Monday, November 19, 2007
Superior Court Commissioner James N. Bianco to Run for Judge
By KENNETH OFGANG, Staff Writer
Los Angeles Superior Court Commissioner James N. Bianco said Friday he will run for an open Superior Court seat in the June primary.
“I’m really enjoying the challenge of being a commissioner,” Bianco said. “I’ve been very fortunate in my assignments. But sometimes being a commissioner is a limitation, and I’d like to open the possibility of eventually being assigned elsewhere.”
Bianco, 44, has been a commissioner since May 2005 and currently handles a misdemeanor trial court downtown.
He told the MetNews that he has raised about $75,000 and has more than $25,000 more in commitments. Only about $100 of that is his own money, he said, with most of his donors being attorneys and judges.
He said he has been endorsed by more than 100 judges and commissioners and has retained the consulting services of Parke Skelton, who has managed a number of successful judicial races. Many of his endorsers, who include three appellate court justices, are listed on his campaign Web site, biancoforjudge.com.
Bianco was of counsel to the Los Angeles firm of Overland, Borenstein, Scheper, and Kim when the court’s judges elected him to his current post. He said at the time that he was ready for a change in careers after 18 years of practicing law.
His practice was primarily as a criminal defense attorney, although he began at a civil firm after being admitted to the State Bar in 1987.
Bianco is a graduate of the State University of New York-Stony Brook and of USC Law School. A native of Syosset, N.Y, he said he came to California for the warm weather and lifestyle, and originally planned to go back East to practice but liked this area too much and stayed.
He joined the Santa Monica City Attorney’s Office in 1990, stayed four years, then established his own practice in Santa Monica. He moved to the Overland Borenstein firm just a few months before he was appointed commissioner.
Bianco said he was unaware of any judges who do not plan to run for re-election, but had started his campaign based on past history, which suggests that a half dozen or so incumbent judges will not file for re-election. The filing period for the June 3 vote begins in February.
Copyright 2007, Metropolitan News Company