53. Craig Cornett
For years, Craig Cornett was one of just a handful of people in the Capitol who knew the Byzantine state budget backwards and forwards. He was the budget expert advising a half-dozen legislative leaders, and he educated rank-and-filed lawmakers – and reporters – about key issues. Three years ago Cornett was named CEO of the California Association of Health Facilities, a 70-year-old nonprofit representing some 800 skilled nursing facilities and 500 intermediate care facilities throughout California, with their patients largely developmentally disabled. CAHF’s members serve about 370,000 patients annually. It’s not an easy gig, and it didn’t get any easier with the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. Cornett received his Master of Public Affairs degree from the LBJ School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas at Austin and his B.A. from Washington and Lee University.
Updated Aug. 11, 2020