William Newsom

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William Alfred Newsom III (born February 15, 1934) is an American retired state appeals court judge, administrator of the Getty family trust, and the father of former San Francisco Mayor, current Lieutenant Governor of California, and Governor-elect of California Gavin Newsom.[1]

Life and career[edit]

Newsom was born in San Francisco, California, the son of Christine (née Brennan) and William A. Newsom II. A lifelong San Franciscan, Newsom has longstanding political and financial ties. His father ran the Pat Brown campaign for San Francisco district attorney. He later became governor of California.[2]

Newsom's late sister Barbara was once married to Ron Pelosi, brother-in-law of Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi. He is also a close friend of Gordon Getty, son of oil tycoon J. Paul Getty, who lived in his house 1940s while attending St. Ignatius Catholic prep school in San Francisco.[1]

Judicial career[edit]

Newsom went to University of San Francisco, followed by Stanford Law School and was admitted to the California Bar in 1962. He worked as legal adviser to the Italian division of Getty Oil and then as a tax attorney for the Getty family. He was the one who delivered ransom money for release of his godson Paul Getty

[2] In 1967, he married Tessa Menzies, and had two children (including Gavin) before divorcing after five years.[2] In 1968, he ran unsuccessfully against State Senator Milton Marks, a popular Republican.[2]

In 1975, Jerry Brown appointed Newsom to the Superior Court bench in Auburn (Placer County) and later to the state Court of Appeal in San Francisco, where he served until 1995.[2]

Investment management[edit]

Newsom currently serves as a financial advisor for the Getty family businesses. He directly manages the Gordon P. Getty Family Trust, which is estimated at more than $2 billion.[1] The trust earns about 2 percent a year resulting in approximately $40 million in annual income.[2] He screens potential investments and makes recommendations on real estate, stocks, bonds, and other ventures. "I make my living working for Gordon Getty", Newsom said in 2003.[1]


  1. ^ a b c d Byrne, Peter (April 2, 2003). "Bringing Up Baby Gavin - Page 1". SF Weekly. p. 1. Archived from the original on July 30, 2010. Retrieved July 30, 2010.
  2. ^ a b c d e f Byrne, Peter (April 2, 2003). "Bringing Up Baby Gavin - Page 2". SF Weekly. p. 2. Archived from the original on July 30, 2010. Retrieved July 30, 2010.