Biography

Ben Allen was elected to represent the 26th Senate District on November 4, 2014, which consists of the cities of Manhattan Beach, Hermosa Beach, Redondo Beach, Palos Verdes Estates, Rancho Palos Verdes, Rolling Hills, Rolling Hills Estates, El Segundo, Avalon, Lomita, Torrance, Santa Monica, West Hollywood, and Beverly Hills; the Los Angeles neighborhoods of Marina Del Rey, Playa Del Rey, Westchester, Pacific Palisades, Brentwood, Westwood, Westwood Village, Bel Air, Holmby Hills, Little Holmby, Sunset Hills, Beverly Grove, Mar Vista, Mid City West, Miracle Mile, Larchmont Village, Hollywood, Hollywood Hills, Fairfax, Carthay, Fremont Place, Hancock Park, and Windsor Square; and the unincorporated Los Angeles County communities of Marina Del Rey, San Clemente Island, Santa Catalina Island, Franklin, Centinela, and Ocean View.

Ben is a former board member, and former Board President, of the Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District and was elected as the top vote-getter in both his 2008 election and 2012 reelection. He is also an attorney with the law firm of Richardson & Patel LLP and he is a lecturer at UCLA Law School, where he teaches education law and policy.

Ben continues to be a leader on issues of environmental sustainability, financial accountability, and community engagement. While President of the Board, Ben helped shepherd through a successful $385 million bond measure that is set to upgrade District facilities using cutting-edge environmental best practices and create good new local jobs. He helped lead the negotiations for the District with the City of Santa Monica that increased and stabilized City funding for the schools and has supported efforts to ensure that the District provides all students with high-quality educational opportunities regardless of their background or means.

Ben serves on the executive board of the Los Angeles County School Trustees Association, is the Chair of L.A. County’s Committee on School District Organization, and is a delegate to the California Democratic State Convention.

While in law school, Allen served as a voting member of the University of California Board of Regents and as a judicial clerk with the United Nations’ International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda. Afterwards, Allen was a litigator with the law firm of Bryan Cave LLP and then led the successful Los Angeles launch of The Spark Program, a non-profit organization that connects at-risk middle school students with apprenticeships. He currently serves on Spark’s board.

Prior to his law career, Allen worked for the National Democratic Institute for International Affairs (NDI), and then as communications director for Congressman Jose Serrano (D-NY). Allen has degrees from Harvard, Cambridge, and UC Berkeley, and he is fluent in Spanish.