Caliph Assagai, ESQ

Caliph has been in policy advocacy for over 15 years, working in juvenile and criminal justice, mental health, higher education, transportation and land use, food access, and sustainable development. Before joining California Policy Solutions, Caliph was the founder and Principal of Public Interest Advocacy, a boutique lobbying firm representing nonprofit organizations before the California State Legislature. Before forming Public Interest Advocacy, Caliph served as the Legislation and Public Policy Director at the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) California and as the Advocacy Manager at Ubuntu Green, a non-profit organization focused on environmental justice, land use, and sustainable development.

Caliph graduated from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) School of Law’s Class of 2012. He earned specializations in Public Interest Law and Policy and Critical Race Studies. Caliph was honored to be selected as the National Bar Institute’s Public Service Fellow as a law student. During law school, Caliph gained legal experience through providing direct services to low-income individuals at Legal Services of Northern California on land use and housing issues and assisting with the representation of indigent defendants at the Los Angeles County Public Defender’s Office. Caliph gained an intimate understanding of federal policy and the federal policy-making process while serving as the State-Federal Relations Fellowship with the California Institute for Federal Policy Research in Washington, D.C. In this role, Caliph provided legislative analyses and authored articles for the California Congressional Delegation on legislation impacting California related to transportation, housing, climate change, and education.