Cynthia Castillo is a Policy Consultant for Senate Majority Leader Robert Hertzberg, covering a large portion of his policy portfolio including education, labor, transportation, agriculture, privacy, housing, environment and water policy. A generalist at heart, Cynthia juggles multiple policy priorities and objectives while maintaining and fostering strong relationships with capitol, state agency, and regulatory staff.
Prior to joining Senator Hertzberg's office, Cynthia lobbied for the Faculty Association of California Community Colleges (FACCC). Cynthia worked her way from a Legislative Assistant, to External Affairs Associate Director, and ultimately Public Affairs Director, handling both external communications and government relations for the association. A former community college student herself, Cynthia was a fierce advocate for college affordability and access for low income and underserved students, leading her to work closely on Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) policy. In addition to advancing legislative solutions to ease the cost of higher education, Cynthia negotiated budgetary requests to extend a critical foster youth program and to fund full and part-time faculty hiring.
Prior to that, Cynthia served as a Field Organizer for the California Democratic Party in a competitive congressional campaign to re-elect Congressman Ami Bera. As an organizer, she coordinated and ran a bi-weekly latino to latino phonebank, and led the "Get Out the Vote" (GOTV) canvassing operation which encompassed more than 400 volunteers. Her campaign organizing spurred her desire to be a progressive agent of change, and she continues to engage with the state party and campaign work.
Born in Redwood City to a Nicaraguan immigrant family, Cynthia is deeply committed to social justice and equity. Her experience as a first generation American and as the first person to earn a college degree in her family has motivated her to pursue positive change for underserved communities. She is an active member of multiple local democratic clubs, and has served as the secretary for the Sacramento Fem Dems. Cynthia holds a Bachelor's degree in Mass Communications from Sacramento State University.
In her free time, Cynthia enjoys keeping up with the latest in pop culture, traveling, cooking, attending music shows, watching movies, and spending quality time with friends and family.