Three member-elected positions representing current educators.
A retired CalSTRS member appointed by the Governor and confirmed by the Senate.
Three public representatives appointed by the Governor and confirmed by the Senate.
A school board representative appointed by the Governor and confirmed by the Senate.
Four board members who serve in an ex-officio capacity by virtue of their office: Director of Finance, State Controller, State Superintendent of Public Instruction, and State Treasurer.
Board members, excluding the ex-officio members, serve four-year terms.
The board has six standing committees: Appeals, Audits and Risk Management, Benefits and Services, Board Governance, Compensation and Investments.
The board appoints a Chief Executive Officer to administer the system consistent with the board’s policies and rules. The board also selects a Chief Investment Officer to direct the investment of the Teachers’ Retirement Fund in accordance with board policy.
Communication With the Board
The board welcomes your comments. If you would like to contact a member of the board, please use the following:
Dana Dillon is a kindergarten through eighth grade school teacher from Weed. She has served on the board since her election in 2003, including stints as chair and vice chair. Ms. Dillon has been active in the California Teachers Association for more than 34 years, serving as a state council representative and a member of the CTA Board of Directors.
Vice-chair Sharon Hendricks is a communications studies professor with the Los Angeles Community College District and was elected to the Teachers’ Retirement Board in 2011. She also serves as president of the American Federation of Teachers, local 1521 chapter at Los Angeles City College. Ms. Hendricks is active in the Community College Council of the California Federation of Teachers.
Sharon Hendricks serves on the following committees:
Prior to being elected Treasurer, John Chiang served from 2007 through 2014 as California State Controller. He began his career as a tax law specialist with the Internal Revenue Service and served as an attorney in the State Controller’s Office. He graduated from the University of South Florida with a degree in finance and received his law degree from the Georgetown University Law Center.
Michael Cohen was appointed as director of the California Department of Finance by Governor Jerry Brown in September 2013. He serves as the governor’s chief fiscal policy advisor. Prior to becoming director, he served as chief deputy director of the Department of Finance from 2011–2013. Mr. Cohen was the department’s lead contact with the state Legislature on the state budget. From 1997–2010, Mr. Cohen worked at the Legislative Analyst’s Office. While there, he served as a local government finance analyst, director of state administration and deputy legislative analyst. Mr. Cohen earned a master’s degree in public affairs from the Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas and a bachelor’s degree in urban studies from Stanford University.
Joy Higa is the vice president, regulatory affairs, for UnitedHealthcare’s West and Central Regions, where she manages relationships and policy activities with 28 state regulatory agencies. She previously served as deputy chief of staff to the state controller from 2004–2006 and chief deputy cabinet secretary in the Office of the Governor during 2003. She received her Bachelor of Arts from Cornell University.
Harry M. Keiley is a high school teacher with the Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District, and was elected to the Teachers’ Retirement Board in 2007. He has served as the president of Santa Monica-Malibu Classroom Teachers Association and chair of the California Teachers Association Political Involvement Committee.
Paul Rosenstiel has been involved in financing infrastructure and other capital projects for more than three decades. Most recently, he was a managing director of public finance with Stifel, Nicolaus & Company, Incorporated. Before that, he managed the San Francisco office of De La Rosa & Company for 15 years. From 2007–2009 he was deputy treasurer of the state of California. He received an MBA from Stanford University.
Paul Rosenstiel serves on the following committees:
State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson, a former science teacher and cross country coach, has helped devise and implement major reforms in California schools. During his seven years as head of the nation’s largest school system, California has adopted more rigorous academic standards, increased school funding, given more authority to local officials to make spending decisions, expanded public participation in school decisions and launched a new way of evaluating schools using multi-measures of success, not just test scores. Torlakson, who served in the state Senate and Assembly, also has been a champion for recruiting teachers and making sure students come to school healthy and ready to learn.
Nora Vargas has served as the vice president of Community & Government Relations for Planned Parenthood of the Pacific Southwest since 2009. Ms. Vargas is a member of the Southwestern Community College District Governing Board. She is a champion of Hispanas Organized for Political Equality (HOPE) and a board member of the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials (NALEO). Ms. Vargas has been active in social justice issues for over three decades with a general focus on the advancement of women, access to education, healthcare and Latino issues.
Nora E. Vargas serves on the following committees:
Karen Yamamoto is a retired elementary school teacher from West Sacramento. Ms. Yamamoto taught second grade for 15 years and retired in 2007. She was a member of the California Department of Education’s Curriculum Development and Supplemental Materials Commission from 1999-2003, acting as Chair in 2003.
Prior to beginning her career as an educator, Ms. Yamamoto also served as a Legislative Assistant to several Assembly Members in the California State Legislature from 1978-1991. She is currently active in the Asian Pacific Youth Leadership Program and the Japanese American Citizens League, Florin Chapter.
Karen Yamamoto serves on the following committees:
Betty Yee became California’s chief financial officer in 2015, following two terms on the Board of Equalization. She has 30 years of experience in public service, specializing in state and local finance and tax policy. Ms. Yee is a member of many financing authorities and oversight entities related to environment, energy, transportation, housing, infrastructure, health and science. She holds a bachelor’s degree in sociology and a master’s degree in public administration.
Electronic privacy is crucial for the ongoing success of the Internet as a convenient means to provide customer service. Your personal information will be used only to conduct CalSTRS-related business.
The California State Teachers’ Retirement System website has been developed in compliance with California Government Code §11135, which requires that all electronic and information technology developed or purchased by the State of California is accessible to people with disabilities. There are various types of physical disabilities that impact user interaction on the web. Vision loss, hearing loss, limited manual dexterity, and cognitive disabilities are examples, with each having different means by which to access electronic information effectively.