Sheila James Kuehl was elected to the State Senate in 2000 and again in 2004 after serving for six years in the State Assembly. A former pioneering civil rights attorney and law professor, Ms. Kuehl represents the 23rd Senate District in Los Angeles and Ventura Counties. She is the chair of several important committees in the Assembly, including the Select Committee on the Health Insurance Crisis in California. In her 12 years in the State Legislature, Sen. Kuehl has authored 160 bills that have been signed into law, including legislation to establish the rights contained in Roe vs. Wade in California statute, to establish nurse to patient ratios in every hospital, and to prohibit discrimination on the basis of gender and disability in the workplace and sexual orientation in education. She was selected to address the 1996 Democratic National Convention on the issue of family violence and the 2000 Democratic National Convention on the issue of diversity. In 2006, the Capitol Weekly picked her as the most intelligent member of the California Legislature. Senator Kuehl graduated from Harvard Law School in 1978 where she was the second woman in the school’s history to win the Moot Court competition. She was a law professor at Loyola, UCLA and USC Law Schools and co-founded and served as managing attorney of the California Women’s Law Center.