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California Assemblymember Ash Kalra Named Chair of Judiciary Committee

California Assemblymember Ash Kalra Named Chair of Judiciary Committee

  • The first Indian American to serve in the state legislature, he recently served as chair of the Assembly Labor and Employment Committee.

California Assemblymember Ash Kalra has been appointed chair of the Assembly Committee on Judiciary by Speaker Robert Rivas. The committee’s primary jurisdictions include family law, product liability, tort liability, Civil Code, and Evidence Code (excluding criminal procedure). Kalra had most recently served as Chair of the Assembly Labor and Employment Committee for the past five years.

In a statement posted on Nov. 22 on his website, the Indian American lawmaker said he is “honored” for the appointment. He said the post comes “at a time when California must be vigilant in protecting civil rights, fostering a just legal system, and ensuring everyday consumers are protected.”

He represents California’s 25th Assembly District, which encompasses the majority of San José, including downtown and open space areas in southeast Santa Clara County. He was first elected in 2016, becoming the first Indian American to serve in the California Legislature. He was re-elected to his fourth term in 2022. He was previously the chair of the Committee on Labor & Employment and has served as a member on the Housing & Community Development, Judiciary, Transportation, and Water, Parks, & Wildlife committees.

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In the State Assembly, “he has authored successful legislation promoting secure and peaceful communities for all residents, including protecting and preserving civil rights and civil liberties, and has taken up equity and social justice issues during his tenure,” according to his website. 

He has a law degree from Georgetown University and was a Deputy Public Defender for Santa Clara County for 11 years. As a public defender, “he represented clients in both felony and misdemeanor matters,” his website says.

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