Albert Vera Pulls Papers to Run for City Council Seat
December 21, 2017
Business owner, Civil Service Commissioner and lifelong Culver City resident Albert Vera officially pulled papers to appear on the April, 2018 City Council ballot on Monday, December 18.
Flanked by his girlfriend, Kimberly Griffin; campaign treasurer Hal Berman; Mayor Jeff Cooper; and longtime supporter Ira Diamond, Vera met with the City Clerk and made official his intent to run for one of two available seats on the Council that will be vacated by Cooper and Councilman Jim Clarke, who are both termed out.
"Albert simply has a heart of gold, and I am honored to be supporting him in his run for City Council," Diamond said. "I know we can count on him to always do what is right, represent all of our interests fairly and make improving our neighborhoods his number one priority."
"I am anxious to bring my business experiences to City Hall," Vera said. "We need to be smart about our city's finances but we also have to focus on important issues like attainable housing for working professionals, public safety for all of our residents and intelligent ways of dealing with traffic, transportation and mobility.
"We need to move our city forward by working together to address our challenges and take advantage of the opportunities we have before us. We need to balance economic development with the special qualities that make Culver City unique. I know that I can do that."
Vera said his vision for Culver City's future includes focusing on the need for attainable housing for seniors and young professionals, support for the city's protective services and the need to be smart about traffic and development.
"We have attracted some great high-tech companies, brought our city a new public transportation hub and seen lots of positive development, but all that success comes with a price," he said. "We need to make sure that development is done correctly. We need to take care of the less fortunate. And we need to do that without constantly coming to our residents to increase taxes."
"I am supporting Albert for some very simple and basic reasons," Cooper said. "He understands our city and has been committed to it for many years: not only by carrying on the great family tradition of being a giving person but by rolling up his sleeves and getting involved as a volunteer on many committees, with many non-profit organizations, and is even serving our city currently as a Civil Service Commissioner."
Vera, whose father served 12 years on the City Council from 1992-2000 and from 2002-2006, said he hopes to give back to the community that supported him and his family through good times and bad by serving on the Council and guiding the city as it takes on future challenges.
"Knowing Albert and his generosity, this is an ideal opportunity for him to expand his participation in the city he really loves," said Griffin.
Born in Culver City, Vera attended St. Augustine Elementary School and St. Bernard high school while helping his parents, Albert and Ursula, in their landmark Sorrento Italian Market on Sepulveda Boulevard. He served for 15 years as a Culver City Police Department reserve officer while continuing to help run Sorrento, during which time he got married and had a daughter, Alexandria.
The Sorrento market retains its old-world charm but Vera has made numerous upgrades and improvements, including the introduction of new imports from all over Italy and the creation of what has become one of Southern California's finest Italian wine departments.
Vera has maintained the broad philanthropic efforts undertaken by his father, something he said has shaped his attitude toward how the city should be run.
"We need to look out for everyone who calls this city 'home,'" Vera said. "Culver City should be a safe and welcoming environment for families at all levels of the economic spectrum and I am committed to making sure our schools, our police department, our fire department and our parks system have the tools and resources they need to create that environment."
Vera is a member of the Culver City Exchange Club and has served on both the Culver City Landlord/Tenant Board and the Culver City Civil Service Commission, where he currently serves as part of the five-member commission charged with advising the City Council on all matters concerning Human Resources administration.
Vera also serves on the Culver City Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors, the Culver City Palms Family YMCA Board of Managers and the board of Upward Bound House, a non-profit agency that works to find permanent, supportive housing for homeless children and their families.
For more information about Vera and his campaign please visit http://www.veraforcouncil.com.