Melinda Guzman was appointed on May 16, 2006, as the representative to the Commission by the California State University Board of Trustees, and serves at the pleasure of the Board of Trustees.
Ms. Guzman is sole shareholder of Melinda Guzman, Professional Corporation, a certified Woman and Hispanic owned law firm. She has been a partner of the law firm of Goldsberry, Freeman and Guzman, LLP. Ms. Guzman is a former partner of Diepenbrock, Wulff, Plant & Hannegan, LLP, where she became the first Latina to be named partner in a majority owned firm in Sacramento and in most of Northern California. Ms. Guzman's law practice focuses on representing private and non-profit corporations, foundations, media interests (radio, television and print media), venture and equity capital firms (in acquisitions, financing, and collections), insurance carriers, and other business interests. She is a proven litigator, an effective business negotiator and work-out counsel, and is highly regarded for her mediation skills. Ms. Guzman is also a dedicated public servant with expertise in finance, higher education and business. She is a proven leader with a confirmed track record.
Ms. Guzman serves as a director for the Federal Home Loan Bank of San Francisco. The Federal Home Loan Bank of San Francisco delivers low-cost funding and other services that help member financial institutions make home mortgages to people of all income levels and provide credit that supports neighborhoods and communities. The Bank also funds community investment programs that help members create affordable housing and promote community economic development. The Bank's members–its shareholders and customers–are commercial banks, credit unions, savings institutions, thrift and loans, and insurance companies headquartered in Arizona, California and Nevada. She is the only woman and Latina to serve on this board.
Ms. Guzman also served as a director of Pac-West Telecomm, Inc. from 2004-05. Pac-West Telecomm, Inc. is a publicly traded company located in Stockton, California and is one of the largest competititve local exchange carriers headquartered in California. Ms. Guzman was the only woman and Latina to serve on this board.
Ms. Guzman was appointed by California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger to serve as a member of the Board of Trustees for the California State University system (2004-2012). The California State University is the nation's largest university system. She also serves as a Commissioner for the California Postsecondary Education Commission, which serves as the state's planning and coordinating body for higher education. In 2003, she was appointed by Governor Gray Davis to serve as a member of the Board of Governors of the California Community Colleges.
Ms. Guzman served as General Counsel of the United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce ("USHCC") and of the United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce Foundation ("USHCCF") from 2004-2010. These organizations represent the interests of over 3 million Hispanic-owned businesses in the United States and Puerto Rico. She is also Past Chairwoman of the California Hispanic Chambers of Commerce (CHCC) and a Past President of the Sacramento Hispanic Chamber of Commerce (SHCC). With over 20 years of work with chambers of commerce, Ms. Guzman is highly regarded for her work with small businesses to help grow and develop this important economic base. She is also highly regarded for her work on governance issues and she is a noted speaker and trainer on the fiduciary duties of officers and directors of boards of directors.
Ms. Guzman was born and raised in Fairfield, California and is the daughter of the late Amado Guzman and Anita Guzman of Fairfield. Ms. Guzman is a first generation graduate of the University of California at Davis (B.A., 1985; J.D., 1988). She resides in Fair Oaks, California with her husband, a Vice President of Student Services of a California community college and their daughter, a graduate of Sacramento State University (BA) and San Francisco State University (MA).
- J.D., University of California, Davis (1988)
- B.A., University of California, Davis (1985)
Awards and Honors:
- Recognized with the national "Latina leadership Award" by Latino Leaders magazine, 2008
- Named one of "The 100 Influentials" by Hispanic Business Magazine, 2004
- The Luminary Award for Leadership in Business by the National Association of Women Business Owners
- Business Woman of the Year by the Sacramento Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, 1999 and 2005
- Top "40 under 40" dynamic young achievers by the Sacramento Business Journal
- Recognized for leadership in the Hispanic Community by Univision and McDonalds Corporations
- Recognized as well respected business leader for her ethics and integrity; creating and developing programs that promote education and business growth and development; and expertise in corporate governance and venture programs
- Member, Sacramento County Bar Association
- Member, State Bar of California
- Member, California Minority Counsel Program
- General Counsel, United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce Foundation
- Member, Women Lawyers of Sacramento (former Board Member)
- Member, La Raza National Lawyers Association (Vice President, 1989)
- Former Member, Executive Committee, Law Practice Management Section
- Former Member, Board of Governors of the California Community Colleges, appointed by Governor Gray Davis (2003)
- Past Chair, Nehemiah Corporation of America, one of the nation's largest down payment assistance programs for new home buyers
- Past President (1995) and Member, Davis Community Television Board of Directors (1990-95). She provides on air talent for DCTV productions, including Davis Dialogue and has provided commentary for DCTV's campaign coverage.
- Served on Comstock's Club and KVIE Channel 6 Board of Directors where she chaired the Community Advisory Board and serves as talent for special on air productions.
- Former Member, Board of Trustees, University of California Davis Foundation
- Former Member, Board of Directors, Make-A-Wish Foundation
- Past Chairwoman, California Hispanic Chambers of Commerce ("CHCC")
- Past President, Sacramento Hispanic Chamber of Commerce ("SHCC")