Rich Llewellyn, Chief of Staff
Rich is the Councilmember's senior advisor on legislative, policy and community matters, and oversees all operations of the Council office.
Rich has long experience in City, County and federal government including service as Senior Deputy for Legal and Administrative Affairs for a member of the Board of Supervisors, Special Counsel to the District Attorney, Chief Deputy City Attorney and Chief of Staff to another Councilmember. A graduate of Duke University and Harvard Law School, Rich lives in Los Feliz with his husband and two children, and has been active in numerous community organizations including serving on the Boards of Directors of the Los Angeles Gay and Lesbian Center and All Saints Episcopal Church in Pasadena.
Joan Pelico, District Director
Joan oversees the West Los Angeles and Valley District Offices, providing direction and strategic assistance to all Field Deputies. She works closely with the Chief of Staff and Chief Field Deputy and handles more of the district's time sensitive long term projects. As well, she works closely with the city departments and is involved in every aspect of community outreach.
Joan grew up in New York and moved to Los Angeles in 1978. She has been a Valley resident since 1987, and is the proud mother of a beautiful teenaged daughter. She has an extensive background and experience in problem solving, creating solutions, motivational speaking, communications, producing workshops and events, marketing, sales, fund raising, management, and as an innovator and educator. She was discovered by the CD 5 Office in 2005 when she was the Director of Development for the Sherman Oaks Elementary School. Joan is driven by her desire to help people in their time of need.
City Hall Office
David Hersch, Legislative Director
David oversees all legislative matters, staffs the Councilmember on the Audits & Governmental Efficiency Committee and the Budget & Finance Committee and is the lead staff for the Commission on Revenue Enhancement.
David is a veteran of local and state government. In Los Angeles City Hall, David has worked as a legislative staffer for three different Councilmembers over the past 20 years. He previously served as Special Assistant to then-Assemblymember Koretz in Sacramento, and began his political career as deputy to then-West Hollywood City Councilmember Koretz. A native Angeleno, David graduated from UCLA with a degree in Political Science, and from Loyola Law School.
Paul Neuman, Director of Communications
Paul is responsible for all communications from the Council Office, including press releases, press advisories, newsletters, website and media relations.
In years past, Paul has worked in three other City Council Offices (CDs 2, 8 and 14) and for Assembly District 42, serving in various capacities – press deputy, legislative deputy and field deputy. As a journalist, he was honored with a “Best Feature Story” award from the California Newspaper Publishers Association for a history of Central Avenue. A veteran of many community causes, Paul serves on the Silver Lake Neighborhood Council, which he has co-chaired, and is a founder of the North East Central Alliance of Neighborhood Councils.
Christopher Koontz, Planning Deputy
Christopher is responsible for planning, land use and development issues in the Westside portion of the district. He is a council office liaison to the Planning Department and monitors the Planning & Land Use Management Committee for the Councilmember.
Christopher is a Southern California native and long-time advocate for the environment and vibrant communities. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Public Policy and a Master’s Degree in Urban Planning. Prior to joining the Councilmember’s team, he worked for the City of Los Angeles Department of City Planning, the City of Malibu, the Sierra Club and the California League of Conservation Voters. Within the district, Christopher enjoys shopping at Flasher on Melrose, catching art-house films at the Landmark, sausage and fries at Jeff’s on Pico, and drinks with friends at the Dime. Christopher serves on the board of the American Planning Association Los Angeles, and lives downtown with his kids (cats) Jackson and Penelope.
Joel Lyle, Legislative Deputy
Joel is responsible for briefing and staffing the Councilmember on the Personnel Committee and serves as a liaison to the organized labor community.
Joel recently joined the public sector after having spent more than 30 years working with and for the labor movement as a benefits coordinator and director. He prides himself on having created and managed both health care and consumer benefits that provided cost savings and affordable services to thousands of members of the working class. Joel is a native Californian, and graduated from UCLA with a degree in Economics. He serves on several labor committees, is a delegate to the Los Angeles County Federation of Labor, and recently was elected to the Granada Hills South Neighborhood Council.
David Giron, Legislative Deputy
David is responsible for briefing the Councilmember on Council agenda items and issues, preparing and submitting Council motions and staffing the Transportation Committee and the Budget & Finance Committee. He also monitors issues that come before the Public Safety Committee; Public Works Committee; Transportation Committee and the Arts, Parks, Health and Aging Committee. In addition, he is responsible for briefing and staffing the Councilmember on policy issues relating to animal welfare. David also oversees major projects as they relate to legislative implementation throughout the Fifth Council District.
David, a first generation LA native, grew up in Koreatown. He attended Los Angeles Center for Enriched Studies before moving on to Santa Monica College and then Cal State University, Northridge, where he studied Political Science with an emphasis on government. While at CSUN, David worked with the national No Child Left Behind program as an in-home tutor, as well as a fund-raiser with Council District 12 for the Shakeout conference in Los Angeles. Before joining Council District 5, David worked as an elections consultant specializing in outreach for latino voters. He also serves on the Young Professionals Committee of Break the Cycle, a national non-profit that works to end domestic violence by reaching out to teens and young adults.
Andy Shrader, Legislative Deputy
Andy advises the Councilmember on issues related to the environment and sustainability, working to ensure the city can meet its present economic, environmental and sociopolitical needs without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. He staffs the City Council Energy and Environment Committee.
Andy was elected in 2003 as a founding member of the Mar Vista Community Council, where his most notable resolution instituted the popular Mar Vista Farmer’s Market. He holds both a Masters in Screenwriting and a Certificate in Global Sustainability from UCLA, wrote the celebrity speeches for 10 years for the EIF Revlon Run/Walk for Women (in support of cancer research, treatment and support), is an accomplished mountaineer, and was awarded Heal the Bay’s “2011 Super Healer Award” for his activist work on marine debris plastic waste issues. When he’s not at City Hall, he can be found in indie coffee shops across the city writing screenplays.
Tammy Louie, Office Manager
Tammy manages office operations at City Hall, coordinates youth and senior busses and provides support for legislative staff and field deputies.
A City Hall veteran, Tammy has worked with four different Los Angeles City Councilmembers, serving on the 3rd and 5th districts’ administrative support teams. Tammy is married to another long time city employee (actually DWP). She is active in her community serving on the PTSA Board, working with her daughters’ Girl Scout Troop, and volunteering at the Chinese United Methodist Church in Chinatown.
Leana Scott, Council Deputy
Leana is likely the first person you will speak with when calling the City Hall office. She provides administrative support for legislative staff and assists with the newsletter and website and monitors a variety of legislative issues.
Leana joined our staff after attending the University of California, Santa Cruz where she majored in Legal Studies with an emphasis on environmental policy. A fifth generation Angeleno, Leana has volunteered and worked with numerous political offices, campaigns, and non-profits. She is also an avid hiker and photographer.
Sheila Kouhkan, Executive Assistant
Sheila works with the staff at City Hall, the West Los Angeles District Office and the Valley District Office to make sure the CM is properly staffed, prepared for speaking engagements and/or his many activities within the community, and coordinates his external and internal communications. In addition, she is responsible for briefing and staffing the Councilmember on policy issues relating to animal welfare.
Sheila is a proud resident of the 5th Council District. She recently joined the staff after interning for the West Los Angeles field office for the past two years. Sheila graduated from UCLA with a major in Political Science and a minor in Education. She is active in the city through her animal activism and work for education rights. She is also active in the Persian community.
West Los Angeles Field Office
Jay Greenstein, Chief Field Deputy
Jay is responsible for briefing and staffing the Councilmember on district transportation issues such as the Westside Subway Extension, the Expo light rail project, and the I-405 Sepulveda Pass HOV lane project. Jay is also responsible for neighborhoods in the Westwood South of Santa Monica Blvd. area of the District. He is the primary contact and provides assistance for residents, businesses and community organizations by helping them navigate the City bureaucracy, as well as representing the council office at any number of Neighborhood Council, homeowners association, neighborhood watch and many other community group meetings.
Jay first met Councilmember Koretz in 1986 when he interned for then-West Hollywood Councilmember Alan Viterbi, and a young Paul Koretz was serving as his deputy. Jay later spent six years as a Field Representative to then-Assemblymember Koretz before joining the staff of CD 5. Jay has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science from California State University, Northridge and a Master’s Degree in Public Administration from the University of Southern California. He lives in CD 5, and is married with two children, both of whom attend a local public elementary school.
John Darnell, Field Deputy
John is responsible for neighborhoods of Carthay Circle, South of Carthay, Carthay Square, Miracle Mile, Fairfax, Hollywood and Melrose. He is the primary contact and provides assistance for residents, businesses and community organizations by helping them navigate the City bureaucracy, as well as representing the council office at any number of Neighborhood Council, homeowners association, neighborhood watch and many other community group meetings.
John is a native of CD 5, growing up in Encino where he still resides. He earned his degree in political science, with a minor in urban planning, from California State University, Northridge. He worked his way through university, and was the first in his family to obtain a college degree. John has volunteered with many causes and organizations about which he is passionate, including: serving as a county inspector at the Encino polls from 2004-2008, helping to raise money for high school students wanting to study agriculture in college and working on environmental justice issues in Pacoima. John also enjoys exercising, the beach and animals.
Tania Bradkin, Field Deputy
Tania is responsible for the neighborhoods of Beverlywood, Palms, Westside Village and South Robertson. He is the primary contact and provides assistance for residents, businesses and community organizations by helping them navigate the City bureaucracy, as well as representing the council office at any number of Neighborhood Council, homeowners association, neighborhood watch and many other community group meetings.
Sarah Mallory, Field Deputy
Sarah is responsible for neighborhoods of Comstock Hills and Westwood. She is the primary contact and provides assistance for residents, businesses and community organizations by helping them navigate the City bureaucracy, as well as representing the council office at any number of Neighborhood Council, homeowners association, neighborhood watch and many other community group meetings.
Sarah grew up in the San Gabriel Valley and moved west to attend UCLA from 2006-2010, where she earned Bachelor of Arts Degrees in Global Studies and Psychology as well as a minor in Political Science. She has a wide range of experience in various fields through internships and full time positions, including time spent with Senator Dianne Feinstein's Los Angeles office. In addition, she is also very passionate about the welfare of others and is currently active in Young Professionals groups for two Los Angeles based non-profit organizations: Women Against Gun Violence and Break the Cycle.
Wesly Hernandez, Field Deputy
Wesly is responsible for the neighborhoods of Century City, Cheviot Hills, Rancho Park, Tract 7260, Westwood Gardens, California Country Club, West LA, and West of Westwood. He is the primary contact and provides assistance for residents, businesses and community organizations by helping them navigate the City bureaucracy, as well as representing the council office at any number of Neighborhood Council, homeowners association, neighborhood watch and many other community group meetings.
Wesly was born and raised in the San Fernando Valley. He graduated from UCLA with a B.A in Political Science and minors in Global Studies and Public Policy. He also holds an M.P.A from CSUN with an emphasis in Policy Analysis. Outside of his field deputy duties, Wesly is actively involved in the Los Angeles community. He has assisted the U.S Census Bureau in counting historically undercounted communities in the North East Valley and has served as a board member for the Sun Valley Area Neighborhood Council. He is the President and Founder of the League of United Latin American Citizens Los Angeles Chapter, an organization that provides merit scholarships for low and middle income high school seniors and undergraduate college students. Prior to joining the Council Office, he was an assistant clerk in the Dispute Resolution Department and Civil Filings Division of the Santa Monica Superior Court.
Valley District Office
Shawn Bayliss, Planning Deputy
Shawn is responsible for planning, land use and development issues in the Hillside and Valley portions of the district. He is a council office liaison to the Planning Department and monitors the Planning & Land Use Management Committee for the Councilmember.
Shawn hails from a family of planning and land use aficionados, so one could say he was born with a set of plans in his hands. Raised in the Midwest, he left the cold weather behind to pursue planning and land use in the best city on earth - Los Angeles. He worked on these issues in neighboring cities prior to joining the CD 5 team. When he isn’t at a planning hearing, Shawn enjoys golfing, cheering on his favorite college football teams and sampling LA’s best frozen yogurt spots. Shawn lives in West Los Angeles.
Jeffrey Ebenstein, Field Deputy
Jeff is responsible for the neighborhoods of Encino, Sherman Village, Beverly Crest, Bel Air, and parts of Hollywood. He is the primary contact and provides assistance for residents, businesses and community organizations by helping them navigate the City bureaucracy, as well as representing the council office at any number of Neighborhood Council, homeowners association, neighborhood watch and many other community group meetings. In addition, he is responsible for briefing and staffing the Councilmember on policy issues relating to animal welfare.
Jeff is a third generation Los Angeles native and proud of his Valley roots. Jeff attended Valley Beth Shalom and Milken Community High School before pursuing his passions for Political Science and History at California State University, Northridge. While in school, he hosted a radio program on 104.3 KBIG FM. Before joining Team Koretz, Jeff worked for Los Angeles Unified School District. Jeff is a proud community activist, and serves as Vice President of the Sherman Oaks Neighborhood Council, a member of the Executives at the Jewish Home for the Aging, an alternate member of the Los Angeles County Democratic Party, and a member of the Central Committee, the Young Democrats, and Project Sunshine at Children’s Hospital.