Michael Pimentel is the Executive Director of the California Transit Association, a nonprofit trade organization representing California’s transit industry, including more than 85 public transit and rail agencies statewide. In this role, Michael oversees the Association’s advocacy and member education programs, with special focus on transportation funding, climate change, and air quality initiatives. Before being selected as Executive Director, Michael was the Association’s Deputy Executive Director and Legislative and Regulatory Advocate.
Prior to joining the Association, Michael held various appointed positions in the administration of Governor Jerry Brown, serving most recently as Senior Legislative Analyst at the California High-Speed Rail Authority. In this role, Michael developed and managed the Authority’s legislative program, advised its CEO on legislative and budgetary issues and developments, and served as the Authority’s primary liaison to the State Legislature, the California State Transportation Agency, and the Office of the Governor. Previously, Michael served as a Legislative Assistant in Governor Brown’s office.
Michael received a Master of Public Policy from the University of California, Berkeley’s Goldman School of Public Policy, and a Bachelor of Arts in Economics from the University of California, Berkeley. In 2023, Michael was recognized for his advocacy on behalf of California’s transit industry in leading industry publications, including Capitol Weekly’s Top 100 and Mass Transit Magazine’s 40 under 40. Michael currently serves on the California Energy Commission’s Advisory Committee for the Clean Transportation Investment Plan and on the Advisory Boards for the multicampus University of California’s Institutes of Transportation Studies as well as for the UCLA Institute of Transportation Studies and the UC Davis Institute of Transportation Studies. He was a fellow with the New Leaders Council in 2015 and served on the NLC Sacramento Chapter’s Advisory Board from 2019 to 2021. He was a fellow for the California Association of Councils of Governments’ California Academy for Regional Leaders in 2019.