Along with his twin sister, Steve Mozena is the youngest of eight children born to European immigrant parents.
His father, now deceased, was born in Italy. He owned a medical equipment and supply company in Portland and Seattle.
Steve's mother, born in Ireland, founded "Portland's White House," the first bed and breakfast in Portland, so named because it resembled the White House.
Mozena received a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism from the University of Oregon, and he soon made a name for himself as an entrepreneur, technology innovator, publisher, print and radio journalist, community activist, and creative, out-of-the-box problem-solver.
Mozena is a man who is not intimidated by large, unresponsive bureaucracies or by those who wield power and privilege but have forgotten who they are supposed to represent. He works passionately, tirelessly and ingeniously for the causes he believes in.
Early in his career, while working as a sports intern at KPTV-12 in Portland, Oregon, he came up with a creative idea that captured the public imagination. Building on the Portland Trailblazers' Blazermania and victory of the Western Conference in the late 1980s, Steve created the hot-selling "Blazer Tails," a three-colored streamer that people could tie onto their car antennas to show their support for the Blazers. He made eight thousand dollars from the Blazer Tails in one week!
Also in the late 1980s, Steve Mozena was a morning radio personality, giving drive-time broadcasts on Phoenix, Arizona's FM 100 KLZI radio station. He also created the persona of "Dr." Steve Mozena. He would don lab coat and scrubs for public appearances, and mix music and humor as he poked mild fun at himself as "Dr. Steve." This routine was based on an earlier stint of Steve's in which he owned and sold medical and surgical supplies to doctors' offices, hospitals, and nursing homes.
In the early 1990s, Mozena made his mark as a publisher. As founder, CEO, and publisher of Mozena Publishing, Inc., a custom textbook company, and ETEXT.net Electronic Textbook Publishing, an online academic publishing firm, he pioneered the electronic college textbook field.
ETEXT.net was founded in 1994, as Mozena's e-vision for education propelled him to take advantage of the Web before it was hip. See etext.net. ETEXT.net provides a service for college professors and students. Professors receive higher royalties, and students pay less for their custom etext than for conventional hardcover or paperback textbooks.
Steve Mozena is also a perpetual investigative reporter; his observations about the city, the media, and other items of importance to the citizens of Los Angeles and around the country have been widely published in cities such as Portland, Ore.; Seattle, Wash.; Phoenix, Ariz., and even New York. One of his recent undertakings is to promote fiscal responsibility in government. See his Post the Finances Web site at postthefinances.com
Mozena also has a long track record as a community activist. When he lived in Venice, California, he surprised everyone by persuading the Los Angeles City Council to embark on a long-overdue tree-trimming project. Local residents had been trying unsuccessfully for more than ten years to get this accomplished and turned to Steve for help. He asked the Council for funds to beautify Venice Beach and Boardwalk, joking that he represented the "Merchants of Venice" because he had a petition with more than 200 signatures of residents and merchants along the world-renowned Venice Beach Boardwalk. The Council took the Shakespearean hint, and Venice Beach was no longer treated like the city dump. With the necessary funds, Steve arranged for 600 trees to be trimmed. See the archives of the Los Angeles Times (latimes.com) for more information about his success.
Following this success, Steve Mozena approached the Los Angeles Recreation and Parks Commission, requesting grass seed for his community. The Commission said there was no money in the budget, but Steve offered to pay for the seed if the city promised to plant and take care of the seedlings. They agreed to this, but the city did not live up to its end of the bargain. So, Mr. Mozena, after having exhausted all measures to reclaim his money, as a final resort sued the city in small claims court and won. The Los Angeles Times' reporter, Bob Poole, wrote an article about the incident. See latimes.com archive for the story.
But this disappointment was not the end of Steve's beautification efforts. He enlisted the homeless to remove graffiti, had the city post new recreational road signs, remove debris, set up volleyball nets, repair potholes and sidewalks, fix fencing around storm drains, fix lampposts, and paint swing sets.
As a problem solver and out-of-the-box ideas generator, Steve came to the rescue of the City when it said it did not have enough money to tear down an old dilapidated building on Venice Beach. Mozena suggested a land swap with the Native Americans, granting them the right to build a casino on the site.
The State of Oregon had made a similar land swap with the Native Americans of Oregon. It was a typical piece of artful Mozena persuasion. The city managed to find the money to tear down the building and create a park on the site. The homeless have often had cause to be grateful for Steve Mozena's assistance. He has volunteered in homeless shelters, befriending these men and women of misfortune, even taking them to music concerts and sporting events. He helped a homeless man record a song on a CD, and as a result of his efforts Universal Music Group showed interest in signing this new talent once he received national exposure or was played on major radio stations. Maybe Simon, Randy or Paula will give the homeless man a shot on "American Idol."
Mozena has also participated in the political life of California. In 2001, he ran for public office in Lost Angeles because he wanted to give something more back to his community.
In his spare time, Steve Mozena has been a singer and actor. He sang in choir at both St. Monica's Catholic Church in Santa Monica, Calif. as well as St. Mark's Catholic Church in Venice, Calif. He has been a member of SAG and AFTRA actors' unions for more than 10 years.
In order to achieve his acting dreams, Mr. Mozena advertised himself on bus benches located near major Hollywood Studios. Shortly thereafter, a major motion picture was released about . . . an actor who advertises himself on a bus bench and goes from "Hollywood's Least Known to Hollywood's Most Wanted." The movie, "Jimmy Hollywood," was released by Paramount Pictures. It stars Joe Pesci and Christian Slater, and is directed by Barry Levinson. Art imitating Life! Rent it on Video or DVD.
In April 2001, Mozena married Lucille (Pedrita) Mozena. They have one child so far, a daughter, Arista Mozena, who was born in June of 2002.
Since moving to Carson, California, in 2002, Mozena has continued to be active in community life. He ran for public office in Carson in March, 2004, and actively worked to bring new businesses to Carson.
In 2005, Steve had some health problems, from which he fortunately has now recovered. His wife has also suffered two miscarriages.
Despite these setbacks, Steve continues to pursue his dreams. In late 2005, Steve went to a local recording studio and made a CD, "Daddy's Christmas Songs," featuring himself singing some of his favorite Christmas carols. He included 3 1/2 year old Arista singing "Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star." Steve persuaded the famed music mogul Clive Davis to personally listen to "Daddy's Christmas Songs."
Given his love of cooking-he once won second place in a cooking contest-Steve submitted his application to the Food Network's show "Next Food Network Star" and Bravo's "Top Chef."
In the meantime, Steve's letters on matters of national interest have been appearing in more and more newspapers. On January 1, 2006, one of his letters was published by the Chicago Sun-Times, and was followed 15 days later by another letter in USA Today.
Adding to these successes, Steve's wife Lucille became a U.S. citizen on May 5, 2006!
Steve's most recent venture is the promotion of "Karaoke Christmas on the Radio," which he envisions as a way for everyone to become singing stars on their local radio stations at Christmas. He created a "Karaoke Christmas on the Radio" CD and contacted numerous radio group CEOs to promote the idea. He also marketed the CD, and two major retailers have asked him to contact them in early 2007.
"It ain't over till it's over," as Yogi Berra put it, and Steve's life certainly isn't over yet. He has loads more energy, enthusiasm, and creativity to share with everyone in the coming years. With Steve, you just never know what to expect next!