Fresno County Women's Chamber of Commerce Featured Speaker:
native of Fresno, Mehas received his bachelor's
degree from Fresno State University in 1962, his master's degree from
UCLA in 1967, and his doctorate in education from the University of
Southern California in 1979. He was an All-American, All-Conference
center in college.
Mehas began his professional career as an instructor at Roosevelt High
School (Fresno Unified School District) in 1963.
also taught at Edison High School before signing on with the Clovis
Unified School District where he worked his way up from assistant principal
at Clovis High (1968-69) to principal (1969-75) to assistant superintendent
(1975-78) and to associate superintendent (1978-87).
From 1984 to 1987, Mehas established and served as the legislative advocate
in Sacramento and Washington, D.C. for the State Center Community College
District, Fresno County, and Modoc County Offices of Education and a
consortium of 36 school districts throughout Central California.
In 1987, Mehas was appointed by Governor Deukmejian as his Chief Advisor
on matters relating to all public education in the state, kindergarten
through 12th grade, community colleges, the California State University
and University of California systems and private and independent schools
and universities and as the director of the Governor's Office of Education
Planning and Policy Committee. His primary responsibilities were to
develop policy positions for the Governor on education issues, to track
legislation related to education for the Administration and to serve
as liaison between the Governor's Office and the education community.
He has appeared on national television's NBC "Today" and ABC
"Good Morning America" representing Governor Deukmejian's
view on education. In 1990, Mehas was appointed to the State Board of
Education by Governor Deukmejian.
Prior to assuming his position with the Deukmejian Administration, Mehas
was a member of the State Commission on Student Loan Assumption; the
Department of Education's Committee on Quality Indicators of Secondary
Schools, the Large Suburban School Curriculum and Legislative Committee
and the State Industrial Education Council.
served on the U.S. Secretary of Education's National Advisory Committee
on Accreditation and Institutional Eligibility; the Governor's California
Commission on Educational Quality; the National Governor's Association
Education Advisory Committee; the Constitutional Rights Foundation and
state representative to the Steering Committee of the California Policy
Seminar. Mehas chaired the AB 9 Task Force to develop criteria for low
performing schools, was the representative (with Governor Deukmejian)
to the President's Education Summit in Charlottesville, Virginia in
1989, participated in the State Superintendent of Public Instruction's
Education Summit and the 1997 Presidential Summit on the Future of American’s
Youth in Philadelphia and California Attorney General Daniel E. Lundgren’s
Policy Council on Violence Prevention in 1994.
In September 1991, President George Bush appointed Dr. Mehas to a 17-member
advisory commission to implement his executive order on Latino education.
Other members of the commission on Educational Excellence for Hispanic
Americans include pro-golfer, Nancy Lopez; Peter H. Coors, President
of Coors Brewing Co., and Raul Yzaguirres, head of the National Council
of La Raza. In 1992, Dr. Mehas was a speaker at the National Republican
Convention in Houston, Texas. In 1998 Dr. Mehas was appointed by Governor
Pete Wilson to the California Community College Board of Governors.
He served as Regional Chair to Elect George W. Bush for President.
Mehas serves on the Fresno Compact Executive Board, California State
University–Fresno President’s Education Commission and Dean
of Education Advisory Committee, UC Advisory Board, American Hellenic
Education Progressive Association, California Association County Superintendent
of Schools, Valley Business Conference Executive Board, CSUF Wrestling
Booster Board and Bulldog Foundation Member, President of the Fresno
County Athletic Hall of Fame, California Consortium for Visual Arts
Education Board Member, Advisory Board–Fresno Police Activities
League (PALS), Phi Delta Kappa, Community Advisor for the Junior League
of Fresno, Inter-Agency, Sanctuary Board, Fresno Historical Society
Board, Congressman Radanovich Advisory Committee–Education Chairman,
ACSA (Association of California School Administrators), YWCA Advisory
Board, Marjaree Mason Center Advisory Board, Youth Fair Chance Board,
and UC San Francisco Medical Education Advisory Board.
1990, Dr. Mehas was the recipient of the Fresno Public Education Fund's
Gold Star Alumni Award, and in 1993, was the recipient of The New United
Way's Annual George A. Osborne Award and the Rotary Paul Harris Fellowship.
He also received the Outstanding Public Service Award for 1992 by the
California Farm Bureau Federation and the California Foundation for
Agriculture, USC School of Education Distinguished Lecturer, 1998 CSU
Fresno School of Social Science Distinguished Alumni Award, 1999 Fresno
City College Distinguished Alumni Award. In 2001, Dr. Mehas was awarded
as an honorary life member in the National Congress of Parents and Teachers,
was recognized as the 2001 Breaking Barriers for Children Award honoree
and was named recipient of the Rose Ann Vuich Ethical Leadership Award.
Mehas holds a lifetime California Standard Secondary Teaching Credential
and General Elementary Credential, as well as, a lifetime School Service
Credential in General Administration.
In June 1990, Dr. Mehas was elected Fresno County Superintendent of
Schools and was re-elected by a 72% margin for a second term in June
1994. In 1998 he ran unopposed for his third term. In all three elections,
he had the unanimous endorsement of the Democratic and Republican legislators
from the Fresno area.
Mehas and his wife, Demi, have two daughters, Alethea and Andreanna.
The family resides in Fresno.