Meet Ash Kalra

Ash Kalra was elected to the California State Assembly in 2016, representing the 27th Assembly District. He has called San Jose home for over 37 years. In that time, he has developed a passion for serving his neighbors and making sure that our government is solving problems – not creating them.

In 2008, Ash made history by becoming the first Indian-American to be elected to the San Jose City Council. In his time as a Councilmember, he has fought against cuts topublic safety including standing up in favor of restoring the SJPD burglary unit and Violent Crimes Enforcement Team, worked to provide incentives for companies to locate and grow in San Jose and has been a champion for more transit options including the BART to Silicon Valley extension. Ash has been one of the foremost advocates of clean energy and reducing our dependence on fossil fuels while preserving our open spaces and protecting our surrounding habitat. Ash has been a voice for public safety, better schools, improved public transportation and a healthier environment.

Since 1999, Ash has been a law professor at Lincoln Law School of San Jose. Previously, he also taught at San Jose State University and at inner city Washington, DC high schools.

Prior to serving on the City Council, Ash was an attorney for the Santa Clara County Public Defender's Office for 11 years. Most of his time was spent in drug treatment court where clients were given theopportunity to complete a rehabilitation program and turn their lives around. In addition, Ash served on numerous non-profit boards, including Somos Mayfair, the Asian Law Alliance, the South Asian Bar Association, Fresh Lifelines for Youth and the Santa Clara County Bar Association. Ash also helped to found the Hayes Neighborhood Association in the neighborhood in which he grew up and still lives today.

Ash Kalra earned a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Communications from the University of California, Santa Barbara and a Law Degree from Georgetown University.

 

 

Awards and Recognitions

2015 League of Conservation Voters Legislator of the Year Award

2015 Hindu American Foundation Pride of the Community Award

2014 African American Community Service Agency Drum Major Award

2014 Chitresh Das Dance Company Arts Seva Award

2012 Inductee into the East Side Union High School District Hall of Fame

2012 BAYMEC Straight Ally Award

2012 San José/Silicon Valley NAACP Legislator Award

2012 National Coalition of 100 Black Women- Silicon Valley Chapter Man of the Year

2011 Human Agenda Human Rights Award

2010 South Asian Bar Association Trailblazer Award

2009 Santa Clara County Bar Association Diversity Committee Unsung Heroes Award

2009 South Asian Bar Association Northern California Government Attorney of the Year

2009 South Bay Labor Council Rookie Legislator of the Year

 

Committee and Board Memberships

San José City Council Transportation & Environment Committee, Chair

Santa Clara Valley Transit Authority, 2014 Board Chair, Member (2009-2015)

Bay Area Air Quality Management District, 2013 Board Chair, Member (2010-2014)

CalTrain (Joint Powers) Board Member (2009-2015)

Housing Trust of Santa Clara County Board (2010-Present)

Association of Bay Area Governments Board (2009-2014)

New Leaders Council- Silicon Valley Honorary Chair (2010-Present)

HomeFirst Advisory Board (2014-Present)

Sister Cities International Board - United States (2013-2015)

Planning Commission for City of San Jose (2006-2008)

Human Rights Commission for City of San Jose (2000-2006)

Domestic Violence Council for Santa Clara County (2000-2003)

Silicon Valley Asian Pacific American Democratic Club Board (2005-Present)

African Community Health Institute Board (2006-2008)

Somos Mayfair Board (2005-2008)

San Jose Rotary Club Member (2003-Present)

Santa Clara County Bar Association Board of Trustees (2002-2006)

Asian Law Alliance (2001-2003)

Fresh Lifelines for Youth (2000-2003)

South Asian Bar Association of Northern California (1999-2002; 2004-2006)