Goldman School of Public Policy - University of California, Berkeley

Moses Zapien

Biography

Moses Zapien is the incoming CEO and President of the Community Foundation of San Joaquin, one of the area’s largest philanthropic organizations that provides leadership, promotes a culture of giving, and cultivates resources that address the needs of our community. Prior to his time at the Foundation, he was appointed by Governor Brown to represent the Third District on the San Joaquin County Board of Supervisors, and served as Chairman of the Board. The Third District covers the northern and western areas of the City of Stockton, the City of Lathrop, the northern area of the City of Manteca, and areas of the Delta.


The son of Mexican immigrant parents who worked the farmlands along the Delta, Moses was born and raised in Stockton. He learned the value of hard work early on in life. Moses and his siblings grew up in a small, family-run denture manufacturing business his parents started and continue to operate today. He went on to become the first in his family to graduate from college, attending both the University of the Pacific, and the University of Southern California. Following his dreams of becoming an attorney, Moses earned his law degree from the Laurence Drivon School of Law, where he served as President of the Student Bar Association. Moses is also a graduate of Leadership Stockton, and a Senior Fellow with the American Leadership Forum, Great Valley Chapter.
Prior to his appointment to the Board of Supervisors, Moses served on the Stockton City Council from 2013 until 2015. During his time on the Council, he worked to help the city emerge from municipal bankruptcy, supported measures to increase the number of police officers, and facilitated the growth of local businesses and cut red tape.


Moses' professional experience includes working as a civil litigation attorney with the Law Office of James M. Morris, and as counsel to the Law Office of Mark Choi. Most recently, Moses served as a criminal prosecutor with the San Joaquin County District Attorney’s Office, where he prosecuted misdemeanor crimes, such as domestic violence, elder abuse, and driving-under-the-influence.
Moses is active in the community and serves on a number of boards. He served as President of the San Joaquin County Bar Association, where he organized the Association’s efforts to establish a free legal clinic to serve the needs of the greater community. Moses serves on the Board of Directors of the Library and Literacy Foundation of San Joaquin County, and is a co-founder of Little Free Libraries Stockton Association, whose goal is to establish 100 neighborhood book exchanges in low literacy areas.Moses also serves on the Executive Board of the Beyond Our Gates Community Council, an advisory body of the University of the Pacific, whose focus is to increase the number of local children who are strong readers by the time they leave third grade.

Moses has been recognized for his advocacy of important community issues. His collaborate work to promote child literacy has been recognized by San Joaquin A+, the International Reading Association, and the San Joaquin County Reading Association in 2015. As a result of his policy work to champion sustainable, healthier communities, Moses was named a Healthy Growth Leader by the American Lung Association in 2014—one of a handful in the Central Valley and the only one in San Joaquin County to earn that distinction. Moses was also named as one of Comstock Magazine’s 10 Young Change Leaders to Watch in 2015.


Moses is dedicated to serving our community. He is committed to improving the quality of life for all residents of San Joaquin County through philanthropy and public service.