As 2022 comes to a close, Hawthorne’s City Manager reflects on many successes and acknowledges the many accomplishments over the year that uphold the City’s Mission and core values. The mission of the City of Hawthorne is to preserve, protect and enhance the quality of life for those who live and work in our community by providing the highest quality services while utilizing fiscal responsibility. Hawthorne’s core values focus on accountability, innovation, integrity, respect., and professionalism. The list below highlights just a portion of the many achievements while embracing those core values.


This year, Hawthorne focused on instilling a greater sense of responsibility and ownership in maintaining a respectful community. The adoption of our communication plan was a key instrument in increasing communication and transparency with the public while encouraging residents to stay informed and involved.  We commissioned a monthly newsletter, Hawthorne City View, for Employees and Residents; and overhauled the website to include translation capability, offering links to regional support services and an updated calendar of citywide events and meetings. We also held a six-day event to celebrate the centennial, culminating in a State of the City planned by employees to share city accomplishments.

Hawthorne residents celebrating the centennial

So much of the City’s innovation was inspired by the commitment to economic development and ability to channel flexibility and creativity. This year Hawthorne celebrates several achievements such as our stand-alone ad hoc economic development committee whose work resulted in the acquisition of the Bank of America located next to City Hall – increasing the City’s asset portfolio. We also instituted a Virtual City Hall Project (“311”) to process service requests, enhance communication and heighten the experience of conducting business in the City.

The ongoing pandemic also demanded creativity in offering services to the community. With the help of an internal COVID-19 task force made up of a cross-section of employees, we were able to keep city hall open; offer in-person council meetings and serve our residents at full capacity. Most importantly, we were able to bring employees back to work.

In addition to expanding upon Hawthorne’s innovation, the City has worked towards adopting internal and external practices that uphold ethical standards and principles.  Within the last year we were very productive. Hawthorne was one of the first cities in the region to be certified by California Housing & Community Development’s Permanent Local Housing Allocation (PLHA) when we adopted our Housing Plan for 2021-2029. City Council approved balanced budgets for 2021-2022 and 2022-2023; and Managed American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funding including the creation of an Emergency Business Assistance Grant program.

In 2022, Hawthorne invested in public safety and infrastructure projects that position Hawthorne as a respectable community. The following are some examples of the work we accomplished for our community:

  • Served over 10,000 families via food drives in coordination with LA County Supervisor Holly
  • Established free financial literacy classes for residents of Hawthorne.
  • Created a grant program for non-profit organizations in the City of Hawthorne.
  • Created a new community garden at Holly Park and finalized the dog park at Memorial Center.
  • Arranged Coffee with a Cop to strengthen the rapport between residents and police.
  • Established the Illegal Dumping Program and hotline phone number: (310) 349-1634.
  • Completed 5 million dollars in infrastructure projects such as street rehabilitation, providing safer roads.
  • Awarded the Homeless Services Grant ($348,000) from the South Bay Council of Governments to partner with the Los Angeles Center for Drug & Alcohol Abuse (LA CADA).
  • City Council approved the Bridge of Hope Community Housing Project, providing 12-15 pallet shelter units.


Groundbreaking of the Bridge of Hope Community Housing Project


The City is committed to attracting and retaining the best employees to serve the community. Within the past year, Hawthorne invested in enhancing the workplace environment by providing additional tools and opportunities supported by an increased training budget. Hawthorne employees now have an official Employee Handbook and have participated in customer service training. We also successfully negotiated adding Juneteenth as a dedicated holiday for all employees. City Manager Vontray Norris, stated “The new year is sure to bring new challenges, but with our continued commitment to the City’s mission and values, we are better equipped to provide high-quality services that meet the needs of our residents and businesses.” Hawthorne identified several priorities for 2023: implementation of the five-year Economic Development Strategic Plan; continued implementation of the Strategic Communication Plan; launch a rebranding campaign; increase homeless services and provide additional training opportunities. Norris concluded, “I look forward to a prosperous year in 2023 and producing great work together to maintain Hawthorne’s motto of being a city of good neighbors.”