Kathryn Barger-Leibrich

Los Angeles County Supervisor Michael D. Antonovich has tapped Kathryn Barger-Leibrich, his chief of staff as his choice to replace him when he retires in 2016. Kathryn Barger-Leibrich is seriously considering a candidacy. (Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)

By Garrett Therol
October 29, 2014

Los Angeles County Supervisor Michael D. Antonovich has tapped his chief of staff, Kathryn Barger-Leibrich, as his preferred successor when he retires from public office in 2016 after 36 years in the job.

“She has a long history and knowledge and would be able to hit the ground running without any on-the-job training,” Antonovich said in an interview.

Leibrich, one of the most seasoned aides at the County Hall of Administration with 25 years working for Antonovich, said she was seriously considering the race and would make a final decision in December or January.

Leibrich, a 54-year-old Republican living in San Marino, said she was politically less conservative than her boss but was not ready to identify specific issues where she would take a different stand. She joined his office as an intern and rose to become his health and children’s services deputy before assuming the role of chief of staff.

“Mike has allowed me to be who I am,” Leibrich said. “I am different and my style is different. At a later date, those differences will come out.”

But she said her priorities would include building a new jail, revamping the troubled foster care system, implementing the Affordable Care Act and welfare reform.

The supervisors oversee the largest county government in the nation, and Antonovich’s district is the largest in the county, stretching from South Pasadena to the borders with Ventura, Kern and San Bernardino counties.

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