Transitions for State Officials, Governor’s Staff

Since the last edition of Alert, announcements from the Governor’s office have revealed changes to come in the lineup of statewide officials and the Governor’s staff.

• The Governor nominated California Secretary of State Alex Padilla to fill the U.S. Senate seat to be vacated by Vice President-Elect Kamala Harris when she is sworn into office on January 20.

Alex Padilla

• The Governor named Dr. Shirley Weber, Assembly member from San Diego, to become California’s next Secretary of State.

Dr. Shirley Weber

• The Governor’s Chief of Staff, Ann O’Leary, submitted her resignation on December 21, 2020, but continues in her role until the middle of the month. Press reports say O’Leary is on the short list for a position in the Biden administration.

Ann O’Leary

In statements issued following the announcements, CalChamber President and CEO Allan Zaremberg praised the Padilla nomination as “a smart decision…Secretary of State Padilla has experience in all levels of government and a good track record of bringing people together to find common sense solutions. We look forward to working with Alex Padilla in his new role as United States Senator to make California’s economy and job creation a priority.”

Describing Dr. Weber as “an extraordinary individual,” Zaremberg noted that she “has shown her ability to lead on difficult issues and we look forward to working with her to ensure that California has accessible and well-run elections as well as transparent, helpful business regulation.”

Zaremberg thanked O’Leary “for her service and her dedication during this most difficult and troubling time in California. We look forward to working with the Governor and his entire team as we pull together to face the challenges ahead and restore the California economy.”

Visit the newsroom on the Governor’s website to see the press releases on the nomination of Dr. Weber for Secretary of State, the selection of Padilla to the U.S. Senate and the pending departure of O’Leary and naming of public affairs consultant Jim DeBoo to serve as Executive Secretary starting January 1 and leading the Office of the Governor alongside Cabinet Secretary Ana Matosantos.