De León Poised to Become Next Calif. Senate President

Sen. Kevin de León during the 2013 Armenian Genocide commemoration in the State Capitol

SACRAMENTO—California Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg said on Tuesday that “it is clear” Sen. Kevin de León will be the next leader of the state Senate, reported the Sacramento Bee.

“I think he will be a great leader. He’s adept at both the policy and the political side,” Steinberg said as he and de León emerged from a meeting of Senate Democrats this afternoon, in which the majority party discussed leadership of the house but did not take a formal vote, reported the Sacramento Bee.

“It was a good conversation and the caucus embraced my message. I think we’re well on our way. I support Kevin very strongly,” The Sacramento Bee quoted Steinberg as saying.

According to the Bee Steinberg said he told fellow Democrats that he intends to remain the leader of the state Senate until his term ends in November, and that he will call for a vote on de Leon’s leadership after the budget is complete in June.

“The ANCA Western Region greatly appreciates having had the opportunity to work closely with Speaker Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg during his tenure, and we wish him well in his future endeavors,” said Armenian National Committee of America-Western Region Board of Directors Chairwoman Nora Hovsepian.

“We also want to warmly congratulate our good friend and long-standing supporter, Senator Kevin de León, on his impending position as California Senate Pro Tem, and we look forward to continuing to work closely with him in the future, especially on issues of concern to the Armenian-American community,” added Hovsepian.

De León took office in 2006, representing the Little Armenia area of Hollywood and worked closely with the community.

He has been active supporter of the Armenian Relief Society’s Social Service Center in the heart of Little Armenia, providing assistance to community members who utilize the office’s services.

Since 2006, de León has sponsored or co-sponsored the Annual Genocide Commemorations in the State Capitol

Every year he has co-sponsored the Little Armenia Beautification Project

In 2009, through de León’s initiative, Little Armenia Freeway signs were place on the 101 Freeway, with the California Department of Transportation footing the bill, so the community did not have to dip into its resources.

In addition to the ceremonies in the State Legislature, in 2010 he co-hosted the iWitness Photo Exhibit, a photographic project by artists Ara Oshagan and Levon Parian, which depicted survivors of the Armenian Genocide. The iWitness Exhibit was displayed in the Rotunda of the Capitol building.

2012 Senator de Leon welcomed Nagorno-Karabakh Republic National Assembly Chairman Ashot Ghulian to the State Senate inviting him to speak on the Senate Floor about the advances in Karabakh. He also hosted a special breakfast in Ghulian’s honor

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