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Meet Your Portuguese-American Elected Officials in California: Lori Cardoza

Lori Cardoza, a lifelong resident of Tipton and Tulare, was appointed in 2003 to represent Ward 4, have been reelected ever since. Her knowledge of the dynamics that influence all aspects of the Valley – economics, agriculture, social concerns, education -- made her the logical choice to serve on the Board of Trustees. A product of local K-12 schools, Lori is a graduate of COS and Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo, where she earned a BS in Agriculture. Her participation and graduation from the California Agricultural Leadership Program provided opportunities to study a wide range of issues at several universities throughout the state. She also had the opportunity to visit educational facilities and governmental agencies throughout the United States and in third world countries. This program enhanced her knowledge of educational systems and gave her a new appreciation for the tremendous impact it has on the economy of local communities.

Lori serves on the Agricultural Advisory Committees at Tulare Joint Union High School District and COS. She believes that community input and involvement is essential in maintaining and creating the programs that give our students the skills they need to be successful. Lori and her husband David reside in Tulare and have four sons, Jacob, Adam, Joseph and Ethan. They operate Cardoza Company. Lori has served on boards and advisory committees for the Tulare County Farm Bureau and the California Farm Bureau Federation. In addition, she serves in different capacities at St. Aloysius Parochial School and is on the board of the Tulare-Angra Sister City Foundation. She is extremely proud of her Portuguese roots, being a daughter of immigrants from the island of São Jorge in the Azores. Her parents, Manuel and Hazel Sousa have been leaders in the Portuguese-American community in the Central valley for many years.

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