Ricardo Lara 

Commissioner, California Department of Insurance 

As the leader of the California Department of Insurance, Commissioner Lara oversees the largest insurance market in the United States and the fourth largest insurance market in the world. Since taking office in January 2019, he has acted to protect California consumers, fight climate change, and expand access to health care for all – while preserving a competitive insurance market.

Commissioner Lara has a long record as one of California’s most effective environmental champions, passing laws that promote innovation and investment in clean air, embrace equity, protect waters from oil drilling, and keep California at the forefront of confronting global climate change. He wrote the nation’s first climate insurance law to protect Californians from climate-linked environmental disasters like wildfires, extreme heat waves, flooding and sea level rise. To confront the growing threat of climate change, he created the nation’s first Climate and Sustainability Branch within the Department of Insurance, issued the first-ever report on “climate insurance,” and launched the first subnational state-level partnership with the United Nations Environment Program to create a “sustainable insurance roadmap.” He co-chairs the first executive level task force of the National Association of Insurance Commissioners dedicated to climate risk and resiliency.

Commissioner Lara received the 2017 U.N. Climate and Clean Air Award with California Governor Jerry Brown for his groundbreaking work to create California’s climate strategy for reducing super pollutants, including methane, HFCs, and black carbon.