Doug Otto to Seek Re-election Long Beach City College Board of Trustees

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Mayoral Candidate Doug Otto - Photo from Doug Otto Campaign

Long Beach City College Board of Trustees President Doug Otto to seek re-election to the Board.

Long Beach City College (LBCC) Board of Trustees President Doug Otto today announced that he will seek re-election to the Board of Trustees in the April 2016 election.

“I am excited to launch this campaign to continue my work for the Long Beach community by creating opportunities for students,” said Otto. “Continuing to improve access to high-quality, affordable higher education in Long Beach will ensure the long-term economic and cultural vibrancy of our city.”

“We have accomplished a lot, but there is still much more to be done. We need to provide a foundation of opportunity for low- and middle-income families by expanding the Long Beach College Promise, making sure students graduate on time, and continuing to build academic programs that lead to the jobs of the future. I have always been committed to the students in this community and I will continue to put that commitment to work for them.”

Upon launching his re-election campaign, Otto has already received major endorsements from many Long Beach leaders, including Congressman Alan Lowenthal, Assemblymember Patrick O’Donnell, Mayor Robert Garcia, former Mayor Bob Foster, and former Mayor and former LBCC President Beverly O’Neill.

Doug Otto has developed and implemented many successful programs for the college since first being elected in 2004. His leadership during tough budget times allowed LBCC to come out of the Great Recession as one of the best community colleges in California. Under Otto’s leadership, LBCC has grown by hiring 90 new faculty members since 2013, and offered 2,586 classes in the Spring 2015 semester – the highest in five years.

Among the most notable of his accomplishments, Otto helped develop and expand the Long Beach College Promise for LBCC. Under this nationally-recognized program, 12,000 LBCC students have received one free semester at LBCC and countless other students will benefit in the future. The program has recently been expanded from a free semester of tuition to a free full year. Additionally, Otto helped implement the Promise Pathways Program to help students graduate in a reasonable time frame. In the first year of the program, there was a 304% increase in transfer-level math course completion and a 370% increase in transfer-level English course completion.

Recently, Otto helped LBCC implement the new Transfer Degree Program, which will allow LBCC grads to enter into the Cal State system with two full years of credit and a path to early completion of their Bachelor Degrees.

Under Otto’s leadership with now-Mayor Robert Garcia, LBCC passed the $440 million Measure E bond in 2008. Since then, LBCC has seen a dramatic transformation in its facilities and classroom technology at both the Liberal Arts and Pacific Coast Campuses. At the Alternative Transportation Technologies and Energy Center, students will now be able to work on the next generation of alternative fuel cars. Additionally, the funds are being used to modernize the Nursing Building with a state-of-the-art hospital simulation training facility. This will be the first major overhaul for the 45-year-old Building C, and will allow LBCC’s nursing students to be among the best-prepared nurses in the country.

Doug Otto has been active in his hometown of Long Beach for decades. He is a Founder and Past President of Long Beach Heritage. He was named Long Beach’s Preservationist of the Year in 1990. He chaired the City of Long Beach’s Blue Ribbon Citizens Transportation Task Force, which developed a comprehensive transportation plan for the entire city (1989-1990). He was a member and Chair of the Long Beach Planning Commission (1992-2000). He chaired the Long Beach City Manager’s Downtown Business and Development Advisory Committee (1998-2004). He is a founding Board member of the Long Beach Aquarium of the Pacific (1994), currently serves on its Executive Committee, and chairs the Long-Range Planning Committee. He also served on the City’s Ethics Task Force in 2002.

From 1998 through 2000, Otto chaired the Long Beach Strategic Plan 2010; a comprehensive city-citizen planning effort adopted by the City in 2000. For this and his other community work, he received the prestigious David Landry Memorial Award for Outstanding Community Service from the City of Long Beach.

Otto is a member and former President of the Long Beach Bar Association, which named him Lawyer of the Year in 2005. The California State Bar Association named him Attorney of the Year for Small Firms in 2011. He is a member of the St. Mary Medical Center Board of Governors, is the past President of the Long Beach Arts Council, and has been a member of the California State Bar Association, Access to Justice Commission.

Otto earned his B.A. from Stanford University; his M.A. jointly from Columbia University and Union Theological Seminary in New York City; and a J.D. from the University of Chicago. He has been a full adjunct professor of law at Southwestern University School of Law, where he taught for 16 years. He and his wife, Freda, live on the East Side of Long Beach. They have five grown children, all of whom graduated from California universities.

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