Melody Schubert

First elected in 2004, then later re-elected in 2006, 2008, and 2010, Mayor Sukhee Kang has accomplished many goals. One of which is continuing to recognize and celebrate the cities cultural diversity. He is also the first Korean-American to serve as Mayor of a major U.S. city.

Mayor Kang was born and raised in South Korea, and as the father of two adult children he understands the importance of a safe community. Of which, Irvine has received the distinction of being named "America´s Safest Big City" for six consecutive years.

We met Mayor Sukhee Kang on our recent visit to Irvine, California, which has become a cultural crossroad that welcomes diversity. When listening to the Mayor speak about Irvine we were engaged and eager to explore more of this city that is committed to the safety and unity of their community. Mayor Sukhee Kang was easy to talk to during our visit, and although we did not get to spend too much time with him, it was enough to feel the energy and pride he has in his community.

We were also intrigued by the educational and business opportunities Irvine offers. It is home to a third of the Fortune 100 companies, and with the diverse programs available at the University of California, Irvine there are opportunities to open many doors in this planned community. The Mayor's approach of listen, learn and respond is working as we could tell by touring the city of Irvine.

Irvine has done such a great job attracting businesses and tourist, which has had a positive effect on the economy. When you look at the numbers you realize that the biggest spending benefitted the Food and Beverage Services; with 28% of spending equaling $133.4 million in revenue. Lodging and accommodations came in second with 23% of spending equaling $108.2 million in revenue. Arts, Entertainment & Recreation was just slightly below this with $105.2 in revenue, and Retail Sales did well with $90.9 in revenue. Surprisingly to some, transportation was the lowest on the list with 8% of spending equaling $38.9 million in revenue.

We're certain Mayor Sukhee Kang, and the city of Irvine are very proud of their community, and its accomplishments. Tourism does help local economies by supporting job grow and stability, which is much needed in these times of uncertainty.

We know from our visit how easy it was to get around. Connected by freeways that lead throughout Southern California, Irvine is a wonderful example of what commitment and dedication can accomplish. Streets are ease to navigate, and clean. The John Wayne International Airport is just down the street from the highway, and allows travelers can The City has lush green space, and actively inspires their residents to not only enjoy natures, but also to protect it. Family is an important part of the future, which is evident by the Cities ongoing dedication to education.

We thank the Mayor, and everyone who has made Irvine a wonderful to visit, and hope you enjoy your trip to Irvine as much as we did!

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