John Lee is a father, husband, community leader, and San Fernando Valley native with nearly 20 years of experience working for and delivering results for the communities of Los Angeles’ Twelfth Council District.
The son of South Korean immigrants who arrived in California during the 1960s in pursuit of the American dream, John learned from an early age the values of hard work, community, and family. A product of local public schools, John is a proud Highlander and Matador, having attended Prairie Street Elementary, Robert Frost Middle School, Granada Hills High School, and California State University, Northridge.
John began his lifelong love of public service by volunteering for various local non-profit organizations in the CD12 community while working full-time during college. John then began working as a Field Deputy for Councilmember Joel Wachs, the creator of the Neighborhood Council system to enhance the voice of everyday residents in local government.
John went on to serve as Chief Legislative Deputy to former Los Angeles Councilmember Greig Smith where he was the lead on critical public safety, environmental, and fiscal legislation.
Continuing his legacy of service in CD12, John served as Chief of Staff to former Los Angeles Councilmember Mitch Englander. Throughout his tenure in public service, John has spearheaded innovative programs and policies on a wide range of issues from improving neighborhood services and protecting the environment, to expanding youth programs and strengthening public safety, to addressing homelessness, investing in infrastructure, and helping our local economy grow.
Among his many notable contributions to our CD12 communities, John has:
- Secured over $2 million in Federal funds to build the Greig Smith LAPD Devonshire Youth Center in Northridge, home of the Police Activity League Supporters (PALS).
- Raised over $1 million to fund after school programs for low-income and at-risk youth in our community for the North Valley Family YMCA.
- Brought together community stakeholders to build the San Fernando Valley Rescue Mission’s Home Again transitional housing project. This 90-bed family housing facility has been hailed as a model for how to effectively address the homelessness crisis – enjoying widespread support in the community and having saved hundreds of families from life on the streets by helping them get back on their feet with good jobs and stable housing.
- Advocated for the implementation of Performance Based Budgeting in the City of Los Angeles and increasing efficiency of services within our City Departments.
- Together with former Councilman Mitch Englander, Chair of the Public Safety Committee, ensured that our first responders get the equipment they need to protect our communities, including on-officer body cameras for our LAPD Officers, and equipment and new technology for our Firefighters.
- As the appointee for the City of Los Angeles on the Porter Ranch Community Advisory Committee, he ensured that the local community and those affected by the Aliso Canyon Gas Leak were connected to critical resources.
- Helped lead successful efforts to protect and expand open space in Aliso Canyon Park, Rinaldi Park, the Oakridge Estate Park, and the properties adjacent to Stoney Point Park.
A long-time community leader, John has served on the board of various non-profit organizations in the San Fernando Valley, including LAPD Devonshire PALS, the North Valley Family YMCA, and the San Fernando Valley Rescue Mission. He is also deeply involved in preserving the Valley’s history through his work with Valley Relics and honoring our veterans as a volunteer and supporter of Wings over Wendy’s, a local group of WWII, Korean, and Vietnam War veterans.