Tuesday, July 1, 2014
Brown Names Rothschild and Edmon Presiding Justices of C.A.
Hoffstadt and Collins Nominated to Fill Associate Justice Vacancies
By a MetNews Staff Writer
Court of Appeal Justice
LEE S. EDMON
Los Angeles Superior Court Judge
BRIAN M. HOFFSTADT
Los Angeles Superior Court Judge
AUDREY B. COLLINS
U.S. District Judge
Gov. Jerry Brown has named Court of Appeal Justice Frances Rothschild as presiding justice of this district’s Div. One, and proposed three judges of other courts for appointment to other divisions.
The Governor’s Office Saturday said Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Brian M. Hoffstadt would be nominated as associate justice in Div. Two, former Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Presiding Judge Lee S. Edmon as presiding justice in Div. Three, and U.S. District Judge Audrey B. Collins as associate justice in Div. Four.
Brown also named two candidates to fill vacancies in the First District.
Rothschild, 73, was named to the Court of Appeal by then-Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger in 2005. She was named to the Superior Court by Brown in 1978, while he was in his first term as governor.
She was a Los Angeles Municipal Court judge at the time of her appointment to the Superior Court, having been named to the lower court by Brown in 1975.
She came to the bench from a private law practice specializing in labor law and other civil litigation. In a 1983 interview, she attributed her appointment to the bench to being in the right place at the right time, having represented Brown in a lawsuit when he was secretary of state.
She also served as senior counsel for the California State University and Colleges and clerked for Shirley Hufstedler when the future U.S. secretary of education was a justice of this district’s Court of Appeal.
Rothschild earned her law and undergraduate degrees at UCLA. She was born in Poland and immigrated to the United States with her family when she was 8 years old.
The family initially settled in Brooklyn, and she attended Rutgers University before transferring to UCLA.
If confirmed by the Commission on Judicial Appointments, she will fill the vacancy created by the retirement of Presiding Justice Robert M. Mallano.
Hoffstadt, 43, was named to the Superior Court by then-Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger in 2010.
He was a partner at Jones Day from 2007 until his appointment to the bench. He served in the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Central District of California as an assistant U.S. attorney for the preceding seven years and was senior counsel for the U.S. Department of Justice from 1998 until 2000.
He also served as special counsel in the Office of General Counsel for the Federal Communications Commission from 1997 to 1998 following service as a law clerk to then-U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor from 1996 to 1997, and to Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals Judge Cynthia Holcomb Hall—since deceased—from 1995 to 1996.
Hoffstadt was admitted to the State Bar in 1996 after graduating from California State Polytechnic University Pomona and the UCLA School of Law.
If confirmed, Hoffstadt would the vacancy created by the retirement of Justice Kathryn Doi Todd.
Edmon, 58, was appointed to the Los Angeles Superior Court by then-Gov. Gray Davis in 2001 and was the court’s first female presiding judge, holding the post in 2011 and 2012 before being assigned to a complex civil trial court. She is also a former member of the Judicial Council.
Edmon served as president of the County Bar from 1998 to 1999, following terms as its senior vice president and vice president/treasurer.
She has served on the boards of a number of other legal organizations as well.
Edmon, a graduate of Bob Jones University and the University of Illinois College of Law, began her legal career with the law firm of Adams, Duque and Hazeltine. In 1987, she moved to Dewey Ballantine LLP, where she became a partner in 1990.
Brown last week appointed her husband, Richard Burdge, to the Los Angeles Superior Court.
If confirmed by the commission and the voters, Edmon, a past recipient of the California Women Lawyers’ Joan Dempsey Klein Distinguished Jurist Award, would succeed the prize’s namesake. Klein recently announced that she would not seek retention for a new 12-year term, so Edmon would succeed her on Jan. 5.
Approval by a majority of Second Appellate District voters at the November general election is required before Edmon can take office because she is being nominated for a full term, rather than to succeed someone who vacated mid-term.
Collins, 69, has served on the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California since 1994, and was chief judge from 2009 to 2012.
She was appointed to the federal bench by then-President Bill Clinton following service as assistant district attorney for Los Angeles County, the No. 3 position in the office.
Collins graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Howard University in 1967, and earned her master’s degree in government and public administration from American University in 1969. She graduated Order of the Coif from UCLA’s law school in 1977, and joined the Legal Aid Foundation of Los Angeles as an assistant staff attorney.
One year later, Collins became a deputy district attorney for Los Angeles County. She served as the head deputy in the Torrance branch office from 1987-1988, assistant director of the Bureau of Central and Special Operations from 1988-1992, and assistant district attorney from 1992-1994.
She also served as deputy general counsel to William H. Webster, in his capacity as special advisor to the Los Angeles Board of Police Commissioners following the civil unrest of 1992.
She would fill the vacancy created by the retirement of Justice Steven Suzukawa.
If all of the nominees in this district are confirmed, there would still be vacancies in Divs. Five, Six and Seven.
Nominated by Brown in the First District were Justice James Humes of Div. Four, who would succeed the now-retired James Marchiano as presiding justice of Div. One, and San Francisco Chief Deputy City Attorney Therese M. Stewart, who would fill the Div. Two slot left open when Justice James Lambden retired.
The Commission on Judicial Appointments, when considering First District nominees, consists of Chief Justice Tani Cantil-Sakauye, Attorney General Kamala Harris, and senior Presiding Justice J. Anthony Kline. When considering Second District nominees, it consists of Cantil-Sakauye, Harris, and senior Presiding Justice Joan Dempsey Klein.
All of Saturday’s nominees are Democrats.
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