The Timothy A. Hodson Capital Fellows Assistance Fund was established in 2012 after the passing of the Center’s longtime Executive Director, Tim Hodson. The Fund provides need-based support for Capital Fellows for the purposes of relocation and other expenses necessary for participation in the fellowship.

As the class of 2016-17 embarks on their fellowship journey it is important to recognize the past recipients of the Fund and note the impact it had on their Fellowship year. Ashley Hernandez, Judicial Administration Fellow (Class of 2015-2016) details her story below.



Ashley Hernandez, 2015-16 Judicial Administration Fellow

As an emancipated minor and woman of color I have a unique perspective on issues regarding accessibility, public institutions, and the policy-making process. However, as a young adult and student working three jobs I did not have the capacity and resources to put my critical lens into action beyond the classroom and found difficulty in envisioning myself as a leader in the public realm. I saw the Capital Fellows Programs as a mechanism in which I would be allowed to put my knowledge and passion for public service to practical use through hands-on learning and professional development.


Upon admission to the fellowship as a Judicial Administration Fellow, I sought financial assistance through the Timothy A. Hodson Capital Fellows Assistance Fund, as I would be relocating completely alone to Alameda County from Los Angeles County and working in a professional environment for the very first time. The Hodson Assistance Fund gifted me the resource to safely relocate to a new city and purchase my very first professional wardrobe. The Hodson Assistance Fund provided me with the means that I would not have otherwise had to participate in the incredible opportunity that is the Capital Fellows Programs.

Although I have always found pride in supporting myself independently despite certain financial and familial hardships, the Hodson Assistance Fund provided me a safe space to seek assistance for an opportunity that was, for me, a dream. My knowledge, perspective, and voice were valued in the Research Division at the Superior Court of Alameda County and I was able to see myself as someone capable of impactful work and research as a public servant. I was inspired by the work I did through the fellowship to continue to develop my leadership skills and education. Most importantly, I was empowered by the Hodson Assistance Fund, as it was the catalyst for my personal transformation and growth. As a current PhD student at the University of California, Irvine, I will continue my work on public policy, collaborative governance, and social justice to provide others with the means that was gifted to me through this opportunity.

Please consider supporting future Capital Fellows by donating to the Timothy A. Hodson Capital Fellows Assistance Fund at the link below:

(Please select Designation: College of Social Sciences and Interdisciplinary Studies-Account: Tim Hodson Scholarship)