Mario will be the first open LGBTQ candidate elected to the Downey City Council and in line to be their first openly gay mayor!
Thirty years ago, Mario moved to Downey and taught elementary school in South Central Los Angeles (1990-1996). Through this experience, he learned the importance that community efforts play in the education of young minds. A teacher by day, Mario attended Southwestern University School of Law during the evening. Recognized as a Moot Court Honors student, he earned his Juris Doctorate in 1995 and became a member of the California State Bar in 1996.
On August 1, 1996, Mario became a Los Angeles County Deputy District Attorney. He has served as a prosecutor, primarily in the South East region of Los Angeles County, with assignments in the Whittier, Compton, Bellflower, and Norwalk courthouses. His last trial assignment was with the Hard-Core Gang Division, prosecuting many of the most difficult gang-related murder cases in the county. During his first year in the division, Mario prosecuted more trials than any other attorney in the unit. He also served as a felony prosecutor in the Victim Impact Program, handling emotionally charged and sensitive felony cases. These cases involved the physical and sexual abuse of children as well as domestic violence cases. His experience as atrial attorney includes 115 jury trials – 85 felonies and 30 misdemeanors – including 22 murder cases. His 95% conviction rate is a testament to this hard work and dedication to justice.