Get to Know: Mayor Claudia M. Frometa


Andre Lucas, Co-Copy Editor

An immigrant from Mexico, Claudia M. Frometa moved to Downey in the 1980s and went to Downey public schools before earning a bachelor’s degree in Communications. She then worked as a journalist before working in Emergency Management and Disaster Preparedness for 15 years. In addition to currently working for the national team of emergency management for Kaiser Permanente Foundation & Health Plan, she lives in Downey where she now raises her 4 children and serves her community not only as mayor but also in community service clubs and organizations. During her tenure, she intends to deal with the following issues:


Since the death of George Floyd, calls to defund police departments across the nation have made their way to Downey. On the issue of defunding the police, Mayor Frometa opposes defunding the police due to Downey being one of the first police departments to institute new accountability measures, such as body cameras and de-escalation methods. However, she still sees room for improvement.


“What I do believe, and that is one of my goals as mayor this year, is to increase the number of officers that are also working with mental health professionals,” Frometa stated.  “A lot of the calls that our community receives may be associated with individuals having mental illness and mental episodes, so we need to be able to know how to handle those calls.”


The ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, which Los Angeles was hit hard by, has been on Frometa’s radar since taking office, as she released a video on the City of Downey’s social media accounts where she pleaded with the community to not gather in large crowds during the holiday season. 


“It is important for the community to adhere to social distancing protocols and masking guidelines,” Frometa said. “We will get through it, but we really need to do our part because, at the time, our hospitals were being completely overwhelmed and overtaxed with patients, so we needed to do the right thing and that is ‘let’s take care of each other’ by adhering to the county orders.”


Another goal is to increase youth engagement. Although the City of Downey has a youth commission where five high school students are selected by their city council members annually to represent their districts on the commission, she wants the youth and elected officials to work even closer together through possible virtual events, such as “Coffee with the Mayor” where students can converse with the mayor on any civic issue of their interest.


“[They] are seeing life from a very different perspective and it is important that we listen and… have this dialogue with [their] elected officials,” Frometa explained. “I may not have all the answers, but it is important that we connect and that we stay connected so that our community can be united and our community can move forward in a very positive way.”


Mayor Frometa can be reached at [email protected] or (562) 904-7274.