The 100 Highest Paying Jobs In California For 2020

by Chris Kolmar
Rankings - 5 months ago

Find a Job You Really Want In

To get started, tell us where you'd like to work.

Sorry, we can't find that. Please try a different city or state.

Copied!
Editor’s Note: Article updated for 2020. This is our sixth time ranking the highest paying jobs in California

Ever wonder who gets paid the most? Or how much your dentist makes for all the pain they put you through?

We had that same burning desire to know more about the highest paid professions in California. And if you can’t tell by that sentence, we’re a bit of what you’d call data nerds.

We decided to go directly to the source: The Bureau of Labor Statistics.

After scrounging through the Bureau of Labor Statistics, we discovered that Surgeons, Except Ophthalmologists are the highest paid people in California.

Here’s a quick look at the top ten highest paying jobs in California:

  1. Surgeons, Except Ophthalmologists
  2. Psychiatrists
  3. Obstetricians and Gynecologists
  4. Nurse Anesthetists
  5. Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons
  6. Orthodontists
  7. Chief Executives
  8. General Internal Medicine Physicians
  9. Physicians, All Other; and Ophthalmologists, Except Pediatric
  10. Airline Pilots, Copilots, and Flight Engineers

Everyone’s favorite dentists place number 22 on the list of highest paid professions in the Golden State. So the next time you sit there while they drill you can dwell on the fact that they are getting extremely well paid for it.

How we determined the highest paid jobs in California For 2020

We looked at the BLS’s data set for all 753 job classifications in California in order to identify those that get paid the most.

Pretty straightforward and easy to do when the government does your job for you 🙂

We used the most recently released data on March 29, 2020.

For more reading, check out:

Detailed List Of Highest Paying Jobs In California

Rank Job Title Average Salary Entry Level Salary # Of People
1 Surgeons, Except Ophthalmologists $248,100 $115,900 3,650
2 Psychiatrists $236,930 $122,570 3,560
3 Obstetricians And Gynecologists $236,730 $114,320 1,540
4 Nurse Anesthetists $227,290 $127,700 1,270
5 Oral And Maxillofacial Surgeons $222,180 $68,470 690
6 Orthodontists $220,410 $57,970 420
7 Chief Executives $216,520 $88,350 31,730
8 General Internal Medicine Physicians $212,510 $114,140 3,410
9 Physicians, All Other; And Ophthalmologists, Except Pediatric $210,140 $80,010 32,070
10 Airline Pilots, Copilots, And Flight Engineers $208,070 $90,760 10,340
11 Family Medicine Physicians $203,320 $66,400 11,050
12 Pediatricians, General $200,270 $105,550 3,160
13 Computer And Information Systems Managers $185,640 $107,130 75,700
14 Dentists, All Other Specialists $184,560 $105,350 420
15 Judges, Magistrate Judges, And Magistrates $184,340 $95,630 1,690
16 Architectural And Engineering Managers $179,860 $105,670 34,140
17 Lawyers $173,970 $75,610 83,750
18 Marketing Managers $169,200 $83,670 40,900
19 Astronomers $164,130 $60,490 360
20 First-Line Supervisors Of Police And Detectives $158,120 $95,880 4,930
21 Financial Managers $156,500 $73,830 92,060
22 Dentists, General $155,670 $70,550 16,220
23 Nurse Midwives $154,500 $103,260 690
24 Advertising And Promotions Managers $149,320 $78,070 2,670
25 Personal Service Managers, All Other; Entertainment And Recreation Managers, Except Gambling; And Managers, All Other $146,910 $71,680 69,780
26 Nuclear Engineers $146,470 $95,710 510
27 Economics Teachers, Postsecondary $146,410 $63,970 690
28 Human Resources Managers $145,710 $79,770 21,600
29 Industrial-Organizational Psychologists $145,410 $72,000 40
30 Athletes And Sports Competitors $144,700 $31,590 730
31 Pharmacists $144,050 $106,080 32,150
32 Law Teachers, Postsecondary $143,660 $38,580 1,540
33 Petroleum Engineers $142,910 $96,390 2,440
34 Purchasing Managers $142,350 $84,340 7,830
35 Computer Hardware Engineers $142,090 $75,910 19,940
36 Public Relations And Fundraising Managers $140,710 $74,060 9,210
37 Computer And Information Research Scientists $140,020 $71,430 7,370
38 Nurse Practitioners $138,660 $104,890 13,900
39 Training And Development Managers $138,500 $74,710 5,180
40 First-Line Supervisors Of Firefighting And Prevention Workers $138,450 $70,130 3,000
41 General And Operations Managers $137,050 $54,860 259,550
42 Sales Managers $137,000 $51,400 80,610
43 Philosophy And Religion Teachers, Postsecondary $136,460 $54,280 2,940
44 Environmental Science Teachers, Postsecondary $136,250 $61,240 580
45 Computer Science Teachers, Postsecondary $135,700 $56,170 2,200
46 Art Directors $135,410 $64,180 8,300
47 Family And Consumer Sciences Teachers, Postsecondary $134,700 $52,960 280
48 Software Developers And Software Quality Assurance Analysts And Testers $134,370 $77,840 249,620
49 Forestry And Conservation Science Teachers, Postsecondary $134,040 $54,240 110
50 Medical And Health Services Managers $133,040 $65,140 36,940
51 Optometrists $132,950 $85,150 4,270
52 Political Science Teachers, Postsecondary $132,950 $57,010 1,010
53 Air Traffic Controllers $132,510 $80,410 2,210
54 Physical Scientists, All Other $131,180 $70,310 1,850
55 Education Administrators, Postsecondary $129,400 $70,490 11,670
56 Communications Teachers, Postsecondary $129,220 $68,280 2,170
57 Education Administrators, Kindergarten Through Secondary $128,880 $88,680 24,540
58 Biological Science Teachers, Postsecondary $128,580 $58,900 3,590
59 Computer Network Architects $128,100 $64,160 18,210
60 Electronics Engineers, Except Computer $127,860 $75,080 27,110
61 Physician Assistants $127,520 $79,000 10,890
62 Engineering Teachers, Postsecondary $127,290 $62,540 2,470
63 Atmospheric, Earth, Marine, And Space Sciences Teachers, Postsecondary $126,590 $64,600 1,420
64 Mathematical Science Teachers, Postsecondary $126,550 $54,960 5,460
65 Business Teachers, Postsecondary $126,520 $56,590 5,470
66 Physics Teachers, Postsecondary $126,480 $56,660 910
67 Aerospace Engineers $125,000 $74,130 11,440
68 Anthropology And Archeology Teachers, Postsecondary $124,800 $61,990 620
69 Social Sciences Teachers, Postsecondary, All Other $124,680 $39,850 2,050
70 Atmospheric And Space Scientists $124,570 $80,300 830
71 Industrial Production Managers $124,110 $65,700 20,770
72 Physicists $122,670 $66,380 1,950
73 Producers And Directors $121,950 $50,410 33,610
74 Mining And Geological Engineers, Including Mining Safety Engineers $121,610 $62,630 550
75 Construction Managers $121,540 $61,480 32,830
76 English Language And Literature Teachers, Postsecondary $121,450 $53,720 6,820
77 Administrative Law Judges, Adjudicators, And Hearing Officers $120,900 $66,250 1,800
78 Economists $120,580 $62,740 1,810
79 Criminal Justice And Law Enforcement Teachers, Postsecondary $120,550 $44,850 1,250
80 Radiation Therapists $119,800 $71,880 1,160
81 Chemistry Teachers, Postsecondary $119,030 $51,040 1,620
82 Geography Teachers, Postsecondary $118,560 $50,240 250
83 Film And Video Editors $118,510 $42,090 10,520
84 Emergency Management Directors $117,900 $71,750 760
85 History Teachers, Postsecondary $117,870 $52,450 1,380
86 Health Specialties Teachers, Postsecondary $117,800 $54,490 9,180
87 Personal Financial Advisors $117,690 $47,290 25,910
88 Actuaries $117,530 $72,560 1,630
89 Electrical Engineers $117,070 $68,370 25,370
90 Sales Engineers $116,620 $59,230 11,440
91 Architecture Teachers, Postsecondary $116,570 $42,420 440
92 Veterinarians $116,440 $75,930 7,380
93 Psychology Teachers, Postsecondary $116,330 $50,860 4,980
94 Nuclear Medicine Technologists $115,390 $87,730 1,330
95 Data Scientists And Mathematical Science Occupations, All Other $115,340 $65,980 4,690
96 Administrative Services And Facilities Managers $115,050 $59,860 41,650
97 Recreation And Fitness Studies Teachers, Postsecondary $114,660 $52,550 2,150
98 Information Security Analysts $114,620 $61,680 9,200
99 Sociology Teachers, Postsecondary $113,860 $49,580 910
100 Engineers, All Other $113,640 $63,760 25,740

If you’re interested, you can read more about the California job scene here:

Job type you want
Full Time
Part Time
Internship
Temporary