People believe in Magic to the point that his mere involvement gives cautious corporate investors the confidence to venture into inner-city neighborhoods. His Magic Johnson Theatres (a partnership with Loews Cineplex Entertainment) are lighting up the Crenshaw district more than a decade after the 1992 riots. His real estate fund (another partnership, with Canyon Capital Realty Advisors) has underwritten redevelopment in Hollywood and downtown L.A. His deal with Starbucks--he's its sole outside partner--has brought jobs (and $3 lattes) to more than three dozen low-income neighborhoods in Southern California. His political endorsement is among L.A.'s most influential, and talk persists of his mayoral potential.
Lucile M. Jones
Seismologist, U.S. Geological Survey; 51, La Canada-Flintridge
Technically, Jones is a specialist in earthquake probabilities, but for 20 years she's been the "earthquake mom," calming the public after a temblor with her reassurance and expertise. She's also an outspoken member of the state's Seismic Safety Commission. When Schwarzenegger's administration tried to fire Jones earlier this year (on the centennial of the San Francisco quake, no less) the reverberations were so strong that the governor overruled the removal the same day.
Steve "Jonesy" Jones
Indie rock deejay; former Sex Pistol; 50, Benedict Canyon
His playlist on KDLD/KDLE-FM (103.1) is pretty much whatever the bloke feels like 'earing, which has made "Jonesy's Jukebox" not just one of L.A.'s hottest radio shows but the source of a cottage industry in downloads and CD sales. Virgin Megastores now feature "Jonesy's Picks" sections. At least three fledgling bands have gotten major label deals because Jonesy played them. And though the station doesn't match the ratings or signal strength of L.A.'s alt-rock big dog KROQ-FM (106.7), it's credited with forcing rivals to get edgier or step aside.
For The Record
Los Angeles Times Thursday August 17, 2006 Home Edition Main News Part A Page 2 National Desk 2 inches; 90 words Type of Material: Correction
Southland's most powerful: The listing of Southern California's 100 most powerful people in Sunday's West magazine incorrectly stated that real estate heir Stephen L. Bing had been "socked by actress-model Elizabeth Hurley with a successful paternity suit." It was Bing who initiated legal proceedings to establish his paternity and successfully confirmed his legal right to provide financial support for his son, despite Hurley's opposition. The article also gave the incorrect city of residence for Richard "Wooly" Woolcott, CEO and president of Volcom. He lives in Laguna Beach, not Laguna Hills.
For The Record
Los Angeles Times Sunday August 27, 2006 Home Edition West Magazine Part I Page 5 Lat Magazine Desk 2 inches; 89 words Type of Material: Correction
The Power Issue: The listing of Southern California's 100 most powerful people (Aug. 13) incorrectly stated that real estate heir Stephen L. Bing had been "socked by actress-model Elizabeth Hurley with a successful paternity suit." It was Bing who initiated legal proceedings to establish his paternity and successfully confirmed his legal right to provide financial support for his son, despite Hurley's opposition. In addition, the listing gave the incorrect city of residence for Richard "Wooly" Woolcott, CEO and president of Volcom. He lives in Laguna Beach, not Laguna Hills.
Chairman, KB Home; 60, Bel-Air
In the homebuilding industry, Karatz is known as a master marketer. He has spent two decades helming the former Kaufman & Broad Home Corp., the company that virtually created suburban Southern California. His concept in 1996 of "pre-selling" homes before they're built--a revolutionary idea at the time--is now common. But beyond that, Karatz is a major civic presence, serving over the years on many important local boards (from USC to Rand Corp.) and wading into Democratic politics (though he backed the wrong horse--Bob Hertzberg--for mayor).
CEO, DreamWorks Animation;
cofounder, DreamWorks SKG;
55, Beverly Hills
Katzenberg not only leads the chief competitor to Disney in the animation arena, but he has evolved into an important civic presence. A major fundraiser for AIDS service and treatment organizations, Katzenberg also chairs the Motion Picture and Television Fund, which underwrites home healthcare and housing for the needy who have worked in the entertainment industry.
Executive director, Port of L.A.; 54, Long Beach
Knatz came to the Port of L.A. this year from the neighboring Port of Long Beach, giving her a thorough understanding of the nation's biggest harbor complex. Together, the ports generate some 500,000 jobs, dwarfing other major industries here. But until Knatz made her move, L.A. and Long Beach behaved like bitter rivals, creating a chronic obstacle to air-quality improvement. Now, with Knatz reaching out to her old boss, Port of Long Beach Executive Director Richard Steinke, the two appear destined to work together on pollution reduction and more. "She gets up at 4:45 in the morning and kicks butt all day," one admirer has said.
John Kobylt and Ken Chiampou
Talk-radio hosts; 45 and 50, Beverly Hills and Hermosa Beach, respectively
OK, OK. We know these are two names (technically making our list The West 101). But there is no way to separate John and Ken, the guys behind L.A.'s top-rated afternoon-drive talk show on KFI-AM (640). Whether you agree with them or not, the impact of their angry-white-guy campaigns is unmistakable. When Villaraigosa declared that the nation relies on immigrant workers, saying, "We clean your toilets," John and Ken fans deluged City Hall with more than 1,000 toilet brushes. Their daily rants against Gov. Gray Davis (Gumby, they called him) were instrumental in the 2003 gubernatorial recall, as was their support of Schwarzenegger, which has--uh-oh--been wavering.
Chief of staff to Mayor Villaraigosa; 53, Windsor Square
Press-shy but preternaturally plugged in, Kramer has been the right hand of so many downtown heavy-hitters that even she may have lost count. She was chief of staff to former L.A. Councilman Richard Alatorre, then chief of staff to Mayor Richard Riordan, then senior director of Eli Broad's foundation and now--after intensive lobbying by Antonio himself--chief of staff for Villaraigosa. Her fingerprints are, by the nature of her job, invisible, but her name brings instant credibility to any boss or cause.