The Spanish word alameda means aspen forest or tree-lined street. The name was originally used to describe the Arroyo de la Alameda, which was lined with willows and sycamores. Now, the main stream that runs through the county is simply known as Alameda Creek. Alameda County is part of the San Francisco—Oakland—Berkeley, California Metropolitan Statistical Area and the San Jose—San Francisco—Oakland, CA Combined Statistical Area.
It was formed on March 25, 1853 from a large part of Contra Costa County and a smaller part of Santa Clara County. This region was initially developed as a streetcar suburb of San Francisco in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. The progression from Native American tribal lands to Spanish, then Mexican ranches, then to farms, ranches and orchards, and then to various urban centers and suburbs is shared with the adjacent and closely associated county of Contra Costa. The annual county fair is held at the Alameda County Fairgrounds in Pleasanton.
It lasts four weekends from June to July and features horse racing, carnival rides, 4-H exhibits, and live bands. The Board of Supervisors elects a president who chairs all Board meetings and appoints committees to manage work related to the county's major programs. If the president is absent during a meeting, the vice president will be responsible. A Board election is held every two years for these positions.
Supervisor Carson currently serves as president; supervisor Miley is vice president. The Alameda County Superior Court operates in twelve different locations across the county, with its headquarters in René C. Davidson Courthouse located in Oakland, near Lake Merritt. Most major criminal trials and complex civil cases are heard here or in the courtrooms of the county administration building across the street. The Hayward Fault, a major branch of the San Andreas Fault to the west, cuts through the most populated parts of Alameda County, while the Calaveras Fault cuts through the southeastern part of the county.
Areas close to the bay itself have a warm Mediterranean maritime summer climate, while behind the mountains summers are significantly warmer. The climate graphs below are for Oakland and inland Livermore. Santa Clara County is bordered by Alameda County to the south. San Joaquin County borders it on the east. Contra Costa County borders it to the north.
Stanislaus County borders it at the easternmost end of its southern boundary along 250 feet (76 m). In terms of population demographics, 24.6% were under 18 years old; 9.6% were between 18 and 24; 33.9% were between 25 and 44; 21.7% were between 45 and 64; 10.2% were over 65 years old; and 34 years was the median age. For every 100 females there were 96.60 males; for every 100 females age 18 and over there were 94 males. The table below includes the number of incidents reported and rate per 1,000 people for each type of crime. The Alameda County Office of Education oversees seventeen K-12 school districts and one K-8 district in Alameda County. In total there are approximately 10,000 teachers serving 225,000 students.
ACOE also serves three community college districts with a total enrollment of approximately 55,000 students. Alameda County is home to University of California at Berkeley -the flagship campus of California university system- and one of largest and most prestigious research universities in world. The main airport is Oakland International Airport with two general aviation airports: Hayward Executive Airport and Livermore Municipal Airport. The nonprofit organization Community Food Bank of Alameda County provides food bank resources to residents; while Family Emergency Shelter Coalition coordinates services for homeless families. The district attorney's office is responsible for prosecuting all criminal violations of laws of state of California, county or its constituent municipalities in Alameda County Superior Court. Alameda County Fire Department (ACFD) was formed on July 1st 1993 as dependent district with Board of Supervisors as its governing body. The largest universities in Alameda County by number of degrees awarded are University of California-Berkeley (14685 & 43.6%), California State University-East Bay (11057 & 5387 & 16%) & Chabot College (2285 & 678%). Even when Ronald Reagan won national popular vote by 18.3% margin in 1984 Walter Mondale won Alameda County by larger margin; obtaining sixth highest number of negative votes by percentage & second largest county by total voter turnout voting against. This chart shows breakdown of actions from major industries for residents of Alameda County although some may live in Alameda County & work elsewhere.