The Barack Obama Freshman Campus could be the name of San Leandro High School's new adjunct campus, or it just might be named for Stephen Colbert.

The nominations are in for the new freshman campus, to open next year at 13900 E. 14th St. The campus, just a short walk from San Leandro High, will be home to 700 to 800 freshmen to ease overcrowding at the high school.

Other possible namesakes for the campus are Maya Angelou, Al Gore, Bill Lockyer and Cesar Chavez, all on a list of 29 names submitted by 73 people and groups.

On Tuesday, school board trustees will discuss and whittle down that list. The board will make its final choice Dec. 15.

Submission guidelines stated that nominations had to be the names of individuals, living or deceased, who have made outstanding contributions to the community, state, country or world. Also allowed was a more general name for the geographic area where the campus will be located.

So if trustees want to play it safe, they always can go for submission No. 13: The Freshman Campus.

"One of the things I was looking forward to when people submitted names was to learn about our local history," school board President Mike Katz-Lacabe said.

For example, Katz-Lacabe cites the nomination of Cliff Dow, a little-known native of San Leandro who was an early ham radio pioneer.

"It's a good, interesting selection of names," he said.


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Other San Leandro names on the list are: Brian Copeland, actor, comedian, author and KGO radio talk show host; Dan Niemi, a San Leandro police officer who was shot and killed in the line of duty in 2005; and Luster Knight, an Alameda County firefighter and committed community volunteer who died in 2008.

While President Obama received four nominations, Fred Korematsu far and away received the most with 32. Korematsu was a Japanese-American who refused to go to the internment camps during World War II and was convicted of disobeying an executive order. The conviction was upheld by the Supreme Court, but in 1998 President Bill Clinton awarded Korematsu the Presidential Medal of Freedom for his fight against racism and injustice.

Nominations for the campus name were made by a wide swath of the local public, including city residents, business owners, police officers, students, teachers and school administrators.

Whatever name is chosen will be displayed at the front of the campus.

"I'm pleased that it's generated this kind of community interest," school district Superintendent Christine Lim said. "I'm very pleased with the voice of the students."

Jason Sweeney covers San Leandro. Reach him at 510-293-2469.

possible name of San Leandro's freshman campus
Barack Obama
Bill Lockyer
Cai Lun
Cesar Chavez Academy
Cesar Chavez
Charles Kuen
Cliff Dow
Dan Niemi
Faith Frazier
Fallen Heroes
Fred Korematsu
Fresh Start Academy for Freshman
Freshman Campus
Hendy "Wijaya" Huang
Jack D. Maltester -- Wesley McClure
Jack Maltester Memorial Freshman
Mayor Maltester
John Ward
Lee Lundberg
Luster Knight
Maya Angelou
Peralta Intermediate
SLHS "Freshman Future"
SLHS Al Gore
SLHS International
SLHS Mary Beth Barloga Education Village
SLHS Copeland
Stephen Colbert
The Future