Office of the President

Commemorating Juneteenth on June 19

April 17, 2023

Dear Campus Community,

I am pleased to announce that the CSU Board of Trustees has designated Juneteenth a paid holiday for CSU employees. This year, the Juneteenth holiday will be observed on Monday, June 19.

Juneteenth marks the anniversary of the day in 1865 when federal troops arrived in Texas and let it be known that all enslaved people were free. This took place two and a half years after the Emancipation Proclamation was signed. Thus, Juneteenth is an opportunity to continue the work to confront the pain and indignity that slavery has left behind and reflect on the continued fight for racial equity and justice. It is also a time to joyfully celebrate Black history and culture, Black resistance and resilience, and Black excellence. 

I welcome you to use the holiday as an opportunity to reflect and learn. Below are some ways to engage with the campus community around the Juneteenth holiday.   

  • The Office of Inclusive Excellence will provide information about on-campus and local community programming commemorating the day. Please stay tuned for this information. 
  • Cal Poly Pomona’s future is linked to the success of Black communities on and off campus. I welcome you to be part of the Black Thriving Initiative.  
  • Last year’s CSU inaugural Juneteenth symposium was very powerful; you can watch it online. This biennial event will take place again in 2024.  

This Juneteenth and beyond, let us honor and remember our freedom fighters while also acknowledging that the struggle for equity and equality is ongoing. And as we commemorate Juneteenth, I ask each of you to join us at the forefront of this march toward a more just and equitable future. 


Soraya M. Coley, Ph.D.