Rex Richardson Launches Campaign for Long Beach Mayor
Vice Mayor Rex Richardson has declared his candidacy to be the next Long Beach Mayor.
“Long Beach provided me with an opportunity to put down roots, build a family, and spend every day making our community a better place for every resident,” stated Richardson. “I’ve seen the results of what happens when neighbors come together and create change. I’m ready to bring this same spirit of unity and collaboration to our entire city as your next Mayor.”
Richardson shared his vision for creating a city where every person and every neighborhood is provided the resources they need to thrive.
“We have our work cut out for us – navigating a pandemic and getting our economy back on track while ensuring no neighborhood is left behind. We’ve proven that when we work together, there is nothing we can’t overcome,” continued Richardson.
Richardson shared that he will focus on addressing homelessness, protecting neighborhood health and public safety, investing in opportunities for youth, and confronting the effects of climate change.
Elected to the city council in 2014, he worked alongside neighborhood leaders to bring vital public safety, economic, and community investments as part of his “Uptown Renaissance” initiative. He secured significant investments into the revitalization of North Long Beach that led to the creation of the Michelle Obama Library, the Doris Topsy-Elvord Community Center, and the restoration of the wetlands at DeForest Park.
Richardson was instrumental in building Long Beach’s first municipal homeless shelter with supportive bridge housing that has helped unhoused individuals move off the streets. He also championed creating the Long Beach Office of Equity to improve community health outcomes, which has led to a more equitable response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Richardson has also secured early support from regional leaders, State Senator Lena Gonzalez and Los Angeles County Supervisor Janice Hahn.
“I’m grateful for the endorsements from our local firefighters, State Senator Lena Gonzalez, and Supervisor Janice Hahn and appreciative of the faith they have in my leadership at this critical moment for our city,” said Richardson. “In the coming months, I look forward to listening to Long Beach residents and working together to shape a city where every neighborhood and resident is healthy, safe, and thriving.”
Richardson also announced a fundraising haul of more than $250,000 from 750 donors to help jumpstart his campaign.
Throughout his life, Richardson has overcome tough odds. A son of working-class parents, Richardson’s father served our country in the Air Force, and his mother––a child of the South who integrated her school––worked as a union assembly line welder at General Motors. Richardson’s family fell on hard times when his parents divorced, exasperated by housing insecurity and deep poverty. With the help of public schools and youth opportunity programs, Richardson set on a path toward a better future.
His and his mother’s hard work culminated in Richardson’s college acceptance, opening the door to a life different than he had experienced growing up. After serving as the Student Body President of Cal State Dominguez Hills, Richardson became a community organizer with SEIU Local 721, helping blue-collar workers in South Los Angeles County. At age 25, he bought his first home in North Long Beach, the first in his family to own real estate. Soon after, he began serving as Chief of Staff to Councilmember Steve Neal.
Seeking to create greater change, Richardson won his City Council race in 2014 with 73% of the vote, making history as Long Beach’s youngest member ever to serve. Richardson quickly established himself as a collaborative leader and change agent, seeking to provide equitable investment and opportunities for the members of his community. He was re-elected to his position in 2018, and his peers chose him to serve as Long Beach’s Vice Mayor twice.
Richardson is the Immediate Past President of the Southern California Association of Governments and currently serves as a South Coast Air Quality Management District Board Member.
He and his wife, Dr. Nina Richardson, Ed.D., are homeowners in North Long Beach, where they reside with their two young daughters.