10. Jason Elliott
Musical chairs seems to be a familiar pastime in the Newsom administration’s inner sanctum, and another example of that is Jason Elliott, who is serving the governor as a “senior counselor for housing and homelessness,” and who earlier was the “chief deputy cabinet secretary for executive branch operations.” Titles aside, Elliot was named the point man for housing and homelessness on Jan. 10, but since then there’s been a lot of water – blood? – under the bridge. Affordable housing was, and is, in crisis, but COVID-19 has sucked out all the oxygen feeding that crisis and others, and the public and media’s attention for months has been directed almost entirely on the pandemic. That means housing counselor Elliot, often described as the governor’s brains and idea man, is focusing on this latest emergency. Elliot, like other top members of the administration, has strong connections to Newsom. He served Newsom when the latter was mayor of San Francisco, and he was a senior adviser on Newsom’s gubernatorial election campaign in 2018.
Updated Aug. 11, 2020