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Santa Clara County, CA June 5, 2012 Election
Smart Voter Full Biography for Joe Coto

Candidate for
State Senator; District 15

This information is provided by the candidate

Joe Coto began his career as a teacher where he experienced firsthand the influence of public policy on education. He decided early on that he wanted to be in a position to effect changes in education. After serving in several administrative capacities, he was selected as superintendent of a large urban school district in 1984. Four years later, he was recruited by the East Side Union High School District in San Josť and appointed as superintendent where he served the East San Josť community for over 14 years. Coto has a lifetime commitment to the advancement of all students and their families. In recognition of his contributions as superintendent of the East Side Union High School District and beyond, the Association of California School Administrators (ACSA) named him the 2003 'Superintendent of the Year'.

During his tenure as Superintendent, Coto used his leadership and experience to craft policies that reached beyond the East Side Union High School District. He organized the East Side Consortium of school districts which led to the approval of SB 1051, the Voluntary Integration Program. Since its inception, the program has brought over $100 million for participating districts and contributed to increased diversity and integration in East San Josť schools. During his tenure in the East Side Union High School District, Coto was able to bring nearly half a billion dollars in grant monies and improvement bonds to East San Josť.

Between 2004 and 2010, Coto served three terms in the California State Assembly. His agenda in the Legislature focused on making California's schools the best in the nation. He also worked to ensure that all of California's children have health insurance and are provided with the ability to experience the American dream. This dream includes going to college, securing a good paying job, and owning a home.

As an Assemblymember, Coto authored numerous bills chaptered into law, including legislation that provided support to underachieving schools, expanded access to healthcare for children, protected college students from predatory credit card companies and helped fix California's workers compensation system. Coto served as the Chair of the Governmental Organization Committee, the Insurance Committee and the Select Committee on Urban Education. In addition, he served on a number of committees, including Education, Banking and Finance, and Arts, Entertainment, Sports, Tourism and Internet Media. In 2006, Coto was elected Chair of the 26 member Latino Legislative Caucus.

In addition to his commitment to excellence in education, Coto has continued to serve the community by serving as Chair of the Mexican Plaza Cultural Arts Center in San Josť and as President of the Latino Democratic Forum. He has served on the boards of Joint Venture Silicon Valley and the Lucille Packard Children's Hospital.

Joe Coto received his B.A. from California Western University, and his M.A. in Management from the University of Phoenix. He completed a three year course of study in the Inquiry Program at the Teachers College of Columbia University (NY) and possesses lifetime credentials as a teacher and school administrator.

Joe and his wife, Camille, have been married for 39 years and have 2 daughters.

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Created from information supplied by the candidate: April 20, 2012 14:51
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