Ilona Jo Katz


The Late Trustee Ilona Jo Katz


Ilona Jo Katz served as a college trustee 23 years until her death on April 26, 2000.

In her memory, the SMC Foundation established the Ilona Jo Katz Chair of Excellence in the SMC Music Department. Also in her memory, the Board of Trustees named their meeting room the Ilona Jo Katz Board Room.

Mrs. Katz had been a trustee on the Board of Trustees since 1977 and served as chair four times.

During her tenure, she held several leadership posts on California education organizations, particularly in the areas of special education and community college governance.

She served 10 years on the Board of Directors of the California Community College Trustees, including one year as president. She was the only community college trustee appointed by the California Community Colleges Board of Governors to serve on the search committee to select the state chancellor in 1988. In addition, she served on five community college accreditation teams in California.

A former trustee of the Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District, she had been involved in education and community service for more than 30 years, through such organizations as PTA and YMCA. Her honors included awards from the Santa Monica Lions Club, Santa Monica Mayor, YMCA (Family of the Year), YWCA and California PTA.

She was born April 29, 1933, in Montana but moved with her family to Los Angeles when she was a child.

A graduate of Beverly Hills High School, she attended UCLA and spent 10 years in the marketing business.