PALMDALE – The Palmdale City Council has selected District 2 Councilmember Richard J. Loa to serve as Mayor Pro Tem for the City. His term began on Dec. 15 and will run until the council will select a new Mayor Pro Tem at the Dec. 2022 City Council meeting.
“As we head into what will certainly be a busy and productive 2022, I am excited to work with Richard in his role again as Mayor Pro Tem, as well as with the entire City Council, as we continue to work on initiatives and policies that make Palmdale a great place to live, work, learn, and play,” said Palmdale Mayor Steve Hofbauer.
“It will be a pleasure to work closely with Richard again as Mayor Pro Tem,” said Palmdale City Manager J.J. Murphy. “And many thanks to Laura Bettencourt who served this position with distinction and honor over the past year.”
Loa was first elected to the Palmdale City Council in 2001, where he served his four-year term. After completing his term, he headed to Sacramento in 2005, where he served as Governor Schwarzenegger’s appointee to the Board of Prison Terms. He was then appointed by the governor to serve as assistant director to the Housing and Community Development Department. While in Sacramento, Loa also served as staff counsel for the Department of Consumer Affairs, and as counsel for the Barbering and Cosmetology Board and the Fiduciaries Bureau.
Loa returned to the Palmdale City Council on December 11, 2018, as he was appointed to fill the District 2 vacancy created by Mayor Steve Hofbauer’s election. He named Mayor Pro Tem on December 3, 2019 and was elected to a full term as Councilmember on November 3, 2020, winning more than 59% of the vote in his district. Loa earned a Juris Doctor Law Degree from UCLA in 1976, and a Bachelor of Arts Degree from California State University Northridge in 1973. He was licensed to practice law in California in 1977, and currently Loa practices criminal, civil and real estate law locally.
Loa serves as a delegate on the Antelope Valley Transit Authority, second alternate for the League of California Cities Desert Mountain Division, delegate on the Los Angeles County Sanitation District No. 20, League’s Housing, Community and Economic Development policy committee, SCAG’s Aviation Technical Advisory Committee (ATAC), and alternate to the California State Prison Citizens Advisory Committee, US/Mexico Sister Cities Association and High Desert Corridor Joint Powers Authority. He has previously served as the Palmdale City Council delegate for the Antelope Valley Air Quality Management District, Antelope Valley Emergency Management Council, Antelope Valley Regional Anti-Crime Committee and U.S./Mexico Sister Cities Association.
With a passion for community service, Loa is founding officer of the Antelope Valley Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, where he currently serves as director. He is also the current vice president of the Palmdale Sheriff’s Boosters, member of the Knights of Columbus for St. Mary’s Church, director of Amigos De La Feria and member of the Friends of the Fair. Loa is also the parliamentarian for NAHREP, a real estate professional organization, and is a member of the Edwards Air Force Base support group CIV-MIL.
He and Vera, his wife of 46 years, have four children and five grandchildren.