Ventura County resident is new president of state’s largest child-advocacy organization

Ventura County resident is new president of state's largest child-advocacy organization

SACRAMENTO – Justine Fischer, a resident of Thousand Oaks in Ventura County, is the new president of California State PTA, leading the association of more than 800,000 members in advocating for the education, health and welfare of California’s 9 million children.

As the nation’s largest and highest profile child-advocacy organization, California State PTA and its volunteers and members connect families and schools and promote the education, health and welfare of all children and youth.Fischer was elected to the 2015 – 2017 term of office, which began July 1. In her new role, Fischer will serve as chairman of the Board of Directors and chief executive officer of California State PTA.

Fischer has been deeply involved in providing training and outreach to thousands of parents across the state to help them understand and engage in their local schools, such as through the Local Control and Accountability Plan/Local Control Funding Formula processes and through creating diverse and inclusive school communities. She also serves as a member of the Education Coalition Leadership Committee and on numerous task forces and workgroups including serving as the vice president for the EdSource Board of Directors.

“In my new position as president, I will encourage parents to be engaged in the Local Control and Accountability Plan process, work with educators and communities to have effective parent engagement, and – most importantly – remind elected officials that our children are our greatest natural resource and we should teach, nurture and love them,” said Fischer.

She also noted that family are the most important people in a child’s life, however the child defines family.

“PTA at its heart is about supporting and nurturing children and their families, and creating opportunities to build meaningful relationships and communities,” she said. “There are 9 million kids in California and our support has lasting effects throughout their lifetime!”

Professionally, Fischer has worked for many years serving the needs of children with learning disabilities, foster youth and migrant families and communities in Southern California. She holds a BA in radio/TV/film communications with a specialization in industrial-education media from California State University Northridge. She is a married mother of two: Her son is an airman in the U.S. Navy and her daughter recently graduated college.

California State PTA has a long tradition of speaking up and speaking out on behalf of all children and families at national, state, regional and local levels. Joining your local PTA is a great way to support your child’s education: Contact your local school or principal to sign up.

2015 – 2017 California State PTA Board of Directors

  • Justine Fischer, President
  • Dianna MacDonald, President-elect
  • Mary Galuska, Vice President for Leadership Services
  • Kathy Steinberg, Vice President for Programs and Member Services
  • Carol Green, Vice President for Communications
  • Barbara Harris, Vice President for Convention
  • Deborah Kemper, Vice President for Community Concerns
  • Celia Jaffe, Vice President for Education
  • Scott Folsom, Vice President for Health
  • Colette Rudd, Vice President for Family Engagement
  • Brian Bonner, Vice President for Membership
  • Sue King, Secretary
  • Sherry Elkington, Treasurer
  • Kathy Stevenson, Parliamentarian
  • Shayne Silva, Director of Legislation
  • Beth Bacting, Chairman of the District Presidents.

About California State PTA
California State PTA connects families, schools and communities, and has more than 800,000 members throughout the state working on behalf of public schools, children and families, with the motto, “every child, one voice.” The PTA is the nation’s largest and highest profile volunteer association working to connect families and schools, and to improve the education, health and welfare of all children and youth. The PTA also advocates at national, state and local levels for education and family issues. The PTA is nonprofit, nonsectarian and noncommercial. For more information:



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