Commencement 2017 Keynote Speaker: Eloy Ortiz Oakley, Chancellor for the California Community Colleges

Photo of Eloy Ortiz Oakley, Chancellor for the California Community Colleges

El Camino College Compton Center is pleased to welcome California Community Colleges Chancellor Eloy Ortiz Oakley as the 2017 commencement speaker. He is the first Latino to lead the California Community Colleges and was appointed chancellor by the California Community Colleges Board of Governors in December 2016.

Oakley is best known throughout California and the nation for implementing innovative programs and policies that help students succeed in college. Oakley strongly believes that California's emerging economies demand a workforce with quality credentials and that the state's 113 community colleges play a pivotal role in moving California forward.

Prior to becoming chancellor, Oakley was appointed as the superintendent-president of the Long Beach Community College District (LBCCD) in 2007. Since then, he has fostered strong relationships with members of the community, state and national policy leaders, his Board of Trustees and the faculty and staff of the college. He has provided statewide and national leadership on the issue of improving the education outcomes of historically underrepresented students. For his efforts, the James Irvine Foundation recognized him with their 2014 Leadership Award. Also in 2014, Governor Brown appointed Oakley to the University of California Board of Regents.

During his tenure at LBCCD, Oakley helped form the nationally recognized Long Beach College Promise, which engages high school administrators and teachers to work with college faculty and staff to create structured pathways for students to follow as they progress from one educational institution to the next. The Long Beach College Promise has inspired similar programs across the country, including the Compton Promise established at El Camino College Compton Center in partnership with the Compton and Lynwood unified school districts and California State University, Dominguez Hills.

Oakley first joined LBCCD in 2002, serving as the assistant superintendent/executive vice president of administrative services. Previously, he served as the vice president of college services at Oxnard College, the assistant vice president of the Property & Casualty Division of Keenan & Associates, and the manager of risk services at the Coast Community College District. Oakley also served as an adjunct faculty member for the Environmental Technology Certificate Program at Golden West College.

Oakley himself is a community college success story. After serving four years in the U.S. Army, he enrolled at Golden West College. He then transferred to the University of California, Irvine where he earned his Master of Business Administration degree and a bachelor's degree in environmental analysis and design.

He is a member of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), the Association of California Community Colleges Administrators (ACCCA), the Presidents for Entrepreneurship Forum, and is a founding member of the President's Alliance for Student Learning and Accountability and Presidents for Latino Student Success.

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