Senior Program Officer
Catherine Hazelton has served as a senior program officer in the California Democracy program since 2009. At Irvine, she has helped design and lead several key initiatives including the Future of California Elections, the James Irvine Foundation Leadership Awards, the Public Sector Leadership project, and an effort to deepen public engagement in redistricting processes. Catherine also oversees grants related to public media coverage of state policy and elections. Before joining Irvine, Catherine worked with California law enforcement leaders to advocate for public investments in early education programs as associate director of the nonprofit Fight Crime: Invest in Kids. Previously, she served as a senior legislative aide and district director to Assemblywoman Carol Liu and a legislative aide and field representative to Assemblyman Jack Scott. Catherine has worked on numerous political campaigns including, most recently, Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign. She was recently appointed by Assembly Speaker John Pérez to serve on the state board that oversees physician assistants. Catherine has served on several nonprofit boards, including the California National Organization for Women and Help A Mother Out, an organization that provides free diapers to families in need. She completed her master’s degree in public policy at the University of California, Berkeley, and earned her bachelor’s degree in history at Scripps College. She also attended Pasadena City College where she trained hundreds of students in grassroots advocacy and organized dozens of state and federal student lobbying trips. Her research related to redistricting reform and women in California politics has appeared in the Los Angeles Times, the San Francisco Chronicle, Policy Matters and other publications.
In the month since the 2014 awards were announced, media outlets across the state have been highlighting the work of these extraordinary individuals and pairs advancing innovative solutions to some of California’s biggest challenges.Read the Story
When President Barack Obama's Commission on Election Administration released its final report today, making recommendations to improve the voter experience, we were thrilled to see that the Commission acknowledged the Future of California Elections (FOCE).Read the Story
California voters have many opportunities, in fact, responsibilities, to participate in our democracy — from choosing candidates and considering ballot measures to sharing views with policymakers and holding them accountable.Read the Story