Early Life

Roth's father swears him into the U.S. Air ForceRichard Dale Roth was born November 6, 1950, in Columbus, Ohio and graduated from Ada High School (Ada, Ohio) in 1968, where he played in the band and was elected president of his junior class and the Student Council. He went on to Miami University (Ohio), majored in political science, minored in chemistry and enlisted in the ROTC program. After a less than perfect eye exam kept him from flight school, Roth set his sights on the Air Force Judge Advocate General’s Corps (JAG) and earned his law degree from Emory University in 1974.

Air Force Career

After earning admission into the JAG Corps, Roth entered active duty in the US Air Force in 1975. He served various postings with the Strategic Air Command and Pacific Air Forces units in Arizona, Okinawa, Japan and California. Roth became a lifelong resident of Riverside in 1978, when he was assigned to Riverside’s 22nd Bomb Wing at March Air Force Base.

Transferring from active duty to the Air Force Reserves in 1979, he served at March AFB over the next 13 years with Strategic Air Command and Military Airlift Command units. During this period, he was named Air Force Judge Advocate of the Year (1986) and California Air Force Reserve Officer of the Year (1992).

Through the 1990s and early 2000s, Roth worked as a reserve judge advocate at Air Force bases in Georgia, California, and Illinois. He also served at Headquarters Air Force Reserve Command and in the Pentagon. By 2004, he had risen to the rank of Major General and served in the Pentagon as Mobilization Assistant to The Judge Advocate General of the U.S. Air Force where he oversaw more than 900 Reserve judge advocates and paralegals assigned to more than 200 offices at every level of command and helped to manage the recruitment, training, utilization, and deployment of Reserve legal forces worldwide.

Roth retired from the Air Force in 2007 after 32 years of service in the grade of Major General. Over the course of his career, he received numerous awards and decorations, including the Distinguished Service Medal, the Legion of Merit, the Meritorious Service Medal, and the Air Force Commendation Medal.

Civilian Life

Roth engaged in the practice of labor and employment law with Riverside-based firms for over 30 years and is a member of the State Bars of California and Georgia. Prior to establishing his law practice, Roth worked as an attorney with the National Labor Relations Board. He has served as a part-time adjunct instructor in Labor and Employment Law at the University of California at Riverside’s Anderson School of Management and in the University’s extension division.

Roth is a Past Chairman of the Board for the Greater Riverside Chambers of Commerce and past President of the Monday Morning Group. He is a former member of The Raincross Club, the Riverside Community Hospital Advisory Board, the Thomas W. Wathen Foundation Board (Flabob Airport), the Riverside County Bar Association Board of Directors, the Path of Life Ministries Advisory Board, the Air Force Judge Advocate General’s School Foundation Board, and the La Sierra University Foundation Board.

He is also past Vice Chairman of the Parkview Community Hospital Board, past member of the Riverside Art Museum Board, and a past Trustee of the March Field Museum. He currently serves as Legal Advisor to the Airlift/Tanker Association and as a member of the Riverside Police Foundation. He has served as a Lawyer Representative to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals Judicial Conference.

Roth and his wife Cindy live in Riverside.

Election to the State Senate

Roth was elected to represent the California State Senate’s 31st Senate District on November 6, 2012. He was sworn into office in California’s State Capitol in Sacramento on Monday, December 3, 2012.  The 31st State Senate District includes portions of Riverside County including the Cities of Corona, Eastvale, Jurupa Valley, Moreno Valley, Norco, Perris, and Riverside.


Senator Roth is chair of the Senate Committee on Health, as well as the Select Committee on Career Technology and the New Economy. He also serves on the Joint Legislative Budget Committee and the following Senate policy committees: Business, Professions and Economic Development, Budget,Governmental Organizationn, and Budget Subcommittee #3 on Health and Human Services, and the Select Committee on Student Success.

Senator Roth has also been appointed to serve on the Bureau for Private Postsecondary Education Advisory Committee, the Governor's Military Council, the California Aviation Caucus, the Mental Health Caucus, the UC Legislative Roundtable and the California Law Revision Commission.