Over 1100 participants, including NCVV Board members and stakeholders, spent Saturday September 9 at City Hall as part of the 2017 Congress of Neighborhoods. The annual day long event brings together NC Board members and stakeholders with elected city officials and representatives of city departments for a day of learning and networking.

Participants were welcomed in the morning session by Mayor Eric Garcetti, and heard a keynote address from LA County Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas. Many in the crowd remember the work in 1997 by Ridley-Thomas that led to the Neighborhood Council system. Today almost 100 NCs are strengthening relationships between communities, city departments and city leaders.

In addition to the Mayor and Supervisor, other speakers included Councilmembers Paul Krekorian and David Ryu, and Director of the Department of Neighborhood Empowerment Grayce Liu. NCVV Board member Suzanne Lewis (pictured with Mayor Garcetti) served again this year on the NC Congress organizing committee, chaired by Sunland Tujunga NC Board member Cindy Cleghorn.

In his welcome remarks, Mayor Garcetti reminded the record crowd how important they are to the City of LA. “Congress of Neighborhoods brings together hundreds of leaders from all of L.A.’s Neighborhood Councils — where our residents become active partners in our democracy, help chart a course for our city, and make your voices heard and your values known” said Garcetti. “Neighborhood Council Leaders are Local Stars”.

The Congress was part of Civic Engagement month which was declared in Council Chambers on September 1 with a proclamation presented by City Council President Herb Wesson to the Board of Neighborhood Commissioners President Joy Atkinson and Department of Neighborhood Empowerment General Manager Grayce Lui.

Also part of the celebration is a Neighborhood Council display on the bridge between City Hall and City Hall East. Neighborhood Council Valley Village was represented on two of the display panels on the bridge. We are proud to report that our own NCVV Board Member Suzanne Lewis helped with the creation, design and installation of the bridge display and she was the only NC Member to do so.

Highlighting the Valley Village Architectural Design Standards:

Showcasing our Park Groundbreaking: