The Palmdale City Council has selected District 3 Councilmember Laura Bettencourt to serve as Mayor Pro Tem for the city. Her term began on Dec. 22 and will run until the Council will select a new Mayor Pro Tem at the Dec. 2021 City Council meeting.

“2021 is going to be a challenging and exciting year in our city and I look forward to Laura in her new role and the rest of our Council working towards accomplishing many great things for our community,” said Palmdale Mayor Steve Hofbauer.

“In today’s world, I am glad to see Laura Bettencourt serving as the first female Mayor Pro Tem in the City of Palmdale,” said Councilmember Austin Bishop. “Her insights, leadership, and advocacy on so many important issues will be critical as we tackle the challenges we will face in 2021.”

Bettencourt was first elected to City Council on May 19, 2009 and re-elected on Nov. 3, 2009, Nov. 8, 2016 and again on Nov. 6, 2018. she has resided in the Antelope Valley since 1985.

Bettencourt works as a crime and intelligence analyst for the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department and has done so for 23 years. She previously worked for Northrop Grumman at Site 4 on the B2 Bomber project. For the past 20 years, Bettencourt has also worked as an adjunct instructor at Antelope Valley College teaching courses in criminal justice.

Bettencourt holds an associate’s degree from Antelope Valley College, a bachelor’s degree in social ecology, specializing in criminology, law and society, from the University of California, Irvine, and a master’s degree in criminal justice from California State University, San Bernardino. While attending UC Irvine, she worked at the Irvine Police Department.

She is also certified by the California Department of Justice in Crime and Intelligence Analysis and has attended both the basic and advanced DEA federal law enforcement academies for intelligence analysis in Quantico, Va.

Bettencourt is a member of the Palmdale City Audit Committee, Palmdale Airport Authority, a director on the Palmdale Financing Authority, and a director on the Palmdale Civic Authority.

She is also an alternate delegate for the Antelope Valley Transit Authority, Palmdale Recycled Water Authority (PRWA), California Contract Cities Association, US/Mexico Sister Cities Association, and sits on the board of the Palmdale Aerospace Academy.