FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 29, 2021
SOS Press Office
Governor Newsom Swears in Dr. Shirley N. Weber as California Secretary of State
SACRAMENTO, CA –– Former Assemblymember Dr. Shirley N. Weber was sworn in as California Secretary of State today. The oath was administered by Governor Gavin Newsom, who nominated Secretary Weber for appointment, following the resignation of former Secretary of State Alex Padilla. The nomination was confirmed by both the State Assembly and State Senate. She is making history as California’s first Black Secretary of State and only the fifth African American to serve as a state constitutional officer in California’s 170-year history.
“The fact that each citizen is a primary officeholder in a democracy is the lodestone tenet of our system of government,” said Secretary of State Weber. “It is my responsibility as Secretary of State to ensure that more Californians are able to exercise that power through the electoral process, and that our elections remain secure, accessible and fair even under the most adverse conditions. Dr. King teaches us that we are at our best when we stand up in service of others, and I am humbled to be able to continue to stand up for Californians as Secretary of State. I thank the Governor for his nomination, the State Senators and Assemblymembers who confirmed my appointment, and the Californians who expressed their faith in my ability to assume this critical office. I look forward to lifting up and defending our democratic values of inclusivity and participation in this new role.”
The Secretary of State serves as California’s chief elections officer and custodian of the State Archives while also overseeing many filings for business, campaign finance, and lobbying activity. The Secretary of State commissions notaries public, administers the Safe at Home confidential address program, maintains the Domestic Partners Registry, and more.
Secretary Weber was born in Hope, Arkansas to two sharecroppers during the segregationist Jim Crow era. Her grandfather never had the opportunity to vote, and her father was not able to vote until he was in his 30s. At the age of three, her family moved to California after her father was threatened by a racist lynch mob.
Secretary Weber attended the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), where she received her BA, MA and PhD by the age of 26. Prior to receiving her doctorate, she became a professor at San Diego State University (SDSU) at the age of 23. She also taught at California State University at Los Angeles (CSULA) and Los Angeles City College before coming to SDSU. She retired from the Department of Africana Studies after 40 years as a faculty member and serving several terms as department chair. Following her academic tenure, Secretary Weber served four terms as an Assembly Member representing California's 79th Assembly District, which includes parts of the City of San Diego as well as several cities and communities in the San Diego region. Weber also served as a member and chair of the San Diego Unified School District and has twice served as a California Elector, including chairing the California College of Presidential Electors on December 14, 2020
Secretary Weber is a mother of two adult children, three grandchildren and was married for 29 years to the late Honorable Daniel Weber. She is number six in a family of eight children. Her Parents, David and Mildred Nash, are deceased.