Prof. Levinson confirmed as new L.A. ethics commissioner

Associate Clinical Professor Jessica Levinson was unanimously confirmed on Friday, Oct. 23 as the newest member of the Los Angeles Ethics Commission. Appointed by L.A. City Controller Ron Galperin, Levinson’s five-year term will run until June 30, 2018. 

Levinson is a highly regarded political analyst and legal scholar with deep roots in election law and related issues. A 2005 alumna of Loyola Law School, her courses at the Law School include the Campaign Finance Seminar and Money, Politics & the Supreme Court.                                                                                                        

Previously, Levinson was director of political reform at the Center for Governmental Studies, where she shaped policy decisions and helped educate voters. She was involved in crafting California’s Proposition 11, known as the Voters First Act, which authorized the creation of the Citizens Redistricting Commission to oversee the redrawing of electoral-district boundaries. 

For Levinson, the Ethics Commission was a natural fit. "I am looking forward to helping to make the electoral and political processes in Los Angeles fair and transparent," she said. 

Heather Holt, the commission’s executive director, was equally as enthusiastic. “Commissioner Levinson’s valuable experience in the field of elections and campaign financing is a natural fit for the Ethics Commission,” said Holt. “We look forward to benefitting from her expertise.” 

In addition to her role as a professor, Levinson continues her mission to educate the public on election-related issues by publishing op-eds and providing media commentary to such outlets as Southern California Public Radio, the Los Angeles Times, the New York Times and many others. She blogs about the intersection of law and politics at PoLawTics.lls.edu

The Ethics Commission was created by voters in 1990 to administer and enforce the city laws that help ensure fair and transparent government decisions. It has five part-time commissioners, who serve staggered five-year terms. Its members are appointed by the Mayor, the City Attorney, the Controller, the City Council President and the City Council President Pro Tem. Levinson joins President Paul Turner, Vice President Valerie Vanaman, Commissioner Nathan Hochman and Commissioner Erin Pak.