2006 Alumni Guardian Awards Honorees

2006 marked the inaugural year for the Alumni Association’s special event. On October 24, three individuals – all guardians in their own right – were honored at the Inaugural SPPD Alumni Guardian Awards dinner, held at Town & Gown on the University Park campus. The honorees – Sheriff Leroy D. Baca, John Bedrosian, and the Honorable Joyce L. Kennard – have served as guardians for USC, Los Angeles and their respective communities through their visionary leadership and professional commitments, according to Jack H. Knott, SPPD’s C. Erwin and Ione L. Piper Dean. “Plato’s idea of ‘guardians’ speaks to what SPPD works to instill in its graduates: virtue, knowledge, doing good for our communities,” says Knott. “Through their actions and their example, these alumni have honored the school and the university. I am pleased that now, with the Guardian Awards, we in turn were able to honor them.”

The awards were bestowed in three categories. Baca received the award for alumni service; Bedrosian, the award for vision and leadership; and Kennard, for alumni merit. The SPPD Alumni Association created the event to recognize alumni and friends whose personal and professional achievements advance the mission of the school to help improve public problem solving and to make practical contributions toward the betterment of communities.





Leroy D. Baca, Sheriff
MPA, 1973; Doctor of Public Administration, 1993
Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department

Leroy D. Baca commands the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department (LASD), the largest sheriff’s department in the United States and law enforcement provider to 41 incorporated cities, 90 unincorporated communities, nine community colleges, the Metropolitan Transit Authority, and the Rapid Rail Transit District. Under his leadership, the LASD oversees the nation’s largest local jail system, which houses over 20,000 prisoners. Baca also serves as Director of the Homeland Security-Mutual Aid for California Region I, which includes Los Angeles and Orange Counties and serves 13 million people.
» Learn more about Leroy Baca.


John C. Bedrosian
LLB, 1959
Founder, Judith and John Bedrosian Center on Governance and Public Enterprise

John C. Bedrosian was chairman and co-founder of Autobytel, Inc., the world’s largest Internet automobile marketing referral service, which is headquartered in Irvine, California. Prior to co-founding Autobytel in 1995, Bedrosian was senior executive vice-president, director, and co-founder of National Medical Enterprises (NME), now Tenet Healthcare Corporation. He currently serves on the Board of Councilors for the USC School of Policy, Planning, and Development, and on the board of the National Institute of Transplantation.
» Learn more about John C. Bedrosian.


The Honorable Joyce L. Kennard
BA, 1971; MPA / JD, 1974
Associate Justice, California Supreme Court

Joyce Luther Kennard is an associate justice on the California Supreme Court. Appointed to the court in April of 1989, she has also served as chair of the California Judicial Council’s Appellate Advisory Committee since May of 1996. Previously, Kennard was an associate justice on the state Court of Appeal in Los Angeles, and a trial judge in Los Angeles County. Prior to that, she was a senior attorney on the state Court of Appeal in Los Angeles, and a deputy attorney general in Los Angeles in 1975.
» Learn more about Joyce L. Kennard.