Anne Gust Brown grew up in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan. She received her bachelor’s degree from Stanford University and her law degree from the University of Michigan.
Mrs. Brown enjoyed a long, successful career in the business field. She left her position as chief administrative officer for the clothing retailer Gap, Inc., in 2006 to assume the role of campaign manager for then–Oakland Mayor Jerry Brown’s race for attorney general of California.
Mrs. Brown served as special counsel to Governor Brown when he was California's attorney general, and in January 2011, she was appointed special counsel in the Office of the Governor.
The first lady and her husband, Governor Jerry Brown, were married in 2005.