On September 16, 2003, Ralph L. Franklin was first elected to the Inglewood City Council to represent the 4th Councilmanic District. His charismatic character and outstanding leadership resulted in him being re-elected to a second, third and now fourth and current term of office which began in April 2015.
Prior to his election as a City Council Member, Ralph L. Franklin served as the Chair of the City of Inglewood’s Parks and Recreation Commission for twelve (12) years.
For more three (3) decades, Councilman Franklin has demonstrated his civic commitment as Former Treasurer and current Delegate to the Independent Cities Association (ICA); Former President of the NAACP Inglewood/South Bay Branch; Former President of the Coalition of Black Trade Unionists (CBTU) Southern California Chapter; Chair for the Census 2010 Inglewood Complete Count Committee and a Past Board Member of the State Employment Panel Commission. He continues to demonstrate his civic commitment through his service as Chair of the Metro South Bay Service Council; Treasurer and Board Member with the California Cities for Self-Reliance Joint Powers Authority (JPA); and Former Chair and current City Delegate to the South Bay Cities Council of Governments (SBCCOG). He is also a Lifetime member of the New Frontier Democratic Club, a Diamond Life Member of the NAACP and has displayed his spiritual commitment as a faithful member of Crenshaw Christian Center for more than 40 years.
Councilman Franklin was instrumental in bringing new business development projects to the 4th District including the very successful Village at Century Shopping Center. Boasting national name brand retailers and restaurants, this Center hosts Aldi, Children’s Place, Chili’s, The Gap, Old Navy, Red Lobster Restaurant and Sherman Williams.
The Crenshaw Imperial Plaza has also undergone a tremendous transformation under the ownership of the NewMark Merrill Companies. New retail tenants such as Chipotle Mexican Grill, Five Guys Burgers, Ono Hawaiian BBQ, Planet Fitness and Grocery Outlet have revitalized this shopping center and plans to bring in other brand name retailers which are in the works.
The Imperial/Crenshaw Shopping Center is home to Burlington which celebrated its grand opening in September 2008. Other name brand retail tenants at this location include CVS, T-Mobile and Louisiana Fried Chicken.
All of these developments have reinvigorated the community by removing blight, providing local jobs to Inglewood residents and all while providing a satisfying shopping experience for residents.
In December 2013, the Hollywood Park Race Track hosted its final race in preparation for the most anticipated multi-year development in the City. The groundbreaking for the 238-acre parcel of the LA Stadium and Entertainment District at Hollywood Park (formerly Hollywood Park Tomorrow) took place in February 2014 and this enormous project will contain more than 2 million square feet of Class A commercial space, nearly 2,500 modern residences along with 4-acres of civic use development with a project labor agreement to pay prevailing wage jobs with an emphasis on local hiring.
In February 2015, the Inglewood City Council unanimously approved an amendment to the Hollywood Park Project to include the building of a NFL Stadium, to host to the Los Angeles Rams and Los Angeles Chargers, along with a Performing Arts Theater.
Councilman Franklin hosts quarterly Town Hall Meetings to keep District 4 residents up-to-date on a variety of issues, programs, events, and activities taking place within the City of Inglewood while also focusing on topics of specific interest to the District 4 constituency and the City at-large.
For more than a decade, Councilman Franklin spends several months preparing to assist needy families in the City of Inglewood during the Thanksgiving and Christmas seasons. For Thanksgiving, the City of Inglewood hosts an Annual Thanksgiving Turkey Giveaway where Inglewood community non-profit, for profit, and civic organizations along with individuals provide generous supplies of Thanksgiving food items to needy Inglewood residents and their families. For the Christmas season, Councilman Franklin hosts his Annual District 4 Christmas Toy & Food Drive Celebration in partnership with local businesses, non-profit and for-profit organizations, Inglewood residents, block clubs and other staunch supporters, to provide toys, staple food items and retail and/or grocery gift cards to needy families that have a child that attends an Inglewood elementary school in the 4th District and, in addition, he supports caregivers, seniors and foster parents throughout the City.
For more than two (2) decades, Councilman Franklin was active with the Boy Scouts of America where he has served in many volunteer leadership positions including Cub Master, Scout Master, District Commissioner, Wood Badge Staff, District Silver Beaver Chairman and District Treasurer. His outstanding leadership and volunteer efforts have been acknowledged with awards for Cub Master of the Year, Scout Master of the Year, and the Silver Beaver Award for helping to equip boys to become quality young men.
In 2014, Councilman Franklin became a member of the Benevolent and Protective Order of the Elks, an organization with a 141-year history of charitable works and service through benevolent programs to aid persons in need in the communities in which they live and work.
Councilman Franklin is an avid reader and visits the District 4 elementary schools with the Read-a-Loud Program. He also participates in Annual Career Day Programs made available through the Inglewood Unified School District.
For more than a decade, Councilman Franklin and his wife, Juanita, have been benevolent sponsors who have assisted five (5) Inglewood Unified public schools in the 4th District with Campus Beautification Projects. Each project consisted of the selection of plants, garden accessories and supplies by each school’s principal along with Councilman Franklin from a local retail store and then delivered to the school campuses. The campus landscapes were then transformed through hard work and the labor of love by school staff members, students, parents, volunteers and Councilman Franklin. Five (5) campuses were transformed over the course of several weekends and after school days and are great examples of what can be accomplished when people work together. In addition, contributions were made to support other needed school projects.
Councilman Franklin earned his Associate of Arts Degree in Business Management from Los Angeles City College, his Bachelor of Science in Business Management, with a Minor in Public Relations, from Woodbury University, and he has received a Special Certificate for the 2-year Food Marketing Management Program from the University of Southern California. Councilman Franklin and his wife, Juanita, have been residents of the 4th District for more than 40 years and have three adult children, Felicia, Gabriella, and Ralph II, and four grandchildren, Mariah, Ethan, `Abri and Isaiah.