Playa del Rey resident John Frierson has been elected as the new chairman of the California State Athletic Commission.

Dr. Christopher Giza was elected as the new vice chairman of the commission, which regulates professional boxing, professional and amateur kickboxing and professional mixed martial arts throughout the state by licensing all participants and supervising the events.

Frierson, a member of the Athletic Commission since 2001, is a 26-year veteran of the Los Angeles Police and Sheriff’s Departments who served as LAPD senior traffic supervisor for 17 years. He’s been a member of the Los Angeles Transportation Commission since 2001 and is currently its vice president.

“It’s an honor to serve as chairman of the State Athletic Commission; I’m especially looking forward to working with new Executive Officer George Dodd,” Frierson said. “The health and safety of California’s amateur and professional athletes is my number one priority.”

Frierson is an executive board member of the California Democratic Party and was a delegate to the Democratic National Convention from 1976 through 2000. He has received numerous community service awards from both the City of Los Angeles and the California State Assembly.

Giza has served on the Athletic Commission since 2005. He currently serves as an assistant professor at the UCLA David Geffen School of Medicine, is a pediatric neurologist at UCLA’s Mattel Children’s Hospital and a researcher at the UCLA Brain Injury Research Center.

The California State Athletic Commission works to maintain the health, safety, and welfare of the participants and the public as they are involved in the sports it regulates.