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Dr. Jo Ellen Chatham

In January 2019, Dr. Jo Ellen Chatham was named Director of Concordia University Irvine's Center for Civics Education. The Center is dedicated to promoting civil dialogue, providing educational and inspiring programs devoted to our nation's history and foundational principles, and encouraging informed citizen engagement.

Keith Curry

Jo Ellen retired as Director of Public Affairs for Southern California Edison (SCE) after twenty years managing a team of Region Managers serving more than fifty cities in Orange and Los Angeles and supporting strategic planning for public affairs services.

Jo Ellen is the former Chair of the Board of Trustees of PBS SoCal, the second most viewed of more than 340 PBS stations in the United States, and a member of the Board of Directors of the Public Media Group of Southern California. She served as Lay Vice Chair of the Association of Public Television Stations (APTS) and continues as a member of the Executive Committee of the Board of Directors of the Pacific Symphony and the Board of Directors of the Orange County Forum.

For nearly 15 years, Jo Ellen was an Associate Professor of Political Science at West Los Angeles College where she also served as an administrator and officer in the Faculty Senate. Prior to joining SCE, Jo Ellen was president of Eagle Forum of California, a public policy organization; appointed by Governor Pete Wilson to the Board of Governors of the California State Bar Association and the Narcotic Addict Evaluation Authority and was a member of the Board of the Henry Salvatori Forum at the University of Southern California.

Jo Ellen has served in various capacities on the boards of numerous organizations, including the Orange County Commission on the Status of Women, the Orange County Business Council, the World Affairs Council of Orange County, Red Cross of Orange County (Secretary), the Orange County High School of the Arts Foundation Board, the Leadership Council of the Center for the Study of Democracy at the University of California at Irvine, and the Board of Visitors of the Chapman University School of Law and Orange County Taxpayers Association. She is the Public Affairs Ambassador for the Nowruz Commission and a member of the Advisory Board of the National Ethnic Coalition of Organizations which awards the Ellis Island Medals of Honor.

In 1987, Jo Ellen authored “A More Perfect Union: The Constitutional Convention of 1787”, which received official recognition by the United State Commission on the Bicentennial of the Constitution. Among other honors, she received the Ellis Island Medal of Honor in 2015. She received her B. S. and M. A. in Political Science from California State University at Northridge and a second M.A. and Ph.D. in Political Science from the University of Southern California. She also studies Consumer Economics at UCLA graduate school.

For two years Jo Ellen was a panelist on NBC's Emmy Award-winning public policy program "Free 4 All" and a frequent guest on television and radio, including appearances on such programs as "CNN and Company," "The Tom Snyder Show," "The Today Show," CBS's "News Makers", "Live in L.A." and many others. She was a political columnist for the Daily Pilot and has organized and taught seminars in effective political action and media relations. She is a co-founder of the Alpha Political Campaign School and has authored The Political Campaign Manua and the Citizen Action Manual.

Scott Carpenter

Scott Carpenter is the Managing Partner of Fusion Strategies, LLC, a professional public relations, government affairs, and political consulting firm. Among his numerous responsibilities and tasks are recruiting and training candidates for political office on local, county, and state levels of government; advising and consulting on public policy initiatives in the crafting of policy items and advocacy to policymakers and the public at large; and coordinating strategic communications and messaging with clients to present to the public and key stakeholders.

Keith Curry

Scott has served in various capacities for several elected officials, including State Senator John Moorlach. For six years he was Senator Moorlach's District Director, managing the training of District Office staff and overseeing all district office operations. In that capacity, he built and cultivated relationships with community leaders, business owners, charitable organizations, elected officials, constituents, and issue advocates throughout the community. In addition, he collaborated with local leaders to identify legislation needed to solve problems within the district; oversaw communications to traditional and social media; managed constituent services; and advocated for the Senator's legislative agenda in the community and with other legislative leaders.

Prior to service with Senator Moorlach, Scott was Senior Policy Advisor to Orange County Supervisor Shawn Nelson for five years where he researches and allayed policies affecting health care, social services, senior services, community resources, probation, proposed legislation, and other topics. He worked with the Communications Director to assist in drafting and editing press releases, newsletters, and social media messages and represented the Supervisor at many community and committee meetings when relevant policy issues were being addressed. Before joining Supervisor Nelson's county office, Scott served as Campaign Manager for Nelson's election to the Board of Supervisors.

Until recruited by Shawn Nelson's campaign, Scott was a Field Representative and Legislative Aide to California State Assemblymember Chuck DeVore, Scott spent one year in the State Capitol, coordinating DeVore's schedule, researching legislation, and staffing legislation through the legislative process.

Scott earned a B.A. in Political Science and History with a Minor in Business from Concordia University, Irvine in 2005. A Dean's Scholarship Recipient, Scott was active in student government, serving in the Student Senate from 2003-2004 and as Student Body Vice President from 2004-2005 as well as being a 4-year Work Study student.

Scott's public service and public affairs experience includes being the campaign manager for a proposed public policy measure in Newport Beach; serving as the Political Director for the Republican Party of Orange County; volunteering as an advisor for the YMCA Youth and Government model legislature and court program; and recruiting and organizing volunteers for mission trips to Tijuana to build and repair homes, gather food and supplies and raise funds for mission activities. he continues to serve as a Board Member of Yellow Ribbon America, an Irvine-based non-profit organization dedicated to supporting members of the military and their families.

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