The public is invited to a special ceremony marking the investiture of Dr. Joseph I. Castro as Fresno State’s eighth president from 2-4 p.m. May 10 at the Save Mart Center. This formal academic event marks the culmination of a week’s worth of activities celebrating Castro’s appointment.
An investiture is defined as the formal ceremony of conferring the authority and symbols of high office. It is California State University policy to hold these events during the new president’s first year in office.
Castro was named Fresno State president by the CSU Board of Trustees on May 22, 2013. When he started August 1, Castro became the first Central Valley native to lead the University.
Free and open to the public, Castro’s investiture will be followed by a community picnic on the lawn south of the Save Mart Center, featuring student-produced food items such as the Bulldog Hot Dogs from the Jordan College of Agricultural Sciences and Technology.
“I see this as an opportunity to engage and excite the community about higher education,” Castro said of the event. In that spirit, he and First Lady Mary Castro contacted every school district in the San Joaquin Valley and invited more than 93,000 children and their families to attend.
During the investiture, CSU Chancellor Timothy P. White will present Castro with his presidential medallion. KFSN TV’s Graciela Moreno will serve as mistress of ceremonies. Dr. A. Eugene Washington, vice chancellor of UCLA Health Sciences, dean of the David Geffen School of Medicine and a mentor of Castro’s, will deliver the keynote address. Castro also will address the audience.
The investiture will also feature student performances by the Fresno State Symphony Orchestra, vocalist Aaron Burdick and a poetry reading by Glady Ruiz.
The ceremony and picnic are fully funded by private donations.
Guests can RSVP for the ceremony online before April 25.
Prior to assuming the presidency, Castro held several leadership positions at University of California campuses, most recently serving as vice chancellor for student academic affairs at UC San Francisco since 2010. He also served as vice provost (2008-10), associate vice chancellor for student academic affairs (2006-08) and interim graduate dean at UCSF from 2011-12.
During his 23-year career, Castro has served in leadership positions within the UC system at the Berkeley, Davis, Merced and Santa Barbara campuses and at the Office of the President.
Castro earned a bachelor’s degree in political science and master’s degree in public policy from U C Berkeley and a doctorate in higher education policy and leadership from Stanford University.
A native of Hanford, Castro is the first member of his family to attend college. He and his wife Mary, who is also a Valley native, have three children.