The California City Management Foundation (CCMF) is pleased to announce our five winners of the 2020 Wes McClure Scholarship:
- Angela Chavez-Monroy – Cal Poly Pomona
- Connie Ho – California State University, Long Beach
- Antony V. López – University of Southern California
- Jennifer Venema – University of Southern California
- Aaron Wodka – Cal State Fullerton
Wes McClure, for whom our annual scholarship was named, served as City Manager of San Leandro for 28 years. He passed away at the age of 94 on December 20, 2009. Wes had many outstanding attributes, including an unparalleled ability to listen. His patience and skill in this regard contributed enormously to his successful career working with city councils and impacted CCMF directly during the formation of the foundation, in which Wes played an integral part.
This award was created in honor of Wes’s outstanding and significant contributions to the City Manager’s Department, League of California Cities, the State of California and the City Management profession.
“This year, as part of our commitment to fostering the growth of future city managers, the CCMF Board of Trustees unanimously approved the expansion of the number of Wes McClure scholarships available annually from two to five,” said Fran Mancia, Chair of the CCMF Scholarship Committee. “I am very pleased that CCMF as an organization is in a position to fund five deserving applicants. The scholarship committee was very impressed with the overall caliber of all the applicants, their experiences and especially their commitment to public service. I am looking forward to seeing all of their careers develop over time. They will no doubt serve local government very well.”
About Our 2020 Winners
Angela Chavez-Monroy will begin the MPA Program at Cal Poly Pomona in the fall. She plans to apply to be the director for one of the TRIO Pre-College Programs to assist students in high school. Later in her career, she would like to work for the U.S. Department of Education.
I can now serve low-income, first-generation students who do not have the resources to navigate through high school and continue to post-secondary education.”
Connie Ho is a first-year student at California State University, Long Beach’s MPA program. With a background in communications and public affairs, Connie is excited about the opportunity to utilize knowledge gleaned in the classroom to strengthen her work in community outreach.
“The funding will assist me in learning how to adapt local government entities for digital success.”
Antony López is in the final semester of his MPA at the University of Southern California Sol Price School of Public Policy, completing a capstone project concerning the utility of public spaces during and after a pandemic like COVID-19.
“The Wes McClure Scholarship will help me continue my passion for public service and public participation in rural communities in my hometown, the City of Avenal – where I currently serve as Associate City Planner.”
Jennifer Venema is starting as a first-year MPA student at the USC Sol Price campus in Sacramento. She currently serves as the Sustainability Manager for the City of Sacramento in the Department of Public Works and looks forward to expanding her skill sets for public administration.
“My purpose for seeking a Master of Public Administration degree is to equip myself as an increasingly effective public servant to deliver transformational change.”
Aaron Wodka will begin studies for his MPA this fall at California State University, Fullerton.
“I look forward to being introduced to the network that encompasses the California City Management Foundation as I begin a career in municipal government, specifically with an interest in becoming a leader in public finance.”