Newsom Appoints Rei Onishi as Deputy Legal Affairs Secretary

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SACRAMENTO — Gov. Gavin Newsom on Jan. 14 announced the appointment of members of his legal affairs team in the Governor’s Office.

Rei Onishi

Rei Onishi, 37, of Sacramento has been appointed deputy legal affairs secretary. He previously served in the same capacity for Gov. Jerry Brown from 2017 to 2019.

Onishi served as a senior policy advisor and White House fellow in the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (2015-2017); a deputy attorney general at the California Department of Justice, Office of Attorney General (2012-2015); a law clerk for Judge Beverly Martin of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit (2011-2012); and a legislative aide and Senate fellow in the Office of State Sen. Joe Simitian (2004-2006).

Onishi is a co-founder of the Buck Fellows Program and past board member of the American Constitution Society, Bay Area Lawyer Chapter. He earned a Juris Doctor degree from Harvard Law School and a Master of Public Policy degree from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government.

This position does not require Senate confirmation and the compensation is $155,004. Onishi is a Democrat.

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