Das Williams

 Das Williams head shotAssemblymember Das Williams grew up in Isla Vista near UCSB.  He attended elementary schools in Ventura County and Isla Vista, Goleta Valley Junior High and Dos Pueblos High School before coming to Santa Barbara City College at the age of 17.  While attending SBCC, Assemblymember Williams lived out of his van that he parked at Ledbetter Beach since all of his income went to paying his student fees and buying books.  Despite facing severe economic challenges, Assemblymember Williams persevered, committed to continuing the quality education he was receiving at SBCC.  One of his favorite professors at SBCC was current Board of Trustees member Dr. Peter Haslund, who instructed the Model United Nations and who also shares fond memories of Assemblymember Williams as a student.  Another favorite class was Comparative Politics, taught by Manou Eskandari, which nourished the future Assemblymember's passion for involvement in the political process and for using the process to help those in need.

After two years of study at SBCC, Assemblymember Williams received a scholarship to UC Berkeley where he transferred to study Political Science.  After his graduation from Berkeley, he worked as a legislative aide to former Assemblymember Hannah-Beth Jackson, who represented the very same district he currently represents.  He then returned to school to get his Masters in Environmental Science & Management, with a focus on water pollution, planning processes, and land-use law at UCSB's Bren School of Environmental Science and Management.  While in graduate school, he was elected to the Santa Barbara City Council, due in large part to his expansive community involvement going back to his time at SBCC.  Assemblymember Williams believes the education he received at SBCC was equal to the quality of education he received at Berkeley and UCSB.  It has also allowed him to have closer interactions with his professors and fellow students and to develop a greater sense of love and respect for the community he now serves in the California State Assembly.