Richard Barrera was elected to the Board in 2008. A first-generation San Diegan, his father emigrated from Colombia and mother is the daughter of European immigrants who came to America through Ellis Island. After graduating from El Cajon Valley High School, Mr. Barrera received his Bachelors Degree in American History from UCSD, and a Masters Degree in Public Policy from Harvard University.
Mr. Barrera has a background as a community organizer, working to revitalize low-income neighborhoods and create networks for parents of pre-school aged kids. He served five years as president of the Consensus Organizing Institute and has also worked for the Local Initiatives Support Corporation, the Comer Science and Education Foundation and as a consultant for the City Heights Community Development Corporation. In the field of labor relations, he has served as San Diego regional organizer for both the United Domestic Workers and United Healthcare Workers. Mr. Barrera serves as a board member of the San Diego Cooperative Charter School, the Greater Golden Hill Community Planning Committee, the San Diego League of Conservation Voters, and the San Diego Unity League, and volunteers for the Urban Corps of San Diego County and as a coach for his sons’ North Park Little League teams. Mr. Barrera's two sons are students in the San Diego Unified School District.