About Richard Holober
Richard Holober is the President of the San Mateo County Community College Board. First elected in 1997, he has served five terms on the Board that governs Cañada College, College of San Mateo, and Skyline College. Richard was elected to the Millbrae School Board in 1993, and served four years, including a term as School Board President.
Richard has championed access to quality, affordable higher education and job training programs. Richard Holober represented the College Board when the District developed its Strategic Plan that set goals and measured progress in improving student retention and success. As the Strategic Plan is continually refined, the results demonstrate noticeable improvements in course completion, degree attainment and transfer rates.
During the Great Recession that followed the 2008 Wall Street collapse, state funding for Community Colleges was slashed by more than 20%. Facing this crisis head on, Richard led the College Board in scrutinizing programs to make difficult but necessary cuts to underenrolled programs while ensuring that core academic and vocational course went unscathed.
During the funding crisis, Richard led the successful effort to win approval with a two-thirds vote of local residents of the first Community College parcel tax in California history. As a result of Richard’s efforts, the college district weathered years of state funding cuts with no layoffs, and no pay or benefit cuts. And when the funding emergency ended, Richard kept his promise to voters, and led the College Board in terminating the parcel tax.
Richard led the College Board in adopting green building standards that won the District three Sustainable San Mateo County Awards. Richard has helped the College District address the housing affordability crisis by developing the state's first below market rate rental housing for college faculty and staff.
Richard Holober has served as Executive Director of the non-profit Consumer Federation of California for 17 years. In 2002, he co-founded Californians for Privacy Now, which was instrumental in winning the nation's strongest financial privacy law. As a leading consumer advocate, he has worked to expand health care patient rights, to protect the public from defective products and household toxics, for food and drug safety laws, for stronger protections against fraudulent sales practices, and for curbs on predatory lending practices. His work as a consumer advocate has been covered by scores of news media outlets, including the New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Los Angeles Times, Bloomberg News, Forbes, Reuters, AP, Fox News and GQ.
Previously, Richard served as a labor advocate, and helped win passage of the state’s first parental leave act and laws protecting women and LGBT people from discrimination in the workplace. In 1996 Richard Holober founded the Liveable Wage Coalition and ran the successful Proposition 210 campaign that raised California’s Minimum Wage by 35%, lifting two million hard working people out of poverty. In the mid-1980's, Richard worked for the United States Senate on the staff of US Senator Alan Cranston.
Richard and his late wife, Nadia, raised their two sons, Reuben and Evan, in San Mateo County. Richard is a graduate of the University of Rochester and attended Graduate School at Cornell University.