While other leaders waited and watched to see if coronavirus would manage to penetrate their jurisdictions, London Breed was different. She declared a state of emergency when San Francisco had not even confirmed a coronavirus case. Before mid-March 2020, the mayor had banned gatherings of more than 1000. Her efforts have seen the curve flatten as only 15 deaths and 987 cases have been confirmed so far. With such impressive leadership skills, you must be wondering who London Breed is, so here are ten things you know about her.
1. She likes to keep herself clean in the eyes of the public.
Any politician will tell you that remaining blameless in the public eye is hard because anything you do can and will be used against you, regardless of how innocent you are. With such knowledge at her fingertips, London admitted that she had received a gift from Mohammed Nuru, although she was not required to disclose any gifts she accepted in 2019 to April 2020. London said that Nuru paid $5,600 for her car expenses, but she planned on reimbursing him once she sold her car. Nuru was arrested on fraud charges, and London, therefore, felt it was necessary to ensure that it was known her dealings with him were transparent.
2. She did not think she would be an inspiration to the future generation
In her interview with Nob Hill Gazette, London said that she was not expecting her position would be of such a significant impact on different people. The mayor was surprised that even P. Diddy was hopeful of the future of his daughters, knowing that she had paved the way for them.
3. She owes her success to her grandmother
If London had her way as a child, she would not be where she is today. However, her grandmother was hard on her; while she let London’s siblings get away with almost everything, London’s grandmother did not tolerate any of that from her granddaughter. Although the mayor did not like going to school, she had to, to avoid getting into trouble with her grandmother. She was even advised to learn how to take care of herself since things outside her home were bad; drug dealings, gangs, and shootings were the order of the day. Luckily with the knowledge that her grandmother imparted in London, the mayor was able to overcome it all.
4. She was not a good student in junior high school
Although London went to school to please her grandmother, she still could not manage to behave appropriately. Therefore despite listening to her teachers, the politician was involved in fights. However, when she joined high school, her love for music ensured that she changed her ways. According to The Lowell, the band instructor told her she had to shape up else she could no longer be in the band. Fortunately, even the vice principal saw London’s potential hence helped her become a much better student.
5. Her hardships inspired her to be a politician
London does not hide the fact that she grew up in the projects with barely any money, but her grandmother taught her to be a responsible person regardless of her background. In college, she could not afford sheets large enough to cover her bed. Moreover, while her college mates had enough money to attend concerts, the politician had to be absorbed in her studies since she did not have any to spare. Hoping to change her future, she decided to change her major from chemistry to political science. London reasoned that if at all she would get to live a better life, then her community deserved it too.
6. She tried to get her brother out of jail
London’s sister died of a drug overdose while her brother, Napoleon, sold drugs to make a living. Unfortunately, his life turned for the worse when he was charged with murder after he threw his girlfriend out of the car, and she was fatally hit by another vehicle. Napoleon was sentenced to 42 years, but after he was found doing drugs in prison, the sentence went up to 44 years despite the charges being reduced manslaughter. London requested former governor Jerry Brown to issue a pardon for her brother, but the request was denied.
7. She went on vacation after Election Day
London talked to the San Francisco Chronicle where she revealed that she was out of reach after Election Day because she was on vacation. The mayor went to Cabo to relax and therefore did not take her phone with her.
8. She is a proactive leader
The mayor believes everyone should play their part in ensuring that San Francisco is a great city. Therefore even if there are funds to hire more street cleaners, London expects people to clean up after themselves and will not hesitate to tell those loitering the streets to pick up the trash. Moreover, instead of only telling children to stop breaking into other people’s cars, she paid them to work at the Africa American Art & Culture Complex. London knew that the kids needed someone to take care of them, and keeping them occupied was her way of helping them stay out of trouble. Her proactive leadership has also ensured that San Francisco’s rate of coronavirus patents deaths or infections has remained low.
9. She has been accused of being controlled by Conway
Ed Lee was allegedly close friends with Ron Conway, and since Conway urged donors to support London in her campaign, people joined the dots. However, London hates to be told that Conway is pulling strings behind the curtain, and she is his puppet. She clarified that her decisions on the Board of Supervisors were based on facts hence even refused to answer what kind of relationship she has with Ron Conway.
10. She officiated a gay marriage
London has never shied away from showing her support for the LGBTQ community, and nothing could have stamped her stand better than officiating a gay marriage. Consequently, in January, the mayor officiated a same-sex wedding between Rick Welts and Todd Gage by announcing the two men as spouses for life.