Science Informing California Policy: Legislative Recipients of Inaugural "CCST Leadership Awards" Announced
February 21, 2018 | CONTACT: Sarah Brady, firstname.lastname@example.org
Google Folder for Media Kit: http://bit.ly/CCSTPress-Awards2018
SACRAMENTO, Calif. - The California Council on Science and Technology (CCST), a nonpartisan,
nonprofit organization established via the California State Legislature to serve state leaders, is
proud to announce the inaugural recipients of its CCST Leadership Awards.
"California state legislators have a long history of incorporating scientific advice into their
decision-making process, because they understand that California's policies are stronger with
science," says Amber Mace, Deputy Director of CCST and a former Assistant Secretary at the
California Natural Resources Agency. "It's time that we celebrated our state's vanguard position in
evidence-based policymaking and science-informed leadership. CCST is proud to call attention to our
four honorable awardees - whose consideration of science and technology have made a difference in
the Golden State."
The awardees will be recognized during the CCST Science & Technology Week Reception and Leadership
Awards Ceremony, Wednesday, February 21, 2018, 5:00 to 8:00 p.m., at Cafeteria 15L in Sacramento.
The greater Capitol community is invited to attend; RSVP at www.ccst.us/STWeek.
The four award categories and our 2018 recipients are:
Given to a current or
former Legislative Member with training in science or engineering who has gone on to lead a
distinguished career in policy and public service, while continuing to incorporate science advice
and address science-related policies throughout their leadership roles.
Science in Public Service Award - California Secretary of State Alex Padilla
"Not many seasoned policymakers can boast of their beginnings as an engineering student at MIT.
Secretary Padilla not only comes from a science and technology tradition, but as a California state
legislator, he repeatedly leveraged scientific curiosity towards finding solutions in the public
interest, from earthquake safety to energy policy. His long career serves as a wonderful model to
scientists and engineers pondering a professional path in public service, and we are most honored to
have Secretary Padilla accept our 2018 CCST Science in Public Service Award." - Amber Mace, CCST
Given to a
current Legislative Member whose legislative actions are addressing the impact of new technology on
Californians, including laws, regulations, higher education, or workforce and economic development.
Frontiers in Technology Policy Award - California State Assemblymember Jay Obernolte
"An aviator, a software engineer, and an entrepreneur, Assemblymember Obernolte has parlayed his
computer science training at Caltech and UCLA and his technology industry experience into a career
in state leadership. He has repeatedly considered the role and impact of data accessibility and
security in his legislative actions - maintaining a vigilance for the potential implications of new
technology in order to anticipate unmet needs in California's policies. For that, we are most
pleased to have Assemblymember Obernolte accept our 2018 CCST Frontiers in Technology Policy Award."
- Amber Mace, CCST Deputy Director
Given to a current Legislative Member whose legislative actions early in their career
have consistently considered scientific evidence and advice.
Emerging Science Champion Award - California State Assemblymember
"As a second-term legislator, Assemblymember Irwin has already made waves with significant bills
encouraging the application of science and technology towards California's economic and societal
well-being. Nationally, she has taken leadership as Chair of the Cybersecurity Task Force for the
National Conference of State Legislators. In California, her work on AB 2664 have brought fresh
energy to boost research entrepreneurship at UC campuses, keeping California at the forefront of
global innovation. Inspiring and fitting for a UC San Diego engineering alumna - and among the many
reasons we are excited to have Assemblymember Irwin accept our 2018 CCST Emerging Science Champion
Award." - Amber Mace, CCST Deputy Director
Given to a current or
former Legislative Member whose participation and guidance have contributed deeply to the CCST
Science & Technology Policy Fellowship program, which recruits and trains PhD scientists and
engineers to work as legislative staff in Sacramento
Science in Policy Mentorship Award - California State Senator Nancy Skinner
"Successful future leaders arise from dedicated mentors today, and this is particularly true for our
CCST Science Fellows program, where PhD scientists and engineers take a bold leap from academia to
train and serve in the dynamic world of California policymaking. Over the course of her Assembly
career, Senator Skinner mentored CCST Science Fellows on four occasions - and all four Science
Fellows have gone on to successful careers in public policy, including one current Chief-of-Staff
and one current Committee Consultant. The lessons our Science Fellows learned while with her office
have made a lasting impact on their individual paths in policy and public service, and for that, we
are most grateful to have Senator Skinner accept our 2018 Science in Policy Mentorship Award." -
Amber Mace, CCST Deputy Director
CCST Science & Technology Week revives a tradition last celebrated in 1999 by the California State
Assembly and in 2000 by the California State Senate. The 2018 CCST S&T Week coincides with the 30th
anniversary of Assembly Concurrent Resolution 162 (Farr, Garamendi) in 1988 - which called for the
creation of the California Council on Science and Technology to "respond appropriately to the
Governor, the Legislature, and other relevant entities on public policy issues significantly related
to science and technology."
Download This Announcement (PDF)
Visit the S&T Week page
About the California Council on Science and Technology
The California Council on Science and Technology is a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization
established via the California State Legislature in 1988. CCST engages leading experts in science
and technology to advise state policymakers - ensuring that California policy is strengthened
and informed by scientific knowledge, research, and innovation.
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