State Policy Director, CALSTART

Orville Thomas

Orville Thomas currently serves as CALSTART’s State Policy Director and oversees Budget and Legislative Advocacy in California. In his role, Orville coordinates CALSTART member companies around efforts to ensure public-private partnership around California’s ambitious climate change mitigation strategy in the transportation sector. He was previously the Director of Government Relations at Lion Electric, where he oversaw Federal and 50 state strategy to help transition public and private medium- and heavy-duty fleets to all-electric vehicles and ensure communities breathe clean air.

Orville is an immigrant son of immigrant parents. Born in Abu Dhabi and raised in Stockton, California since he was three, he has a deep passion for ensuring the state lives up to its promise and ideals of a California for all. Those beliefs helped him lead CIPC’s Government Affairs program for two years and push forward victories such as Health for All Young Adults and Elders, Earned Income Tax Credit expansion to undocumented Californians, and pushes to expand access to the state’s social safety net.

He holds a Master of Public Policy degree from the University of California, Berkeley’s Goldman School of Public Policy and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Radio and Television Broadcasting from San Francisco State University. Orville and his wife live in Sacramento with their two dogs, Chewbacca and Ruby.