Former Supervisor Ross Mirkarimi - District 5

gavelFormer Supervisor Ross Mirkarimi
Supervisor Ross Mirkarimi
Ross Mirkarimi (pronounced Meehr-kah-reem-e), was elected San Francisco District 5 Supervisor in 2004, and reelected in 2008.

In 2009, he was appointed by the State Senate to the California Coastal Commission, one of the most powerful land-use bodies in the United States. Ross has lived in San Francisco for 25 years.

Supervisor Mirkarimi has authored more than 80 ordinances that have had both citywide and national impact. Apart from his reputation for sponsoring cutting-edge laws, he is also well known for his 24/7 focus on issues that chronically challenge his district and the City.

Highlights of Ross's legislative accomplishments:

  • Plastic Bag Ban: First-in-the-Nation ban on plastic bags in chain grocery stores and drug stores, which sparked similar legislation around the world from Oakland to Canada to Paris to Beijing.
  • Commuter Benefits: First-in-the-Nation commuter benefits law, requiring private-sector businesses to allow employees to pay for public transit expenses with pre-tax dollars.
  • Climate Change Protocols: First-in-the-Nation mandatory protocols for both public and private sectors.
  • Medical Cannabis Dispensary Regulations: First-in-the-Nation public health, land-use and public safety regulations of medicinal marijuana dispensaries.
  • Reentry for Ex-Offenders: Formation of the Safe Communities Reentry Council to help reintegrate the formerly incarcerated -- recognizing the reentry process as a critical opportunity to break the cycle of crime and violence and reduce California’s worst-in-the-nation recidivism rate.
  • Police Foot Patrols: Required the San Francisco Police Department to institutionalize community policing practices such as foot patrols.
  • Workforce Reform: Overhaul of the City's workforce training and placement programs to expand the scope of the First Source Hiring Program and establish private sector incentives to employ residents from disadvantaged communities and those who served time in prison or county jail.
  • Tenant Protection: Successful ballot measure (Prop H, 2007) to increase relocation assistance payments to tenants who are evicted through no fault of their own, including increased payments for seniors, children, and the disabled.
  • Chain Store Restrictions: Neighborhood-backed legislation to restrict chain stores while protecting small business and neighborhood integrity.

Ross was born in Chicago to an Iranian father and mother of Russian descent.

Ross spent most of his youth in Rhode Island, obtained his undergraduate degree from St. Louis University (Political Science and Russian Literature), and earned Master’s degrees from Golden Gate University (Economics) and the University of San Francisco (Environmental Science/Management). He is also a graduate of the San Francisco Police Academy, where he was class president.

Prior to being elected Supervisor, Ross served as an investigator with the San Francisco District Attorney's Office for almost nine years, specializing in economic and environmental crimes.

Community organizing and activism have always been a significant part of Ross's life, as student body president of St. Louis University, president of the Missouri Public Interest Research Group (MOPIRG), and co-founder of the California Green Party.



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  • Elected November 2004 for term January 2005 to January 2009
  • Elected November 2008 for term January 2009 to January 2013

Committee and Board Assignments:

  • Board of Supervisors
  • Budget and Finance Committee 
  • Budget and Finance Sub-Committee
  • City and School District Select Committee
  • Government Audit and Oversight/LAFCo Joint Meeting
  • Joint Meeting-Public Safety Committee, Police Commission
  • Public Safety Committee
  • Rules Committee
  • Select Committee on Ending Gun and Gang Violence