Former Long Beach Mayor Attends Mentor Lunch with CLA Students

unnamedFormer Long Beach Mayor, Robert Foster, visited campus on February 20th to join eight of our students as part of the College of Liberal Arts Mentor Lunch Program. Associate Dean, Dr. Amy Bippus, hosted Mr. Foster on campus along with several student attendees, which included: Laura Acosta, Jei Florentino, Steven Kerns, AJ Leone, Larry Horsley, Selena McQuarrie, Cameron Kleinberger, and Steven Cruikshank.

Foster discussed his collegiate journey during the luncheon as a Political Science Major while simultaneously working at his family’s flooring business. His political career began when he worked on energy policy as a consultant to the California State Senate Energy Commission while pursuing his graduate degree. He also served as Deputy Director of the California Energy Commission before moving on to the Presidency of Southern California Edison. Most recently, he served two terms as the Mayor of Long Beach.

Foster shared his thoughts about the future of energy and water resources policy. He discussed what he considers to be the ideal background and skill-set for students interested in working on those issues in the public and private sector. He attributes his ability to face political pressure head-on during his mayoral terms, to gaining extensive experience in his previous careers before entering public office. Foster praised the host students for their impressive resumes; it’s his belief that students should cultivate their interests and skills so as to have more than one potential vocational path.