Keynote Biography: Joseph “Gray” Davis '67
Joseph “Gray” Davis ’67 was elected the 37th governor of California in 1998, winning 58 percent of the vote. As governor, he made education a top priority, signing legislation to strengthen California’s K-12 system, increasing accountability in schools, and expanding access to higher education with a record number of scholarships and college loans. These reforms improved student achievement scores for six consecutive years.
While presiding over California during an economic expansion, Davis made record investments in infrastructure, created four Centers of Science and Innovation on University of California campuses, and expanded state health insurance for an additional one million children. He also was the first governor in the nation to authorize stem cell research.
As a leader on environmental issues, Davis signed the first law in the nation to reduce global warming and greenhouse gases. He also created the first Greenhouse Gas Monitoring Registry and established the nation's most ambitious commitment to renewable energy by creating the statewide Renewables Portfolio Standard. In 2002, Davis was re-elected to a second term.
Davis graduated from Stanford University (cum laude) and Columbia Law School and was awarded the Bronze Star for his service during the Vietnam War. He served as California's lieutenant governor (1995-1998), state controller (1987-95), state assemblyman (1982-86).
Davis is of counsel in the Los Angeles office of Loeb & Loeb, where he provides strategic advice to clients on numerous matters. He is also a senior fellow at the UCLA School of Public Affairs and regularly speaks before various academic and civic groups.