PRESS RELEASE September 30, 2016

Paige Marlatt Dorr
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California Community Colleges Incoming Chancellor Eloy Ortiz Oakley Honored at White House as

“Champion of Change for College Opportunity”

Oakley among 11 individuals honored in Washington, D.C.

SACRAMENTO, Calif. – California Community Colleges incoming Chancellor Eloy Ortiz Oakley today was honored at the White House as a “Champion of Change for College Opportunity.” Oakley was recognized for his work on the Long Beach College Promise and his efforts to establish a California College Promise.

“I am honored to be recognized by the White House and I share this with our Long Beach College Promise partners,” said Oakley. “Our partners are completely dedicated to the success of the Long Beach College Promise, which is evident by our great results, and we are proud to be a model for other communities.”
Oakley helped form the nationally recognized Long Beach College Promise, which creates pathways for students to follow as they progress from one educational institution to the next. Long Beach College Promise students are guaranteed a tuition-free year at Long Beach City College and preferred admission status to California State University, Long Beach after completing transfer requirements. America’s College Promise, an initiative introduced by President Obama in 2015, was modeled in part on the Long Beach College Promise.
The Champions of Change program was created as an opportunity for the White House to feature individuals doing extraordinary things to empower and inspire members of their communities. The 11 individuals honored at the ceremony today were selected by the White House for their leadership and diligent work to expand opportunity for students from all backgrounds to advance to and through college. Oakley is the only Californian among the group.
Oakley will begin his duties as the new chancellor on Dec. 19, 2016 and replaces Chancellor Brice W. Harris, who retired in April after leading the community college system for nearly four years. Erik E. Skinner will continue to serve as interim chancellor until Oakley takes office.
Photographs and coverage of the event will be posted on the White House website at You can also watch a video of today’s Champions of Change event at

The California Community Colleges is the largest system of higher education in the nation composed of 72 districts and 113 colleges serving 2.1 million students per year. Community colleges supply workforce training, basic skills education in English and math, and prepare students for transfer to four-year institutions. The Chancellor’s Office provides leadership, advocacy and support under the direction of the Board of Governors of the California Community Colleges. For more information about the community colleges, please visit,, or