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Hannah-Beth Jackson (D) - District 19

Hannah-Beth Jackson Biography

Hannah-Beth Jackson is a former California legislator, practicing attorney, educator and small business owner. From 2012 to 2020, she served in the State Senate, representing nearly one million residents in the 19th Senate District, which includes Santa Barbara County and western Ventura County. From 1998 to 2004, she represented the 35th State Assembly District.

During her legislative career, Hannah-Beth served as Chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee and received national recognition as a champion for women’s equality. The Huffington Post identified her as one of 11 women in the United States “blazing new trails” in American politics and she was described as “the state senator shifting California’s workplace culture” by The New York Times.

Hannah-Beth is the author of the California Fair Pay Act, landmark legislation that strengthens the state’s equal pay law, and Senate Bill 826, the first law in the nation that requires publicly-held corporations to include women on their board of directors. She is a joint author of legislation that created the nation’s first affirmative consent standard (“Yes Means Yes”) for the state’s college and university campuses. In response to the #MeToo movement, she authored significant legislation to prevent and respond to sexual harassment. Even as the Trump Administration sought to roll back Title IX protections, she authored legislation to ensure victim-centered processes for responding to sexual harassment and assault on college campuses. These groundbreaking laws positioned California as a national leader in women’s equality and many inspired similar proposals in other states. In addition, she is the author of laws that strengthened and expanded California’s Paid Family Leave program and protect survivors of domestic violence.

A champion for the environment, Hannah-Beth is the author of Senate Bill 188, blocking the Trump administration’s efforts to expand oil development off the California coast, as well as legislation that strengthened the state’s pipeline safety laws, reduced the threat of future oil spills, and capped abandoned oil wells. She has been a leading advocate in the fight against climate change and a strong supporter of developing clean energy sources. She is also the author of the nation’s first industry-funded “take back” program for unused medications and needles, leading the way for extended producer responsibility legislation.

Among Hannah-Beth’s other legislative accomplishments are laws to improve California’s wildfire preparedness and response, reduce gun violence, expand services for aging Californians, and support military veterans struggling with mental illness and drug addiction. She is an outspoken advocate for Internet privacy protection and women’s reproductive rights.

During her California Senate service, Hannah-Beth also served as a member of the Committee on Natural Resources and Water, the Labor and Industrial Relations Committee, the Human Services Committee and the Public Safety Committee. She also served as Chair of the Joint Legislative Committee on Emergency Management. As a Past Chair of the California Legislative Women’s Caucus, she significantly elevated the visibility of the Caucus and helped transform it into an influential voice both in and outside the Legislature.

Hannah-Beth has been recognized as “Legislator of the Year” by a wide range of organizations and is a recipient of the prestigious Fay Stender Award, presented annually by the California Women Lawyer’s Association to an attorney committed to affecting positive change with “zest, humanity (and) personal courage” who serves as a role model for women. An advocate for justice for women, children and victims of crime for more than three decades, she helped establish Santa Barbara Shelter Services for Women (now known as Domestic Violence Solutions) and Santa Barbara’s Women Against Gun Violence (now known as Coalition Against Gun Violence). She is also a founding member and Past President of the Santa Barbara Women’s Political Committee and Santa Barbara Women Lawyers.

A native of Boston and lifelong Red Sox fan, Hannah-Beth was a New England junior tennis champion before attending Scripps College in Claremont, California where she graduated with a joint major in Government and Sociology. She earned her law degree from Boston University School of Law and commenced her legal career as a Santa Barbara County deputy district attorney. She was engaged in the private practice of law for 20 years with offices in Los Angeles, Ventura and Santa Barbara prior to her election to the State Assembly, and was the managing partner for The Law Offices of Eskin & Jackson.

Hannah-Beth is married to retired Superior Court Judge George Eskin, and they share three children and six grandchildren. She and her husband have resided in Santa Barbara for more than 40 years.