Tag Archives: 28th Congressional District

Congressman Schiff Announces 2016 Women of the Year

Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Burbank) announced his selections for the 2016 Women of the Year. These inspiring women come from communities in the 28th Congressional District –West Hollywood, Burbank, Pasadena, Silver Lake, Echo Park, Elysian Valley, Los Feliz, Sunland/Tujunga, Glendale, La Cañada Flintridge and La Crescenta. This recognition is made each year during Women’s History Month.

“This remarkable group of women demonstrate the truth of the maxim that if you need something done, ask a busy person,” Rep. Schiff said. “Each has worked tirelessly to support a myriad of charitable, business and community causes, and made an indelible mark on our region. I’m honored to recognize these women and show appreciation for their extraordinary work in our community.”

This year’s honorees:

Holly Hampton (Echo Park), Marlene Hitt (Sunland/Tujunga), Anne-Marie Johnson (Silver Lake), Phyllis Kim (Glendale), Lena Kortoshian (La Crescenta), Camille Lombardo (Pasadena), Betty Porto (La Cañada Flintridge), Christine Rodriguez (Elysian Valley), Noemi Torres (West Hollywood), Amanda Truelove Fairey (Franklin Hills/Los Feliz), Karen Volpei-Gussow (Burbank), and Amy Yanow (Hollywood Hills).

These honorees come from all backgrounds and professions and represent the thousands of women who make a positive impact in our communities. While there are no specific criteria for nomination, Rep. Schiff looks to recognize women who — through their work or volunteerism — have improved the quality of life for our community.

Rep. Schiff will present and enter a special tribute into the Congressional Record for Karen Volpei-Gussow (below). On Saturday, April 22, Rep. Schiff will honor these women at a luncheon in Echo Park.

A Tribute to Karen Volpei-Gussow – 28th Congressional District Woman of the Year

I rise today in honor of Women’s History Month.  Each year, we pay special tribute to the contributions and sacrifices made by our nation’s women.  It is an honor to pay homage to outstanding women who are making a difference in my Congressional District.  I would like to recognize a remarkable woman, Karen Volpei-Gussow of Burbank, California.

For over twenty years, Ms. Volpei-Gussow has symbolized the tireless and dedicated work of a true pillar of her community.  She has given of herself with joy, humility, and grace and, along the way, has changed so many lives for the better in Burbank.  Her kind and relaxed demeanor is not only evident in her treasured relationships with her husband Barry, her family and friends, but also in her charitable work in the community.

Ms. Volpei-Gussow has brought her incredible talent, insight, time, and energy to numerous boards and special committees over the years.  She currently sits on the Boards of the Burbank Chamber of Commerce, City of Burbank Heritage Commission, Burbank Arts for All, Burbank on Parade, Burbank Business Partners, and Keller Williams Agent Leadership Council.  She serves on committees for the Providence Saint Joseph Foundation Emergency Service Campaign, Boys and Girls Club of Burbank and Greater East Valley, Burbank Temporary Aid Center, and Family Service Agency of Burbank.

Her past community involvement includes Ambassador Chair of the Burbank Chamber of Commerce, Docent at the Burbank Historical Society’s Gordon R. Howard Museum, and Board Member of both the Kids Community Dental Clinic and The Burbank Association of REALTORS, Community Service Foundation.

Ms. Volpei-Gussow’s charitable and professional work has not gone unnoticed as she was awarded 2012 “Realtor of the Year” by the Burbank Association of REALTORS and named “Community Leader of the Year” at the Boys and Girls Club of Burbank and Greater East Valley 2013 Gala Dinner.

Ms. Volpei-Gussow rarely says no when asked to give a helping hand, and once given, her level of leadership, support, and generosity never waivers. She is a community leader who is unafraid of challenging the ways things were done in the past as she looks towards the future with a bold new plan to make the organizations she is involved with and the City of Burbank grow and thrive.

I ask all Members to join me in honoring an exceptional woman of California’s 28th Congressional District, Karen Volpei-Gussow.

Rep. Adam Schiff on Gun Control

BurbankNBeyond interviewed Rep. Adam Schiff of California’s 28th District in late February, discussing a wide variety of topics of interest to Burbank residents and other surrounding communities.  As the topic of gun control continues to stimulate healthy debate from nearly all levels of society, Rep. Schiff provides a good view into his viewpoint, and representation of the issue in Congress.

BurbankNBeyond:  Gun control is a big topic, at the federal, state, and local level.  What is your perspective on the issue?

Rep. Schiff:  I believe we should have responsible safety measures, and I say that as somebody who grew up with guns in the house, enjoyed hunting with my father, and still enjoys target practice and shooting clays from time to time.

But nothing in the 2nd Amendment precludes us from placing reasonable restrictions on military-grade weapons like assault weapons, or the capacity of extended ammunition clips.  Certainly we should have universal background checks, and I also feel we should crack down on straw purchases of weapons.

I introduced a bill to do exactly that, now two or three years ago, so I re-introduced it this session.

I also believe we should roll back the special immunity the gun industry enjoys that no other industry in America does.  And that is gun sellers can act in a negligent way, and can turn a blind eye to the straw purchasers that come and buy dozens of weapons and then turn the m over to people who can’t pass a background check.

There is no reason we should hold them immune from responsibility, or from negligence.  No other industry in America enjoys that special status.

So I do think there are some changes that we need to make.  There are two facets of the problem that we have to deal with.  One is the horrendous level of every day gun violence in many of our cities, that claim lives all over the country on a daily, weekly basis.

And the other are these horrible mass-shootings like we saw in Newtown, which are really an injury to the country itself.  They are different kinds of problems that require different kinds of solutions.  But we should not put up with this, and we cannot accept this as a facet of American life.  We can do better than this, and we really have to.

BurbankNBeyond:  So there are two topics you mentioned, one is prior to a person getting their hands on a gun, as is their right within the 2nd Amendment , and there is also the result when people misuse weapons and atrocities like Newtown and (Chris) Dorner here locally have committed.  Should there be more drastic sentences for people who commit crimes which include a weapon?  Is that a deterrent? A priority?

Rep. Schiff:  I think that is a very high priority, particularly when it comes to “straw” purchasers.  These (“straw” purchasers) are people who lie about why they are purchasing a gun, claim they are purchasing it for themselves, when in fact they are purchasing it for someone else.  They are really a straw purchaser.  And they’ll turn it over to someone who can’t pass a background check.

That in the past has been considered a paperwork violation, and we need to beef up the penalties on this kind of violation not only to deter this kind of conduct, but also to allow us to go after higher-ups in some of the gun trafficking organizations.

So that’s an area where we definitely need to increase penalties.

When you look at a situation like Newtown, though, someone who is mentally ill, goes out and commits a heinous crime, is not likely to be deterred by what the sentence is.  And there we have to look at a few things.  We have to look at mental health – making sure that those who are mentally ill are not able to buy weapons or gain access to weapons.

And number two, we have to make sure that the kind of weapons they can access, or that others can access are not made for just killing large numbers of people in a short amount of time.  As is in the case of an assault weapon equipped with an extended ammunition clip.

I think the different natures of the problem requires different remedies, and this is where we need to take a comprehensive approach to the problem.