January 28, 2024, on a sunny Sunday afternoon, Triston Ezidore, the freshly elected Vice President of the CCUSD School Board gathered friends and colleagues for a celebration of a unique achievement – at the age of 20, Ezidore is the youngest person to sit in this position in the state of California. Not only that, he is the first Black man to be elected to the CCUSD board in history of the district, and the youngest elected official in the history of Los Angeles County.
Speaking to the crowd, Ezidore offered “The work that we are doing here in Culver City is not [limited] by district or party lines; this is our work in the world. They say if you want to go fast, you go alone. If you want to go far, you go together. And look at us, here, together. Look at how far we have come, and how far we are going to go. “
The gathering was filled with local electeds, School Board President Dr. Kelly Kent and Mayor Yasmine Imani McMorrin, along with a big crowd from the entire California landscape; Mayor John Erickson of West Hollywood, 51st District Assembly member Rick Chavez-Zbur, Los Angeles County Supervisor Lindsey Horvath. Representatives were on hand from from Congresswoman Sydney Kamlager, State Senator Lola Smallwood-Cuevas, and LA County Assessor Jeffrey Prang.
And voters. Dozens and dozens of voters.
Since the school district was first established in 1949, there have been more than 300 people elected to the board; but only five of them have been Black, and only one male. It’s a history that reflects on both the gender and racial preferences of the educational institution and also speaks to the changes that the 21st century has opened up in local politics.
Noting that the most common question he’d been asked was ‘how did you get here?’ he was generous thanking many in the crowd for their support; family, friends, colleagues and the progressive voters of Southern California. “I’m here becasue of you , becasue of all of you, and I’m deeply grateful.”
Ezidore, while serving on the school board is also taking his undergraduate degree at USC, majoring in Political Science.
Concluding his remarks to the crowd, he stated “It is my belief that there is no testimony without the test – someone will challenge you. How you respond to that challenge is how you move forward. It’s how you overcome those roadblocks. It is my humble opinion that our very lives depend on it.”