Biography

Shawn Nelson, Supervisor
Orange County 4th District

Shawn Nelson, who currently serves as the Chairman of the Board of Supervisors in Orange County, was first elected to the position in a special election on June 8, 2010. Finishing first in a field of six candidates, he took office on June 22, 2010.  He won re-election during the November 2nd 2010 general election to a full four-year term, receiving 63% of the vote. He was re-elected to a second four-year term on June 3, 2014 with over 83% of votes cast.

Prior to serving on the Board of Supervisors, Supervisor Shawn Nelson was elected to the Fullerton City Council in November 2002, and was re-elected in November 2004 and 2008. He served as Mayor in 2004-05 and 2006-07 and as Mayor Pro Tem in 2003-04. A native Californian, Supervisor Nelson was born in Lynwood and raised in Fullerton. The Sunny Hills High School graduate holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration from USC, and a Juris Doctorate from Western State University College of Law. He has also studied economics at Harvard University.

An attorney by profession, Supervisor Nelson was the managing partner in the Santa Ana law firm of Rizio and Nelson. Shawn was a civil litigator and represented small business owners and individuals in a variety of legal matters. He also sits as an arbitrator for the Orange County Bar Association. Supervisor Nelson served six years as the City’s representative to the Board of Directors of the Orange County Water District.

In addition to serving as Chairman of the Orange County Board of Supervisors in 2014 for the second consecutive year, Supervisor Nelson is honored to serve as a member of the audit oversight committee (Chair), Orange County Transportation Authority (Chair), Southern California Regional Rail Authority (Metrolink), Orange County Council of Governments, Orange County Housing Authority Board of Commissioners, South Coast Air Quality Management District, Southern California Assocation of Governments, Southern California Water Committee and the Transportation Corridor Agency.

Active in the community, Supervisor Nelson is a member of the Fullerton Elks Lodge, and the Orange County Bar Association. He is actively involved as a member of Zion Lutheran Church, is a sponsor and "Soccer Dad" for the Fullerton Rangers youth soccer club, head coach and a parent sponsor for Fullerton Pop Warner Football's Junior Midget Level Team, and head basketball coach for Fullerton NJB Division 1 boys. Supervisor Nelson was named the "Local Elected Official for 2009" by the Orange County Republican Party. Supervisor Nelson and his wife, Sharon, have three children: Kathryn, 17, Shane, 15, and Amanda, 12.

Board of Supervisors Appointments 2014

Each January, the Orange County Board of Supervisors appoints its members and staff to various local and regional agencies for the remainder of the year, in addition to their regular duties at the County of Orange. These agencies oversee concerns such as transportation, housing and parks, among others.

As well as serving as Chairman on the Orange County Board of Supervisors in 2014, Supervisor Nelson is honored to serve as a member of the:

  • Audit Oversight Committee – Chair
  • Orange County Council of Governments (OCCOG)
  • Orange County Housing Authority Board of Commissioners
  • Orange County Transportation Authority (OCTA) octa
  • South Coast Air Quality Management District (AQMD)
  • Southern California Association of Governments (SCAG)
  • Southern California Water Committee
  • Transportation Corridor Agency – Foothill/Eastern

In addition, Supervisor Nelson serves as an alternate for the:

  • California State Association of Counties
  • Emergency Management Council
  • OC Operational Area Executive Board
  • Orange County Sanitation District
  • Urban County Caucus