State Controller Betty T. Yee ('79) was elected in November 2014, following two terms of service on the California Board of Equalization. As Controller, she continues to serve the Board as its fifth voting member.
Ms. Yee was first elected to the Board of Equalization in 2006 where she represented 21 counties in northern and central California. She was elected to her second four-year term in 2010.
Now serving as the state’s chief fiscal officer, Ms. Yee also chairs the Franchise Tax Board and serves as a member of the California Public Employees’ Retirement System (CalPERS) and the California State Teachers’ Retirement System (CalSTRS) Boards. These two boards have a combined portfolio of nearly $500 billion. Ms. Yee also serves on the Ceres Board of Directors, a nonprofit organization working to mobilize many of the world’s largest investors to advance global sustainability and take stronger action on climate change.
Ms. Yee serves on dozens of boards and commissions with authority ranging from land management to crime victim compensation. As a member of the State Lands Commission (and chairperson in even-numbered years), she helps provide stewardship of public-trust lands, waterways, industrial wharves, marine terminals, pipelines, and resources through economic development, protection, preservation, and restoration consistent with the state’s environmental needs. The development and extraction of oil, gas, and geothermal resources are part of the Commission’s purview, as well. Through other financing authorities, Ms. Yee is dedicated to creating incentives that will increase the number of affordable housing units in California, given that demand consistently outpaces supply.
Ms. Yee has over 30 years of experience in public service, specializing in state and local finance and tax policy. Ms. Yee previously served as Chief Deputy Director for Budget with the California Department of Finance where she led the development of the Governor’s Budget, negotiations with the Legislature and key budget stakeholders, and fiscal analyses of legislation on behalf of the Administration. Prior to this, she served in senior staff positions for several fiscal and policy committees in both houses of the California State Legislature. She also cofounded the Asian Pacific Youth Leadership Project, which exposes California high school youth to the public service, public policy, and political arenas.
A native of San Francisco, Ms. Yee received her bachelor’s degree in sociology from the University of California, Berkeley, and she holds a master’s degree in public administration.