Rudy Salas Jr. was born and raised in California’s Central Valley. Growing up in a modest neighborhood, Salas noticed that his neighborhood didn’t have the same basic services and amenities as other areas. He quickly learned that in order to improve his community, he had to work with local elected officials to get answers and fight for a fair share of the resources. This sparked his passion for public service.
While working towards his goal of public service, Salas worked in both the oil and grape fields getting firsthand experience in the largest industries that fuel the economy of his district. Realizing his next step was college and coming from a working class family, he knew he had to work and save. At one point, he held three jobs and later graduated from UCLA with two degrees. Upon graduation, Salas was offered a job in Washington, D.C. where he worked in the White House.
Knowing his path would lead him back home; he returned to work at California State University, Bakersfield (CSUB). At CSUB, he served as a counselor with the Upward Bound Program, serving eight of our local high schools. Additionally, Rudy served as the Residential Life Director for the College Assistance Migrant Program for incoming college freshmen at the University. Salas remained active in politics which led him to the State Capitol. Salas served as legislative staff for leadership in both the Assembly and Senate. Shortly after, Salas realized his dream of representing and fighting for the community he was born and raised in by becoming the first Hispanic to serve on the Bakersfield City Council. He now has the honor of serving in the California State Assembly.
Since being elected, Salas has already made his mark fighting for jobs, education, water, veterans, and health services for the Central Valley. Salas co-authored the Water Bond with $7.545 Billion for safe drinking water and storage project, giving California the ability to store water for use during dry years; saved funding for Ag Education programs such as FFA; authored a Hospital Authority Bill to save the local Kern Medical Center; secured $15 million in the budget for job training; helped secure millions of dollars for local schools; kept our neighborhoods safe by leading the charge to re-open local community correctional facilities and shut down illegal gambling cafes; protected veterans from discrimination and fought to tackle veteran homelessness; passed legislation to bring more doctors into the Valley; and spent countless hours volunteering and meeting with local friends and neighbors to make a difference.
Assemblymember Salas currently serves on the following Assembly Committees: Accountability and Administrative Review; Agriculture; Governmental Organization; Veterans Affairs; Chair, Regional Approaches to Addressing the State’s Water Crisis; Chair, Workforce and Vocational Development in California; Member, Renewable Energy Economy in Rural CA; Member, California Workforce Investment Board.
Assemblymember Salas was elected in November 2012 to represent California’s 32nd Assembly District, comprised of part of the city of Bakersfield, the cities of Arvin, Avenal, Corcoran, Delano, Hanford, Lemoore, McFarland, Shafter, Wasco and the communities of Armona, Buttonwillow, Home Garden, Kettleman City, Lamont, Lost Hills, Stratford and Weedpatch.