Los Angeles mayor Eric Garcetti announces three new senior leadership staff members

Mayor Eric Garcetti Friday announced new members of his senior staff, naming Mary Hodge as deputy mayor of the Mayor's Office of City Services, Kevin Keller as deputy mayor of the Mayor's Office of Economic Development, and Alex Comisar as director of communications.

"The breadth and depth of experience of these three leaders make them the right people to continue our recovery from the pandemic and steer our city toward a future of equity, resilience and prosperity," Garcetti said. "From delivering on our back to basics agenda to record job creation and economic growth, these three individuals have the track record and institutional knowledge to excel in these roles, and I am proud to welcome them into these new positions."

Garcetti is expected to leave office early, having been appointed to a U.S. ambassadorship in India by President Joe Biden. The mayor said during an unrelated news conference on Aug. 23 that he expects to be mayor for "some months still" as he awaits the U.S. Senate confirmation process.

Hodge, who currently serves as deputy chief of staff, will oversee 15 departments involved in the city's transportation network, infrastructure and neighborhood services.

"I am excited to work with our city departments that play such important roles in shaping how people experience Los Angeles -- whether residents or visitors," said Hodge.

"The work we do touches the lives of so many people in so many different ways, ranging from providing basic vital services like the water, power and sanitation that we rely on every single day, to building and maintaining the roads, bridges and transportation systems that connect our neighborhoods and communities to the parks, libraries, zoo and cultural landmarks and experiences that enrich our city and make it unique."

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Hodge also previously served as chief of operations for Garcetti. Before that, she worked in a senior position for President Barack Obama's 2008 presidential campaign and Garcetti's 2013 mayoral campaign.

Keller, as deputy mayor of the Mayor's Office of Economic Development, will oversee planning, building services, tourism, convention, airport and port departments.

"As we help restaurants and other small businesses get back on their feet, we will continue to increase housing, invest in our infrastructure, and expand our economy. I look forward to working with community and business leaders to ensure their voices are heard as we work together to bring economic opportunity to all Angelenos," Keller said.

Keller will also be a chief advisor on land use, land development and economic policy. He previously served as executive director for the Department of City Planning, managing all internal department operations.

Comisar, who served as deputy communications director and press secretary, joined Garcetti's team in 2015. He replaces Dae Levine as director of communications.

"Public trust in city government depends on effective communication with Angelenos about the issues that matter most to them, and what we're doing to improve their lives every day," Comisar said. "Mayor Garcetti has always been deeply committed to making sure everyone has the chance to participate in the public discussion about building L.A.'s future, and I am honored that he has given me the opportunity to help him lead that everyday dialogue with our constituents."