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Portrait of Graham Knaus

Graham Knaus

Chief Executive Officer

California State Association of Counties

Graham Knaus is CEO for the California State Association of Counties (CSAC) and the California Counties Foundation, representing California’s 58 counties and their 296 elected supervisors. Prior to his current role, he was the deputy executive director of operations and member services for CSAC. In this role he was responsible for operations, communications, and strategic planning. During this time, he also served as CEO of the California Counties Foundation, where he had previously been a faculty member for several years. The California Counties Foundation oversees the CSAC’s nationally recognized leadership and policy development and the CSAC Grants Initiative, which supports counties in maximizing state and federal funding. He has spent his career working for California counties, including six years with Placer County as the county’s assistant director of Health and Human Services and as the county budget director. Prior to that, he served as a senior fiscal and policy analyst for the County Welfare Directors Association and as a legislative advocate for a firm representing California counties. While in these roles, he was a primary strategic advisor on the 2013 Health Realignment, which implemented the Affordable Care Act; he was also a principal architect on the 2011 State Public Safety Realignment, which realigned $6 billion of services and funding from the state to counties. In addition to his CSAC role, he serves as vice president of the CSAC finance corporation board and the National Council of County Association Executives. He also sits on the board of Easy Smart Pay, an online platform to facilitate property tax and other public payments; the California Foundation on the Environment and the Economy (CFEE); as well as a variety of nonprofit boards, including the Public Policy Institute of California’s Statewide Leadership Council. He received his BA degree in political science/public policy from UC San Diego, and his MPA from the University of Southern California.