Matthew Harper is the 59th Mayor of the City of Huntington Beach. Harper was elected to the Huntington Beach City Council November 2, 2010 on a campaign platform of public safety, infrastructure, economic development, administrative and fiscal accountability, property rights, personal freedom and opposition to higher taxes. Harper was elected by the mayors of the Second District to the Orange County Transportation Authority (OCTA) Board of Directors.
Harper will be a candidate for California State Assembly in the 74th District to succeed Assemblyman Allan Mansoor. The 74th Assembly District includes Huntington Beach, Costa Mesa, Newport Beach, Irvine, Laguna Woods and Laguna Beach.
Early life and education
Harper was born in Long Beach, California and lived briefly in Colorado, but grew up in Westminster and Huntington Beach. A graduate of Huntington Beach High School, Harper is a member of the HBHS Alumni Association. After transferring from Orange Coast College, Harper earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Public Policy and Management at the University of Southern California.
Prior to his service on the Huntington Beach City Council, Harper was elected to the Huntington Beach Union High School District (HBUHSD) in 1998, re-elected with the most votes in 2002, and named to an uncontested third term in 2006. There are five governing board members, or trustees, that are each elected at-large by HBUHSD voters. The HBUHSD serves the secondary education needs of the Orange County communities of Huntington Beach, most of Westminster, most of Fountain Valley, a portion of Garden Grove, Midway City and Sunset Beach. Four separate feeder elementary school districts serve the primary education needs of the territory served by the HBUHSD. High schools in the district include: Huntington Beach High School, Westminster High School, Marina High School, Fountain Valley High School, Edison High School, Ocean View High School, Valley Vista High School, Coast High School, Community Day School, and Huntington Beach Adult School.
From 2007–2011, Harper served as a policy advisor and deputy chief of staff to Orange County Supervisor Janet Nguyen. Harper assisted in intergovernmental relations, and also served as lead liaison with the City of Westminster, OC Fire Authority, OC Sanitation District and OC Transportation Authority. Harper was an advisor on issues concerning OC infrastructure (i.e. airport, water, flood control, roads, parks, public works, etc.). In 2011, Harper served as an appointee to the five-member Orange County Redistricting Committee.
For two years, Harper was the elected Chairman for the Young Republican Federation of California (YRFC) and served on their state board for over ten years. Harper was re-elected in 2012 to his fifth term to the Orange County Republican Party Central Committee. Harper serves on the executive committee for the OCGOP. Statewide, Harper served as the elected Associate Representative to the California Republican Party. As Associate Representative, Harper served as an ex-officio member of the state platform committee. Harper is a delegate to the California Republican Party as named by Congressman Dana Rohrabacher.
- "Mayor Matthew Harper Biography, City of Huntington Beach Official Website". Retrieved December 2, 2013.
- Miller, Michael (September 1, 2010). "First-time candidate favors economic development: Twelve-year trustee with school district calls Beach and Edingers Corridors Specific Plan a key area of revitalization.". Huntington Beach Independent. Retrieved December 2, 2013.
- "Smartvoter Information for Matthew Harper, Candidate for Huntington Beach City Council 2010". Retrieved December 2, 2013.
- "OCTA Director Matthew Harper Biography, Orange County Transportation Authority Official Website". Retrieved December 2, 2013.
- Carpio, Anthony Clark (May 15, 2013). "H.B. leaders consider political moves: Councilmen Matthew Harper and Joe Carchio are keeping their eyes on county and state offices.". Huntington Beach Independent. Retrieved December 2, 2013.
- Carpio, Anthony Clark (December 12, 2013). "New mayor known for strong stands". Huntington Beach Independent. Retrieved December 15, 2013.
- "Smartvoter Information for Matthew Harper, Candidate for Huntington Beach Union High School District 1998". Retrieved December 2, 2013.
- "Smartvoter Information for Matthew Harper, Candidate for Huntington Beach Union High School District 2002". Retrieved December 2, 2013.
- "Orange County Redistricting Committee". Retrieved December 2, 2013.
- "Orange County Republican Party". Retrieved December 2, 2013.
- "Smartvoter Information for Matthew Harper, Candidate for Republican Party of Orange County Central Committee". Retrieved December 2, 2013.