Indian American California Assemblymember Ash Kalra appointed Chair of Judiciary Committee

Ritu Jha–

Indian American California Assemblymember Ash Kalra was appointed Chair of the Assembly Committee on Judiciary by Speaker Robert Rivas (D-Salinas) on November 21. The Assembly Committee on Judiciary’s primary jurisdictions include family law, product liability, tort liability, Civil Code, and Evidence Code (excluding criminal procedure).

“At a time when California must be vigilant in protecting civil rights, fostering a just legal system, and ensuring everyday consumers are protected, it is an honor to serve as Chair of the Judiciary Committee. Having served on this committee for the past seven years under Chairs Stone and Maienschein, I am grateful for their leadership and ready to hit the ground running,” said Assemblymember Kalra. “I am
thankful to Speaker Robert Rivas for his confidence and this opportunity to further serve the people of California.”

Assemblymember Kalra served as Chair of the Assembly Labor and Employment Committee for the past five years. Kalra 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 in state history, and was re-elected to his fourth term in 2022. He has also served as a member of the Housing & Community Development, Judiciary, Transportation, and Water, Parks, & Wildlife committees.

Kalra 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. 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.

“The justice system is foundational to keeping Californians safe and holding offenders accountable. I’m confident Assemblymember Kalra will fight for the rights of the people who matter most while ensuring the system itself is just,” Speaker Robert Rivas said. “I’m grateful to Assemblymember Maienschein for his hard work and stewardship, and look forward to working with Assemblymember Kalra.”

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