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Fresno State President Honored by Cal State Student Association



Fresno State President Saúl Jiménez-Sandoval received the Robert C. Maxson President of the Year award. (GV Wire Composite)
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Fresno State News

Fresno State President Saúl Jiménez-Sandoval received a vote of confidence from the student organization that represents the nearly half a million students in the California State University system, the nation’s largest public higher education system.

The Cal State Student Association selected Jiménez-Sandoval as the 2021-22 recipient of the Robert C. Maxson President of the Year award, given annually by the association to one CSU campus president. The award was presented at the California State University Board of Trustees meeting on Tuesday in Long Beach.

Established in 1958 to support students throughout the CSU system, the Cal State Student Association is a nonpartisan, membership-based advocacy organization composed of representatives from each of the 23 CSU campuses. The President of the Year award is named after Robert C. Maxson, a former president of Long Beach State.

“In his tenure as president of Fresno State, President Jiménez-Sandoval has embodied an honest value for student-centered leadership and the principles of an all-encompassing shared governance,” said Isaac Alferos, president of the Cal State Student Association and a senior at Cal State Fullerton. “Especially during these turbulent times, he has been a model for honest, empathetic, and driven leadership that has garnered the trust of students across the system.”

Jiménez-Sandoval became Fresno State’s ninth president in 2021 after Dr. Joseph I. Castro left to become chancellor of the CSU system. Jiménez-Sandoval has been with Fresno State since he joined as a faculty member in 2000. He previously served as professor of Spanish and Portuguese, coordinator of the Spanish master of arts degree, chair of the Department of Modern and Classical Languages and Literatures, interim associate dean of the College of Arts and Humanities, dean of the College of Arts and Humanities, and provost and vice president for academic affairs.

“I am incredibly honored to receive this recognition from our system’s talented students. With their boundless energy and dynamic creativity, our students illuminate the path before us,” Jiménez-Sandoval said. “I was deeply fortunate to collaborate with two amazing leaders: (Fresno State student body) President D’Aungillique Jackson and President Isaac Alferos. They both inspire me to serve our students, be real about the current issues impacting our campus community and strive to find the best avenues for growth and opportunity.”

Jiménez-Sandoval grew up in nearby Fowler after his family came to the United States from Mexico when he was a child.

Praise from ASI Officials

Fresno State Associated Students, Inc. representatives spoke highly of their interactions with Jiménez-Sandoval.

“President Jiménez-Sandoval is exactly the type of leader I strive to be,” said David Klein, executive vice president for Fresno State’s Associated Students Inc. “He is personable, engaging, but most importantly, willing to listen and adapt. He leads with a public service mindset and a commitment to improving the Fresno State community.”

Caroline Alvarez, Associated Students Inc. vice president of external affairs, echoed Klein’s praise.

“President Jiménez-Sandoval has worked diligently with our ASI team to hear the complaints of students,” she said. “I’ve been involved in many projects that involve his approval, and he continues to emphasize that these projects benefit students and, at the end of the day, that’s all that matters. I could not be more proud of our president, and I think the award went to the right person.”