Forum Planned for 43rd District Candidates


Candidates for California’s 43rd Assembly District will be in town this weekend for a public candidates forum, as campaigning gets underway for Assemblymember Mike Gatto’s soon-to-be vacated seat.

The forum will be held Sunday, Jan. 24 at the Sparr Heights Community Center from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m.

Featured candidates include Glendale City Council member Laura Friedman, Glendale City Clerk Ardashes “Ardy” Kassakhian, former La Cañada Unified School District Governing Board President Andrew Blumenfeld, Dean of Students at Burbank’s Providence High School Dennis Bullock, and former Economic Development Advisor to Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti Rajiv Dalal.

Friedman has served on the Glendale City Council since 2009 and was Glendale’s mayor in 2011 and 2012. She has also served on the boards of the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California, the Glendale Design Review Board and the Energy and Environment Committee for the Southern California Association of Governments. She has also owned and operated a small jewelry business since 2001 and lives in Glendale with her husband and daughter.

Kassakhian has served as Glendale’s city clerk since 2005. He also serves as secretary of the Glendale Economic Development Corporation and is working towards completion of his Master’s degree in Public Policy from UCLA. He lives in Glendale with his wife and son.

Blumenfeld served as president of the La Cañada Unified School District governing board from 2011 to 2015. A La Cañada native, Blumenfeld graduated from La Cañada High School in 2009 and attended Princeton, where he helped found Students for Education Reform. He also worked at Democrats for Education Reform in Los Angeles and as a fifth grade teacher.

Bullock has both taught and served as dean of students at his alma mater, Providence High School, for the past 12 years. He graduated from USC with degrees in political science and communication and Claremont Graduate University with a master’s in politics. Before working at Providence High, Bullock worked for AT&T, Airtouch Cellular and USC as a PA announcer for the athletic department. He resides in Burbank with his wife and two children.

Dalal is the executive director of the Tom Sherak Multiple Sclerosis Hope Foundation and was Economic Development advisor for Eric Garcetti and ran Garcetti’s Office of Motion Picture & Television Production. He was also executive director of Time Warner’s corporate affairs division in Asia-Pacific, overseeing international corporate affairs for Warner Bros., CNN, HBO and TIME. Dalal lives in La Cañada with his wife.

The forum is free and open to the public. The Sparr Heights Community Center is located at 1613 Glencoe Way in Montrose. Doors open at 2:30 p.m.

The primary election will be held on June 7.