Miguel A. Santana Biography
In June 2009, Mr. Miguel Santana was nominated by Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and confirmed by the City Council as the City Administrative Officer for the City of Los Angeles. Mr. Santana is one of the few city officers who reports directly to the Mayor and the City Council. As the CAO, his office has direct oversight over the City’s $7.25 billion budget, labor negotiations and major policy issues as directed by the Mayor and/or City Council, including the proprietary departments of Department of Water and Power, Airport and Harbor.
Prior to this position, Mr. Santana served as one of five Deputy Chief Executive Officers for Los Angeles County. He worked under William T Fujioka, the County's Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and former City CAO. As Deputy CEO, Mr. Santana provided oversight to all of the County's social service departments including the Department of Children and Family Services, Public Social Services, Child Support, Military and Veterans Affairs and the Human Relations Commission. Collectively, these departments represented $9 billion of the $22 billion annual County budget.
Mr. Santana has more than 20 years of experience managing numerous legislative, political, and community issues. He was Managing Director at Sonnenschein, Nath and Rosenthal consulting on high profile cases including Dan Rather vs. CBS. Prior to this work, Mr. Santana served as Chief of Staff to Supervisor Gloria Molina - one out of five members of the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors. Los Angeles County is the largest county in the United States, with a population of 10 million. As Chief of Staff, Mr. Santana was responsible for more than 40 legislative, field, and support staff.
During his 14 years of service with Supervisor Molina, Mr. Santana's responsibilities included strategic management, legislative and political advocacy, and media relations. His core issues included the following policy areas: budget, health, public works, community and economic development, urban planning, housing, public safety, immigration, restructuring of county governance, consumer protection, and human resources.
Prior to his work with LA County, Mr. Santana worked at MALDEF (Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund), Pomona College, Neighborhood Housing Services, and Whittier-Area Ecumenical Rotating Homeless Shelter.
Mr. Santana has a B.A. in Sociology and Latin American Studies from Whittier College and a Masters Degree in Public Administration from Harvard University. Mr. Santana is married to Sandra Santana, a human resources specialist and has four daughters.
Mr. Santana serves on the Boards of MALDEF, LA Plaza de Cultura y Artes and the United Way of Los Angeles.