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Press Release · September 5, 2007

The PPIC Sacramento Center Opens Its Doors

SAN FRANCISCO, California, September 5, 2007 – The San Francisco-based Public Policy Institute of California (PPIC) announces the opening of the PPIC Sacramento Center, located across the street from the State Capitol in downtown Sacramento.

Funded in part by The James Irvine Foundation and The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, the Sacramento Center will greatly augment PPIC’s efforts to inform and improve the state’s policymaking climate and process.

The Sacramento Center is located in the Senator Building at 1121 L Street, Suite 801. With a full-time research and government affairs staff, the center will be used to convene meetings, provide research and policy briefings, host events, and generally serve as an accessible source of rigorous, objective, state-level policy analysis.

“We are committed to making PPIC an even more engaged and influential institute in the state’s policy landscape,” said Mark Baldassare, PPIC’s president and CEO. “Having a physical presence — including research and outreach staff — at the center of California governance and policymaking will enable us to be more responsive to the information needs of the policy community. And we hope that this presence will facilitate broader, more productive, and less partisan discussions of the critical policy challenges facing the state.”

David Lesher (916-440-1130 or, PPIC’s new senior manager for government affairs, oversees outreach to the policy community. Lesher is a respected journalist and was the founding director of the California Program for the New America Foundation. Artemio Armenta (916-440-1133 or, PPIC’s new government affairs associate, is a former Sacramento-based producer for the Spanish-language television network Univision.

Visiting fellow Jon Sonstelie (916-440-1132 or and research fellow Heather Rose (916-440-1131 or – both economists and education specialists – are also based at the center. They are currently developing a K-12 school finance simulation model.

The Public Policy Institute of California is a private, nonprofit organization dedicated to improving public policy in California through independent, objective, nonpartisan research on major economic, social, and political issues. The institute was established in 1994 with an endowment from William R. Hewlett.