Councilmember Victor Gordo Bio

Victor Gordo

The oldest of 5 children, Victor M. Gordo, born in Zacatecas, Mexico, arrived in the United States at the age of five. Together with his family, he has lived in Pasadena ever since, attending Madison Elementary in District 5, and getting his first job as a paperboy delivering the Pasadena Star News during middle and high school. Victor is a proud product of the Pasadena Unified School District, playing football, baseball, and soccer at Pasadena High School and receiving a number of athletic honors including All Pacific League honors, All San Gabriel Valley Ambassadors Co-Athlete of the year, the Pasadena High School faculty awarded him the George Stewart Memorial Scholarship established to “honor the graduating senior whose character, determination, and quiet leadership best reflect the memory of George Stewart.”

When Victor enrolled at Pasadena City College, he became the first person in his family to attend college. Continuing at Azusa Pacific University, studying business management and finance, he worked his way through school as a waiter and restaurant manager (including at the then the Rose City Diner and Ranchero Mexican Rest.). After Pasadena City College and Azusa Pacific, he coached and taught at High Point Academy, then spent several years working on issues involving children, youth, and families.

As Program Director for Pasadena’s Day One Community Partnership, Victor brought together over 100 agencies to create Youth Month, which is now in its thirteenth year of providing Pasadena young people with free daily activities during the month of August. He also worked closely with city staff and residents to rid neighborhoods of problematic bars and liquor stores. As a result of his efforts with Day One, Victor was asked to work with the Los Angeles County Children’s Planning Council to help develop a system of Service Area Planning Councils aimed at making county government more responsive to local needs, as well as more efficient and effective in delivering services to children, youth, and families.

Victor began his direct service to the city of Pasadena in 1997, when then–Vice Mayor Bill Crowfoot appointed him as the field representative for District 5. In this capacity, Victor successfully handled many types of constituent issues, from problems affecting a small number of residents or businesses to issues of citywide concern.

While working full-time for Vice Mayor Crowfoot, Victor undertook the grueling task of attending law school at night, commuting 4-5 nights a week to the University of La Verne College of Law for classes and spending weekends in that institution’s law library in order to compete with students who did not work during the week. He excelled at his studies, earning several prestigious honors including several American Jurisprudence Awards, Moot Court Honors, Best Oralist Award, Success Grant Recipient, and after defeating students from other top law schools Victor reached the quarter-finals of the 2000 HNBA National Moot Court competition held at Georgetown University, Washington D.C. Victor successfully passed the California Bar on his first attempt in July 2001.

Following Vice Mayor Crowfoot’s leaving city service, Victor was elected to the Pasadena City Council in his own right in March 2001 and has represented District 5 ever since, being re-elected in 2005 and again in 2009 (with 91.2% of the vote). Victor was also elected by his Council colleagues to serve as Pasadena’s Vice Mayor in 2009 and 2011. Victor serves on the Council’s Finance Committee and as Chair of the Economic Development and Technology Committee of the City Council.

Pasadena’s District 5 is one of the city’s most ethnically and socially diverse districts, and includes several of its most important and notable historic landmark districts—Bungalow Heaven, Garfield Heights, Washington Square, and Orange Heights. Throughout his time on the Council, Victor has focused on fostering an improved quality of life in District 5 neighborhoods, advocating for economic growth and stability in local business districts, and promoting safe, family-friendly environments throughout the district and the city as a whole. Once again, he has led efforts to combat nuisance liquor stores that were negatively affecting residential neighborhoods, chairing a work group that developed a process for dealing with this issue, which had plagued the city for decades. (Adopted by the City Council, the Deemed Approved Ordinance withstood legal challenge in 2012.) In addition, Victor was selected by the Pasadena City Council in 2009 to serve as its representative on the Rose Bowl Operating Company (RBOC). The following year, he was elected by the RBOC Board of Directors to serve as its President/Chair and help lead the Stadium’s renovation efforts.

Professionally, Victor served as an attorney for the Laborers’ International Union of North America (LIUNA) Local 777 from 2001 through 2007, and was promoted to general counsel in 2008. In 2009, he was elected Local 777’s Secretary/Treasurer and now serves the organization in both capacities. Having successfully handled many complex legal matters, Victor was also named a 2012 Top Attorney by Pasadena Magazine, chosen by the vote of other attorneys in the San Gabriel Valley and Los Angeles Metro areas.

Victor enjoys a wonderful family life in Pasadena’s District 5 with his wife Kelly, an elementary school teacher in the El Monte Unified School District, and their two children—seven-year-old Michael and five-year-old Emma