A new era is unfolding for residents in City Council District 8. Not only has the district expanded after the city completed redistricting in 2021 — Councilmember Al Austin is leaving an open seat for a new candidate after completing a 12-year tenure.

With a diverse professional background and a history of community leadership, Sharifa Batts is hoping she can secure the seat in the March election. Batts, who served as vice president of environment & sustainability for Ports of America, was also appointed by former Mayor Robert Garcia to Long Beach’s Equity and Human Relations Commission. Batts says her love for the community she grew up in is why she’s dedicated to trying to beautify and improve District 8.

On this episode of “The Word with Jackie Rae” podcast, Batts explains why she believes her background, along with being a native of Long Beach, makes her the ideal candidate for the District 8 seat.

To learn more about candidate Sharifa Batts, you can visit her website.