On March 17, California officials announced the inaugural membership of the five-member board for the California Privacy Protection Agency (CPPA). The formation of the CPPA is a requirement of the recently passed California Privacy Rights Act (CPRA), which goes into effect on January 1, 2023. The newly formed agency is responsible for conducting rulemaking under the CPRA and enforcing the law, as well as providing guidance to consumers regarding their rights.
In terms of next steps, we expect that the CPPA will hire additional staff in the near future. (The CPRA directs the agency to appoint an executive director, as well as officers, counsel, and employees). The CPPA will also be responsible for adopting regulations for the CPRA by July 1, 2022 and enforcing the law beginning on July 1, 2023.
The following board members will serve on the CPPA:
- Jennifer M. Urban. Urban has been a Clinical Professor of Law and Director of Policy Initiatives for the Samuelson Law, Technology and Public Policy Clinic at the University of California, Berkeley School of Law since 2009, where she has held multiple positions since 2002, including Fellow, Lecturer, and Visiting Acting Clinical Professor of Law. She was a Clinical Professor of Law and the founding Director of the Intellectual Property and Technology Law Clinic at the University of Southern California, Gould School of Law from 2004 to 2009. Urban was a Visiting Associate Professor of Law and Interim Director of the Cyberlaw Clinic at Stanford Law School from 2007 to 2008. She was an Attorney in the IP Group at Venture Law Group from 2000 to 2001. Urban is a member of the American Association of Law Schools, American Intellectual Property Law Association, Takedown Research Network, American Civil Liberties Union, and Authors Alliance. She earned a Juris Doctor degree from the University of California, Berkeley School of Law.
- John Christopher Thompson. Thompson has been Senior Vice President of Government Relations at LA 2028 since 2020. He held multiple positions at Southern California Edison from 2013 to 2020, including Vice President of Local Public Affairs and Vice President of Decommissioning. Thompson held multiple positions in the United States Senate from 2003 to 2013, including Chief of Staff, Legislative Director, and Legislative Assistant. He was a Legislative Assistant at the United States House of Representatives from 1996 to 2001. Thompson is a member of the California Science Center Foundation, Public Media Group of Southern California, and Public Policy Institute of California Statewide Leadership Council.
- Angela Sierra. Sierra recently served as Chief Assistant Attorney General of the Public Rights Division, overseeing the work of the Division’s over 400 employees in areas related to safeguarding civil rights, protecting consumers against misleading advertising claims, fraudulent business practices and privacy violations, maintaining competitive markets, protecting consumers’ health care rights, preserving charitable assets and safeguarding the State’s natural resources and environment. As the Chief of the Public Rights Division, Sierra oversaw the Consumer Protection Section’s Privacy Unit, including the Unit’s multi-state data-breach settlement with Equifax in 2019 that resolved allegations that the credit reporting agency improperly exposed the personal information of 147 million consumers, including 15 million Californians. During her 33-year career at the Department of Justice, Sierra worked on a broad range of issues, including, police practices, voting rights, housing and employment discrimination, immigrant rights, civil prosecution of hate crimes, discriminatory business practices, disability access, reproductive rights, environmental justice, Native American cultural protection, and access to education. Sierra is also a seasoned litigator and appellate advocate with administrative law and rulemaking experience and throughout her career has worked closely with a wide array of state agencies.
- Lydia de la Torre. Since 2017, de la Torre has been a professor at Santa Clara University Law School, where she has taught privacy law and co-directed the Santa Clara Law Privacy Certificate Program, a cutting-edge program that enables students to graduate ready to practice privacy law. She also has served as of-counsel to Squire Patton Boggs, where she specialized in privacy, data protection, and cybersecurity. She is leaving the law firm to take on this appointment, and during a short transition out of the firm, she will not be participating in any firm meetings or business related to the CPRA. Lydia de la Torre is an international expert in data protection issues generally and in the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) in particular.
- Vinhcent Le. Le currently serves as a Technology Equity attorney at the Greenlining Institute, focusing on consumer privacy, closing the digital divide, and preventing algorithmic bias. Le’s work has helped secure funding to increase broadband access, improve and modernize the California Lifeline Program, and create a program to provide laptops to low-income students in California. Prior to his current position, he served as a law clerk in the Orange County Public Defenders Office, the Office of Medicare Hearing and Appeals, and the Small Business Administration. Le received a J.D. from the University of California, Irvine School of Law, and a B.A. in Political Science from the University of California, San Diego.