The California Senate confirmed Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger’s appointments of John Harris and Jesse Choper to the California Horse Racing Board by unanimous vote on April 2.
Harris, currently vice president of the board, was first appointed by Governor Gray Davis on Nov. 9, 2000. He has twice been reappointed -- by Davis in 2003, and then by Schwarzenegger last September. Commissioner Choper has served on the board since March 30, 2007. All appointments to the CHRB are subject to Senate confirmation.
Harris owns and operates Harris Farms in Coalinga, a major livestock and crop operation, which also includes Harris Ranch Restaurant and Inn on Interstate 5 near Coalinga. He has owned Thoroughbreds since 1958 and is a prominent breeder of racehorses. He was elected a director of the California Thoroughbred Breeders Association in 1974, served as the organization’s legislative chairman for 20 years, and was twice elected CTBA president. He served as CHRB chairman in 2003-04.
He also has served on the boards of the Breeders’ Cup, Thoroughbred Owners of California, Grayson-Jockey Club Research Board and the Center for Equine Health/UC Davis Advisory Board.
Choper joined the faculty at the University of California’s Boalt Hall in 1965, where he served as dean for 10 years and continues to teach as the Earl Warren Professor of Public Law. After graduating from law school, he served as a law clerk to U.S. Supreme Court Chief Justice Earl Warren. He taught at the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School and the University of Minnesota Law School. He also has been a visiting professor at Harvard Law School, lectured at major law conferences throughout the world, and written several books and numerous articles on the law.
The board currently has six commissioners following the recent resignation of longtime member Marie Moretti.