No. 36: Capitol Weekly’s Top 100

Illustration by Chris Shary

36. Alma Hernandez

Labor leaders pop up on this list all the time, and the reasons are clear: Unions can make a lot of noise, they can marshal get-out-the-vote troops at election time, and they vote in large, disciplined numbers. The largest union in the state is the 700,000-member Service Employees International Union, and the executive director at SEIU is Alma Hernandez, who joined the union as a political director and quickly built a rep as a shrewd campaign strategist and coalition builder. Hernandez became executive director in 2016 – the first Latina to hold the job. SEIU’s issues include immigration policy, affordable housing, homelessness, immigration, health care and opposition to all things Trump. She earlier worked as a staffer in the California Legislature for five years, was a lobbyist and worked on a number of statewide campaigns. Hernandez, who is a member of the board of directors of the nonprofit California Budget and Policy Center, graduated from UC Berkeley with degrees in rhetoric and political science.

Updated Aug. 11, 2020

Want to see more stories like this? Sign up for The Roundup, the free daily newsletter about California politics from the editors of Capitol Weekly. Stay up to date on the news you need to know.

Sign up below, then look for a confirmation email in your inbox.


Support for Capitol Weekly is Provided by: