Assemblymember Rob Bonta will be the first Filipino-American to serve as California Attorney General in the U.S. Legislature after Governor Gavin Newsom appointed him to fill the seat vacated by the newly sworn Secretary Xavier Becerra of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services on Wednesday, March 24.
The 48-year-old lawyer will be taking bigger steps to reform the justice system and defend the rights of every Californian. The Office of the Governor of California noted on Twitter, “As CA’s first Filipino AttorNey General @RobBontaCA will fight to reform our justice system & stand up to hate. He has led efforts to end cash bail, ban for-profit prisons, renter protections, and hate crime protections. He will be a staunch advocate for CA values.”
As CA's first Filipino Attorney General, @RobBontaCA will fight to reform our justice system & stand up to hate. He has led efforts to end cash bail, ban for-profit prisons, renter protections, and hate crime protections. He will be a staunch advocate for CA values. pic.twitter.com/Z5UYGo34P6
— Office of the Governor of California (@CAgovernor) March 24, 2021
Bonta was born in the Philippines and grew up in Central Valley, CA. His mother, Cynthia, is a Filipina who supported farmworker organizer families, and his father, Warren, was also an advocate for service and social justice. Bonta was growing up surrounded by activist parents and high-profiled law firms.
His parents have taught him at a very young age to learn to stand up and speak up for others when someone is treated unfairly. During his college years, Bonta was inspired by one of the characters in the book entitled “To Kill a Mockingbird” seen the law to have the power to resolve injustices.
The son of both civil rights activists went to Law School at Yale University. After he graduated, he went to California and worked pro-bono to defend the natives from any exploitation and racial profiling. In fact, in much of Bonta’s dedication to working as an experienced lawyer, he served nine years in San Francisco as a Deputy City Attorney and prepared himself before running another legal position in Alameda County.
In 2012, his career was geared towards success when he won in the Legislature’s election representing the district Cities of Oakland, Alameda, and San Leandro. He instantly became known for his fights for criminal justice, immigration rights, and multiracial coalition, right in time of his services.
“I became a lawyer because I saw the law as the best way to make a positive difference for the most people, and it would be an honor of a lifetime to serve as the attorney for the people of this great state,” said Bonta in a statement.
As California’s Attorney General, I will work tirelessly every day to ensure that every Californian who has been wronged can find justice and that every person is treated fairly under the law,” he added.
The appointment of Bonta would be a win-win benefit not only for the Californians but also for over 5 million Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) who reside in the U.S. for many years.
Photo Credit: https://twitter.com/RobBontaCA