Meet Viviana Garzon, running for City Clerk in Burbank, California
This is an administrative position that oversees the City Council’s decision-making process, manages city records and passport office, oversees the appointments to Burbank’s boards and commissions, oversees city elections, and maintains the Burbank Municipal Code and Charter.
Viviana believes this is such a vital position in this city because the city clerk is the conduit of information for residents, keeper of the City’s records, ensures that the legislative process is transparent and available to the public for active participation, and has an essential role in the elections.
Viviana began working for the City of Burbank 20 years ago. She started working in an entry level position and fell in love with all aspects of public service. Even back when Viviana was getting her college education, she knew she wanted to be a public servant. She has a bachelor’s degree from UCLA in Sociology and Public Affairs along with a masters degree from CSU Northridge in Public Administration! The city clerk position was always an interest of Viviana’s and so when the opportunity to run for this position came up, Viviana was ready to go. As the current city clerk is retiring, Viviana believes it is the perfect move in her public service career in Burbank. She is even endorsed by the current long-time city clerk and has a strong working relationship with her. In preparation for this position, Viviana has even been taking workshops and training courses. She considers herself a lifelong learner and is also a part of the International Institute for Municipal Clerks and the City Clerks Association of California.
One of Viviana’s goals is to increase voter participation. She knows that many people don’t vote in smaller elections even though they are very important and affect people’s daily lives. We learned that out of 104,000 residents in Burbank, approximately 70,000 of them are registered voters. Out of those 70,000 people, only half of them actually vote. Voter turnout among minority residents is about 15% and Viviana wants to
make sure her office implements outreach services to ensure the voter information is easily accessible to all residents. Another one of Viviana’s goals is to increase participation in local boards and commissions. She told us that Burbank has 22 boards and commissions and there usually aren’t many people applying for these positions. She wants people to know that getting involved in the community does not have to be a huge commitment and it’s much easier—and rewarding— than many people realize. Viviana aims to spread awareness and education on these local positions and encourage more people to apply for them!
Viviana loves Burbank because it is a great community and a great place to raise a family. She is grateful that it has its own resources such as police and fire departments along with caring community leaders. Viviana and her family have a german shepherd, lab mix that they rescued. His name is Dante, named after the Xolo dog in the movie Coco! Dante and Viviana’s daughter share a birthday, and they get to celebrate together every year. Outside of public service, Viviana loves to hike and read novels!
With 20 years of experience and knowledge of the inner workings of the city, Viviana believes she has the qualifications to be a great city clerk for Burbank. Her message is that she will be ready to get to work on the very first day she is elected!