Educator for Riverside County Board of Supervisors

Education brought Jose Medina to Riverside, and it has been the place he has called home ever since. An educator, Jurupa Unified School District Board of Education member, Riverside Community College Board Trustee, and State Assemblymember, Jose dedicated his life to serving others and opening the paths of opportunity for thousands of high school and college students in Riverside County.

Jose's commitment to improving education was inspired by his father, who immigrated from Panama to pursue an American education. His father, a civil engineer, and mother, a state government Spanish translator, taught him the importance of helping others. Growing up in Southern California in 1960s, Jose was inspired by President John F. Kennedy's call to service and the civil rights movement fight for racial justice.

His family returned to Panama when his father was recruited to work for the Panama Canal Company. Jose earned an Army ROTC scholarship to attend Purdue University and moved from Panama to Indiana. On the weekends, he drove to Chicago to organize with the United Farm Workers and participated in the lettuce boycotts. Ideologically opposed to the Vietnam War, Jose resigned his scholarship and drove cross country to UC Riverside, where he earned his Bachelor's Degrees in Latin American Studies, Master's Degree in History, and Teaching Credential

"I'm running for County Supervisor to build on the progress our region has made and deliver quality services to Riverside County's hardworking families."

– Jose Medina

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Jose began his 34-year teaching career at the California Institute for Women, where he advised the Latina women's group and learned the power of education in restorative justice. He taught elementary school, middle school, Spanish, Ethnic and Chicano Studies at Riverside Polytechnic High School, and U.S. History at San Bernardino Valley Community College. He served as an advisor to MEChA and took part in student led marches against Prop. 187 and the fatal police shooting of teenager, Tyisha Miller. The first teacher to be memorialized in Riverside Poly's Hall of Fame, Jose continues to keep personal relationships with countless students and families.

Jose became active in the California Teachers Association, advocating for resources to improve education quality and critical programs. Eager to help students beyond the classroom, Jose ran for public office and won a seat on the Jurupa Unified School Board of Education in 1989 and then the Riverside Community College Board of Trustees in 1997. Under his leadership, Riverside City, Moreno Valley, and Norco Colleges each became accredited colleges allowing the district to grow and serve more students. He also helped pass a $350 million bond measure to improve the on-campus facilities including a new library, student center, and aquatic center that offers summer swimming lessons to community members.

In 2012, Jose was elected to represent Riverside, Moreno Valley, Perris, and Mead Valley in the California State Assembly. On his first day in office, Jose introduced legislation to allow the University of California, Riverside School of Medicine to begin training doctors and other medical professionals to serve the Inland Empire.

Jose enjoys living Riverside with his wife, Linda and can be found connecting with community members at Zacatecas Restaurant. He has two adult children and two grandchildren.


Southern California


U.C. Riverside


Linda Medina


Two children and two grandchildren