Todd Gloria is an American politician who is serving as the 37th Mayor of San Diego, California. He is a member of the Democratic Party. He is the first person of color (Native American and Filipino) and the first openly gay person to serve as San Diego’s mayor.
Gloria was first elected to public office representing District 3 of the San Diego City Council. He was president of the nine-member council from 2012 through 2014. In his role as council president, Gloria served as interim Mayor of San Diego from the August 2013 resignation of Mayor Bob Filner until the March 2014 inauguration of Mayor Kevin Faulconer. Gloria was then elected to represent California’s 78th State Assembly district, which encompasses much of San Diego. While on the Assembly, he served as House Majority Whip.
Gloria is a third-generation resident of San Diego. All four of his grandparents moved to the area because of their involvement with the military. He has described his ethnic background as “[b]asically half Native American (Tlingit-Haida, an Alaska tribe), a quarter Filipino, and then a little bit of Dutch and Puerto Rican.
Gloria grew up in the Clairemont neighborhood and attended Madison High School. He was interested in politics from childhood. At age 10, he was runner-up in a “mayor for a day” contest. At 14, he volunteered to work for Democratic candidates in the 1992 election.
Gloria graduated summa cum laude from the University of San Diego, with majors in history and political science. While a student at USD, Gloria was active in the effort to add sexual orientation to the campus nondiscrimination policy. He was also a member of Delta Lambda Phi.
U.S. Congresswoman Susan Davis has been Gloria’s political mentor since they met in 1993. Davis was the director of the Aaron Price Fellows Program, a leadership program for high school students focused on civic education and cross-cultural understanding, and Gloria was a high school freshman. In 2002, Gloria became Davis’s district director, a position he held until his election to the City Council in 2008.
Gloria also served as a San Diego Housing Commissioner from 2005 until 2008. Openly gay, he is also a former chairman of the San Diego LGBT Community Center and was a resident panelist on San Diego’s Prostitution Impact Panel.