Capitol Weekly’s Top 100: Nick Rowley

80. Nick Rowley

We’ve mentioned the revision of the Medical Injury Compensation Reform Act (MICRA) a number of times so far: Others involved in that deal may have better numbers on this list, but without attorney Nick Rowley there would have been no deal. Rowley authored and partly funded the Fairness for Injured Patients Act


Tal Kopan and Joe Garofoli: Capitol Weekly’s Top 100

100. Tal Kopan and Joe Garofoli

Tal Kopan was the Washington, D.C. correspondent for the San Francisco Chronicle, (she’s now at the Boston Globe) and Joe Garofoli is the paper’s senior political writer. Together, they did good this year – real good. On April 14, their story on questions about U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein’s mental


Capitol Weekly’s Top 100: David Pruitt

94. David Pruitt

This is fundraiser/strategist David Pruitt’s first time on this list, but he is no newcomer to Capitol politics. He has over 25 years in the political arena, starting as a capitol staffer and later moving to the Los Angeles County Medical Association, and then the California Medical Association, where he spearheaded efforts


Capitol Weekly’s Top 100: Randall Hagar

93. Randall Hagar

Randall Hagar, legislative advocate for the Psychiatric Physicians Alliance of California, has quietly, for decades, played a key role in complex policy and legislative efforts to reform California’s notoriously patchwork system of mental health care. It’s a subject generating intense political interest as the state’s mental health and homelessness crisis plays out


Capitol Weekly’s Top 100: Michael Romano

90. Michael Romano

Michael Romano is the founder and director of the Three Strikes Project at Stanford Law School, which seeks to amend or reverse the most unjust criminal sentences under the law. Since 2006, the effort has overturned 18 life sentences. In 2019, Gov. Newsom appointed Romano as chair of California’s new criminal law and


Capitol Weekly’s Top 100: Arnie Sowell Jr.

86. Arnie Sowell Jr.

Arnie Sowell Jr. is the Executive Director of Nextgen Policy, the California-based nonprofit launched by billionaire Tom Steyer to advocate for progressive policies in the Golden State. Steyer (a habituè of this list for several years) has increasingly turned his focus to the national picture and relies on key advisors like


Capitol Weekly’s Top 100: Karen Getman

84. Karen Getman

Karen Getman is a political attorney whose clientele is a veritable Who’s Who of Democratic political power in California. She has deep knowledge of the arcane intricacies of political and campaign finance law, including the quagmire of regulations originating in the 1974 Political Reform Act, which created the state’s campaign finance “watchdog,”


Capitol Weekly’s Top 100: Kurt Oneto

64. Kurt Oneto

Kurt Oneto heads the government law section at Nielsen Merksamer, a venerable and prestigious political law firm that has had an impact in California for decades, which means Oneto writes ballot initiatives, mostly measures backed by Republicans and business interests. And not only in California: Oneto has written some 60 ballot measures


Capitol Weekly’s Top 100: Alice Busching Reynolds

44. Alice Busching Reynolds

Alice Busching Reynolds stepped into some big shoes when the governor appointed her president of the California Public Utilities Commission: This is the powerful entity that regulates everything from trains to telephones to investor-owned utilities, and much more. Reynolds not only filled one of California’s most important regulatory positions, she replaced


Capitol Weekly’s Top 100: Lorena Gonzalez

36. Lorena Gonzalez

It feels odd putting Lorena Gonzalez on the Top 100. A pro-business Republican lobbyist once told us that she was the “most effective lawmaker” in Sacramento, but since this list does not contain elected officials, we skipped over her during her eight, productive years in the Assembly. But now she heads California

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