The California State University announced Wednesday that Joseph I. Castro, current president of Fresno State University, is being appointed as the next chancellor of the 23-campus system.
“The California State University provides unprecedented and transformational opportunities for students from all backgrounds to earn a high-quality college degree and to better their families, their communities and the industries in which they become leaders. There is no other institution that makes this great of an impact on the entire state – the CSU is key to a growing and thriving California,” Castro said in a statement. “I am truly grateful for and excited about this unique and wonderful opportunity, and I look forward to working with the talented faculty, staff and presidents of the 23 campuses as well the Board of Trustees and executives and staff at the Chancellor’s Office to further increase achievement for our 482,000 students.”
President Jane Close Conoley said she is “delighted” with the trustee’s choice.
“I knew chancellor-select Castro as a colleague at [the University of California] Santa Barbara. He actually taught in my college in his field of educational leadership,” Conoley said. “He was the person I consulted when I was a candidate for president at Long Beach State.”
After serving the CSU since 2012, current Chancellor Timothy P. White made the announcement of his intentions to retire in October of 2019.
“Dr. Castro is a passionate and effective advocate for his students, his campus and the CSU – in his local community, in Sacramento and in Washington, DC.,” said Lillian Kimbell, chair of the CSU Board of Trustees. “Above all, he is a leader who inspires greatness in students, faculty and in the broader community. He is the right leader for the California State University in our current circumstance and for our future.”
Castro has served at Fresno State since 2013 and is the first Mexican-American to represent the CSU.
He has worked for the CSU system for 23 years and has held faculty and administrative positions at five University of California campuses, including UCSB, University of California, Berkeley, University of California, Davis, University of California, Merced and University of California, San Francisco, where he served as Vice Chancellor of Student Academic Affairs.
“He is the grandson of immigrants and a first gen student. I think his history mirrors that of many of our students,” Conoley said. “He is a thoughtful and generous leader who is totally student focused. He also understands the role of being president in the CSU System. This is very important.”