Many legislators, although they seem good at first, have a “shelf life,” said Community College Council President Jim Mahler, which expires when they stop responding to the people who elected them. Mahler said to combat this by finding your own candidates. Assemblyman Jose Medina, D-Riverside, winner of CFT’s Legislator of the Year Award, was just who the union was looking for.

“He is one of us,” Mahler said about the Chair of the Assembly’s Committee on Higher Education, who taught high school and part-time at community colleges. Medina said he was proud of his 34 years of teaching and spoke about his commitment to the California Master Plan as well as the importance of extending Prop. 30.

“I saw too many educators receiving pink slips before,” Medina said. “I’m a firm believer that California’s economic success is directly tied to its educational success.”