City Council Candidate Profile: Linda Bessin


Editor’s Note: myBurbank will be highlighting the upcoming election in two areas, first candidate profiles to give you some background on each candidate, and second will be a series of questions on each issue. We will run a new profile each day and the question/answer part will run after they are completed.

Where are you from originally?  

I was born in Hollywood and grew up in Westwood. When I graduated from high school,  I left the Westside as I felt it was not a place that valued community in the way I wanted  to experience it.  

What was the most memorable or character-building part of your upbringing?  

My parents taught me the values of hard work and determination. I learned from them to  give my all and never to take anything for granted. I developed self-discipline, focus, and commitment to completing my goals. I graduated high school when I turned 17 years old and graduated with honors from college. The work ethic imparted to me from  my parents has taken me through a successful business career, a second academic  career earning a Master’s Degree, and now a commitment to public service.  

How long have you been in Burbank?  

I moved to the Burbank area in 1990 and bought my house here in 1994. Burbank is and will always be my home.  

What drew you to the City of Burbank?  

I love the small town feel of Burbank. I see public parks all over the city and neighbors  who care about the quality of life for everyone. People are bonded with their  neighborhoods and help each other. This is special and not always part of every  community. I also value the excellent City services. I can call any city office and speak with a person rather than get voice mail.  

What are some of your interests/hobbies?  

I am an avid reader and am finishing my final semester at CSUN for my Master’s in English. This love of books motivated me to serve on the Burbank Board of Library Trustees for four years. I have been involved in political activism here in Burbank and  around the country. I love my two dogs and take them hiking around Burbank and Griffith Park. Of course, I love my friends and wish I could be socializing with them in this challenging time.  

What motivated you to run for office?  

Our city leaders failed to prepare for a pandemic and had no plan in place. Once the pandemic hit, City Council said to their constituents this isn’t our responsibility, it’s all up to the City Manager, and then they didn’t meet for over a month. During that time, residents didn’t know where to buy food or what they were allowed to do, and people began to feel a sense of panic. This confusion was all avoidable if clear and strong  leadership had been present. I feel that it is up to Burbank citizens like me to show how  there is an alternative to the long-time status quo that enabled and empowered our City  Council to ignore without consequence those that elected them.  

Is there anything else you’d like Burbank residents to know about you?  

My campaign is 100% staffed by volunteers from our community. I have lived in Burbank long enough that people know me and want to be part of my campaign. Over the summer, we conducted an internship program for high school and college students.  There were 16 interns who learned about how a campaign is run and we had guest speakers from different campaigns around the country. These students are now motivated to stay involved in politics and learn more about our government. My goal is to have as much of Burbank as possible become engaged and involved in this election.