Dr. Frank Gornick, Ferial Govashiri, and Geneve Villacres bring years of experience and expertise in higher education and political leadership
SACRAMENTO, Calif.—May 14, 2018—The California Community Colleges Board of Governors approved the appointment of three new members to the Board of Directors for the Foundation for California Community Colleges: Dr. Frank Gornick, Ferial Govashiri, and Geneve Villacres. These new board members bring experience in education and organizational leadership to the Foundation, the official non-profit serving the California Community Colleges Board of Governors and Chancellor’s Office.
“We are thrilled at the energy, unique skill sets, and experience that all three individuals bring to the Foundation board,” said Keetha Mills, Foundation president and CEO. “Each new member shows a passion for higher education and a commitment to supporting the California Community Colleges as they work to serve students, close equity gaps, and build a stronger workforce.”
Dr. Frank Gornick is the chancellor emeritus for West Hills Community College District, where he previously served as chancellor for 16 years. In this role, Gornick helped to transition the district into a multi-college system by centralizing services and eliminating duplication. He also guided the planning and construction of the West Hills College Lemoore campus, which opened in 2002. Prior to being appointed chancellor, Gornick served as the district’s superintendent and president. Gornick has been a leader in expanding student success programs and improving access to essential technologies through strategic partnerships with private and public organizations.
Ferial Govashiri is the current chief of staff to the chief content officer at Netflix and is the former personal aide to the president of the United States under Barack Obama. Govashiri has over ten years of political campaign and government experience at the highest levels and brings fresh perspectives on strategic planning and technology use to the Foundation board. Govashiri has experience bringing together professionals from an array of different backgrounds to address shared goals and has served as an active member of the Iranian American Women’s Foundation, which focuses on organizing Iranian women and teaching the younger generations to lean on each other for mentorship and advice.
Geneve Villacres is the deputy director of communications at the Democratic Office of Communications and Outreach under the Speaker of the California Assembly. In this role she leads a team of media, data, and statewide outreach experts that help build communication strategies for Assembly Democrats. Previously, she served as community relations manager at Pacific Gas and Electric Company, where she created a workforce development strategy focused on local and diverse hiring, and managed the company’s education charitable investment portfolio. Villacres brings a wealth of experience coordinating work-based learning and internship opportunities in the public and private sector, along with experience in communications, public relations, and K-12 pipeline development.
Members are appointed to a four-year term.
The Foundation for California Community Colleges is the official nonprofit foundation to the California Community Colleges Board of Governors and Chancellor's Office. The Foundation's mission is to benefit, support, and enhance the missions of the California Community Colleges system, the largest higher education system in the nation. Incorporated in 1998, the Foundation works to benefit all California Community College students, colleges, college foundations, and the system as a whole by strengthening communities, accelerating paths to economic and social mobility, and reducing barriers to opportunities for all Californians. The Foundation is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt non-profit corporation and receives no direct state or public support. For more information, visit www.foundationccc.org.