Statement from ABOR Chair Larry E. Penley on Gov. Ducey State of the State address
January 11, 2021
“I appreciate the Governor’s remarks today in his seventh State of the State address. I join Gov. Ducey in his condemnation of the violence and vandalism at our nation’s capitol and believe Arizona, with our innovative and trailblazing spirit, will help bind the nation’s wounds.
“Over the past year, the COVID-19 pandemic has challenged our state in ways not seen during our lifetime. But this public health and economic crisis has also brought out the best in Arizona – shining a light on outstanding individuals and essential institutions working to tackle the virus, save lives and keep our economy moving forward.
“High on that list are Arizona’s three public universities: Arizona State University, Northern Arizona University and the University of Arizona. We are grateful to Gov. Ducey for his ongoing recognition of the outsized role these institutions have played in this effort, including the manufacture of personal protective equipment (PPE); rapid-result testing; research and development of treatments and therapeutics; assistance with vaccine storage and distribution; and more.
“I appreciate Gov. Ducey’s recognition of the disruption the pandemic has caused to all Arizona students, and the work of all our teachers – from preschool to university – who have done their heroic best to advance learning for our children. Moving forward, our public universities remain vital in leading Arizona’s post-pandemic recovery, and with the continued support of the Governor and lawmakers, we can raise the opportunity for all Arizona citizens. The board’s New Economy Initiative addresses increased educational attainment through the Arizona Promise Scholarship. It increases the educated workforce that 21st century businesses want, and the Arizona Teachers Academy will grow our state’s next generation of classroom teachers. Additionally, we appreciate the Project Rocket initiative and its aim to bolster striving K-12 public schools in underserved communities. With programs like these and others, and the continued commitment of Arizona public universities, we can make good on Arizona’s promise to make a quality education available to every family.
“When we leave this traumatic chapter of our lives behind, Arizona will emerge stronger and more unified for what we have faced together. ASU, NAU and UArizona will be there – leading for economic recovery, fostering innovation and helping to solve the challenges of our state. Resilient – for the future of Arizona.”