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25th Congressional District candidate profile: Dante Acosta

Posted: June 2, 2012 9:27 p.m.
Updated: June 2, 2012 9:27 p.m.

Dante Acosta

 

Santa Clarita Valley residents rallied around Dante Acosta the day a memorial was held for his son, who was killed while serving in Afghanistan.

On March 31, 2011, the Canyon Country father of two surviving children saw an outpouring of support from those showing respect for Army Spc. Rudy A. Acosta, killed by a rogue private security firm recruit earlier that month.

Acosta, a Republican who wears his son’s dog tags whenever he speaks publicly, hopes he’ll receive similar support as he seeks the 25th Congressional District seat.

In the days and weeks that followed the memorial, and especially in the days when he began questioning politicians and military officials about the circumstances of his son’s death, many residents told Acosta he should run for public office.

As an outspoken advocate for the military’s force protection protocols and the one most critical of Rep. Howard “Buck” McKeon’s role as chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, Acosta was becoming a loud political voice.

On March 7, after two trips to Washington looking for answers from the U.S. military about the death of his son, Acosta announced he was running for Congress.

“I am running because I want to ensure that the 25th is adequately represented,” he told The Signal in a sit-down interview at the time, “not by a national Washington politician but by someone with deep, current ties to the community.”

“I want to be sure the great people of this district have a strong representative who listens to, communicates with, and cares about them.”

Acosta, who grew up working to support his mother’s bridal shop in Granada Hills, said he knows the value of money.

The married father of a daughter, Alexandra, 16, and a son, Doran, 11, Acosta worked at a car dealership and was promoted to general manager, he told The Signal.

He and his wife, Carolyn, volunteer at Santa Clarita Baptist Church in Canyon Country. And for the past 20 years, as senior financial adviser for UnionBanc Investment Services, he’s helped local small businesses grow.

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