Metropolitan News-Enterprise


Wednesday, March 21, 2007


Page 1


Bush Nominates Judge for Southern District of California


By a MetNews Staff Writer


President Bush has nominated San Diego Superior Court Presiding Judge Janis Lynn Sammartino to the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California.

Sammartino, 56, was tapped Monday to fill a vacancy created by the death of Judge Judith Keep in 2004.

Sammartino has been the presiding judge of the court since January of last year. She has served on the state court bench since 1994, when she was appointed to the San Diego Municipal Court by then-Gov. Pete Wilson, who elevated her to the Superior Court the following year.

On the Superior Court, she served in the Family Law Division through 1998, including 18 months as supervising judge. She served as a civil trial judge from 1999 to

2003, then as assistant presiding judge in 2004 and 2005.

Prior to coming onto the bench Sammartino worked in the San Diego City Attorney’s Office, where she served as senior chief deputy city attorney from 1990 to 1994, and deputy city attorney from 1976 to 1990.

Sammartino, who was born in Philadelphia, received her undergraduate degree in 1972 from Occidental College in Los Angeles and her law degree in 1975 from the University of Notre Dame Law School.

The jurist currently serves on the California Judges Association Ethics Committee, the Statewide Judicial Ethics Task Force, and the Trial Court Presiding Judges Advisory Committee to the Judicial Council of California.

Her memberships include the San Diego Judges Association, the American Inns of Court’s Louis M. Welch Chapter, of which she is the current master and president-elect; and the Association of Business Trial Lawyers of San Diego, of which she is member of the Board of Governors. She also is a member of the National Association of Women Judges, California Women Lawyers and the Lawyers Club of San Diego, and former president of the Board of Advisors for the UC San Diego Medical Center.

Sammartino has authored a number of articles on environmental and land use law.

The president Monday also nominated a number of judicial candidates around the country, including Raymond M. Kethledge, a Detroit attorney who was an aide to former Sen. Spencer Abraham, R-Michigan , when Abraham served on the Senate Judiciary Committee, and Stephen J. Murphy III,  the U.S. attorney for the Eastern District of Michigan. Both were nominated to the Sixth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals; both had previously been nominated to that court but the nominations were not voted on last year.

Nominated to vacancies on district courts were Robert J. Jonker, a prominent litigator and partner in a Grand Rapids law firm; Paul L. Maloney, a state trial court judge from the Benton Harbor area; and Michigan Court of Appeals Judge Janet T. Neff in the Western District of Michigan; Sharion Aycock, a state trial judge from Tupelo, in the Northern District of Mississippi; U.S. Attorney David R. Dugas in the Middle District of Louisiana; James R. Hall in the Southern District of Georgia; Richard H. Honaker, a litigator from Rock Springs and former state bar president, in the District of Wyoming, and Superior Court Judge Richard A. Jones of King County in the Western District of Washington.


Copyright 2007, Metropolitan News Company