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‘Best Buddies’ Celebrates Reappointment of Beloved Calif. State Capitol Worker

The entrance to the California governor's office in the State Capitol in Sacramento.

The entrance to the California governor's office in the State Capitol in Sacramento. Shutterstock

 

Connecting state and local government leaders

John Masterson is someone who brings “a little joy, a smile, a little humanity” to a hard-working place.

California Gov.-elect Gavin Newsom has many personnel decisions to make ahead of taking office in the new year and, not unexpectedly, there will be members of the outgoing administration of Gov. Jerry Brown sticking around the State Capitol in Sacramento.

The first reappointment is a beloved figure around the halls of the Capitol and its mailroom: Constituent affairs assistant John Masterson, who was hired through Best Buddies International, an organization that encourages the inclusion of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities in the workplace.

"Smart governors figure out who of the people that have served previous governors should remain. Because they have the institutional wisdom and knowledge and experience," Nancy McFadden, Gov. Jerry Brown’s former chief of staff, told KXTL in 2016. “And in tough, tough offices where a lot of difficult and serious work gets done, it's really wonderful to have somebody who brings a little joy, a smile, a little humanity."

Masterson was first hired by former Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger.

In September, former California first lady Maria Shriver gave Masterson an award for public service that’s named in honor of McFadden, who died earlier this year of ovarian cancer.

Michael Grass is Executive Editor of Route Fifty and is based in Seattle.

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