San Joaquin Valley – Inspiring Public Leadership

On August 16th 2019, The Kenneth L. Maddy Institute signed a ground-breaking agreement with the San Joaquin Valley’s four public universities (California State University campuses – Fresno, Bakersfield and Stanislaus – and University of California, Merced) to:

…create a working partnership…to advance public understanding of public policy issues impacting the San Joaquin Valley, as well as to support the development of student skills and experience to help develop the next generation of government and civic leaders in California’s eight-county (Kern, Kings, Tulare, Fresno, Madera, Stanislaus, Merced and San Joaquin Counties) San Joaquin Valley.

From Memorandum of Understanding signed by CSU Bakersfield President Lynnette Zelezny, Fresno State President Joseph I. Castro, Stanislaus State President Ellen Junn and UC Merced Interim Chancellor Nathan.

This first-of-its-kind collaboration among four universities to share the same public policy/public affairs institute marks a major advancement in The Maddy Institute’s ability to better serve the residents of the San Joaquin Valley by enhancing the public-policy and public-affairs impact of all four campuses on the region.

This alliance allows the Valley to harness the intellectual capital of four universities to address regional and State issues.   In so doing, it allows access to, and the application of, university research its address the region’s challenges. University faculty from the four campuses, for example, has now more opportunities to collaborate on public-policy issues unique to the Valley, and share their findings with Valley residents through the Institute’s various public-affairs media platforms (e.g., Maddy Report and El Informe Maddy TV programs, its Valley Views radio and podcast, and its daily news aggregator, The Maddy Daily).

In addition, this partnership provides Valley students on the four campuses greater access to legislative internships in Washington, D.C., Sacramento, and legislative offices throughout the Valley, as well as the Institute’s $56,000 Wonderful Public Service Graduate Fellowships.

Finally, this new collaboration provides federal and state officials with a central organization that can provide access to region’s the top universities and media markets in the eight-county, 250-mile San Joaquin Valley that is home to more than four million Californians.

Government Leadership, Policy Analysis and Citizen Participation

The Maddy Institute’s work is focused in three key areas: Government Leadership,  Policy Analysis and Citizen Participation.

Our work in the area of Government Leadership involves preparing the next generation of political and governmental leaders.  We have recruited students who have graduated from Valley high schools and attending California State University campuses in Fresno, Bakersfield and Stanislaus, as well as UC Berkeley, UC Merced, USC, UCLA, University of Oregon and University of Madison, Wisconsin.  Our programs include:

  • Wonderful Public Service Graduate Fellowship Program: This $56,000 Fellowship annually funds up to three Valley students to attend the nation’s best graduate programs in public policy, public administration or regional and urban planning with the requirement that, after graduation, they return to the Valley to apply what they have learned.

Our work in the area of Policy Analysis involves providing research to elected officials, public managers and citizens that is a non-partisan, interdisciplinary and fact-driven analysis of the issues.  Our programs in this area include:

  • Maddy Report: Weekly half-hour public affairs television program that airs on ABC30 in Fresno and on the California Channel statewide.
  • El Informe Maddy: Weekly half-hour public affairs television program that airs on UniMas in Fresno program.
  • Maddy Daily: Free news aggregator that chronicles politics and policy in the San Joaquin Valley.Currently, The Maddy Dailyhas over 10,000 subscribers.

Our work in the area of Citizen Participation involves engaging citizens of all ages and inspiring them to follow Senator Maddy’s example of active citizen participation.

  • Maddy Associates: The Maddy Associates provide financial support the Institute and host luncheons featuring a diverse array of distinguished state and national speakers to discuss topics of importance to our region, state and nation.  Modeled after the Commonwealth Club of California, the Maddy Associates program has been designed to be the key public affairs forum to for Central California – a place where community leaders and those concerned about our region can learn and debate issues of public concern.
  • Citizenship Academy: As part of the New Immigrant Network, we assist in the civic integration of new citizens, including hosting an annual naturalization ceremony.


To inspire citizen participation, elevate government performance, provide non-partisan analysis and assist in providing solutions for public policy issues important to the region, state and nation.


  • To provide a non-partisan venue for the thoughtful discussions on important public policy issues facing the San Joaquin Valley, California and the Nation.
  • To increase participation in the democratic process.
  • To help prepare the next generation of civic-minded business, non-profit, and government leaders.
  • To improve the efficiency and effectiveness of government.