Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti: “Be a Change Agent!”


“We can all be change agents,” said Mayor Eric Garcetti at Stephen S. Wise Temple on February 10, 2015. Rabbi David Woznica was a fantastic interviewer and the two spoke about our city of Los Angeles, immigration and security as well as Garcetti’s personal life.

Garcetti said, “I am half Mexican, half Jewish with an Italian last name.” He has been called a “kosher burrito.” His humor and wit came through in all his answers and I was proud that he is our mayor of the second largest city in the United States. Our first elected Jewish Mayor is also a Naval Intelligence Officer and Rhodes Scholar. He is inspired to connect this city and all its communities. The son of District Attorney Gil Garcetti learned the importance of family at home and he and his wife have served as foster parents.   

When Garcetti said, “I love this city and I want it to be right,” I knew he is working to make changes to improve Los Angeles. On the issue of the worst traffic in America, Garcetti said that in Los Angeles there is an average of 1.1 passengers in a car. If there were 1.6, we would have no traffic. He is working hard to add public transportation options which include being able to access the airport by rail line. What can you do? Can you travel one day a week with a friend? Can you work one day a week from home? Can you take the bus? The ideas of smart housing and living near where you work are being discussed and plans are in progress for these issues.

  Garcetti has implemented the entrepreneur in residence at City Hall which is in association with Ernst & Young LLP. Krisztina “Z” Holly and Amir Tehrani are the Entrepreneur in Residence this year. Los Angeles is the most entrepreneurial city in the world with 1 out of 172 residents creating their dreams. Garcetti wants more people to find a success path in this great city. This “City of Second Chances” is going through the largest normalization process with over 550,000 people involved. Garcetti implores us to “find our humanity again” as immigration is the most important civil rights issue of 2015.  

What can you do to make Los Angeles a better place? Garcetti says this is “the most diverse city on the planet.” He invites you to sign up at http://www.lamayor.org/volunteer_corps  

  Mayor @ericgarcetti shares what citizens can do to make #LosAngeles better @wiselosangeles   A photo posted by Lisa Niver (@wesaidgotravel) on

If everyone in our city would commit to helping in three service activities a year, there would be great changes. Garcetti said: “Take a risk and get outside your comfort zone.” He also asks you to publicly say what you love about Los Angeles. Feel free to share your ideas in the comments below.

Garcetti asked: “Can you give up one single car ride this week? Can you connect to a school in your neighborhood through Donors Choice and help a teacher? Can you go to an organizing meeting about minimum wage or a 1/2 cent sales tax?” Garcetti plans to raise one million people out of poverty. Are you willing to help? Can you be part of the immigrations volunteer core? Can you help a student apply for financial aid?

“Get engaged! If the four million people of Los Angeles march together, we can inspire, listen, amplify and lead to a better Los Angeles.”

Lisa Ellen Niver

Lisa Ellen Niver is an award-winning travel expert who has explored 102 countries and six continents. A graduate of the University of Pennsylvania, she worked on cruise ships for seven years and backpacked for three years in Asia. She is the founder of the website WeSaidGoTravel which is read in 235 countries and was named #3 on Rise Global’s top 1,000 Travel Blogs. Niver is represented by Chip MacGregor of MacGregor Literary, Inc. With more than 150,000 followers across social media, she has hosted Facebook Live for USA Today 10best, is verified on Twitter and listed on IMDb, and is the Social Media Manager for the Los Angeles Press Club. You can find Lisa Niver talking travel on broadcast television at KTLA TV Los Angeles, Satellite Media Tours, The Jet Set TV and Orbitz travel webisodes as well as her YouTube channel, where her WeSaidGoTravel videos have over 1.6 million views. After three months on TikTok, Instagram Reels, Facebook Reels and YouTube Shorts, she had over 500,000 (1/2 million) views. As a journalist, Niver has interviewed Deepak Chopra, Olympic medalists, and numerous bestselling authors and been invited to both the Oscars and the United Nations. She has been a judge for the Gracie Awards for the Alliance of Women in Media, and has run 15 travel competitions on her website, publishing over 2,500 writers and photographers from 75 countries. For her print and digital stories as well as her television segments, she has been awarded three Southern California Journalism Awards and two National Arts and Entertainment Journalism Awards and been a finalist twenty times.   Niver has published more than 2000 articles, in more than three dozen magazines and journals including National Geographic, Wired, Teen Vogue, HuffPost Personal, POPSUGAR, Ms. Magazine, Luxury Magazine, Smithsonian, Sierra Club, Saturday Evening Post, AARP, AAA Explorer Magazine, American Airways, Delta Sky, enRoute (Air Canada), Hemispheres, Jewish Journal, Myanmar Times, BuzzFeed, Robb Report, Scuba Diver Life, Ski Utah, Trivago, Undomesticated, USA Today, TODAY, Wharton Magazine, and Yahoo. Awards National Arts and Entertainment Journalism Awards 2021 Winner: Book Critic: Ms. Magazine “Untamed: Brave Means Living From the Inside Out” 2019 Winner: Soft News Feature for Film/TV: KTLA TV “Oscars Countdown to Gold with Lisa Niver” 2019 Finalist for: Soft News, Business/Music/Tech/Art Southern California Journalism Awards 2022 Finalist: Book Criticism 2021 Winner: Technology Reporting 2021 Finalist: Book Criticism 2020 Winner: Print Magazine Feature: Hemispheres Magazine, “Painter by the Numbers, Rembrandt” 2020 Finalist: Online Journalist of the Year, Activism Journalism, Educational Reporting, Broadcast Lifestyle Feature 2019 Finalist: Broadcast Television Lifestyle Segment for “Ogden Ski Getaway” 2018 Finalist: Science/Technology Reporting, Travel Reporting, Personality Profile 2017 Winner: Print Column “A Journey to Freedom over Three Passovers” Social Media Presence YouTube Channel: We Said Go Travel (1.6 million views) Short form video:TikTok, Instagram Reels, Facebook Reels, YouTube Shorts Twitter: lisaniver (90,000 followers) Instagram: lisaniver (24,000 followers) Pinterest: We Said Go Travel (20,000 followers and over 70,000 monthly views) Facebook: lisa.niver (5,000 followers); We Said Go Travel (3,000 followers) LinkedIn: lisaellenniver (9000 contacts)

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