Paul Henderson, District Attorney George Gascón’s chief of administration and possible competition for district attorney in November’s election, has decided not to run for the office and will instead head to the Mayor’s Office in a public safety policy leadership role.
Henderson and Gascón confirmed the move Wednesday.
“After very carefully weighing all of my options, I have reevaluated my initial goal to run for the office of San Francisco District Attorney this November,” Henderson said in a statement. “I am still driven to serve this city in public service but this is not the right time for me to seek that office.”
“I will be supporting DA Gascón in his candidacy and will be working to ensure his every success,” Henderson said.
Mayor’s office spokeswoman Christine Falvey confirmed Henderson will become Mayor Ed Lee’s policy adviser on public safety in March.
In a separate interview Wednesday, Gascón confirmed that “Paul was offered a job by the mayor’s office, as the head of the criminal justice (office), and is now going to be moving over.”
The news comes as Gascón was set to announce the details of a broad reorganization of the District Attorney’s Office later Wednesday.
Henderson filed to run for district attorney in November, as the heir-apparent of Kamala Harris following her successful run for California attorney general.
However, outgoing Mayor Gavin Newsom shocked the city by appointing Gascón, the former police chief, as Harris’ replacement in January, just before Newsom left to take the lieutenant governor’s office.
Gascón then announced his intention to run for a four-year term for district attorney this November, throwing Henderson’s campaign into limbo.
Henderson issued a statement days later that he was still pondering whether to run for district attorney.