​​​Zev YaroslavskyZev Yaroslavsky

Politician/Civic Leader

California State University, Northridge

Mr. Zev Yaroslavsky, a dedicated public servant and former Los Angeles city councilmember and Los Angeles County supervisor, personifies the excellence and achievements that embody the objectives and ideals of the California State University and California State University, Northridge, and exemplifies the university's aspirations for its diverse student body. Throughout his distinguished career, combining vision and political effectiveness, Mr. Yaroslavsky has played an instrumental role in such critical areas as health care, transportation, the arts, the environment, civil rights, and municipal growth and development in the Los Angeles region.

A Los Angeles native, Mr. Yaroslavsky holds a bachelor's and master's degree from UCLA. For four decades, Mr. Yaroslavsky served the Los Angeles community as a city councilmember and county supervisor. In 1975, he was elected to the Los Angeles City Council and was re-elected five times before assuming office in the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors, where he served from 1994-2014. Mr. Yaroslavsky served as longtime chair of the City Council Budget and Finance Committee, and helped secure millions of dollars in funding for the arts in Los Angeles, including the Hollywood Bowl renovation, expansion of the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, and construction of the Walt Disney Concert Hall, as well as securing the city's retention of the highest possible bond rating that will improve the quality of life in Los Angeles for decades to come.

Seeking to expand arts opportunities in the San Fernando Valley, Mr. Yaroslavsky worked closely with CSUN's administration to develop plans for what is now the Valley Performing Arts Center (VPAC). He cemented his commitment to the project by contributing $2 million from his district's discretionary capital funds for the project in 2007. In grateful acknowledgment of these efforts, the facility's rehearsal room was named for him in March 2015. Mr. Yaroslavsky's leadership while serving on the board of directors of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority was also instrumental in creating CSUN's public transportation station, offering local and non-local service through Metro bus lines, the CSUN Metrolink shuttle service and Antelope Valley Transit Authority bus lines.

In recognition of his distinguished career, his numerous contributions to the cultural and economic development of the region, including CSUN, and his extraordinary community and public service, the Board of Trustees of the California State University and California State University, Northridge are proud to confer upon Mr. Zev Yaroslavsky the honorary degree of Doctor of Humane Letters.