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LOS ANGELES

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[[caption]] (Watts Towers) Los Angeles offers black professionals nothing less than a spectacular array of lifestyles-and the climate to enjoy them. [[/caption]]

[[image - Cunningham]]
[[image - Dr. Cobb]]
[[image - Jeffries]]
[[image - Baruka]]
[[image - Dymally]]
[[image - Stokes]]

Even in the early 1920s, Los Angeles offered itself as the perfect setting for the madcap movie geniuses to come. At that time it was a somnolent city bathed in almost too much sun and sensuality and sheer serendipity. There seemed almost nothing more serious for Los Angeles to do than dream. But with the hopes and talents of men and women who for decades were lured to this city, Los Angeles built its lasting fame and fortune on a movie kingdom of celluloid dreams for all ages. 

The Los Angeles of today has grown wider and has sprawled out as if seeking to embrace an ever-blossoming population of dreamers and sun worshipers, but it is also a city of far-ranging economic activity and robust growth. Black Angelenos make up nearly one million (12.6 percent) of the 7,477,503 residents in Greater Los Angeles, and 37.9 percent of their families are rated as middle class. 

The region is well represented with many of the nation's gold-plated firms, that have played a major role in the nation's high tech and computer revolution, making it a highly attractive area for black professionals with technical and science backgrounds. Economic specialists predict that in the coming year, the state's income will rise sharply, and that 330,000 new jobs will be generated. 

The Los Angeles area additionally offers black professionals nothing less than a spectacular array of lifestyles that range from prosaic to princely-and along with them it offers the climate to enjoy them. The median black family income for Greater Los Angeles is high at $16,469. In our survey only Washington, Seattle and Denver rank higher. Also, the cost of living for a family of four is a competitive $22,500. The city has a $247 consumer price index, which puts it slightly below our ten-city average of $249. The median value of a home in Los Angeles, where 40 percent of its black residents own homes, is $88,000. The median monthly mortgage payment works out to $397, and for an apartment dweller, the median monthly rent is $245. 

Over the intervening years, as the city has broadened its appeal and the film and entertainment industry has widened its base, Los Angeles has become home for prominent black celebrities, entertainers, local sports personalities, actors and musicians who lived in regal Beverly Hills splendor. Many like Motown mogul Berry Gordy Jr., singer Ray Charles, basketball star Marques Johnson, Tina Turner still make their homes their. But other affluent though lesser-known black professionals live near by in communities in Southwest Los Angeles like Baldwin Hills, View Park, and even Fox Hills. These bedroom communities are similarly contoured by oriental landscaping, tennis courts and swimming pools, and yield breathtaking views of the city. From these addresses the city itself is a 20-minute drive, the Crenshaw and Fox Hills Shopping Malls are even closer, and there are excellent schools in Hollywood and Beverly Hills. 

For black professionals with ambitions and dreams (especially those who wish to be successful in the entertainment world), Los Angeles still has a magic wand. 

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