Did you recognize the image on this post as the flag of Los Angeles? Probably not. Designed and proclaimed the city's official flag in 1931, it has fallen into obscurity, visible only in city offices and courtrooms. To us at Do Good LA, it symbolizes municipal bureaucracy, not the vibrancy of our Los Angeles.
This week has been a do good prize bonanza for Los Angeles.
First, the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation announced that it is increasing the size of its Humanitarian Prize, which is awarded every year, from $1.5 million to $2 million (it is the largest award of its kind in the world). Second, the Berggruen Institute launched a $1 million prize, to be awarded annually, to a philosopher, "a living thinker whose ideas have deeply influenced our world."
Los Angeles is also the home of numerous other high profile prizes with cash awards of varying sizes:
We Californians (especially Angelenos) are accustomed to put downs from New Yorkers--We are used to the hearing and reading the ill-formed stereotypes...you know the ones.
Claremont McKenna College (CMC) is well known for educating future leaders in economics, business and government. Its alumni include founders of mega-financial institutions, accomplished corporate CEOs, and prominent political figures. It is less well known that CMC is also among the top institutions in the United States in social innovation education.
In a recent article in the New York Times on the mansionization that is taking place in some neighborhoods here, the journalist observed:
"Los Angeles has always been known for its tear-it-down, build-it-up methods, to the concern of preservationists. The intensity of the current opposition [to mansionization] has challenged the notion that this is a city with little interest in preserving its past."
Southern California is one of the hottest real estate markets in the country. We read stories daily about investors from around the world buying property here, often for cash.
So, it was heartening to read today in the San Fernando Valley Business Journal that in December of last year, long time Santa Clarita residents and nature lovers Bob and Wendy Stevenson donated two 4.91 acre lots to the City of Santa Clarita for open space. This is their second property donation. In 2007, the couple donated 16.3 acres to the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy.