Suja Lowenthal is set to become the next city manager of Hermosa Beach, Calif., pending the council’s approval.
Lowenthal, currently a senior adviser to Santa Monica's city manager, will know her fate following the council’s next meeting, scheduled for Aug. 28.
“I am so excited to have the opportunity to become a part of the community and work with its residents and business and community leaders,” Lowenthal said in a statement. “I am also enthusiastic about the prospect of serving the community and getting to know city staff—all of whom have committed themselves to making Hermosa an incredible place to live, work and play.”
Lowenthal, a Long Beach resident, has 20 years of government, municipal and community engagement, according to a press release, having served in Long Beach and Santa Monica city governments, as well as local water districts, according to The Beach Reporter.
Since last year, the Indian American official was responsible for analyzing and addressing high-profile issues surrounding the Santa Monica Airport and has served as co-chair of the city’s mobility strategic goal, the report said.
If Lowenthal is approved by the city council, her annual salary would be $219,000, according to the publication.
“We are thrilled to have found such a great fit for our city at such a pivotal time in our development,” said Mayor Jeff Duclos in the report. “Suja’s extensive knowledge of all the various facets of local government, her experience as a Coastal Commissioner, her work in the fields of transportation, education and water management, and her experience in business development and public/private partnerships will be of great benefit to us.
“In addition to her management skills, she is unquestionably one of the most impressive individuals I have had the pleasure of meeting in a long time,” Duclos said.
Lowenthal said Hermosa Beach is a special place and she is ready to “work on implementing the city's long-range plans and enhancing city services.”
Lowenthal, according to the news release, served as Transit Planning and Community Engagement Manager for Santa Monica from 2012-2017. In that role, she was responsible for regional intergovernmental transit planning and all other aspects of transit planning and community engagement for the Big Blue Bus regional transit agency, the report said.
Lowenthal also served as a member of the Long Beach City Council from 2006-2016 and as the city’s vice mayor from 2010-2012 and 2014-2016. In addition, she served as an alternate member of the California Coastal Commission from 2007-2009, it added
In addition to being elected to the Long Beach City Council, Lowenthal was elected to the Board of Education in the Long Beach Unified School District in 2001 and served until 2006. Before joining the city of Santa Monica, she served in a variety of positions for the Water Replenishment District in Cerritos, the Central Basin Municipal Water District, the West Basin Municipal Water District, the Los Angeles City Attorney’s Office and the Los Angeles City Department of Aging, the publication said.
Born in Madras, India, Lowenthal came to the U.S. in 1977 at the age of 7. She earned a bachelor of economics degree from UCLA, an M.B.A. from California State University at Los Angeles, and a doctorate in policy, planning and development from the University of Southern California.