Metropolitan News-Enterprise


Friday, June 10, 2005


Page 1


Mary Lou Katz Elected Superior Court Commissioner


By a MetNews Staff Writer


Mary Lou Katz, a research attorney for this district’s Court of Appeal, has been elected a Los Angeles Superior Court commissioner, court officials said yesterday.

Katz, who works for Presiding Justice Dennis Perluss in Div. Seven, said she was “excited and pleased” to be joining the bench and expects to be sworn in on June 20. She will spend 10 days in orientation and then take up a yet-to-be-determined assignment, Katz explained.

Her decision to apply for the commissioner’s post, she explained, came as a result of working “with a lot of smart judges” at the Court of Appeal—after having been a civil litigator earlier in her career—and seeing how they approach the job. Perluss and Justice Paul Boland, among others, were “fabulously supportive” of her efforts to obtain the post.

Katz, 46, was the highest-ranked candidate on the list of candidates nominated by a judicial panel. She went to work for the appellate court after 12 years at Nossaman Guthner Knox Elliott LLP, which she joined shortly after graduating from law school at USC in 1988, rising to partner as a member of the firm’s business litigation practice.

Her undergraduate degree is from Pepperdine University.

The switch from litigation to the research attorney post, she explained, was made so that she could spend more time with her family and because she was “a little bit tired of fighting all the time.”

Katz fills the position left vacant when Stanford Reichert was appointed to the San Bernardino Superior Court.

Ballots are scheduled to go out today in voting for another commissioner slot, left open when Commissioner Guillermina Byrne retired earlier this week.

The favorite for that post, based on the panel rankings, is Alliance for Children’s Rights attorney Amy M. Pellman. Judges are not bound by the rankings, but the highest-ranked candidate has won every commissioner election for the last several years.

The remainder of the candidate list, in ranked order, is:

Los Angeles attorney Graciela Freixes; Santa Monica attorney Susan Weiss; Referee Alan H. Friedenthal; Los Angeles attorney David J. Cowan; Long Beach attorney Tamila Ipema; retired Municipal Court Commissioner John Murphy; former Referee Laura Hymowitz; Covina attorney Rocky Lee Crabb; and Joel Wallenstein, a former referee who now works for the State Compensation Insurance Fund.

Also Deputy County Counsel Catherine Pratt, Deputy District Attorney Cynthia Zuzga, Deputy District Attorney Lori-Ann Jones, Los Angeles attorney Robert Harrison, Referee Stephen Marpet, Deputy District Attorney Lia R. Martin, Los Angeles attorney Paul Ted Suzuki, Manhattan Beach attorney Michele Flurer, Deputy District Attorney William J. Woods, Los Angeles attorney Adrienne L. Krikorian, and Referee Jacqueline H. Lewis.


Copyright 2005, Metropolitan News Company