Getting to Know the Candidates, 2012 – John Harabedian


Photo courtesy of John Harabedian, click to enlarge

John Harabedian

Election/Seat Sought: One of two 4-year seats
Campaign web page:

Campaign Facebook page:

Bio information as provided by candidate: 

John Harabedian was born and raised in Sierra Madre.  His parents John and Joanne moved to Sierra Madre over 36 years ago, and raised John and his three sisters Jennifer, Erin, and Lindsay here.  Each still proudly lives in Sierra Madre. 

Harabedian attended Sierra Madre Elementary and St. Rita School.  During those years, John spent most of his time playing baseball at Heasley and Dapper fields, hiking Bailey Canyon and Mt. Wilson Trail, and swimming at the recreational center.  Harabedian is a member of St. Rita Parish.   

As an attorney, Harabedian’s practice focuses on commercial and criminal litigation, and he volunteers a significant amount of his time to pro bono matters.  Harabedian previously served as a law clerk to a federal district court judge in the Central District of California.  

Prior to becoming an attorney, Harabedian served as a policy analyst for the City of Los Angeles where he specialized in public safety and homeland security.  Specifically, John worked with the Los Angeles Police and Fire Departments to formulate and implement policies focused on crime reduction, terrorism prevention and deterrence, and emergency preparedness.  Harabedian also served as a Coro Fellow in Public Affairs and worked as an investment banker. 

Harabedian is a graduate of Loyola High School, Yale University (B.A. Political Science), Oxford University (Masters in Public Policy), and Stanford Law School (J.D.).  John serves on the Board of Directors of Orphans Against AIDS, Inc., an international non-profit organization that provides academic support for children in developing countries who have been orphaned or made vulnerable by HIV/AIDS.

John and his fiancée Young-Gi spend most of their time exploring the outdoors, cooking, reading, spending time with family, and of late planning a wedding.   

Responses to SierraMadreNews.Net Candidate Q and A Questionnaire

Q.  What’s your favorite type of music?
A.  Rock/Bluegrass/Soul

Q.  In or out of that genre, what’s your favorite album/CD?
A.   Danger Mouse, The Grey Album

Q.  What’s your favorite movie?
A.  The Breakfast Club

Q.  Who’s your favorite actor?
A.  Christopher Walken

Q.  Who’s your favorite actress?
A.  Melissa McCarthy

Q.  What’s your favorite book?
A.  The Giving Tree, Shel Silverstein

Q. Who’s your favorite author?
A.  Ernest Hemingway/Aaron Sorkin

Q.  What’s your favorite TV show?
A.  Sportscenter

Q.  What’s your favorite meal?
A.  Whatever Mom cooks.  Otherwise, a cheeseburger

Q.  Who’s your favorite comic?
A.   Ricky Gervais

Q.  Your favorite sports team?
A.  Dodgers

Q.  Who is/was your favorite president (living or dead)?
A.  Lincoln

Q.  Who’s better — Mel Torme or Vic Damone?
A.  Mel Torme

Q.  Beatles or Rolling Stones?
A.  Beatles

Q.  U2 or Rush?
A.  U2

Q.  Beach Boys or Jan and Dean?
A.  Beach Boys

Q.  Paper or plastic?
A.  Canvas bag

Q.  What are your hobbies?
A.  Golf, cooking

Q. What’s your favorite sport to watch?
A.  Football 

Q. What’s your favorite sport to participate in?  �
A.  Baseball/Golf

Q.  If you could meet a famous figure from the past, who would you choose and why?
A.  JFK because I admire his legacy and advancement of civil rights

Q.  If you could meet a famous figure from today, who would it be and why?
A.  Mark Zuckerberg because I would love to brainstorm with him on how to connect people beyond Facebook

Photo courtesy of John Harabedian, click to enlarge

John HarabedianElection/Seat Sought: Regular election, one of two 4-year seats

7 Comments on "Getting to Know the Candidates, 2012 – John Harabedian"

  1. Harabedian is just another lawyer trying to get into politics.

    He clearly wants to use Sierra Madre as a stepping stone for his political aspirations. He spent more money on his campaign than anyone in the history of sierra madre… and most of his donations came from out of town.

    He also lobbied for the UUT increase, and was endorsed by the sierra madre police who want him to ensure their raise when the city is broke.

    Oh, and what a ridiculously juvenile Q and A that was. Are those questions seriously what should be asked of a candidate for city council? Embarrassing.

    • Joanne:

      Since 2002, I’ve asked the same questions in my Q and A for the candidates. There are plenty of forums in town that people can attend or read about where the serious issues are discussed. The intent of my Q and A is to have a little fun and let people get to know a little about the candidates as people, away from the issues.

      Thanks for your input.

  2. How much does John really know about Sierra Madre? He has spent the past 8 years attending Ivy League schools and as a first year associate at a large Los Angeles law firm he is required to bill 50 + hours a week. On top of that he is in the process of buying a home and planning a wedding. Does he really have the time to serve the people of Sierra Madre? Sierra Madre needs someone who has real world experience and is able to dedicate their time to serving the people of Sierra Madre.

    • Well Jill I look at his 8 years at school in a different way. I think this Candidate attended these schools to better himself, and could never fault anyone for that. I am sure a guy like that could live and work anywhere, but he has chosen to bring that knowledge and expertise back to his hometown. I agree he seems to have a busy schedule, and that fact that he is still willing to put in the hours to serve our community is impressive. I think this candidate is exactly what Sierra Madre needs.

  3. This guy’s achievements are quite impressive. Yale, Oxford, Standford Law School? He’s definitely smart enough to make the right choices for Sierra Madre. Moreover, he has experience working with the LAPD in crime reduction, and emergency preparedness. I think the city counsel could use a fresh face–an intelligent one at that.

  4. Sandra, John never mentioned party politics but you seem to dwell on it. He only mentions his respect for JFK and his work in civil rights, not necessarily because he was a Democrat. Did you not read that his favorite president is Abraham Lincoln? Did you not know that Lincoln was a Republican? Newsflash, Sierra Madre City Council is a nonpartisan race!

    In the spirit of entertaining your comment, it would be naive to believe that one political party spurred the civil rights movement let alone an individual. Since it was a movement it took much more than a party or individual to voice and address its issues. But since you are such an advocate to the Republicans trailblazing the movement, I would simply ask you why do you think the Republican Party in the 50s and 60s were involved in the civil rights movement? It couldn’t be because the majority of its campaigns aimed at achieving change for African Americans, therefore, making the vast majority of African Americans a Republican and winning their votes? Nooooo that cant be it, can it? The majority of African Americans in the 50s-70s were Republicans. Can you guess what party they associate to now? Democrats. Why? Because African Americans began shifting Parties in the 80s as the Republicans started catering to the Bible Belt states which were socially conservative and highly prejudice in race and religion.

    I’m bipartisan and all I know is that it would be ignorant to believe the Republican Party, then and now, support the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Why don’t you talk to your buddy Republican Party candidate Ron Paul and ask him about his opinions on the Act? Im sure he’ll tell you the Act infringes on the rights of business owners as he did on CNN. The Republicans promote businesses. Businesses are against the Civil Rights Act of 1964, because according to Paul it regulates their business. So according to the Transitive Law (if A=B and B=C, then A=C) Republicans are against the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

    Also, you speak so highly of Barry Goldwater. Isn’t this the same guy who believes in aliens in space? Im sure he funded the NAACP in Arizona, but didn’t he receive contribution from union racketeers who were convicted of extortion? I probably have the wrong guy. It must be another US Senator from Arizona named Barry Goldwater who lost the 1964 presidential election I was thinking of. My mistake.

  5. I am surprised this candidate would mention JFK’s advancement of civil rights. Republicans passed the 1964 Civil Rights Act by huge majorities as compared to the Democrats. Republicans had been fighting for civil rights for the previous century against Democratic obstructionism. Because of voting rights acts, more blacks were voting. I believe Barry Goldwater had supported every civil rights bill (along with the vast majority of Republicans in 1957 and 1960) until the 1964 Civil Rights Act. Goldwater wanted to make it mandatory that federal funds be withheld from programs practicing discrimination, rather than discretionary, as President Kennedy had requested. It was Goldwater who was a staunch foe of segregation, and even founded and funded an NAACP chapter in Arizona to help facilitate integration of the public schools.

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