Our Mission

To empower youth to be active and valued participants in decision making processes at all levels.


About The California Roast

The California Roast is a festive annual tradition conducted in Sacramento for over thirty years. Governors, Speakers, Senate Presidents, Attorney Generals, Treasurers, Budget Chairs, Democratic and Republican Party leaders and others gather to pay “respect” each year to the honoree.  The humorous and edgy crossfire of our high profile panel provides our audience with insights into the present, history and future of California politics. Over six hundred attend including legislators from both parties, lobbyists, executive branch officials, political and public affairs consultants, friends and foes of the Roastee, and others. They appreciate the insights into the dynamics and personalities affecting the legislative, budget-making and political processes of that moment.  The California Roast and the jokes are featured in the press, websites and social media exchanges. Proceeds benefit Capitol Focus and California Center Youth Programs.

The 2017 event: Assembly Republican Leader Chad Mayes

The California Roast of Assembly Republican Leader Chad Mayes was on Tuesday, May 30, 2017.  California Republican Party Chair, Jim Brulte, our Roastee in 2014, was Master of Ceremonies.  He definitely moderated a fantastic panel of Roasters!  It was a great night with some real zingers as the roastee and panel held nothing back.  Another year is in the books as we march forward, truly greatful for all who participated and attended this much anticipated event!

In more than thirty years we have honored Speakers Willie Brown, Antonio Villaraigosa, Fabian Nunez, John A. Pérez, Karen Bass, and Herb Wesson; Senate President pro Tempores Darrell Steinberg, John Burton, Bill Lockyer and Don Perata; Republican Leaders Jim Brulte, Kevin McCarthy, and  Dick Ackerman; and Governors Gray Davis, Pete Wilson, George Deukmejian and more.  You never know what you might here!   

Proceeds benefit the California Center for Civic Participation non-partisan youth programs on state and local government.
Click here to learn more about Capitol Focus!

Past Roastees

2016 - Senate pro Tempore Kevin de León

2015 - Assembly Speaker Toni Atkins
2014- Party Chairs John Burton and Jim Brulte
2013 - Assembly Budget Chair Bob Blumenfield
2012 - Break from the action!
2011 - Assembly Speaker John Perez
2010 - Sen. Pres. pro Tempore Darrell Steinberg
2009 - Assembly Speaker Karen Bass
2008 - Senate Republican Leader Dick Ackerman
2007 - Senate President pro Tempore Don Perata
2006 - Assem. Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy
2005 - Assembly Speaker Fabian Nunez
2004 - Brulte, Burton, Vasconcellos, Alpert, et al
2003 - State Treasurer Phil Angelides
2002 - Assembly Speaker Herb Wesson
2001 - Senate Republican Leader Jim Brulte
2000 - Governor Gray Davis
1999 - Assembly Speaker Antonio Villaraigosa
1998 - Senate President pro Tempore John Burton
1997 - Senate President pro Tempore Bill Lockyer
1996 - Attorney General Dan Lungren
1995 - Assembly Speaker Willie Brown
1994 - Senator Ralph Dills
1993 - Senate Republican Leader, Ken Maddy
1992 - Judge James Garibaldi
1991 - Governor Pete Wilson
1990 - Assembly Republican Leader, Ross Johnson
1989 - Senator Al Alquist (Budget Chair)
1988 - Superintendent Bill Honig
1987 - Senator Bill Campbell
1986 - Senate President pro Tempore, David Roberti
1985 - Attorney General John Van De Kamp
1984 - Governor George Deukmejian
1982 - Assembly Speaker Willie Brown