Ralph M. Brown

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Ralph Milton Brown (September 16, 1908 – April 9, 1966) was a member of the California State Assembly representing the 30th State Assembly district from 1943 to 1961. Born in Kentucky and a resident of Modesto, California, he was Speaker of the Assembly from January 1959 until he resigned in September 1961 to accept appointment to the California Courts of Appeal, Fifth Appellate District Court. He is best known for writing the Brown Act, California's first sunshine law, providing for increased public access to government meetings, which was enacted in 1953.


  • This article incorporates facts obtained from: Lawrence Kestenbaum, "Brown, O to R", The Political Graveyard
California Assembly
Preceded by
Burl R. Salsman
California State Assemblyman, 30th District
Succeeded by
John Veneman
Political offices
Preceded by
Luther H. Lincoln
Speaker of the California State Assembly
January 1959–September 1961
Succeeded by
Jesse M. Unruh