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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    Gov. selects next regent from UA

    David Martinez III
    David Martinez III

    A UA student was selected by Gov. Janet Napolitano last week to serve as a student regent on the Arizona Board of Regents.

    David Martinez III, an education senior, was chosen by the governor because of his background, experience and skills that set him apart from other applicants, said Jeanine L’Ecuyer, a spokeswoman for Napolitano.

    “”Typically, the students who apply for this position are out of law school, but this young man intends to pursue teaching, which is of interest, at least in part, because of the governor’s emphasis on education,”” L’Ecuyer said. “”He has a great background and (is) a leader at the UA, and this together gave him a unique set of skills that the governor thought would be useful to the regents.””

    Martinez received the news via phone call from the governor’s office while he was in the UA Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action Office, where he works.

    “”I was jumping around in the office and was so excited,”” Martinez said. “”I am so blessed and so honored and am really looking forward to serving students in this capacity.””

    In his first year as student regent Martinez will work closely with other board members, including voting student regent Mary Venezia, but will not vote on board decisions until his second year.

    “”This is just my passion,”” Martinez said. “”I understand how important this job (is), as we are one (of) the few states that have a student voice on the board, and I look forward to working with Regent Venezia, traveling and meeting new people.””

    Among other areas of interest, Martinez said he is excited to work with the regents to reduce textbook prices through a textbook task force created by Arizona State University student regent Ed Hermes, who recently graduated.

    “”The textbook task force that Regent Hermes began really brought the issue to a forefront,”” Martinez said. “”It was an issue that the regents weren’t aware of and now they are looking at it seriously, and the work that he has started will continue with me on board.””

    Regent Ernest Calderon – who has worked closely with the textbook task force and has played major roles in keeping tuition as affordable as possible – said he is excited about working with Martinez.

    “”I’m hopeful that we will work well together,”” Calderon said. “”I really need his help in making sure we keep education affordable and in keeping fees as low as possible.””

    Martinez said he is looking forward to the opportunity of helping students who come from backgrounds similar to his.

    “”Being born and raised in southern Arizona means a lot to me,”” said Martinez, who hails from Marana. “”Seeing the opportunity to arise for people like me, a first-generation Hispanic with scholarships, has made me thankful and excited to help others in worse situations.””

    Martinez officially begins his term as a regent on July 1, but he has already begun making contributions that will aid a smooth transition, he said.

    “”Less than a year ago, I never would have imagined in a million years that I would have this opportunity,”” Martinez added. “”I am so thankful and thrilled to be able to serve in this capacity.””

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