University of California Regents has just confirmed that Janet Napolitano, the current United States Secretary of Homeland Security, will be the next president of the University of California public education system starting September 2013. Janet Napolitano will be the first ever female University of California President and the 20th UC President, succeeding Mark G. Yudof. As president of the University of California system, Napolitano will oversee 10 public higher education campuses, five medical centers, three affiliated national laboratories and a statewide agriculture and natural resources program. The selection process for UC president included input from the Board of Regents, student, staff, and alumni advisory committees.
Napolitano started her career earning a bachelor’s degree in political science from Santa Clara University and a law degree from University of Virginia. She moved to Arizona in 1983 to practice law under Judge Mary M. Schroeder and then moved to Phoenix to practice for the firm of Lewis and Roca. Napolitano then became an attorney general of Arizona and served as a U.S. Attorney for the District of Arizona. Following her law career, Napolitano became a twice-elected governor of Arizona, serving from 2003 to 2009. In 2009, President Obama appointed her in his cabinet as Secretary of Homeland Security. Under the Department of Homeland Security, Napolitano invested more than $2.2 billion in new state-of-the-art equipment to increase security and protect people. For more information, contact Alicia Berhow, Vice President, Workforce Development and Advocacy.