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Governor Newsom Announces Judicial Appointments 3.30.23

SACRAMENTO – Governor Gavin Newsom today announced his nomination of three Court of Appeal Justices: Gonzalo Martinez as an Associate Justice of the Second District Court of Appeal, Division Seven; Justice Laurie Earl as Presiding Justice of the Third District Court of Appeal; and Judge David Rubin as an Associate Justice of the Fourth District Court of Appeal, Division One.

The Governor also announced his appointment of 14 Superior Court Judges, which include one in Contra Costa County; one in El Dorado County; one in Fresno County; three in Los Angeles County; one in Madera County; one in Monterey County; one in Orange County; two in Sacramento County; one in San Diego County; one in Santa Barbra County; and one in Santa Clara County.

Second District Court of Appeal

Gonzalo Martinez, of Alameda County, has been nominated to serve as an Associate Justice of the Second District Court of Appeal, Division Seven. Martinez has served as Deputy Judicial Appointments Secretary in the Office of Governor Gavin Newsom since 2019. He served as a Deputy Solicitor General in the California Attorney General’s Office from 2017 to 2019 and was a Partner in the Appellate and Supreme Court Practice Group at Squire Patton Boggs from 2007 to 2017 and in 2019. Martinez served as a Law Clerk at the U.S. District Court, Northern District of California in 2010 and at the U.S. District Court, Eastern District of California in 2007. Martinez was an Associate at Coblentz Patch Duffy and Bass from 2005 to 2007 and at Morrison & Foerster LLP from 2003 to 2005. Martinez earned a Juris Doctor degree from Harvard Law School and a Master of Arts degree in English from Stanford University. He fills the vacancy created by the retirement of Justice Laurie D. Zelon. This position requires confirmation by the Commission on Judicial Appointments, which consists of Chief Justice Patricia Guerrero, Attorney General Rob Bonta and Senior Presiding Justice Arthur Gilbert. He is a Democrat.

Third District Court of Appeal

Justice Laurie Earl, of Sacramento County, has been nominated to serve as Presiding Justice of the Third District Court of Appeal, where she has served as an Associate Justice since 2022. She served as a Judge in the Sacramento County Superior Court from 2005 to 2021. Justice Earl was Senior Assistant Inspector General at the California Office of Inspector General from 2004 to 2005 and a Deputy District Attorney at the Sacramento County District Attorney’s Office from 1995 to 2004. She served as an Assistant Public Defender at the Sacramento County Public Defender’s Office from 1989 to 1995. Justice Earl earned a Juris Doctor degree from the Lincoln Law School of Sacramento. She fills the vacancy created by the retirement of Presiding Justice Vance W. Raye. This position requires the completion of a review by the State Bar’s Commission on Judicial Nominees Evaluation and confirmation by the Commission on Judicial Appointments, which consists of Chief Justice Patricia Guerrero, Attorney General Rob Bonta and Senior Presiding Justice Ronald Robie. Justice Earl is a Democrat.

Fourth District Court of Appeal

Judge David Rubin, of San Diego County, has been nominated to serve as an Associate Justice of the Fourth District Court of Appeal, Division One. He has served as a Judge at the San Diego County Superior Court since 2007. Judge Rubin served as a Deputy District Attorney at the San Diego County District Attorney’s Office from 1987 to 2007. He earned a Juris Doctor degree from the University of San Francisco School of Law. Judge Rubin fills the vacancy created by the retirement of Justice Cynthia G. Aaron. This position requires confirmation by the Commission on Judicial Appointments, which consists of Chief Justice Patricia Guerrero, Attorney General Rob Bonta and Senior Presiding Justice Manuel Ramirez. He is a Democrat.

The compensation for each of these positions is $264,542.

Contra Costa County Superior Court

Palvir Kaur Shoker, of Contra Costa County, has been appointed to serve as a Judge in the Contra Costa County Superior Court. Shoker has served as a Commissioner at the Contra Costa County Superior Court since 2021. She was Court Mediation Director for the Congress of Neutrals from 2018 to 2021. She was a Sole Practitioner from 2014 to 2019 and from 2008 to 2013. Shoker was Partner at Ladva, Shoker and Associates from 2002 to 2007. She earned a Juris Doctor degree from Santa Clara University School of Law. She fills the vacancy created by the retirement of Judge Theresa J. Canepa. Shoker is a Democrat.

El Dorado County Superior Court

Leanne Mayberry, of El Dorado County, has been appointed to serve as a Judge in the El Dorado County Superior Court. Mayberry has served as a Research Attorney at the El Dorado County Superior Court since 2012. She served as a Deputy County Counsel in the Nevada County Counsel’s Office from 2004 to 2011. Mayberry served as a Law Clerk for the Honorable James K. Singleton at the U.S. District Court for the District of Alaska from 2002 to 2004 and as a Law Clerk in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of California in 2002. She earned a Juris Doctor degree from the Northeastern University School of Law. Mayberry fills the vacancy created by the retirement of Judge Suzanne N. Kingsbury. She is registered without party preference.

Fresno County Superior Court

Amythest Freeman, of Fresno County, has been appointed to serve as a Judge in the Fresno County Superior Court. Freeman has served as a Commissioner at the Fresno County Superior Court since 2022. She served as a Senior Deputy District Attorney at the Fresno County District Attorney’s Office from 2003 to 2022 and was a Supervisor at the Family Law Mediation Center of the San Joaquin College of Law from 2001 to 2003. Freeman earned a Juris Doctor degree from San Joaquin College of Law. She fills the vacancy of a new position created on July 1, 2022. She is a Democrat.

Los Angeles County Superior Court

Daniel Alexander, of Los Angeles County, has been appointed to serve as a Judge in the Los Angeles County Superior Court. Alexander has served as a Senior Appellate Court Attorney at the Second District Court of Appeal since 2017. He was a Partner at FisherBroyles LLP from 2016 to 2017 and an Associate at Coleman Frost LLP from 2007 to 2016. Alexander was an Associate and then Counsel at O’Melveny and Myers LLP from 2001 to 2007. He served as a Law Clerk at the Supreme Court of Texas from 2000 to 2001. Alexander earned a Juris Doctor degree from the Southern Methodist University School of Law. He fills the vacancy created by the retirement of Judge Fred N. Wapner. Alexander is a Democrat.
Stephanie Davis, of Los Angeles County,  has been appointed to serve as a Judge in the Los Angeles County Superior Court. Davis has served as a Commissioner at the Los Angeles County Superior Court since 2019. She was Senior Associate at the Law Offices of Vincent W. Davis from 2013 to 2019 and served as a Referee at the Los Angeles County Superior Court from 1997 to 2013. Davis was a Sole Practitioner from 1997 to 2003 and Managing Partner at Davis & Davis from 1989 to 1997. She served as an Attorney at the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, Los Angeles Regional Office from 1986 to 1988. Davis earned a Juris Doctor degree from Loyola Law School. She fills the vacancy created by the retirement of Judge Teri Schwartz. She is a Democrat.
Jessica Kronstadt, of Los Angeles County, has been appointed to serve as a Judge in the Los Angeles County Superior Court. Kronstadt has served as a Deputy District Attorney at the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office since 2013. She was an Attorney at Bet Tzedek Legal Services from 2012 to 2013 and an Associate at Latham & Watkins LLP from 2009 to 2012. Kronstadt earned a Juris Doctor degree from the Washington University in St. Louis School of Law. She fills the vacancy created by the retirement of Judge Amy D. Hogue. Kronstadt is a Democrat.

Madera County Superior Court

Brian Enos, of Madera County,  has been appointed to serve as a Judge in the Madera County Superior Court. Enos has served as an Assistant U.S. Attorney at the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Eastern District of California since 2005. He was Senior Associate Attorney at Sagaser, Franson & Jones from 2000 to 2005 and an Associate at Kimble, MacMichael & Upton from 1998 to 2000. Enos earned a Juris Doctor degree from the University of Illinois College of Law. He fills the vacancy of a new position created on July 1, 2022. He is a Democrat.

Monterey County Superior Court

Ian Rivamonte, of Santa Clara County,  has been appointed to serve as a Judge in the Monterey County Superior Court. Rivamonte has been an Associate at Kazan, McClain, Satterley & Greenwood APC since 2004. He was a Tutor for the University of San Francisco School of Law Academic Support Program from 2003 to 2004. Rivamonte earned a Juris Doctor degree from the University of San Francisco School of Law. He fills the vacancy created by the retirement of Judge Lydia M Villarreal. He is a Democrat.

Orange County Superior Court

Alma Hernandez, of Orange County,  has been appointed to serve as a Judge in the Orange County Superior Court. Hernandez has served as a Deputy District Attorney at the Riverside County District Attorney’s Office since 2007. She was an Associate at Dapeer, Rosenblit & Litvak from 2002 to 2007. Hernandez earned a Juris Doctor degree from Whittier Law School. She fills the vacancy created by the elevation of Judge Fred W. Slaughter to the federal bench. Hernandez is a Democrat.

Sacramento County Superior Court

Shauna Franklin, of Sacramento County, has been appointed to serve as a Judge in the Sacramento County Superior Court. Franklin has served as a Deputy District Attorney at the Sacramento County District Attorney’s Office since 1999. She earned a Juris Doctor degree from the University of California College of the Law, San Francisco. Franklin fills the vacancy of a new position created on July 1, 2022. She is a Democrat.
Julie Weng-Gutierrez, of Yolo County, has been appointed to serve as a Judge in the Sacramento County Superior Court. Weng-Gutierrez has served as Chief Counsel at the California Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control since 2019. She served in several roles at the California Attorney General’s Office from 2000 to 2019, including Senior Assistant Attorney General and Supervising Deputy Attorney General. She served as Staff Counsel at the California Department of Health Services from 1997 to 2000 and was a Sole Practitioner from 1996 to 1997. Weng-Gutierrez earned a Juris Doctor degree from the University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law. She fills the vacancy of a new position created on July 1, 2022. Weng-Gutierrez is a Democrat.

San Diego County Superior Court

Lilys McCoy, of San Diego County, has been appointed to serve as a Judge in the San Diego County Superior Court. McCoy has served as a Deputy City Attorney at the San Diego City Attorney’s Office since 2020. She was a Program Director and Adjunct Professor at the Thomas Jefferson School of Law from 2012 to 2019 and Of Counsel at Bravo Law Group from 2014 to 2019. She was a Shareholder and Partner at McCoy, Turnage & Robertson LLP from 2003 to 2012 and an Associate at Rosner, Law & Mansfield LLP from 1999 to 2003. McCoy was a Sole Practitioner from 1996 to 1999 and from 1992 to 1994. She was an Associate at the Law Office of Gregory Jon Anthony from 1994 to 1996. McCoy earned a Juris Doctor degree from the University of Arizona College of Law. She fills the vacancy created by the retirement of Judge Jay M. Bloom. She is a Democrat.

Santa Barbara County Superior Court

Karen A. O’Neil, of Santa Barbara County, has been appointed to serve as a Judge in the Santa Barbara County Superior Court. O’Neil has been President and Managing Shareholder at Kirk & Simas PLC since 2017, where she held several positions from 2011 to 2017, including Shareholder and Associate. She was an Associate and then Partner at Twitchell and Rice LLP from 2003 to 2011. O’Neil was an Associate at Littler Mendelson PC from 2002 to 2003 and at O’Brien, Watters & Davis LLP from 2000 to 2002. She earned a Juris Doctor degree from the University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law. O’Neil fills the vacancy created by the retirement of Judge Timothy J. Staffel. She is a Democrat.

Santa Clara County Superior Court

Benjamin Williams, of San Mateo County, has been appointed to serve as a Judge in the Santa Clara County Superior Court. Williams has served as a Commissioner at the Santa Clara County Superior Court since 2018. He was a Sole Practitioner from 2009 to 2018 and an Associate at Manchester, Williams and Seibert from 2002 to 2009. Williams earned a Juris Doctor degree from the Santa Clara University School of Law. He fills the vacancy created by the elevation of Judge Cynthia C. Lie to the Court of Appeal. Williams is a Democrat.

The compensation for each of these positions is $231,174.

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