Ousted San Francisco DA Chesa Boudin has a new job

SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA - JUNE 07: San Francisco District Attorney Chesa Boudin looks on during an election-night event on June 07, 2022 in San Francisco, California. Voters in San Francisco recalled Boudin, who eliminated cash bail, vowed to hold

Chesa Boudin, the progressive San Francisco District Attorney who was ousted in a June recall last year, has a new job.

In an email, he announced on Wednesday that he is the founding executive director of the new Criminal Law & Justice Center at the University of California, Berkeley, School of Law.

"I’m thrilled to build, from the ground up, a center that will serve as a research and advocacy hub focused on critical law and policy changes that advance justice in the criminal legal system," he wrote in the email.

He called this his most "ambitious project yet," and stressed that he will continue to support the "criminal reform movement" in principled and rigorous ways.

Boudin did mention how he hated the "superficial distractions" of being in elected office, and how he is excited to focus on data to drive what he described as a common-sense approach to public safety that is "consistent with our values — and our constitution."

Boudin, 42, was a first-time political candidate who narrowly won office in November 2019 as part of a national wave of progressive prosecutors who pledged to seek alternatives to incarceration, end the racist war on drugs and hold police officers to account.

But his time in office coincided with a frustrating and frightening pandemic in which viral footage of brazen shoplifting and attacks against mostly older Asian American people drove some residents to mount a recall campaign of the former public defender and son of left-wing activists.

Recall proponents said Boudin was ideologically inflexible and inexperienced, often siding with criminals instead of victims. Recall opponents said the recall was a Republican power grab meant to undermine public safety reforms.

Brooke Jenkins was elected the new DA of San Francisco. 

The Associated Press contributed to this report.