“Californians are enduring unprecedented devastation, dealing with the fallout of a global pandemic, destructive reocurring wildfires and fighting for the health care they need during difficult times. I want all Californians to know: I’m on your side.”
Working for you
Ricardo Lara serves as California’s Insurance Commissioner. Following his eight years of elected service in California’s Assembly and Senate, he made history in 2018 as the first openly gay person to ever be elected to statewide office in California history. Raised by a factory worker and a seamstress — Venustiano and Dolores — Ricardo’s humble beginnings guide his work as he leads the state’s largest consumer protection agency.
As your Insurance Commissioner, Ricardo has taken on tough fights and won for working families — holding the insurance industry accountable while fighting for health care for all, helping California consumers during the unprecedented devastation of the COVID-19 pandemic, and assisting California wildfire victims in rebuilding their lives.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, Ricardo has directed insurance companies to return health care and auto insurance premiums. His actions resulted in cost savings of over $1.75 billion for California drivers so far.
In response to the climate crisis, Ricardo continues to lead efforts to protect Californians from the impacts of climate change — including wildfires, floods and heatwaves — by pushing the insurance industry to be part of the solution, not part of the problem. Ricardo wrote the nation’s first climate insurance law, SB 30, and following unprecedented wildfire disasters, he used his authority to protect more than 2 million policyholders from non-renewal when insurers tried to flee the marketplace. He created the nation’s first Climate and Sustainability Branch within the Department of Insurance, and also sponsored legislation to allow wildfire survivors to better access their benefits.
As a State Senator, Ricardo authored legislation that would create a single-payer health care system for California and he wrote the Health4All Kids Act — which now covers all California children with full-scope Medi-Cal regardless of immigration status. As your Insurance Commissioner, he continues to lead efforts to help reduce the number of uninsured Californians, strengthen our clinics and public health system, and lower costs for all. Ricardo also serves as Co-chair of the Special Committee on Race and Insurance within the National Association of Insurance Commissioners, where he works with his peers to find solutions to address widespread health disparities.
Ricardo is ready to continue the fight for stronger consumer rights and wants all Californians to know: He’ll always be on your side.
Insurance Commissioner Lara was born in Los Angeles County, California and earned a BA in Journalism and Spanish with a minor in Chicano Studies from San Diego State University. He also currently serves as the President of the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials (NALEO).