Marqueece Harris-Dawson & Mark Ridley-Thomas

Why Serve? | A Conversation with Los Angeles City Councilmembers Marqueece Harris-Dawson & Mark Ridley-Thomas

Civic engagement involves “working to make a difference in the civic life of one’s community and developing the combination of knowledge, skills, values and motivation to make that difference. It means promoting the quality of life in a community, through both political and non-political processes.” And, as Pew Research Center reports, with over 90,000 government units in the U.S., roughly 2% have ever run for federal, state, or local office.

CivitasLA is joined by two distinguished civic leaders – Los Angeles City Councilmembers Marqueece Harris-Dawson & Mark Ridley-Thomas – who share their journey from community leaders to elected leadership and help answer the question “Why Serve?” for those who may feel disengaged from civic life and political participation. Representing over 500,000 citizens across their respective districts, they account for more than 30 years of combined elected service to community at the local, county and state levels of government. To learn more and get involved, please visit: and

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