John Pérez was elected as the 2019-20 chair of the UC Board of Regents in May and started working in the new position July 1.
Pérez was elected as chair on May 16 by the board’s Special Committee on Nominations, which recommended Pérez and Cecilia Estolano for this term’s board chair and vice board chair positions, respectively, according to Anne Shaw, secretary and chief of staff of the regents.
Regent chairs for seven board committees — Maria Anguiano, Gareth Elliott, Sherry Lansing, Richard Leib, Hadi Makarechian, Richard Sherman and Charlene Zettel — were also appointed, according to a July 8 UC Office of the President press release.
“I am honored to serve as chair of the board and continue advocating for our students and their families, in addition to the UC community at large,” Pérez said in the press release.
Pérez has contributed significantly to the UC Board of Regents and has been a member since 2014. Shaw said Pérez has also served as vice chair of the board for the past two years.
During his career, Pérez worked as a political director for the California Labor Federation and served two terms as speaker of the California State Assembly from 2010 to 2014, according to the UC Board of Regents website. As speaker, Pérez fought for policies that aid working families in finding job opportunities and help workers on job sites. One of Pérez’s accomplishments was the establishment of the Middle Class Scholarship, which reduced student fees for middle-class students, according to the board’s website.
“(Pérez’s) lifetime spent fighting for working families can clearly be seen in the legislation and policy initiatives he pursued in the Assembly,” the board’s website states.
Pérez’s endeavors as a state legislative leader to improve the lives of both middle-class families and students have received national attention, and Pérez was invited to speak at the 2012 Democratic National Convention, according to the UC Board of Regents site.
Throughout the next year, Pérez said in the press release that he plans to continue to serve families and students of the UC system through his position.“I look forward to working closely with my fellow board members to continue UC’s tripartite mission of education, research and public service, while giving our students the tools and resources they need for success at UC and beyond,” Pérez said in the press release.