Jerry Brown Two Terms As Governor 1975-1983

March 8, 2012 by staff 

Jerry Brown Two Terms As Governor 1975-1983, Edmund Gerald “Jerry” Brown, Jr. (born April 7, 1938) is an American politician. Brown served as the 34th Governor of California (1975-83), and is currently serving as the 39th California Governor (2011-present). He is the son of Pat Brown, the 32nd Governor of California (1959-67).

Both before and after his first two terms as governor, Brown was elected to a number of state, local and party offices. Brown previously served as a member of the Los Angeles Community College District Board of Trustees (1969-1971), Secretary of State of California (1971-1975), chairman of the California Democratic Party (1989-1991), Mayor of Oakland (1999-2007) and Attorney General of California (2007-2011).

At the time of his election to a third, non-consecutive term as governor, on November 2, 2010, Brown was serving as the 31st Attorney General of California, an elected position. Brown was formally inaugurated as governor on January 3, 2011, the 28th anniversary of the end of his last term. During his first term (as California’s 34th Governor), he was the sixth-youngest Governor of that state. Upon his inauguration as California’s 39th Governor, he became its oldest serving governor. At the age of 73, Brown is also the oldest currently serving governor in the United States.

In 1974, Brown was in a three-person primary race with Speaker of the California Assembly Bob Moretti and San Francisco Mayor Joseph L. Alioto. Alioto had support in Northern California and Moretti in Southern California. Brown had the name recognition of his father, Pat Brown, whom Democrats fondly remembered for his progressive administration. Brown won the primary, and in the General Election on November 5, 1974, Brown was elected Governor of California over California State Controller Houston I. Flournoy. Republicans ascribed the loss to anti-Republican feelings from Watergate, the election being held only ninety days after President Richard Nixon resigned from office. Brown succeeded Republican Governor Ronald Reagan, who had planned on retiring from office after serving two terms. Eight years after his father left Sacramento in 1967, Jerry Brown took office on January 6, 1975.
On November 7, 1978, Jerry Brown was re-elected governor. The Republican candidate was state Attorney General Evelle J. Younger, (1918-1989) a former Los Angeles County District Attorney. Jerry Brown had the attention of the state, national and international media.

Brown was responsible for appointing the first openly gay judge in the United States when he named Stephen Lachs to serve on the Los Angeles County Superior Court in 1979. In 1981, he also appointed the first openly lsbn judge in the United States, Mary C. Morgan of the San Francisco Municipal Court. Brown completed his second term having appointed a total of five openly gay judges, including Rand Schrader and Jerold Krieger. Brown had completed his first term as governor without appointing any openly gay people to any position, but he cited the failed 1978 Briggs Initiative, which sought to ban hmosxls from working in California’s public schools, for his increased support of gay rights.

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