July 21, 2024 #1 Local News, Information and Event Source for the Century City/Westwood areas.

Special election to be held today to fill LAUSD Board of Education seat

 

The seat was left  left vacant by the death of Marguerite Poindexter LaMotte in December. (Thinkstock)
The seat was left left vacant by the
death of Marguerite Poindexter LaMotte in December. (Thinkstock)

A special election will be held today to fill the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) Board of Education seat left vacant by the death of Marguerite Poindexter LaMotte in December.

Retired LAUSD administrator George McKenna and county supervisor aide Alex Johnson topped a seven-candidate field in June, but because no candidate received a majority, a runoff was needed in the district, which includes south and southwest Los Angeles, Cheviot Hills, Hancock Park, Windsor Hills and parts of Gardena.

LaMotte died Dec. 5 while attending an education conference in San Diego. She was 80.

McKenna finished first in the June primary in District 1 with nearly 45 percent of the vote. He was touted highly by Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Los Angeles, when the school board was considering appointing a replacement for LaMotte.

McKenna’s work to curb gang violence at Washington Preparatory High School was the subject of a 1986 made-for-TV movie starring Denzel Washington.

Since the June election, McKenna received endorsements from the Los Angeles County Democratic Party, four of five former competing candidates and the Los Angeles School Police Officers Association.

Johnson, who received 24 percent of the vote, is an aide to Los Angeles County Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas. Ridley-Thomas’ backing of Johnson helped fuel much debate during board consideration of an appointed replacement for LaMotte, with Ridley-Thomas and Waters butting heads over their support of competing candidates. Johnson previously worked with the Department of Education in New York City.

Johnson has been endorsed by former Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, the Association for Los Angeles Deputy Sheriffs and the Planned Parenthood Los Angeles PAC.

Polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.

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