Former Democratic legislator and appellate court justice George Zenovich, who helped write landmark legislation on behalf of agricultural workers, arts and culture and low-income housing while championing the cause of handicapped children, has died. He was 91.
Zenovich was a member of the state Senate and Assembly after serving a tour in the U.S. Air Force during World War II. In the Legislature, Zenovich co-authored a first-in-the-nation law recognizing the right of farm workers to collectively bargain.
He also co-authored a measure to create the California Arts Council and another to established the California Housing Finance Agency.
Gov. Jerry Brown appointed him to the 5th District Court of Appeals in 1979. On Wednesday, Brown traveled to Fresno to visit with Zenovich, but arrived too late.
"George was a longtime friend and a rare public servant who combined wisdom, skill and basic practicality. His many friends will miss him," the governor said in a statement.
John Ellis of The Fresno Bee has a full obituary on Zenovich.
PHOTO: George N. Zenovich and his wife Kika Zenovich during the dedication of the new Court of Appeal Fifth Appellate District building in Fresno on Thursday September 13, 2007. The Fresno Bee/Darrell Wong