Louise Renne has seen a lot. She first entered San Francisco politics in 1978, in the months following the murders of Supervisor Harvey Milk and Mayor George Moscone. When Dianne Feinstein suddenly ascended to the mayorship following that tragedy, she quickly appointed Renne to replace her on the Board of Supervisors (the San Francisco equivalent of the City Council). 

Later, Renne would become the first woman to serve as San Francisco City Attorney. In her 15 years in that role, she would transform what had been a defense-oriented practice into one of the premier public law offices in the country. Under her leadership, the office brought high-profile lawsuits against tobacco companies, gun manufacturers, and even a prestigious all-male social club. 

Now, she runs the Renne Public Law Group, which, in recent years, has been involved in major litigation against large companies including Juul and Alphabet (the parent company of Google).

For a special edition of Question Presented, CAFE Producer Sam Ozer-Staton spoke with Renne about her career, some of her major victories, and what it means to practice public law.