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Barram, Casas Frier to lead Foothill-De Anza trustees

Former Cupertino Union school board member Joan Barram joined community college board in 2009

Trustees of the Foothill-De Anza Community College District elected member Joan Barram as president and Laura Casas Frier vice-president effective Dec. 5.

Barram, a Los Altos resident who joined the Foothill-De Anza board in 2009, served three terms on the Cupertino Union School District Board of Education as well as on the boards of EdSource and the California School Boards Association and on the program committee of the Silicon Valley Community Foundation.

She holds a bachelor's degree in biology from Wheaton College.

"This is an exciting and challenging time for community colleges," Barram said.

"There is increasing recognition of the importance of community colleges and the transitions from high school to college and the workforce. I think we've done a good job at Foothill and De Anza in spite of budget cuts, and I love the student focus at both colleges."

Among her goals will be to reach out to local communities to make sure they know what is available at the colleges, Barram said.

Casas Frier has served on the Foothill-De Anza board since 2005 and is also a board member of the nonprofits Children Now and ALearn. She holds a bachelor's degree in political science from California State University at Northridge and a law degree from Santa Clara University.

About one in six Gunn or Palo Alto High School graduates goes directly to Foothill or De Anza after graduation, according to the college district.

In the fall of 2009, about 18 percent of Paly and Gunn graduates entered the college, and the rate over the past decade has ranged from 13 percent to 19 percent.

With an enrollment of about 43,000, the Foothill-De Anza district covers Cupertino, Los Altos, Los Altos Hills, Mountain View, Palo Alto, Stanford, Sunnyvale and portions of San Jose.

— Palo Alto Weekly staff

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