Riordan, Richard J. (rĭrˈdən) [key], 1930–, American businessman and politician, b. Flushing, N.Y. He moved to Los Angeles, where he amassed a fortune through venture capitalism, real estate investment, and leveraged buyouts. In 1993 the conservative Riordan was elected mayor of Los Angeles, the first Republican to win the office in 32 years. In 1997 he was reelected, gaining much crossover Democratic support in the economically resurgent city; he retired in 2001. Riordan made an unsuccessful bid in 2002 for the Republican nomination for the California governorship. He was California secretary of education from 2003 to 2005.
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