California Governor Gavin Newsom announced today the appointment of Eric Hirata as Director of the Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control, where he has been Chief Deputy Director since 2017. He will take the place of Jacob Appelsmith who served as ABC Director between 2011 and 2013 and again from June 2017 to July of this year when he retired.
Hirata began his career as an Agent in the Inglewood District Office in 1996. He was later assigned to the department’s Special Operations Unit in both Southern and Northern California. He promoted to Supervising Agent and Supervising Agent in Charge in the San Francisco District Office and was later called to serve in two different administrative assignments in Headquarters. He served as the department’s Legislative Director where he collaborated with stakeholders on policy and legislative matters and acted as the department liaison to the California State Legislature.
Hirata also served as the Program Manager for the department’s Grant Unit where he was responsible for allocating grants to local law enforcement agencies under the Grant Assistance Program and worked in partnership with the Office of Traffic Safety and Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention on federal grants. In 2009, he was promoted to Deputy Division Chief in the Northern Division Office where he assumed responsibility for the department’s district offices throughout Northern California.