Supervisors Appoint Carbajal to Lead Department of Consumer and Business Affairs
January 7, 2021
The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors today voted to appoint Rafael Carbajal as the Director of the Department of Consumer and Business Affairs.
"From helping struggling businesses and consumers during this pandemic, to protecting tenants and workers, to providing much needed services for our immigrants in Los Angeles County, strong leadership for the Department of Consumer and Business Affairs has never been more necessary," said Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors Chair Hilda L. Solis. "Rafael Carbajal brings tenacity and experience to the Department during this pivotal moment."
"I am humbled and honored this Board has placed such trust in my ability to execute their vision and represent the diverse communities we serve," said Carbajal.
Carbajal has served as Acting Director since early September 2020, filling the position vacated by Joseph M. Nicchitta. The new director, who previously served the Department as Chief Deputy Director, led an expansive portfolio of programs and numerous Countywide economic development initiatives, including expanding small business support and strengthening financial consumer protection laws. Carbajal also led efforts to implement Board-approved rent stabilization and tenant protection programs as well as legal assistance initiatives for the immigrant community.
In 2020, the Department managed more than 75,000 calls helping consumers, tenants, small businesses, workers, and immigrants. The Office of Immigrant Affairs, housed within the Department, provides a hub for the 3.5 million immigrants within Los Angeles County to access free services.
The Department also has responsibilities for landlord and tenant protections and recently launched new critical programs such as the Eviction Defense Program, Center for Financial Empowerment's Financial Navigators program, and the Los Angeles County Disaster Help Center in addition to rolling out the COVID-19 Recovery Fund which helped deploy over $115 million to businesses and non-profits in need.
Born and raised in Wilmington, California as a first generation LatinX, Carbajal received his bachelors from Cal State Dominguez Hills. Carbajal has been with the County for over 20 years. He started as an eligibility worker with the Department of Public Social Services and moved up the ranks as he pursued many opportunities within the County, taking roles in administration, policy, auditing, and human resources. While at the Department of Workforce Development, Aging and Community Services he worked in employee relations, risk management, performance management, and litigations. As part of the Department's executive team he was responsible for strategic planning, legislation and public relations and finally, served as Director of Business Services and Strategic Partnerships prior to joining the Department of Consumer and Business Affairs.
"I look forward to working with the Board, my colleagues, and our partners to help our communities not only endure but emerge stronger from this challenging time," added Carbajal.