In early December, Arcadia Mayor April Verlato announced her campaign on a heartfelt and dedicated mission as she pioneers her run for the Congressional seat in California’s 28th District.
As the first mayor to challenge incumbent Rep. Judy Chu, Verlato’s decision to run is a poignant response to the overlooked yet pressing crises facing both the district and the nation.
Verlato, driven by her passion for solving community issues such as homelessness and public safety, emerges as a determined leader, prepared to tackle the challenges that lie ahead. Her extensive experience as mayor of Arcadia highlights a proven track record of successful governance, showcasing her adeptness in navigating diverse environments and ensuring effective leadership for the San Gabriel Valley.
Throughout her eight-year tenure, April played a pivotal role in emerging from COVID-19 with a $9-million budget surplus, as well as retaining full funding for city services and the police department. Moreover, she demonstrated her unwavering connection to Arcadia by providing crucial assistance to the community during times of crisis, notably amid the 2020 Bobcat Fire and the COVID-19 pandemic. This wealth of experience and empathy for her community makes Verlato a powerful advocate for positive change.
Verlato’s decision to join the race is born from a commitment to rectify ineffective leadership, implement sound policies, and ensure responsible oversight of local resources, as she had done throughout her career. Additionally, Verlato, whose youngest child is a junior at Arcadia High School, acknowledges the challenges facing California, including housing affordability, rising gas prices and reduced economic opportunities.
Despite the option to leave, she and her husband are committed to fighting for the state. Her vision includes bringing back economic prosperity and growth to the San Gabriel Valley, addressing homelessness meaningfully, making neighborhoods safer and revitalizing businesses.
Verlato aims to bring hope back to California. Her candidacy, which is endorsed by more than 30 Republican and Democrat elected officials, represents a pledge to work tirelessly for the well-being and prosperity of the 28th District and the entire state, echoing her belief that, together, Californians can overcome challenges and build a brighter future.
First published in the January 26 print issue of the South Pasadena Review.