San Diego Area Elected Officials Welcomed to Campus
Chancellor Khosla poses for photos with San Diego area elected officials. Photos by Erik Jepsen/UC San Diego Publications
Now that the voters have spoken and elected officials have settled into office, the Chancellor’s Community Advisory Board (CCAB) invited new and incumbent representatives from around San Diego to a welcome reception on campus Feb. 15 to learn more about UC San Diego and its positive impact on the region.
Chancellor Pradeep K. Khosla congratulated the recently elected officials and talked about the importance of working together to support higher education.
“I urge you to help us, to work with us and to work with each other, to preserve this amazing higher education system,” said Khosla. “We are the envy of the entire country, and we need to maintain our excellence.”
Attendees at the event included California State Assemblymembers Toni Atkins (D-78), Marie Waldron (R-75), and Shirley Weber (D-79); San Diego County Board of Supervisors Chairman Greg Cox; and County Supervisor Dave Roberts, among other elected officials from regional cities and school boards. Several UC San Diego faculty, staff and students also were present and had an opportunity to mingle with the elected officials.
During Khosla’s welcome address, he discussed how the campus is currently involved in a strategic planning initiative and how it is integral to have all constituents from the region be a part of the process. “We want to bring UC San Diego to the community, and we want the community to come to UC San Diego.”
Khosla highlighted the vital role UC San Diego plays in the county, state and nation. “We pride ourselves in serving our community and being an economic engine for our region,” he said. “Our campus members have played a key role in creating the biotech and high-tech industry cluster on the Torrey Pines Mesa. They have created more than 650 start-up companies. We also attract a great deal of federal research dollars. Our annual research funding is more than $1 billion.”
He added, “We have had an amazing 52 years of success and community impact. And we want to maintain that trajectory and contribution.”
Khosla concluded the reception by honoring former Senator Christine Kehoe and former Assemblymember Nathan Fletcher for their public service and championing of UC San Diego.
He thanked Kehoe for being a pivotal leader of the San Diego legislative delegation, a mentor to many and strong supporter of UC San Diego.
Kehoe, who recently joined the Chancellor's Community Advisory Board, commended the university’s vast contributions to society.
“We recognize the importance of UC San Diego,” Kehoe said. “What an economic engine it is, what an intellectual engine it is and what a great education resource it is.”
Fletcher could not attend the reception because he was traveling in Hong Kong, but he did join the event via a live Skype conversation. Khosla thanked Fletcher for his enthusiastic support for UC San Diego, including the efforts he made to ensure that the recently erected Structural and Materials Engineering Building received funding.
Fletcher expressed his gratitude toward the chancellor and said he is excited to have joined the UC San Diego faculty. Fletcher was recently designated a “Professor of Practice” in the campus’s political science department and is co-teaching a course on California governance and politics. “It’s an absolute honor to join you. I don’t represent UC San Diego, but I do work there now,” Fletcher joked.
After the reception, attendees including UC San Diego senior and Associated Students President Meggie Le, had the opportunity to interact with the elected officials.
“It’s important to have events like this where we get to show our representatives how UC San Diego is truly part of our surrounding community,” Le said.
The Chancellor’s Community Advisory Board (CCAB) is composed of UC San Diego supporters and advocates who provide counsel to the chancellor, with specific emphasis on the university’s role in the community.