At a pivotal time of transition and crisis for the state, PPIC -- in partnership with leading corporate and philanthropic partners -- will host a conference on California's future. This all day event includes keynote speeches and expert panels on education, climate change, the economy, and governance.
Mark Baldassare is the President of the Public Policy Institute of California.
Daniel J. Balz is a journalist at The Washington Post, where he has been a political correspondent since 1978. Balz has served as National Editor, Political Editor, White House correspondent and as the Washington Post's Texas-based Southwest correspondent. Balz sometimes appears on the news show Meet the Press and frequently appears on the PBS program Washington Week.
Balz is co-author, with Ronald Brownstein of the Los Angeles Times, of the 1996 book Storming the Gates: Protest Politics and the Republican Revival. In 1999, Balz received the American Political Science Association award for political coverage.
Balz's latest work, co-written with Pulitzer Prize winner Haynes Johnson in 2009, is The Battle for America 2008: The Story of an Extraordinary Election" about the 2008 campaign, is based on two years of reporting, and includes exclusive interviews with President Obama, Senator John McCain and many of the top advisers to the major candidates in the 2008 election.
Before coming to the Washington Post, he worked as a reporter and deputy editor for National Journal and as a reporter for the Philadelphia Inquirer.
Dan was born in Freeport, Illinois, is a 1964 graduate of Freeport High School, followed by a bachelor's and master's degrees in communications from the University of Illinois. Dan served in the U.S Army from 1968-1971. He is married to Nancy Johnson Balz and they have one son.
Fernando J. Guerra is Director of the Thomas and Dorothy Leavey Center for the Study of Los Angeles at Loyola Marymount University. Dr. Guerra served as Assistant to the President for Faculty Resources from 1992-96. He is a Professor of Political Science and Chicana/o Studies, and has served as Chairman of the Chicana/o Studies Department, Director of the American Cultures program, and Director of the Summer in Mexico program. He has been on the faculty at Loyola Marymount University since 1984.
Dr. Guerra earned his Ph.D. and M.A. in Political Science from the University of Michigan. He earned his B.A. in International Relations, with a University Certificate in Latin American Studies, from the University of Southern California in 1980. Dr. Guerra was born and raised in the Northeast section of Los Angeles where he attended Franklin High School. He is currently a resident of the City of Los Angeles.
Known for her expertise in the strategy and structure of political campaigns throughout California, Gale Kaufman has led some of the state's most significant and successful candidate and issue-based initiative campaigns.
In March 2006, Kaufman was awarded the coveted "National Campaign Manager of the Year" by the American Association of Political Consultants for leading the coalition that defeated all four of Governor Schwarzenegger's Special Election Initiatives in November 2005.
Opening her firm, Kaufman Campaign Consultants, in 1987, Gale Kaufman has a well-earned reputation as one of the leading Democratic campaign consultants in the state.
Bill Whalen is a research fellow at the Hoover Institution, where he studies and writes on current events and political trends, with an emphasis on California's political landscape. As a research fellow, he is a contributor to the Hoover Digest and Policy Review, which are also published by Hoover.
Whalen writes frequently for leading California opinionmakers including the Los Angeles Times, San Francisco Chronicle, and the San Diego Union Tribune. His by-line also appears on the Weekly Standard's website, www.weeklystandard.com. He has been a guest political analyst on the Fox News Channel, MSNBC, and CNN. He can also be seen and heard on Bay Area radio and television, commenting on current events, in addition to frequent appearances on the nationwide radio program hosted by Hoover media fellow John Batchelor.
Whalen also serves as a media consultant for California political hopefuls and aspiring policy leaders. His clients have included Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, former California secretary of state Bill Jones, former congressman Tom Campbell and former Los Angeles mayor Richard J. Riordan.
From 1994 to 1999, Whalen was the chief speechwriter and director of public affairs for former California governor Pete Wilson. In that capacity, he was responsible for the governor's annual State of the State address, as well as other major policy addresses.
Broadcast journalist Judy Woodruff is the Co-Anchor and Managing Editor of the PBS NewsHour with Gwen Ifill and Judy Woodruff. She has covered politics and other news for more than three decades at CNN, NBC and PBS.