District I Commissioner

Maria Fort worked more than 30 years in federal anti-poverty programs, including 15 years in the San Francisco  Regional Office of the Office of Economic Opportunity (OEO), Community Services Administration (CSA);  and 17 years in the Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Children and Families (ACF). At ACF she was a Senior Head Start Program Specialist funding, monitoring, and evaluating $200 million in Head Start grants and was the Regional Coordinator of training and technical assistance.

Maria speaks four languages and has traveled extensively on all continents. She is past president of Federally Employed Women, San Francisco Chapter; past president of the YWCA of San Francisco and Marin; and past Board Chair of the Center for Solving Special Social and Health Problems.  Previously, Maria was a member of the California State Head Start Association Board, the KQED Community Advisory Panel and the Board of the Dr. Joel and Maria Fort Charitable Fund.  At present she serves on the board of the Contra Costa Civic Theater.

Maria has been the recipient of numerous awards from OEO/CSA, ACF, the Federal Executive Board and the City of Long Beach (key to the city).  She earned BA and MA degrees in clinical and social psychology from Ohio State University and completed all the course work for a Ph D in Psychology at the University of California Berkeley.

Maria enjoyed a lengthy marriage of 65 years until losing her husband in 2015. She enjoys spending time with her three children and three grandchildren.