Experienced School Board Member
Prior to being elected to the Fresno County Board of Education in 2018, Masumoto served as a Trustee for Sanger Unified School District for six years where she held leadership positions of president, vice president or clerk each year. With twenty schools and over 13,000 students, Sanger Unified was designated as one of California’s Exemplary Districts in 2018. As a board member, Masumoto worked closely with the superintendent to set priorities and policies to enhance academic and support services for all students – including low income, English Learners, foster and homeless youth, and special needs students. As a respected Trustee, she was elected to represent the local region as a Delegate to the California School Boards Association.
In addition to being a managing partner with the family farm, Masumoto works professionally in the health and education fields. She first started as a nutrition advisor for early childhood education sites in Riverside County, and advanced into leadership positions in pubic education and nonprofit organizations upon moving to Fresno County. She currently consults for the University Advancement division of California State University, Fresno. From 2005 to 2015, Dr. Masumoto was Project Director with Fresno State’s educational leadership institute where she organized a network of rural schools and many training programs, conferences and coaching supports for educational leaders in Valley districts. There, she also implemented workforce investment and English Learner projects in collaboration with the CA Partnership for the San Joaquin Valley.
Masumoto was previously employed by UC San Francisco’s Fresno Medical Education Program where she was recruitment coordinator for medical residency programs and also coordinator of a health care pipeline program for under represented middle school students in south east Fresno. Prior, she held positions ranging from health educator and department director to overseeing all-employee training and organizational development at Valley Children’s Hospital. She was instrumental in establishing community campus centers in Madera and Clovis (now Community Colleges), Oakhurst, Selma, and Parlier while employed by State Center Community College District. In addition to professional roles, she has been an active community volunteer, currently serving as President of the Cultural Arts Rotary Club of Fresno.
Masumoto earned a bachelor’s degree in public health education with a minor in nutrition from Loma Linda University, a master’s degree in Community Development from UC Davis, and a doctorate in Educational Leadership from UC Davis and CSU Fresno. Her doctoral research focused on leadership practices of high performing, high poverty rural high schools and was published in the Journal of Research in Rural Education.
Rural Roots and Life
Masumoto grew up working on her family’s goat dairy and was active in 4-H as a youth and adult leader. She met her husband in graduate school at UCD and has been married to author/writer/farmer David Mas Masumoto for 39 years. She is a full managing partner in the family’s 80-acre farm, producing organic peaches, nectarines, apricots and grapes for raisins. Both of her adult children, Nikiko and Korio, attended public schools in Sanger and Fowler, and are graduates of public universities. They also work on the family farm and are active in the community.
The Masumotos are strong advocates for rural communities and California’s Central Valley.