100% of Riordan Scholars Program participants have gone onto college.

Over the past 28 years, Riordan Fellows have obtained advanced degrees from some of the top graduate business programs in the nation.

Notable Alumni

Alex Padilla, California Secretary of State
M.I.T. B.S. Mechanical Engineering, 1994
2015 Riordan Programs' Legacy Award Recipient

Secretary Padilla is one of three children of Santos and Lupe Padilla, both of whom emigrated from Mexico before meeting and marrying in Los Angeles. Padilla grew up in the community of Pacoima in Los Angeles and is a graduate of San Fernando High School in the northeast San Fernando Valley. He earned a degree in mechanical engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1994. After graduation, he moved back to Pacoima and briefly worked as an engineer for Hughes Aircraft, where he wrote software for satellite systems.

Today, Padilla is a California Secretary of State. Padilla previously served in the California State Senate (2006-2014) where he chaired the Committee on Energy, Utilities, and Communications. As chair, he shepherded legislation to combat climate change and create a greener and more sustainable economy. He pursued an ambitious agenda in the areas of renewable energy, energy efficiency, smart grid, and broadband deployment. Padilla also currently serves as President of the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials (NALEO), a non-partisan organization made up of more than 6,000 federal, state, and local officials dedicated to all aspects of civic engagement.

Padilla, 41, lives with his wife Angela and their three sons in the San Fernando Valley.

Cesar Alvarado, Partner - Archer Norris
UCLA School of Law, J.D., 1997
University of California, Berkeley, B.A., 1994

In 1987, Cesar Alvarado was an ESL (English as a Second Language) student from El Salvador at Belmont High School in downtown Los Angeles. He was invited to attend the Riordan Scholars Program at UCLA's school of business. Cesar took away two things from that program - "One, a t-shirt with a license plate in the back saying "1MBA2B" - none of my friends could figure out what that meant. Two, a desire to go back to UCLA, one day, as a student."

Today, Cesar is a partner at Archer Norris, a law firm in Walnut Creek, California. His practice involves complex commercial litigation with an emphasis on multiparty complex environmental toxic tort litigation, products liability, premises liability and general litigation. He received a JD from UCLA in 1997.