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California Department of Education
News Release
Release: #11-0
January 3, 2011
Contact: Communications
Phone: 916-319-0818

State Superintendent of Public Instruction-Elect Tom Torlakson
Announces Transition Advisory Team Co-Chairs and Members

CONCORD—State Superintendent of Public Instruction-Elect Tom Torlakson today announced the two co-chairs and 50 members of his Transition Advisory Team, a bipartisan group of educators, labor, and business leaders who will advise him as he takes office Monday, January 3, 2011.

Torlakson's Transition Advisory Team will provide strategic advice during his first few months in office as he identifies key issues impacting California students, schools, districts, and the California Department of Education and sets goals to address them. Linda Darling Hammond, the Charles E. Ducommun Professor of Education at Stanford University; and David Rattray, Senior Vice President of Education & Workforce Development for the Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce and President of UNITE LA, will serve as co-chairs of the team.

"I am delighted Linda and David have agreed to lead my Transition Advisory Team during this extremely challenging time, and that so many outstanding teachers and other stakeholders have come forward to be part of this team," said Torlakson. "I know their comprehensive knowledge of the issues facing our students and schools will be enormously valuable as we work to chart the best course for California's schools."

The Transition Advisory Team's members include representatives from organizations with key roles in ensuring the success of every California student. Members of the Transition Advisory Team will also join working groups to discuss key issues in more detail, including:

  • School finance reform and funding;
  • Curriculum and assessment;
  • Accountability and data;
  • Educator preparation and evaluation;
  • Early childhood learning;
  • Education supports for the whole child;
  • Secondary transformation (including linked learning, career technical education, A-G guidelines); and
  • Flexibility and efficiency initiatives, school facilities/construction reform and modernization.

The members of the Torlakson Transition Advisory Team include:

  • Catherine Atkin, President, Preschool California;
  • William Barr, Lecturer, University of California, Berkeley Graduate School of Education; former Monterey County Superintendent of Schools;
  • Cruz Bustamante, Former Lt. Governor, State of California;
  • Dennis Cima, Senior Vice President, Education & Public Policy, Silicon Valley Leadership Group;
  • Liane Cismowski, Vice Principal and Teacher, Mt. Diablo High School, Concord;
  • Yvonne de la Peña, Program Director, California Fire Fighter Joint Apprenticeship Committee;
  • Cesar Diaz, Legislative Director, State Building and Construction Trades Council of California;
  • Jim Dierke, Principal, Visitacion Valley Middle School, San Francisco Unified School District;
  • Linda Galliher, Vice President, Education and Healthcare, Bay Area Council;
  • Patricia Gándara, Professor, UCLA Graduate School of Education and Information Sciences and Co-Director, UCLA Civil Rights Project/Proyecto Derechos Civiles;
  • Abigail Garcia, Teacher, Animo Leadership Charter High School, Inglewood;
  • Donald Gill, Superintendent, Antioch Unified School District;
  • Jay Hansen, Chief Strategy Officer, California Medical Association;
  • Marty Hittelman, President, California Federation of Teachers;
  • Adam Hodess, Commissioner, California Apprenticeship Council, Division of Apprenticeship Standards. Business Manager, UA Plumbers and Steamfitters Local 159;
  • Mat Holton, Superintendent, Chaffey Joint Union High School District;
  • Richard Jackson,  Professor, UCLA School of Public Health and former California State Public Health Officer;
  • Ann Johnston, Mayor of Stockton;
  • Maureen Kindel, Chair of the Board of Visitors, Loyola Marymount University School of Education;
  • Diane Levitt, Executive Director, Safe Cities Foundation;
  • Ted Lempert, President, Children Now;
  • Bill Lloyd, President, SEIU California State Council;
  • Dave Long, Former California Secretary of Education;
  • Sonia Martin-Solis, Teacher, Hillcrest Drive Elementary School, Los Angeles Unified School District;
  • Charles McMinn, Co-Founder and Former CEO, Covad Communications;
  • Hydra Mendoza, School Board Member, San Francisco Unified School District;
  • Molly Munger, Co-Director, Advancement Project Los Angeles;
  • Barbara Nemko, Superintendent of Schools, Napa County;
  • Jeff Patterson, Teacher, Antelope Valley High School;
  • Jennifer Peck, Executive Director, Partnership for Children and Youth;
  • Willie Pelote, Assistant Director, Political Action Department, AFSCME International;
  • Jose Pérez, Chair, California Utilities Diversity Council and Publisher, Latino Journal;
  • Chet Pipkin, Chairman of the Board, Belkin International, Inc.;
  • James Ramos, Chairman, San Manuel Band of Mission Indians and Board Member, San Bernardino Community College District;
  • Diana Rodriguez, Board Member, Sacramento City Unified School District;
  • Alex Rooker, Government Affairs Director, Communications Workers of America Local 9400;
  • Russ Rumberger, Vice Provost for Education Partnerships at the UC Office of the President (on leave from UCSB as an Educational Leadership Professor);
  • David A. Sanchez, President, California Teachers Association;
  • Tim Sbranti, Mayor, City of Dublin and Teacher, Dublin High School;
  • Barry Schuler, Former Chairman and CEO, America Online;
  • Jack Scott, Chancellor, California Community Colleges;
  • Gregg Solkovits, Secondary Vice President, United Teachers of Los Angeles;
  • Suzan Solomon, Board Member, Newhall School District and Vice President for Education, California State PTA;
  • Jai Sookprasert, Assistant Director, Governmental Relations, California School Employees Association;
  • Chris Steinhauser, Superintendent, Long Beach Unified School District;
  • Lillian Taiz, Professor of History at CSU Los Angeles and President of the California Faculty Association;
  • Diane Watson, Member of Congress, California's 33rd District;
  • Carl Wong, Superintendent of Schools, Sonoma County;
  • Kristin Wright, Chair, California Advisory Commission on Special Education; and
  • Antronette Yancey , Professor, UCLA School of Public Health.

Torlakson will be sworn into office at 9 a.m. Monday at Mt. Diablo High School in Concord, the school at which he last taught science, math, and world history. Later in the day, Torlakson will host a reception from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. in the lobby of the California Department of Education in Sacramento.

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Tom Torlakson — State Superintendent of Public Instruction
Communications Division, Room 5602, 916-319-0818, Fax 916-319-0100

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