Metropolitan News-Enterprise


Tuesday, October 10, 2006


Page 4


Mexican State’s Chief Justice Praises Links With California Counterparts


By a MetNews Staff Writer


The chief justice of the Mexican state of Michoacan, an invited guest at the 77th annual meeting of the California Judges Association, praised his hosts Friday and said he looks forward to further ties with this state’s judiciary.

“I am convinced that our judiciaries will continue growing our links of friendship and institutional cooperation, for beyond our differences in language, nationality and culture, we share a common and superior value: justice,” Fernando Arreola Vega said in brief remarks.

Last week apparently marked the first time in its history that the CJA hosted an international delegation—nine bench officers from Michoacan, including the chief justice.

Outgoing CJA President Judge Terry Friedman formally welcomed the visiting jurists during the membership luncheon and awards ceremony.

“[We want] to tell everyone about a wonderful growing relationship between the judges of California and judges from Morelia,” the capital of Michoacan, he said.

Vega thanked Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Teresa Sanchez-Gordon for her efforts to foster a growing relationship between Californian and Mexican judges. She, along with San Diego Superior Court Judge Luis R. Vargas and CJA staff, arranged for a group of CJA members to make an eight-day educational visit to Morelia last July

Other highlights of CJA’s kickoff event Friday were the presentation of the Alba Wilkin Humanitarian Award to retired Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Marvin D. Rowen for his work to benefit children through Shriners Hospital, and to San Diego Superior Court Judge William C. Pate for his efforts to help Mississippi courts devastated by Hurricane Katrina.

Rowen was not present, but retired Court of Appeal Justice Elizabeth Baron, who nominated him for the award, accepted on his behalf. She said Rowen has been involved in providing free medical care to children for 30 years.

CJA’s Bernard Jefferson Award, honoring excellence in judicial education, was given to Presiding Justice Paul Turner of Div. Five of this district’s Court of Appeal. Turner, an appellate justice for almost 17 years, has written prolifically for numerous legal publications and has contributed to various handbooks for California judges.

He regularly speaks for continuing judicial education programs and he has addressed numerous bar associations and legal and community groups in addition to CJA, including the Los Angeles County Bar Association., American Bar Association., and the Appellate Judges Conference.

Justice Brad R. Hill of the Fifth District Court of Appeal was the recipient of this year’s President’s Award, which recognizes a jurist’s outstanding service to the California judiciary.

Friedman remarked at the luncheon that CJA’s conference last week was “the most successful annual meeting in over ten years”—it drew 403 registrants, a high turnout Friedman attributed to the strong evidence-themed judicial education programs organized by Justice Mark B. Simons and the planning committee

“I’ll note that everyone is here voluntarily,” Friedman quipped in an apparent allusion to the ongoing controversy over proposals to set mandatory standards for judicial education.


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