CULVER CITY (CBSLA.com) — Funeral services will be held Thursday for Edmund D. Edelman, who spent 20 years as a member of the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors and nine on the Los Angeles City Council.
Edelman died Monday at the age of 85 following a long illness, according to Joel Bellman, who was his press deputy when he was a supervisor. Funeral services will be at 1 p.m. at Hillside Memorial Park in Culver City.
Edelman was diagnosed several years ago with atypical parkinsonism, a neurodegenerative brain disorder that gradually impairs mobility and muscle function in those afflicted.
“Los Angeles has lost a true giant of a public servant,” said Zev Yaroslavsky, who succeeded Edelman on both the City Council and county Board of Supervisors. “Few persons had as profound an impact on the history of our city and county as Ed. His contributions to child welfare, transportation, mental health services and the arts are second to none in this region.
“Above all, he was a man of great personal, professional and political integrity whose example is a model for all political figures to follow.”
Edelman represented the county’s Third District from 1974-1994, which for most of his tenure stretched from the Pacific Ocean to East Los Angeles and included portions of the San Fernando Valley and the Westside.
Edelman’s signature issues included homelessness, public transportation, public health, parks and open spaces, and the arts. He was also an early and outspoken supporter of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning community and staunch advocate for AIDS services and treatment.
Edelman was particularly dedicated to protecting abused and neglected children, and led the effort to establish the county’s Department of Children and Family Services, and to create a dedicated children’s dependency court in Monterey Park that bears his name.
Edelman graduated from Beverly Hills High School and UCLA, where he majored in political science, and the UCLA Law School.
He served as staff counsel to legislative committees in Washington and in Sacramento, and as an attorney with the National Labor Relations Board, before being elected in 1965 to the Westside’s Fifth District seat on the Los Angeles City Council, defeating incumbent Roz Wyman.
Supervisor Michael Antonovich, who served with Edelman, heaped praise on his former colleague during Tuesday’s board meeting.
“Ed was especially devoted to his cello (and) would practice that cello in his office every day,” sometimes heading over to Walt Disney Concert Hall with the instrument in tow, Antonovich said.
Edelman is survived by his wife, Mari; two daughters, Erica (Jeme) Edelman Benadon and Emily (Bryan) Glickman; four grandchildren, Jonah and Juliette Benadon, and Adam and Alexandra Glickman; a sister, Sandra Becker; and a brother, Raymond Edelman.
In lieu of flowers, the family suggests donations to the Ed Edelman Endowment for Chamber Music at the UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music, and the Ed and Mari Edelman Chamber Music Institute at the Colburn School of Music.
(©2016 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services contributed to this report.)