Law and Policy Fellow
Matthew Cate is the Executive Director of the California State Association of Counties (CSAC). Prior to this position, he served for more than four years, under two governors, as Secretary of the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation. As Corrections Secretary, Mr. Cate was instrumental in implementing sweeping reforms to the Department that resulted in reduced recidivism, the end of the prison overcrowding crises, reduced prison spending, and the historic realignment of many public safety services from the State to the County level. During the Brown administration, Mr. Cate also served as Chairman of the Board of State and Community Corrections and the Prison Industry Authority. In addition, in 2010, Mr. Cate was elected by his national peers as Regional President of the Association of State Correctional Administrators.
Prior to his appointment as Secretary, Mr. Cate served for four years as the California Inspector General where he was responsible for public oversight of the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation. Since 2007, he has also served on the California Rehabilitation Oversight Board and, was responsible for reporting on the progress made by the Department in providing effective rehabilitative programs to California’s inmates and parolees.
Prior to becoming California’s Inspector General, Mr. Cate served as a state and local prosecutor. From 1996 to 2004, he held the position of Deputy Attorney General at the California Department of Justice. In 2003, while working on federal fraud and corruption matters, Mr. Cate was cross-designated as a Special Assistant United States Attorney. From 1994 to 1996, Mr. Cate was a Deputy District Attorney for Sacramento County.