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The California Book of Exoduses 2021 Year in Review

Brandon Ristoff

Policy Analyst

Brandon Ristoff
December 26, 2021

The California Book of Exoduses 2021 Year in Review

Take at look at the California Book of Exoduses: HERE

Another year in the books and unlike the pandemic, the California Exodus shows no signs of slowing down.

In February, we started the California Book of Exoduses, a – mostly – comprehensive list of all the notable names that took their lives and companies to other states. Just this last year provided an unfortunate 51 entries.

Say Goodbye to Hollywood!

Among the most fashionable exits were troves of Hollywood celebrities. Leigh-Allyn Baker, known for performances in Will & Grace and Good Luck Charlie, left California for Tennessee in part due to California’s restrictive mask policies.

In June, Becca Tobin, Haylie Duff, and Jamie-Lynn Sigler left as well, noting they left the expensive and fast paced California for the cheaper and slower pace of Texas.

Kiss rocker and Dr. Love himself, Gene Simmons, announced he was moving to Nevada’s side of Lake Tahoe to escape California’s taxes. Youtuber and boxer Logan Paul took up residency  in Puerto Rico.

And while he didn’t move, celebrity chef Gordon Ramsey moved his restaurant empire’s North American headquarters out of Los Angeles. We can imagine his hilarious reaction to California’s terrible business climate.

The California podcaster exodus also continued this year with the departure of Dave Rubin. Dave Rubin, known for the Youtube and podcast show The Rubin Report, ceremoniously left the state for Florida.

Tech Disinvesting from California

Even large tech companies weren’t immune to the harsh business climate. Stitch Fix, while they still are based in San Francisco, laid off 1,400 stylists in California and shut down their South San Francisco distribution warehouse.

Digital Realty Trust, the multi-billion dollar data center firm, also moved to Texas, with the CEO noting Texas’ affordable cost of living and business-friendly climate.

The California Exodus of the Year- Tesla

But if this exodus had a figurehead, it would be Elon Musk, Time’s Person of the Year for 2021. Fittingly, he also moved Tesla, the sixth largest company on the planet, to Austin, just a year after he moved himself. Tesla is currently the sixth largest company by market capitalization in the world, which makes it the largest company ever to move its headquarters out of California. The innovative Silicon Valley company influenced the 2010s and the electric car industries, so its departure will surely be noticed.

Stay tuned for more California Exodus content in the coming year and you can find our California Book of Exoduses: HERE


Brandon Ristoff is a policy analyst for the California Policy Center.

Correction: Clarification added that Stitch Fix did not move their headquarters from San Francisco.

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