martha vega
Martha Vega was recently appointed as a new member of the Cabrillo College Board of Trustees. Photo: Tarmo Hannula/The Pajaronian

WATSONVILLE—The Cabrillo College Board of Trustees on Monday unanimously appointed Martha Vega to fill the Area 5 seat left vacant when Felipe Hernandez was elected to the Santa Cruz County Board of Supervisors.

“I’m grateful,” she said. “I am humbled and I’m honored and I look forward to hearing the voices of everyone.”

A lifelong resident of Watsonville, Vega serves on the Watsonville Planning Commission. She is also active in the Cesar Chavez Democratic Club.

She has been teaching public safety classes for the Career Technical Education program at Pajaro Valley High School.

Vega says she hopes to increase student enrollment at Cabrillo and develop housing for faculty and students.

“I want to find out why students are not enrolling, and what’s going on,” she said. “What’s preventing them from enrolling, and what can we can do to change that.”

She said she will support both students looking to transfer to a four-year university, and those who want to find a vocational career. This would include adding certified apprenticeship programs.

“We all have different paths we want to take, and there is an array of paths here,” she said. 

She also wants to remove the college’s cap on the number of times a student can take a course.

She says she wants to support teachers, students and staff, and would look for ways to offer classes to the college’s classified workers. 

“Seeing things through different lenses—that’s how I see this position,” she said. 

Vega attended Watsonville High and Cabrillo College. She holds a master of arts in leadership through the School of Education from Saint Mary’s College, and a bachelor of arts in human development with a specialization in social change from Pacific Oaks College. In addition, she earned a bachelor of science in criminal justice management from Union Institute and University, and an associate of arts in Spanish, bilingual, bicultural studies and liberal arts degree from Cabrillo College. 

She previously worked for Watsonville Police Department as a police services specialist and an administrative analyst, and supervised the records and property division.

She has also served on the Watsonville Library Board of Trustees.

Vega was vying for the position against Manuel Bersamin and Rebecca Garcia, both of whom formerly served on the Watsonville City Council, and both as mayor. She will serve the rest of Hernandez’s term, which expires in 2024.

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  1. I was proud to nominate Marta for the position and give her nominating speech. She is a wonderful teacher at Pajaro Valley High School, and has all the right instincts, experience and knowledge needed to be our 5th district trustee.
    She is supportive of the name change and will help us with the transition to a new name.
    She will do what Felipe would not do: show up regularly for meetings, speak up on important issues, attend the graduation in May, be a voice for the constituents in the 5th district and not use the seat to pad a resume just so she can run for a higher, paid seat in two years, as Felipe did.
    We are proud to serve the Community college for NO PAY.
    I am grateful for the interest of the community and for Rebecca Garcia and Manuel Bersamin submitting themselves as candidates. All 3 gave exemplary interviews with the board of trustees.
    It is an honor to serve the community on our community college board. and by summer of 2024, we shall, with the public’s help, have a new name.

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    • Again, Trujillo takes this moment to celebrate Martha (not Marta) to again trash Felipe.

      Then he celebrates that they serve with no pay (all caps of course), and then offers that she might run for a paid office, and with a full run-on sentence (we all know he has limited writing skills as a Cabrillo representative… sad…, embarrassing). As for Stevie, you pay for what you get. Zero.

      That said, changing the name of Cabrillo is a fool’s errand, which is a perfect task for ST.

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      • Steve is fooling himself if he thinks this name thing is over. Substantially more than half of the county wants to keep the Cabrillo name and ten percent of the remainder would name the school after Donald Trump if given the chance. Let’s assemble a committee to recall Steve. Waiting until 2024 to kick that bozo to the curb is not acceptable. Recall this nitwit.

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  2. Good for you Martha, and good for the community. A long time local and Watsonville HS graduate and resident, ideal qualifications. My father is a Saint Mary’s grad as well. Go Gaels. Best of luck Martha.

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  3. Felipe deserves to have the truth told about him. he was almost a non -existent trustee.
    Marta deserves the job as she wants to do it. Marta is a good friend, and supporter of mine. you know nothing about it.
    She supports the renaming process, as do those who have emailed me on this issue. By the way, 5 of the other 6 trustees agreed with me. they represent a large portion of the attendance area of the college.
    and your comment supporting the idea renaming the college after trumpdump shows how out of touch you are with the voters. Biden won the city 3-1 over trump in 2020. i know. i walked and talked with thousands of voters that year . you did not.
    Ellen and What live in a fantasy world of their own creation. Neither one wants to live in 2023.

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    • Hey Pigeon Head,

      Felipe Hernandez avoided the Cabrillo Board meetings because if he attended he would have to sit next to you and listen to your constant gibberish. Also, besides inhaling toxic pesticides from the fields next to your house, you also exhale those same pesticides. Why would Felipe expose himself to such an obvious risk to his health?

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      • Felipe did his best to avoid meetings for the board of trustees. and we do not select where we sit, it is done for us. i like birds. i want our city to acknowledge the 206 species we have identified in our city , many of them endangered. i would rather be called pidgeon head than pigeon poop, which fits the ideas and language espoused by you and the other anonymous trolls who love to trash me. BE …..MY ……GUEST. you only look more foolish and absurd.

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  4. Hahaha! I love it! You go Ellen! Steve if you are so loved as you state, why are none of your supporters here? Because the entire city knows that you are a turd in the punch bowl.
    Additionally, you insist on personal attacks to me and the others here regardless of the topic you turn it into a personal attack.
    You reap what you sow. A recall would be in order or at least a petition against you at the next election

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    • then you pay for the $80,000 dollar cost for the special election. that is why we DID NOT have a special election this year to fill the district 5 seat. you have mega bucks; YOU pay for it.

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  5. Speaking of birds, which we were, why do you think Mexicans named this place the Pajaro Valley? Pajaro is the Spanish word for BIRD. we need a bird sanctuary, where Ellen and her fellow trolls cannot take their BB guns and shoot the birds at random. Ramsay Park is an excellent place.
    The birds are also protected on BOTH of our community college campuses. I have already seen to that.
    Nisene Marks, just behind the Horticulture building on the upper campus, is alive with birdsong. Beautiful.
    so unlike the words of Ellen, Texas Twerp and What, which are nothing more than pigeon poop.

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