Legislative Aide, California State Assembly
Karen L. Jones, Ph.D., (they/them) is a Legislative Aide with the Office of Assemblymember Joaquin Arambula, providing strategic legislative advice for several issue areas, including: Human Services, Utilities & Energy, Housing, Elections, and the State Budget. They additionally have specialized focus on the COVID-19 pandemic as it relates to the Central Valley. In this capacity, they coordinate with District Staff and stakeholders to achieve effective, efficient, and equitable responses to the crisis. They previously advocated on voters' rights and social justice issues as the inaugural Trudy Schafer Advocacy Fellow at the League of Women Voters of California. Before their time in the Capitol Community, Karen was a scientist specializing in autism spectrum disorders. They received their Ph.D. in Interdisciplinary Neuroscience from the University of Missouri and a B.S. in Psychology from The Ohio State University. In order to translate their research from "bench to bedside," they completed their postdoctoral work in the fields of immunology and epidemiology at the University of California, Davis. They have since broadened their translational expertise into the domain of policymaking. Outside of work, Karen serves as the Events Director for the Capitol LGBTQ Association. They enjoy running, hiking, and spending time with their partner and dogs.