Meet Our Advisory Board

Joel Kotkin

Described by the New York Times as “America’s uber-geographer,” Joel Kotkin is an internationally-recognized authority on global, economic, political and social trends. He is Urban Futures Fellow at Chapman University and Executive Director of the Urban Reform Institute which focuses on policies to promote upward mobility.

Lanhee Chen

Former Republican candidate for State Controller, Lanhee is a fellow at the Hoover Institution where he is leading a major policy development project on healthcare.

Gloria Romero

Former Democratic leader in the California State Senate, Gloria is a charter school founder and fierce advocate for parental choice in education, and a member of the public policy faculty at Pepperdine University.

Soledad Ursua

Soledad is a Libertarian, and an elected Venice Neighborhood Council Board Member, campaigning on the front lines of California’s homelessness crisis. She is also a Contributing Writer for City Journal.

Tamar Maritz

Tamar is an investor and strategic advisor in the cannabis industry with over a decade of experience in market and consumer intelligence. A proud Californian and immigrant, she is passionate about using her skills to understand the varying needs of California voters and how we can work together to build a prosperous community for all.

Erika Guerrero

Erika is the Founder of Electric Goddess, a research and development company in the energy industry. She also serves as the CEO of Redivivus, a battery recycling and logistics company. Her current focus in life is developing clean energy technology, novel material recycling methods, and creating social change within the tech industry

Pete Peterson

Dean of Public Policy, Pepperdine University. Pete is a leading national speaker and writer on issues related to civic participation, and the use of technology to make government more responsive and transparent.

Kevin Faulconer

Former mayor of San Diego, former Republican candidate for Governor of California, visiting professor at Pepperdine University.

Connie Conway

Former U.S. Representative for California’s 22nd congressional district, former Republican leader in the California Assembly. Connie was also President of the California State Association of Counties.

David Tangipa

David is a San Joaquin Valley native, son of a veteran, and proud first-generation American. Living his entire adult life in Fresno, he attended Fresno State and played tight end for the Bulldogs where he learned the importance of discipline, hard work, and spirit of the Central Valley. David currently works in real estate and is the Field Representative for Fresno County Supervisor Nathan Magsig.

Jennifer Hernandez

Jennifer is considered to be California's top land use and environmental lawyer. She received a California Lawyer of the Year award from the State Bar of California for her work on California's largest and most innovative land use and conservation agreement, and has received numerous civil rights awards for her work on overcoming environmentalist opposition to housing and other projects needed and supported by minority communities.

Benji Backer

Benji is President and Founder of the American Conservation Coalition, the largest right-of-center environmental organization in the country. A frequent contributor to multiple national media outlets, Benji is one of the leading youth environmental voices in America.

Edward Ring

Edward is a contributing editor and senior fellow with the California Policy Center, which he co-founded in 2013 and served as its first president. He is the author of Fixing California: Abundance, Pragmatism, Optimism (2021) and The Abundance Choice: Our Fight for More Water in California (2022).