Victor Manuel Perez was appointed by Gov. Edmund G. Brown Jr. on May 9, 2017 to the Riverside County Board of Supervisors, replacing the late John J. Benoit in representing the County’s Fourth District. The Fourth Supervisorial District covers the eastern two-thirds of Riverside County, stretching from Palm Springs and Desert Hot Springs, south to the Salton Sea and east to Blythe and the Colorado River.
Manuel is grateful for the opportunity to serve in this important position, and looks forward to contributing his experience in local and state government to work on behalf of families and every community in the Fourth District.
Born and raised in the Coachella Valley, the son of immigrant farmworkers, Manuel attended local public schools and graduated from the University of California, Riverside. He taught at a local middle school, and went on to earn a Master of Education degree in Administration, Planning and Social Policy from Harvard University.
He worked as a youth advocate and director of community health and advocacy for Santa Rosa Del Valle-Borrego Health, at Centro Medico Coachella and Centro Medico Oasis. From 2004 to 2008, he served on the Coachella Valley Unified School District Board of Trustees, where he led the passage of a $250 million bond to construct and renovate schools in the eastern Coachella Valley.
In 2008, Manuel was elected to the California State Assembly, representing eastern Riverside County and Imperial County. Entering office during the great recession, he worked with colleagues on both sides of the aisle and the Governor’s Office to bring forth fiscal management discipline, fiscal accountability, budget review and job creation legislation.
A champion for eastern Riverside County, Manuel had more than 60 pieces of legislation signed into law to help create jobs, jumpstart the local renewable energy industry and make neighborhoods safer. His legislation focused on jobs, economic development, small business, education, health care access, infrastructure, renewable energy, transportation, air quality, environment, public safety, parks, technology, agriculture, water and the Salton Sea.
In the Assembly, Manuel became majority leader and worked closely with the Assembly Speaker on the day-to-day functions of the statehouse. He served as the chairman of the Jobs and Economic Development Committee, founding Vice Chair of the Select Committee for the Status of Boys and Men of Color as well as Chair of Stimulus, Economic Recovery and Jobs (SERJ).
After serving three terms in the State Assembly, Manuel continued his public service with election to the Coachella City Council. Prior to his appointment to county supervisor, he was chief government and public affairs officer for Borrego Health, a federally qualified health center serving the under-served in San Diego, Riverside and San Bernardino Counties.
Manuel resides in Coachella with Gladis, his wife of 20 years. They have two sons, Ruben and Alejandro, who attend UC Davis and UC Santa Barbara, respectively.