PAUL KREKORIAN BIOGRAPHY
Devoted to public service throughout his adult life, Paul Krekorian’s career has been defined by his proven record of successful, results-oriented leadership in state government, local government, public education and in the private sector.
For three years, Paul represented the state's 43rd district in the California State Assembly - the last as the Assistant Majority Leader - where he helped usher in groundbreaking legislation while setting the gold standard in local representation.
His career in politics, however, was born of humble beginnings in the San Fernando Valley. After attending Cleveland High School in Reseda, Paul graduated from USC and went on to law school at UC Berkeley’s Boalt Hall. For twenty years, Paul had a successful law practice in business litigation and intellectual property law, representing business clients at two of the country’s most prominent law firms, Skadden Arps and Dewey Ballantine, as well as the entertainment industry boutique firm Leopold, Petrich & Smith, before starting his own firm.
In 2006, Paul was elected to the California State Assembly, launching a magnificent first term in which he authored the highest number of bills signed into law of any freshman legislator. During that first term, Paul's significant legislative successes included legislation that completely revamped and modernized California’s trademark laws, providing California businesses with stronger protections for their intellectual property. The California Chamber of Commerce entrusted Paul to carry one of its priority bills for the term, a measure that enhanced penalties for counterfeiting crimes and provided more effective tools for businesses to combat counterfeiters. Paul also worked with the Recording Industry Association of America in the successful passage of AB 2750, Paul's anti-piracy measure that provides fair compensation for victims of piracy.
From 2006 to 2009, Paul led the Assembly Select Committee on the Preservation of California's Entertainment Industry. In that role he was one of the Legislature's leading advocate for aggressive state action to combat runaway film and television production, culminating in his historic legislation that enacted California's first production tax incentive. The half-billion dollar incentive program will save countless good middle class jobs in Los Angeles that otherwise would have been lost to New Mexico, New York, Louisiana and elsewhere.
In addition to his production incentive, Paul was instrumental in ensuring passage of an economic stimulus measure as part of the resolution of the 2008-09 budget stalemate. Paul's legislation included a two-year tax incentive for small businesses that add employees, and a "single sales factor" revision of California's corporate taxation formula that will encourage multistate businesses to invest more in facilities and payroll within the state.
As Chair of the Assembly Select Committee on Renewable Energy, Paul authored of one of the most important energy and green jobs bills of the 2008-09 Assembly term, AB 64. The bill, which passed the Legislature but was vetoed by the governor, would have resulted in 33% of the state's electricity being generated from renewable resources by 2020. Paul's AB 64 would have spurred innovation, investment and job growth while also protecting the environment and promoting rate stability by putting California in a position of global leadership on renewable energy generation and development.
As a member of the Assembly, Paul created a program dubbed "Government at your Doorstep." During his time in office, Paul and his staff knocked on more than 3,000 doors n his District. In response to complaints about speeding, graffiti and noise pollution, Paul's office acted to alleviate concerns large and small.
In 2009, Paul was elected to lead Los Angeles' second City Council district – the first Armenian-American to sit on the council - in a resounding victory observers hailed as a mandate for change. After a four-month election, Paul received more than 56% of the vote despite being outspent more than 2 to 1 in overall campaign dollars and more than 13 to 1 in third-party political committee donations. After the election, the Los Angeles Daily News took note of Krekorian's coalition while also putting future candidates on notice: "[T]he outcome of the election will serve as a cautionary tale to future politicians in this city that voters are starting to wake up and smell the special interests - and they are not happy about it."
Prior to his service in the Assembly, Paul served as President of the Burbank Board of Education. He was elected to the school board during a fiscal crisis that threatened to devastate the quality of education. Under Paul’s leadership, the district was able to fix its budget problems while improving educational programs by making thoughtful budget cuts and realizing efficiencies to pare administrative and operating costs. At the same time, Paul served as President of the Five Star Education Coalition, a consortium of five suburban school districts that works to shape state and federal education policy.
Paul lives in the San Fernando Valley with his wife Tamar and their three children.