October 2, 2023
Audio Features
Bernstein With a Twist
This is a weekly program with commentary on current issues.
The year was 2002. The Board O’ Regents unanimously picked France Córdova to run UCR, making her the first female Hispanic chancellor in the UC system.

The casual spectator might have viewed this as a moment of triumph, not just for Córdova, but for local Hispanic activists who hit the road and lobbied hard. Their message to the regents: Appoint a Hispanic chancellor. At the time, Hispanic students comprised 20 percent of UCR’s enrollment.

“If they don’t appoint a Chicano or Latino as chancellor here and now,” said Chicano studies major Jose Lopez, “they won’t do it anywhere else.”

Fast forward to 2008. Córdova was long gone. Another search for another UCR chancellor was under way. What did the Empire’s Hispanic tell the regents this time? Nothing. Nothing?

What changed?

“What you get you might not like,” said Danny Morales, who pushed for a Hispanic chancellor six years ago. “We submitted a lot of good names given to us by educators throughout the country. France Córdova’s name was not among those.”

She owed the local Hispanics nothing and never embraced the role they envisioned.
Episode Date: May 23, 2008
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