Thursday, July 25, 2002
Convey, Byrne Face Off in Race for Commissioner Spot
By a MetNews Staff Writer
Sherman Oaks practitioner Michael Convey and Los Angeles Superior Court Referee Guillermina Gutierrez Byrne face a runoff for a Superior Court commissioner vacancy, a court spokesman said yesterday.
Ballots went out Monday and are due back Aug. 15 in the balloting for the seat left vacant by the retirement of Commissioner Ernest Lopez.
This will be the second consecutive election in which Byrne has been in a runoff. She lost last month to Richard Novak, a former deputy federal public defender who took up his duties in Inglewood July 8.
Convey, who practices with Silva, Clasen & Raffalow, in-house counsel for Mercury Insurance Company, was the highest-ranked candidate for the balloting that concluded last Thursday.
Byrne, as she had last month, skipped over several higher-ranked candidates—veteran child-support enforcement lawyer Nicholas Taubert, Referee Marilyn Mackel, Deputy Public Defender Mark Zuckman, and Referee Stephen Marpet—to make the runoff.
The rankings were issued last August by a judicial panel. They are not binding on the court’s judges, who elect the commissioners, but Byrne is the only candidate on the current list, from which 13 commissioners have now been elected, to trump a higher-ranked applicant.
Convey is a graduate of Arizona State University and DePaul University School of Law. He was recently honored by Los Angeles County as Volunteer of the Year, based on his service as judge pro tem.
Byrne graduated from Immaculate Heart College and received her law degree from Loyola Law School.
There are nearly 150 Los Angeles Superior Court commissioners, more than the total number of bench officers on most other California courts.
Copyright 2002, Metropolitan News Company