Alpert chaired the powerful Senate Appropriations Committee and the Joint Committee on the Master Plan for Education. She also chaired the Education Committees for both houses, the Senate Revenue and Taxation Committee, the Select Committee on Family, Child and Youth Development, and the Select Committee on Genetics, Genetic Technologies and Public Policy. She was appointed by two governors to serve as a member of the Pacific States Marine Fisheries Commission and the Pacific Fisheries Legislative Task Force.
The California Journal named Dede Alpert "Senator of the Year" in 2004 and named her the senator with the highest integrity in both 2000 and 2002. She was introduced into the California Tourism Hall of Fame, has been feted with Lifetime Achievement Awards by the California School Boards Association and the San Diego Domestic Violence Council, and was honored as "one of the extraordinary library advocates of the 20th Century" by the American Library Association.
Currently, Alpert is a Special Advisor on Public Policy and Strategic Planning for Nielsen, Merksamer, Parrinello, Mueller & Naylor. She serves as a board member of Sharp Healthcare, the Hubbs-Sea World Research Institute, Gompers Charter Middle School, San Pasqual Academy Foundation and the Office of the Education master Plan. She is also a member if the San Diego Padres Community Board as well as the Wells Fargo San Diego Community Board. Governor Schwarzenegger has appointed her the the Advisory Committee on Education Excellence which will devote the next year to advising him on needed educational reforms.
Prior to her election to the California State Legislature, Alpert served on the Solana Beach School Board for seven years. She was also a court-appointed special advocate for Voices for Children and was active with United Cerebral Palsy, PTA, and the Girl Scouts. She is married to Michael Alpert, a retired attorney and the chairman of the California Little Hoover Commission, and they are the parents of three daughters, Lehn, Kristin, and Alison , and are also proud grandparents.