Senator Richard Polanco (ret.)
Senator Richard Polanco (ret.) was appointed a director of the Company in July 2022. Sen. Polanco is a member of the Compensation Committee and the Equity, Sustainability and Environmental Justice Committee.
Sen. Polanco is an esteemed California political and business leader, and champion for the state’s disadvantaged communities. He brings to the Board 40 years of high-level experience in elected office and the public and private sectors with frontline expertise in public policy, economic development, risk management and community empowerment, among other areas. Sen. Polanco is presently managing director of Tres Es Inc., a boutique government affairs firm.
Senator Polanco began his career in public service in 1975 and has served on the staff of several local and state officials including Los Angeles County Supervisor Ed Edelman in (1975 – 1978), California Governor Jerry Brown (1978 – 1982) and Assemblyman Richard Alatorre (1982 – 1986).
In 1986, Senator Polanco was elected to the California State Assembly where he served until 1994 when he was elected to the California State Senate. Senator Polanco served in the Senate from 1994 until his retirement in 2002, including four years as the Senate Majority Leader from 1998 – 2002. During his 16 years in the State Legislature Sen. Polanco rose to some of the most powerful positions in Sacramento, including as Senate Majority Leader (1998-2002) and Chair of the Latino Legislative Caucus (1990 – 2002), while authoring landmark bills across a wide range of policy areas, from clean drinking water to voting rights.
In October 2002, Senator Polanco established the California Latino Caucus Institute for Public Policy, a 501 (c) 3 non-profit organization that supports innovative leadership programs to enhance the quality of life for all Californians. The Institute was created as a non-partisan effort by the California Latino Legislative Caucus. Senator Polanco served as the Institute’s first Chairman of the Board.
Previously, Senator Polanco served as the Executive Director to the Maravilla Neighborhood Project Area Committee, a $24m community redevelopment program in East Los Angeles, and as a Community Organizer for the Maravilla Public Housing Project.
Senator Polanco has also served on a variety of public and private sector boards and commissions, including California Delta Dental Plan (Board Director), Meruelo Maddux Construction Inc. (Board Director), California Public Utility Commission Low Income Oversight Board (Board Director), Sylvatex Inc. (Advisory Board), Farmworker Institute for Education & Leadership Development- Cesar Chavez Adult Charter School (Advisory Board) and the UCLA Luskin School of Urban Affairs (Advisor).
Senator Polanco resides in Los Angeles with his wife Olivia where he continues to serve his community.
He received his bachelor’s degree in Business Administration following study at the University of Redlands and Universidad de Mexico.