Last night, leaders from around Los Angeles gathered in the Bing Theater at LACMA for a singular event: an evening of conversations about the future of the city. Part civic check-in, part brainstorming session, the evening was intended to encourage cross-discipline networking and problem solving.
Donna Bojarsky, Founder and President of Future of Cities, said the summit was not meant to be a comprehensive overview of all the issues facing the city, but rather to “show glimpses into what L.A. is and can be,” to “celebrate what is already happening with a range of the best, brightest, and wisest people,” and “learn something, meet someone, hear from someone that you didn’t know previously.”
CicLAvia’s Aaron Paley, Councilman David Ryu, restaurateur Bill Chait, KCRW’s Madeleine Brand, ABC Family President Tom Ascheim, LACMA director Michael Govan, U.S. Hispanic Media Inc. board chair Monica Lozano, Los Angeles Times culture writer Carolina Miranda, and Moby were among the event’s featured speakers.
Los Angeles magazine’s editor-in-chief, Mary Melton, also participated in the program. She spoke with Casey Wasserman, Chair of LA24, which represents the U.S. in its bid to host the 2024 Olympics.
“I think the ideals of Olympian-ism are as evident in L.A. as anywhere else and the ability…to bring the most diverse collection of people in human history together—that’s what L.A.’s all about,” said Wasserman. “I couldn’t think of anything I’d be more proud of than being part of the team that brought that back to L.A.”
Wasserman, like many of the evening’s speakers, also discussed the need to improve education in Los Angeles. “Education has become a privilege in this country, and it’s not—it’s a right,” he said. “It’s truly about opportunity, and that opportunity should not be based on where you’re born and to whom you’re born and what community you live in.”
That kind of critical thinking didn’t dampen the pro-L.A. mood. “Moving to L.A.—it’s an inevitability,” said Moby. Based on applause, the crowd agreed.