Roberta Jenkins

Honorary Degrees

California State University, Long Beach

Roberta Jenkins is a passionate advocate of educational equity and access. She founded The Matthew and Roberta Jenkins Family Foundation with her late husband, Dr. Matthew Jenkins, to provide student scholarships.  She continues to serve as the foundation’s vice president and secretary.  

The eldest of seven children, Ms. Jenkins was born and raised on her family’s dairy farm in North Augusta, South Carolina. She attended Tuskegee University, finishing her graduate studies at Boston’s Beth Israel Hospital. She is also a graduate of California State University, Long Beach’s meeting planners certificate program. In 1974, she and her husband created SDD Enterprises, a real estate investment and property management firm with businesses in eight states.

Ms. Jenkins serves on numerous boards and committees, including Teachers for Urban Schools and the Entertainment Industry College Outreach Program for Historically Black Colleges and Universities. She is the recipient of awards from the Tuskegee University Alumni Association, the NAACP, the National Association for Equal Opportunity in Higher Education, the United Negro College Fund and many others.

A long-time resident of Long Beach and strong supporter of Cal  State Long Beach, Ms. Jenkins is a member of the university’s Carillon Society, a past board member of the 49er Foundation and the (CSULB) President’s Council for Strategic Initiatives and a recipient of the President’s Distinguished Service Award. Through her charitable giving, she supports the College of Education, the College of the Arts, the Guardian Scholars and other student-success programs.

In recognition of her commitment to student success, dedication to expand educational access and increase equity, the Board of Trustees of the California State University and the California State University, Long Beach are proud to confer upon Roberta Jenkins the honorary degree of Doctor of Humane Letters.