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Fletcher takes job at Qualcomm

Assemblyman Nathan Fletcher has found his next job.

With his term in the state assembly set to end on Dec. 2, Fletcher announced Thursday he’s accepted an offer to become Qualcomm’s (Nasdaq: QCOM) senior director of corporate development.

“Qualcomm brings innovation to people across the globe,” Fletcher said in a press release announcing the hire. “They are a great community partner and provide good paying jobs for San Diegans. I am proud to join their team and look forward to helping advance these endeavors.”

The press release described Fletcher’s role as primarily focused on attracting clients through promotion. It says he'll develop corporate strategies in wireless health, mobile education and intellectual property protection. He’ll also promote the company’s philanthropic efforts.

“His position will not involve government relations or lobbying activities,” the press release says.

It also says he’ll remain active in his local community and will have further announcements in the coming months.

During his mayoral campaign, Fletcher received the endorsement of Qualcomm CEO Paul Jacobs, and also released his education plan (“to provide workforce for the 21st century”) on the company’s campus, with Jacobs by his side.

As an assemblyman, he also held a hearing for the California select committee on job creation for the new economy, which featured a panel including a Qualcomm representative.

Mayor-elect Bob Filner had promised Fletcher a position in his administration, as an executive in charge of large scale economic projects, such as a new Chargers stadium. Fletcher never publicly responded to the offer.

Fletcher finished in third place in San Diego’s June mayoral primary. A lifelong Republican and veteran of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, he became a vocal point of the race despite his third-place finish when he renounced his party affiliation in March to run as an independent.

In his mayoral campaign, Fletcher promised to reinvent San Diego as “America’s most innovative city,” while calling for an end to divisive partisan politics.

Representatives from both the Republican and Democratic parties called his decision to run as an independent a cynical political stunt to address issues with name recognition at a time when he was running in fourth place, according to polls.

Just weeks before announcing his decision, Fletcher appealed to the local GOP for its endorsement by boasting of the depth of his commitment to the party.

In the months since and in the days immediately following the election, he has said his only regret was not making the decision sooner.

During the general election, Fletcher endorsed both Republicans and Democrats in various races, but withheld his endorsement in the mayoral race.

He also worked with California Democrats, specifically Assembly Speaker John Pérez, to close a $1 billion annual tax loophole used by out-of-state companies to make California public universities more affortable. AB 1500 would have cut fees for University of California and California State University students hailing from households that earn less than $150,000 per year, and would have spent another $150 million per year to increase affordability at those schools. The bill failed in the state Senate.

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