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Digital Equity in the California Legislature: The Golden State’s Historic Opportunity

Friday, June 25, 2021
11:00am - 12:30pm PDT

A year into the COVID-19 pandemic, students continue to experience digital inequity. According to the Brookings Institute, almost 10 million students—half of whom are students of color—do not have the home internet services necessary for remote learning in 2021. According to the Public Policy Institute of California, connectivity and technology gaps persist across the state among low-income, African American, and Latino households. In Sacramento, tackling the digital divides has received top billing among pundits and decision makers. Oftentimes inaccessible, the conversation usually remains within the confines of the Capitol.

Join the Michelson 20MM Foundation, the California Community Foundation, and the Silicon Valley Community Foundation on June 25th, 2021, as we shift the paradigm through our next Connecting California event: Digital Equity in the California Legislature: The Golden State’s Historic Opportunity. The program will feature policymakers determined to uplift what is often described as one of the most pressing social justice issues of our time. 

 

Speakers

Assemblymember Cecilia Aguiar-Curry

4th California Assembly District

In November 2016, Cecilia Aguiar-Curry was elected to the California Assembly to represent the 4th District that includes all or parts of Napa, Lake, Yolo, Sonoma, Colusa and Solano counties. Assemblymember Aguiar-Curry introduced Assembly Bill 14, “The Internet for All Act of 2021,” to bridge the digital divide. She first served as planning commissioner and then was elected to the city council eventually serving as the first female mayor of her hometown of Winters. With the understanding that employment is central to any successful community, Aguiar-Curry helped bring a PG&E training facility to Winters that provided hundreds of jobs for local residents. She was also involved in efforts to create the Berryessa Snow Mountain National Monument in the inner California Coast Ranges that was proclaimed by President Obama in 2015.

Senator Anna M. Caballero

12th California Senate District

Anna M. Caballero, was elected in November 2018 to the California State Senate to represent the 12th Senate District, which includes the Salinas Valley, San Benito County, Merced County and portions of Stanislaus, Madera and Fresno counties. Senator Caballero first encountered digital inequity as a councilwoman in the city of Salinas, where bridging the digital divide was crucial to strengthening the business and commercial opportunities for growth and the redevelopment of downtown Salinas. Caballero is the author of Senate Bill 28, the “Rural Broadband and Digital Infrastructure Video Competition Reform Act of 2021.”

Senator Lena A. Gonzalez

33rd California Senate District

Lena A. Gonzalez was first elected to the State Senate to represent the 33rd District in June 2019. As State Senator, she represents nearly 1 million residents in Southeast Los Angeles, Signal Hill, portions of South Los Angeles and Lakewood, and her hometown of Long Beach. At the beginning of the 2021 legislative session, Senator Gonzalez introduced Senate Bill 4, “The Broadband for All Act,” to help close the digital divide. To date, Gonzalez has worked on over 70 measures that have been introduced at the state legislature. Prior to her time in the Senate, Gonzalez worked for Microsoft where she led social impact programs on digital skills, the future of work and criminal justice reform. She also served on the Long Beach City Council from 2014-2019, representing 50,000 residents in Downtown Long Beach, including the Port of Long Beach.

Presented in partnership with:

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If you missed our Connecting California events, you can find the recordings on our #ConnectingCA YouTube playlist. Michelson 20MM was founded thanks to the generous support of renowned spinal surgeon and inventor Dr. Gary K. Michelson and his wife, Alya Michelson. The Michelson 20MM Foundation is dedicated to supporting and investing in leading organizations, technologies, and initiatives that seek to transform learning and improve access to educational opportunities that lead to a meaningful career. Learn more at www.20mm.org.


Fee
No cost to participate

Who May Attend
Current SCG members

Registration
SCG members: Register online (you must log in to your SCG account to register).
If you have additional questions regarding these sessions, please contact us at [email protected]

Accommodations for People with Disabilities
If you have a disability and require accommodation in order to fully participate in this activity, please contact our programs team at [email protected] or (213) 680-8866. You will be contacted by someone from our staff to discuss your specific needs.

Funding Issue Area & Geographic Regions
Funding Area 

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