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12 Catholics To Watch in 2012: Mayor Richard Riordan

CATHOLICISM IS PART OF HIS DNA

“Catholicism is my DNA – my culture – caring for myself and everybody else. This was caused by watching the respect my parents had for the clergy and their adherence to ethics and fairness.” Due to his upbringing, “I believe we must care for every human being – rich, poor, saint, sinner… I believe in natural laws created by God, which we are capable of understanding and acting upon.”

Catholic People Magazine Mayor Richard Riordan

Mayor with Cardinal Mahony, Eli Broad and Archbishop Gomez at his Brentwood home where he sponsored the announcement of the Catholic Education Foundation’s Legacy Campaign in September.

Catholicism has fueled many humanitarian efforts throughout Richard’s lifetime, from mentoring young gang members at Santa Clara University to working in Ethiopia with The Catholic Relief. He worked with five parishes to help them meet their fiscal problems by matching increases in Sunday collections. He was a founding board member of The International Medical Corp, and also spearheaded a $100 million campaign for scholarships benefiting poor children through The Archdiocese education foundations.

Catholic People Magazine Mayor Richard Riordan

The future Mayor of Los Angeles.

“I believe every child that comes into this world has the God given right to a quality education – the tools to compete – and health care,” Richard said. “Through the Riordan Foundation we have contributed almost 40,000 computers to Catholic and other schools throughout the country to teach reading and writing to young children.”

His future goals include encouraging others – particularly the rich – to help poor children. “This can be done by adopting Catholic schools and not just donating money but being hands on in helping them.”

Looking back on his life so far, “I believe God – and therefore myself – will judge me on what I do today and each and every day of my life. I have monetary wealth, quality education and great networking which give me the ability to get good things done. My Catholicism makes me believe I have an obligation to do them.”

Catholic People Magazine Mayor Richard Riordan

Mayor judging the hat contest at his 80th Birthday Party.

“I believe in natural laws created by God, which we are capable of understanding and acting upon.”