Locals celebrated for leadership

Victor Gomez, Monterey County educator Oscar Ramos, and Nazhat Parveen Sharma receive honorary doctorates with the Claustro Doctoral Honoris Causa program.
Photo provided by Victor Gomez.

La Universidad Iberoamericana recognized local League of United Latin American Citizens members Victor Gomez, Oscar Ramos and Nazhat Parveen Sharma for their community involvement at an April 3 ceremony in Sacramento. The pair received honorary doctorates as part of the Claustro Doctoral Honoris Causa program, which the organization gives to leaders who are positive examples in society.

Sharma, a Hollister-based ophthalmologist, said she was in disbelief and humbled to receive the recognition.

“I don’t need anything in return for what I do,” Sharma said. “I just like taking care of people.”

Ramos, is a Hollister resident and teaches in Monterey County. BenitoLink reported on Ramos‘ being the subject of a PBS documentary in 2014. He is one of eight children who grew up at the Jesus L. Quintero, Inc. labor camp on Wright Road in Hollister.

Gomez, president of Pinnacle Strategy, a public relations consultancy, said La Universidad Iberoamericana informed him of his nomination in January. The organization did not disclose who nominated him, he said.

As part of the process, Gomez submitted information about his impact and work done in the community, with an emphasis on politics.

“I was obviously super excited,” Gomez said. “I was kind of shocked, to be honest.”

Gomez said he has dedicated himself to the community through public service, business ownership and volunteering. He is a registered lobbyist and previously served as Hollister mayor and councilmember, president of the Monterey chapter of the League of California Cities, and chief of staff to San Jose Vice Mayor Magdalena Carrasco.

“I give a lot of credit to the work here, how it motivated me to get more involved,” Gomez said.

Gomez was raised in a family involved in politics. His grandfather served as mayor in Jalisco, Mexico, and Gomez’s father served as the municipal president of Villa Obregon, Jalisco, in the 1950s and ’60s.

But what pushed Gomez to public service was the example set by his older brother, Gus, who was a two-term mayor of Glendale. He is now a judge in Los Angeles County.

“He, being an older brother of mine, set the trend for me,” Gomez said. “That’s when I said if Gus can do it, I can do it too.”

Other San Benito County locals have received honorary doctorates from the Claustro Doctoral Honoris Causa program. Former Hollister Councilmember Mickie Luna was honored in 2017 and is now program coordinator.


Other related BenitoLink articles:

Former Hollister Councilwoman Mickie Luna appointed to international position

Hollister City councilwoman Mickie Luna presented with Honorary Doctorate Degree award



Noe Magaña

Noe Magaña is BenitoLink Co-Editor and Content Manager. He joined BenitoLink as reporter intern and was soon brought on staff as a BenitoLink reporter. He also experiments with videography and photography. He is a San Benito High School alumnus with a bachelor's in journalism from San Jose State and a Liberal Arts Associate's Degree from Gavilan College. Noe also attended San Jose City College and was the managing editor for the City College Times, the school's newspaper. He was a reporter and later a copy editor for San Jose State's Spartan Daily. He is a USC Center for Health Journalism 2020 California Fellow.