Spotlighting Mona Pasquil (U.S. FWN100™ '07)


From Asian Journal MDWK Magazine:

In California’s Appointments Office, there are more than 12,000 applications in the system from individuals seeking to serve on various state boards and commissions.

But before any of them either secure a high-ranking position or get turned down, they are screened by California Appointments Secretary Mona Pasquil, 53, a Filipino-American who has served in her current role since 2011.

“It’s an adventure,” Pasquil said of serving her role under California Gov. Jerry Brown. “‘[The governor] has really challenged us to go out to find the best and the brightest who will want to serve in this administration.”

As the Golden State’s appointments secretary, Pasquil spends much of her time finalizing positions, talking about slots that need to be filled, and working with appointees who may be having issues. She and her team also invest time in traveling up and down California, talking to various groups about the opportunities available to serve in the government.

Growing up, Pasquil says she had her eye on becoming a public servant, as the first Filipina elected to the California legislature.

Life, however, didn’t play out that way.

Before Pasquil assumed her current position, she was heavily involved in public office and spearheading political campaign efforts.

From 2008 to 2009, she served as chief of staff to California Lt. Gov. John Garamendi. She also previously served as political director for former California Gov. Gray Davis’ gubernatorial campaign, California political director for Al Gore’s presidential campaign, deputy political director for John Kerry’s presidential campaign and western political director for the White House Office of Political Affairs under former president Bill Clinton.

Most notably, she became the first Asian Pacific Islander and Filipino-American woman to serve as acting lieutenant governor when Garamendi was elected to Congress in 2009. For this feat, she was awarded a Presidential Citation by former Philippine president Gloria Macapagal Arroyo.

While she was acting lieutenant governor, Pasquil recalls a young girl and her mom coming into her office as part of the school tour. The girl was in awe at the office and told her mom she didn’t know girls could have that kind of office. This particular moment inspired Pasquil to remember the importance of mentorship, particularly for females, whom, she notes, often aren’t aware of opportunities to serve in the government. 

Read the rest of the story here.
News story from Asian Journal.