OCC honors Foley for work

Daily Pilot

Orange Coast College has named Costa Mesa City Councilwoman Katrina Foley its 2010 Citizen of the Year for her service to the community and to the college district.

Foley attended OCC before continuing on at UCLA to study English with a specialization in women's studies. She then earned her law degree from Seattle University School of Law. She will be recognized at Thursday's graduation ceremonies, OCC's 62nd.

"Katrina was the person the community felt was most deserving of the honor for just all of the various things that she's done in the community, and especially those related to Coast Community College [District]," said Doug Bennett, executive director of the college foundation.

Foley was among eight community members, college students, faculties and employees for the laurel. Foley was selected by the 12-member Commencement Committee, Bennett said.

Among her services to the college district was volunteering as chairwoman of Coast Community College District's Measure C Citizen's Oversight Committee. The committee served as a watchdog of Measure C funds, ensuring that the college is using the money appropriately, Bennett said.

Foley was also the community's voice on the OCC Presidential Search Committee, which helped select a new president for the community college in December.

But aside from her work with the college district, Foley is also being recognized for her service as a council member.

"We're concerned about what might happen with the fairgrounds ..." Bennett said. "So we appreciate that Katrina has been an advocate making sure the fairgrounds stays a fairgrounds and has some of the similar usage. She's been one of the leaders on the city's side."

The fairgrounds' parking lot is often used by the overflow of OCC's students. Its amphitheater is also used for the college's commencements.

Foley said she's humbled by the recognition.

"It was unexpected and just very much an honor because I value Orange Coast College and everything they do in the community," she said. "And there are so many other people that they could've chose, it's definitely an honor."

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