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Celebrating Orange County's Political History

Center for Oral and Public History Recognizes Three Leaders

Oct. 17, 2014

Campus and community leaders came together Thursday, Oct. 16, to honor three women who made significant contributions to Orange County's political history: Marian Bergeson, Lynn Daucher and Lois Lundberg.

The three women are the inaugural oral history interviews for Cal State Fullerton's Center for Oral and Public History's Orange County Politics Project.

Noting that the evening's program is a first in the county, President Mildred García extended her congratulations to "three extraordinary women and political leaders whose stories are not only being recognized by this laudable program, but also recorded for the benefit of future students and citizens aspiring to follow in their footsteps.

"To call this a win-win would be an understatement. It's more like a win-win-win," she added.

"First, Southern California wins through the preservation of three outstanding stories that helped shape the social fabric we call home; second, Cal State Fullerton and its surrounding communities benefit from a new bridge of understanding, one that delineates how their respective histories positively impact each other; and third, our students win through learning how to collect oral histories, interpret their themes and present them to the public – exactly the kind of high-impact practices, co-curricular academic practices that engage our students in what we call engaged learning and is part of our strategic plan."

Also welcoming the audience were Dick Ackerman, retired California state senator, and Marilyn Brewer, retired state Assembly member. Both are members of the Cal State Fullerton Philanthropic Foundation board.

Bergeson was the first woman to serve in both houses of the California Legislature, joining the state Assembly in 1978 and the state Senate in 1984. She was elected to the Orange County Board of Supervisors in 1995 and served appointments to the State Board of Education and the California Transportation Commission.

After first being elected to the board of the Brea Olinda Unified School District, Daucher served on the Brea City Council, the 72nd district in the California Assembly and became the highest-ranking Republican on the Budget Subcommittee on Education and Finance. In 2007, she was appointed director of the California Department of Aging for three years.

Lundberg worked on the campaigns of Republican candidates, was a delegate at five Republican National Conventions and became chairman of the Republican Party of Orange County from 1977 to 1984. She also was part of the effort to develop and construct the Nixon Library in Yorba Linda.

"As someone who loves politics and loves the diversity of politics, I thought that this is a project that we needed to do, and the center, given our long history of reporting the history of this county, seemed an appropriate place to do it," said Natalie Fousekis, director of the Center for Oral and Public History and associate professor of history.

"One of the wonderful things about oral history is that you don't just get the facts of what happened; we get the perspective of the people that lived through those moments," Fousekis explained. "We get the perspectives of these three wonderful women that we are honoring tonight."

A video featuring portions of the oral history interviews of Bergeson, Lundberg and Daucher is available  online . The full transcripts are available at the center.

The Center for Oral and Public History was established as the Oral History Program in 1968 and is the largest regionally focused oral history archive in the state. It boasts more than 5,400 recorded interviews, related transcripts, photographs and other materials. In the center's archives are oral histories of ethnic minorities, former presidents, and men and women who served in World War II, as well as Japanese American evacuees and community history, such as the 2007 Santiago Fire.

In 2011, the center was awarded a $425,000 National Endowment for the Humanities Challenge Grant for use toward the renovation and expansion of the center. For more information, email or call 657-278-3580.

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