Julie A. Su is the Secretary of the California Labor and Workforce Development Agency. Governor Gavin Newsom appointed Ms. Su in January 2019 to serve as his cabinet advisor on labor issues and employment programs for workers and businesses throughout California.Prior to her appointment, Ms. Su served as the Labor Commissioner for the State of California. She is a nationally recognized expert on workers’ rights and civil rights who has dedicated her distinguished legal career to advancing justice on behalf of poor and disenfranchised communities. A MacArthur Foundation “Genius,” Su is known for pioneering a multi-strategy approach that combines successful impact litigation with multiracial organizing, community education, policy reform, coalition building, and media work.
Prior to her appointment as Labor Commissioner, Ms. Su served as the Litigation Director at APALC, the nation’s largest non-profit civil rights organization devoted to issues affecting the Asian American community. In her 17 years as a civil rights lawyer, she has brought landmark lawsuits on behalf of low-wage workers in California and initiated grassroots campaigns against sweatshop abuses. Her cases have resulted in judgments and settlements of millions of dollars for workers and effected policy changes in California and the United States.
Ms.Su is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Stanford University and received her law degree from Harvard Law School, where she was Editor-in-Chief of theHarvard CivilRights-Civil Liberties Law Review.
In 1994, she began her legal career at the Asian Pacific American Legal Center (APALC) after receiving a prestigious Skadden Fellowship from the law firm Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom.