34th and 39th Governor of California
Jerry Brown served as the 34th Governor of California (1975–83) and as the 39th California Governor (2011–2019). Brown previously served as a member of the Los Angeles Community College District Board of Trustees (1969–1971) and as Secretary of State of California (1971–1975). In 1989 he became Chairman of the state Democratic Party. He resigned that position in 1991.
Brown sought the Democratic nominations for President of the United States in 1976, 1980, and 1992, and was the Democratic candidate for the United States Senate in California in 1982. He defeated Bill Clinton in Maine, Colorado, Vermont, Connecticut, Utah and Nevada during the 1992 Presidential primaries and was the only candidate other than Clinton to receive enough voter support to continue until the Democratic National Convention. In 1998, Brown ran for mayor of Oakland against 11 other candidates and won in the primary with 59% of the vote. Before taking office, he successfully passed a voter initiative, changing the ceremonial office of mayor to that of a “Strong Mayor” form of city government. He was reelected in 2002 with 64% of the vote. Brown was elected California’s 31st Attorney General on November 6, 2006.
Governor Brown was elected for his third gubernatorial term in 2010. Since taking office he dramatically cut the state budget deficit, improved California’s credit ratings and cut waste and inefficiencies throughout government. Governor Brown also enacted historic public safety realignment, raised the state’s clean energy goal to 33 percent. He signed the nation’s first legislation requiring high school students to demonstrate basic proficiency before graduation. State funding for higher education, including community colleges, more than doubled during Brown’s eight years as governor.