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Biographies Unit Biographies

Yvonne Braithwaite Burke 1932–
Leader in Public Service

Yvonne Braithwaite Burke has a very challenging job. She is a Los Angeles County Supervisor. The people of Los Angeles county elected her to this position.

Burke makes important decisions about the large, diverse county that includes the city of Los Angeles. She makes sure the county provides services for children and families. She brings new businesses into areas that need them. She works to expand transportation systems and parks.

Burke has had a long career in public service. In 1966, she was elected to the California State Assembly. Six years later, she was elected to the United States Congress. Both were “firsts” for African American women in California. In these positions, Burke helped make laws for California and the nation. In 1992, she ran for the job of county supervisor, and won. Burke has been serving Los Angeles County ever since.

Comprehension Check

What does Burke do as a Los Angeles County Supervisor?

Critical Thinking

Why do you think Burke decided to become a county supervisor?