This past Tuesday, my son, Sebastian Ridley-Thomas was elected to represent the people of the 54th District. Words cannot express how proud my wife and I, as well as our entire family were, not just for the achievement, but the dignity and energy he showed on the campaign trail.
Sebastian practiced what is called "servant leadership" which means exactly what it says, that by serving the community, listening to people's concerns, helping those less fortunate, and serving the public in a humble and dedicated fashion, you are leading.
Traditional leadership generally involves the exercise of power by one at the “top of the hill.” By comparison, the servant-leader shares power, puts the needs of others first and helps people develop and perform at their highest level.
Every campaign has its own story and for me the story of this campaign is seeing my son run a campaign filled with ideas on how best his office can serve the community. This dedication of spirit and mind allowed him to connect with his community and not get caught up in any campaign foolishness. It allowed him to inspire his team and garner support from Westwood to Culver City to Crenshaw .
Sebastian has already been sworn in and is getting to work, putting his staff together and setting up an office that is responsive to the people. I know that he will continue to serve and never lose his bond with the people that elected him.
As a father I am proud, but as a citizen I am excited to see what Sebastian accomplishes for his district. My greatest hope is that he uses all his resources and talents to solve problems and continue to bring people together for the good of the 54th District.