De Ocampo, a Democrat, a charitable foundation advisor, and a son of Filipino immigrants, is one of 13 candidates in the Oct. 3 special election running for the seat vacated by Jimmy Gomez, who was elected to Congress to replace Xavier Becerra, who was named state attorney general after Kamala Harris was elected to the U.S. Senate.
The meet-and-greet was hosted by Jason Fujimoto, a board member of the Chinatown Improvement District whose family has owned and operated Moytel Apartments for over 50 years. Most of the residents are senior citizens.
“Alex De Ocampo reached out to me about speaking to our residents to hear their concerns about issues affecting them,” Fujimoto said. “One area that came up was healthcare and Alex promised that he will fight to protect healthcare for all our seniors. We have about 40 residents and about half showed up to say ‘Hi’ and meet (hopefully) our future State Assembly member of the 51st District. It was nice that Alex was reaching out to our community and crossing that cultural line.”
The district includes Echo Park and Silver Lake on the west, Eagle Rock and Highland Park on the north, and El Sereno and unincorporated East Los Angeles on the east.
The other Democrats in the race are Ron Birnbaum, community doctor; Wendy Carrillo, journalist and community advocate; Mike Fong, Los Angeles Community College District Board member; Luis Lopez, nonprofit healthcare director; Marcos Olmos, developer; Gabriel Sandoval, education attorney; Barbara Torres, union member advocate; Mark Vargas, environmentalist and education commissioner; and David Vela, college professor.
Also running are construction worker and student Andrew Aguero (Libertarian), warehouse operations coordinator John Prysner (Peace and Freedom) and government innovation consultant Patrick Koppula (no party preference). There are no Republican candidates.
If no candidate gets more than 50 percent of the vote, the top two will compete in a runoff on Dec. 5.