Willie Brown

Freelance Columnist

The Chronicle

About this Author

Two-term mayor of San Francisco, renowned speaker of the California  Assembly, and widely regarded as the most influential African American politician of the late twentieth century, Willie L. Brown, Jr. has been at the center of California politics, government and civic life for four decades.  His career spans the American presidency from Lyndon Johnson to George W. Bush, and he’s worked with every California governor from Pat Brown to Arnold Schwarzenegger. From civil rights to education reform, tax policy, economic development, health care, international trade, domestic partnerships and affirmative action, he’s left his imprimatur on every aspect of politics and public policy in the Golden State. As mayor of California’s most cosmopolitan city, he refurbished and rebuilt the nation’s busiest transit system, pioneered the use of bond measures to build affordable housing, created a model juvenile justice system, and paved the way for a second campus of UCSF to serve as the anchor of a new development that will position the city as a center for the burgeoning field of biotechnology.

Today, he heads the Willie L. Brown Jr. Institute on Politics and Public Service, where he shares his knowledge and skills with a new generation of California leaders.

By This Author

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January 18, 2020

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Big names, bigger show give 2019 a grand exit in North Beach

January 4, 2020

Mayor Pete’s California ‘wine cave’ gives state’s image a needed makeover

December 28, 2019

Trump holds all the cards in 2020. Dragging out impeachment is Dems’ only hope

December 21, 2019

Mike Bloomberg doesn’t care who beats Trump. But he thinks he’s the one

December 14, 2019

Kamala Harris wasn’t cut out for it. Here’s what she should do now

December 7, 2019