Veteran political aide and journalist joins Cal State L.A.

Peter Hong comes on board as Director of Strategic Initiatives and Deputy Chief of Staff

Peter HongLos Angeles, CA – Veteran Los Angeles political aide and journalist Peter Hong has joined California State University, Los Angeles as Director of Strategic Initiatives and Deputy Chief of Staff in the University President’s office.

He will work on efforts to strengthen existing relationships and create new networks to engage the city and the region with the University, to strengthen and create opportunities for our students and faculty. These include deepening the university’s presence in Los Angeles through joint academic ventures with industry and government.

“Cal State L.A. walks the walk in providing educational advancement and upward mobility to all who deserve the opportunity. Ensuring access to excellent education has been a cause for me since my days as a student activist in high school and college, as well as in my work as a journalist, political staffer, college trustee and parent. Cal State L.A. is where I want to be more than anywhere else,” Hong said. 

Hong comes to the University from the Office of Los Angeles County Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas, where he was Senior Deputy since 2009. As a key advisor to Supervisor Ridley-Thomas, Hong played a leading role in initiatives including:

  • Development and construction of the Crenshaw/LAX rail line and the Expo rail line.
  • Creation of the Blue Ribbon Commission on Child Protection.
  • The dissolution and re-structuring of the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum Commission and adoption of an innovative lease agreement for the Coliseum with the University of Southern California.
  • Probation Department, Department of Children and Family Services and Sheriff’s Department/jails reforms.
  • Repeal of the Board of Supervisors World War II support of Japanese American internment.

Prior to advising Supervisor Ridley-Thomas, Hong was a reporter at the Los Angeles Times for 15 years. He wrote news, feature and investigative stories on higher education, economics, politics and Southern California culture. He also covered the war in Iraq. Prior to the Times, he worked for the Washington Post, BusinessWeek Magazine and the ABC News Washington bureau. 

Hong has served on the Board of Trustees of Occidental College and the national board of directors of the Asian American Journalists Association. He holds a bachelor’s degree in politics from Occidental College. Following his 1987 graduation from Occidental, he was a Thomas J. Watson Fellow in Korea and Poland.

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Cal State L.A. is a university dedicated to engagement, service, and the public good. Founded in 1947, the University is home to over 23,000 active students, and 235,000 distinguished alumni, who are as diverse as the city we serve. Located in the heart of Los Angeles, Cal State L.A. has long been recognized as an engine of economic and social mobility. Led by an award-winning faculty, the University offers nationally recognized programs in science, the arts, business, criminal justice, engineering, nursing, education and the humanities.

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