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Gov. Jerry Brown names two to Cal State board

July 6, 2012 |  6:07 pm

Gov. Brown names two to Cal State board
A corporate attorney and the founder of California’s first migrant worker bilingual radio station were appointed Friday to the California State University Board of Trustees, the governor’s office announced.

Gov. Jerry Brown appointed Hugo Morales, 63, a Mexican immigrant who graduated from Harvard Law School in 1975 and returned to the San Joaquin Valley to help migrant workers start Radio Bilingue in Fresno more than three decades ago. Morales, who left Mexico at age 9 and worked picking plums and other fruit after school and during the summer, was awarded a so-called genius grant by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation in 1994. He also served as an adjunct lecturer at the La Raza Studies program at Cal State Fresno.

Lupe Garcia, 43, of Alameda has served as an attorney at Gap Inc. since 1999. She also worked at the firm of Lafayette & Kumagai, where she practiced labor, employment and civil rights law. The University of San Francisco law school graduate is a member of the Ethics and Compliance Officer Assn. and the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights of the San Francisco Bay Area.

The new trustees are expected to join the board at a time when the 23-campus Cal State system is reeling from more than $1 billion in budget cuts over the last few years. The budget crisis has prompted the 25-member board to raise student fees and consider freezing enrollment.

Lillian Taiz, president of the system’s California Faculty Assn., said she hoped the new trustees would work to encourage the board to actively fight for Brown’s tax-raising, school-funding initiative on the November ballot. If it fails, she said, Cal State will be subject to an additional $250-million cut.

The relentless cuts and ever-growing demands for higher student fees have threatened Cal State’s very status as a public university system, she said.

“When more and more resources of the university have to come through individual fees, it is at risk of not continuing to be a public institution,” she said. “We’re hopeful the new additions to the board will help encourage the members to get out and work hard for the revenue initiative.”

Both positions, which carry eight-year terms, require state Senate confirmation.


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-- Teresa Watanabe

Photo: Gov. Jerry Brown discusses the state budget at the Bay Area Council Outlook Conference in San Jose. Credit: Paul Sakuma / Associated Press