On November 4, 2014, California State Senator Ben Allen was overwhelmingly elected to represent the 26th Senate District, which consists of the Westside and coastal South Bay communities of Los Angeles County: the cities of Manhattan Beach, Hermosa Beach, Redondo Beach, Palos Verdes Estates, Rancho Palos Verdes, Rolling Hills, Rolling Hills Estates, El Segundo, Avalon, Lomita, Torrance, Santa Monica, West Hollywood, and Beverly Hills; the Los Angeles neighborhoods of Marina Del Rey, Playa Del Rey, Westchester, Pacific Palisades, Brentwood, Westwood, Westwood Village, Bel Air, Holmby Hills, Little Holmby, Sunset Hills, Beverly Grove, Mar Vista, Mid City West, Miracle Mile, Larchmont Village, Hollywood, Hollywood Hills, Fairfax, Carthay, Fremont Place, Hancock Park, and Windsor Square; and the unincorporated Los Angeles County communities of Marina Del Rey, San Clemente Island, Santa Catalina Island, Franklin, Centinela, and Ocean View.
He was selected as a freshman senator to serve as chair of the Senate’s Committee on Elections and Constitutional Amendments as well as the state legislature’s Joint Committee on the Arts. He also serves on the Senate’s Budget Committee, the Budget Subcommittee that oversees the state’s education budget, the Veterans Affairs Committee, the Natural Resources and Water Committee, and the Transportation and Housing Committee.
Ben is a former board member, and former Board President, of the Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District and was elected as the top vote-getter in both his 2008 election and 2012 reelection. He is also an attorney with the law firm of Richardson & Patel LLP and is a lecturer at UCLA Law School, where he teaches education law and policy.
While in law school, Allen served as a voting member of the University of California Board of Regents and as a judicial clerk with the United Nations’ International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda. Afterwards, Allen was a litigator with the law firm of Bryan Cave LLP and then led the successful Los Angeles launch of The Spark Program, a non-profit organization that connects at-risk middle school students with apprenticeships. He currently serves on Spark’s board.
Prior to his law career, Allen worked for the National Democratic Institute for International Affairs (NDI), and then as communications director for Congressman Jose Serrano (D-NY). He is a senior fellow with the international human rights organization Humanity in Action, is member of a Pacific Council on International Policy, and a graduate of the Jewish Federation’s New Leaders Project. Allen has degrees from Harvard, Cambridge, and UC Berkeley, and he is fluent in Spanish.
In 2017, Ben received the Clean Money Champion by the California Clean Money Campaign. The award is presented to the California State legislator with the highest “Clean Money Score,” as determined by their leadership, votes, and actions regarding campaign finance reform. Ben lives with his wife Melanie and newborn son Ezra in Santa Monica five blocks from the house where he grew up.
In the 2017-18 legislative session, Ben serves on the following committees:
Ben has been recognized for his accomplishments by the following organizations:
Ben has earned a perfect score from several key organizations:
Prior to serving in the state Senate, Ben was active in the community in elected positions and serving in leadership and volunteer positions with many organizations:
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