May 22, 2023
On April 23, 2021, Robert Andres Bonta was sworn in as the 34th Attorney General of the State of California, the first person of Filipino descent and the second Asian-American to occupy the position. He is married to Mia Bonta, and they have three children.
Born on September 22, 1972, in Quezon City, Philippines, Attorney General Bonta immigrated to California with his family as an infant. Through his father, Warren Bonta, Bonta was a U.S. citizen at birth. The Bonta family initially lived in a trailer at Nuestra Señora Reina de la Paz, the United Farm Workers headquarters near Keene, California, in Kern County, before moving to Fair oaks, California, in Sacramento County. Bonta attended Bella Vista High School, where he played soccer and graduated as class valedictorian.
Bonta attended Yale University and graduated cum laude. In 1995, he enrolled at Yale Law School and graduated in 1998. Bonta returned to California and worked as a litigation associate with San Francisco law firm Keker & Van Nest from 1999 to 2003, where he litigated in a variety of practice areas including civil rights, crime, insurance, patent infringement, legal malpractice, contract, and fraud.
Emboldened by his upbringing and what his parents taught him, “that harm done to any one person is a crime against all,” Bonta decided to become a public attorney so he could obtain justice for the people like the farmworker families he knew as a kid. From 2003 to 2012, Bonta was a Deputy City Attorney of San Francisco. During this tenure, he was elected to Alameda City Council in November 2010. Following, Bonta was elected to represent the 18th district in the California State Assembly in the 2012 election. Bonta was reelected in the 2014, 2016, 2018, and 2020 elections.
The first Filipino-American to serve in the California State Legislature, Bonta chaired the California Asian & Pacific Islander Legislative Caucus. After Xavier Becerra resigned as attorney general to become Secretary of Health and Human Services, Bonta was appointed by Governor Gavin Newsom to replace Becerra. Bonta was sworn in on April 23, 2021, and was elected to a full four-year term in office in 2022.
As the People’s Attorney, Attorney General Bonta seeks justice to secure prosecutions against those who harm California. Bonta believes that law enforcement and first responders are essential to public safety. Under his leadership, the Department of Justice has secured arrests and convictions of sex traffickers, gun smugglers, and those who prey upon children.