BioTony Cardenas was elected to the State Assembly in 1996, carrying on his shoulders the dreams of first-generation Americans like his parents who saw their son sworn into office as the first Latino representing the San Fernando Valley in California's legislature.
As chairman of the Assembly budget committee and a city tax reform panel, Cardenas used the sharp eye he honed as businessman to cut through red tape and institute reforms that made Los Angeles more business-friendly and ushered in the biggest infusion of jobs the Valley has seen in more than five years.
A problem-solver with the disciplined mind of engineer, Cardenas crafted real-world solutions to some of the state's most intractable problems over three terms in the Assembly and eight years as a Los Angeles City Councilmember, earning national acclaim for his groundbreaking gang prevention strategies.
As he seeks to become the first Latino to represent the San Fernando Valley in Congress, Cardenas approaches difficult problems with the heart of a family man who learned to build consensus growing up as one of eleven brothers and sisters.
Cardenas lives and breathes the middle-class values of the communities he represents. After graduating from UC Santa Barbara, Cardenas returned to the San Fernando Valley where he still resides with his wife, Norma, and their children. [top]