Since I am not a politician and haven’t been in the public eye, I thought I would take this opportunity to introduce myself and tell you a little about me.
A Born & Raised Californian
My name is Honor Robson, although I’ve been called “Mimi” since before I was born as Honor is also my mother and grandmother’s name. I grew up in Southern California; moving to Santa Monica when I was 7 years old. My parents divorced when I was nine and my mother, a licensed vocational nurse, worked two jobs to insure that my little brother and I could continue receiving the excellent education of the Santa Monica school system; Santa Monica Unified was one of the best school districts in the country at that time. Seeing my mom work so hard for her kids taught me that anything is possible if you put your mind to it.
A few years later, my mom met and married a wonderful man that was the son of Italian immigrants and grew up in Hell’s Kitchen New York. Realizing the limited opportunities in his community, where many of his class mates were already either in jail or worse, he joined the US Air Force and served in Korea. After he finished his tour he moved to Southern California where he become a licensed building contractor and started his own business.
With my parents being such wonderful role models I was blessed with the knowledge of knowing I could become anything I wanted to be. I became interested in structural engineering in the 1980’s when my step-father, a general contractor, was retrofitting brick buildings that were built before the 1933 Long Beach earthquake to make them safe for future earthquakes. Although I had been interested in the arts, I always excelled in math and science so with the encouragement of my family I realized that structural engineering was a way to combine design and the betterment of my community. I met my husband of 25 years while attending Cal State Long Beach and in 1990 I moved to Long Beach, which has been my home since.
A Professional Who Knows the Struggles of Business Owners
I am now a Licensed Professional Civil Engineer and have been working at a small Structural Engineering Consulting firm since 1994, starting right after the Northridge Earthquake. The majority of my projects have been repairing and reinforcing commercial buildings that have been damaged by earthquakes, fire, wind and severe weather. As a project engineer I am involved in all aspects of the project, which include designing the structures to resist the damaging effects of an earthquake as well as getting all the required building permits for construction. My experience with the various state and local agencies in obtaining these permits has given me first-hand knowledge on how difficult it is to do business in California.
As an example of the difficulties businesses face, a few years ago I was retained by a family that ran a small restaurant which had been damaged by a fire. Although they had sufficient insurance to re-build after the fire they didn’t have the additional code upgrade insurance to complete all the requirements of both the City of Long Beach and the State of California, which included additional accessibly and California Green Code requirements. Although these requirements may be well-intentioned, they wouldn’t have been required if there hadn’t been the fire; without additional up-grade insurance these requirements had to be paid out of pocket and the family almost lost everything they had worked for.
A Passion for Community
In addition to working as an engineer, I have been involved with many charitable organizations over the years. I have helped raise money by getting involved in events which bring awareness and funding. I was one of the top fundraisers for the Orange County Walk to end Alzheimer’s in 2011 as well as events which include AIDS Walk LA and the Walk to End Childhood Diabetes with the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation.
I am passionate when it comes to animals and have been involved in every level of rescue, both personally and with financial support, for many years. I have personally rescued several dogs and cats from the 101 Freeway near my office when people left these animals abandoned on the side of the road. In 2009 I watched someone leave three small dogs on the on-ramp of the freeway. I spent hours chasing these little ones until I finally rescued all three, which included a blind little boy that has been with me since and I appropriately named him “Freeway”. Recently I also rescued a chicken that had escaped from a homeless encampment; my husband and I quickly built a coop to give this little girl a wonderful life. In the past year I have also gotten more involved in homeless outreach to help both the people in need and their pets, which include getting spay and neuter services for their dogs.
I’ve always been involved in my community and know when I’m elected to the State Assembly I have the opportunity to bring a fresh viewpoint to the legislature. I am not part of the political machine and therefore I don’t have to answer to anyone other than the residents that elect me. As a Libertarian I am in a unique position to work with members on both sides of the traditional “aisle”. I will take advantage of this by bringing the voice and needs of my community and leveraging it into policies that will better the economic and educational climate of not only my district but all of California. I will bring practical and logical free market solutions which will give all Californians the opportunity to thrive without government intervening in all aspects of their lives. I invite you to join me. Together we can make California all that is can and should be!