Metropolitan News-Enterprise


Monday, December 17, 2018


Page 1


Two Appointed to Los Angeles Superior Court

Elevation of Commissioners Blancarte, Martella Puts Court at Full Strength; Two Vacancies Anticipated on Friday—Brown Expected to Fill Them


By a MetNews Staff Writer


All Los Angeles Superior Court judgeships are now filled, with the appointment Friday of two commissioners of that court,  James E. Blancarte and Timothy R. Martella, but two vacancies are expected to occur on Friday, with the anticipated confirmation of Judges Brian Currey and John Shepard Wiley to this district’s Court of Appeal.

Gov. Jerry Brown, whose term ends Jan. 7 upon the swearing in of his successor, Gavin Newsom, appears determined to leave no judicial office unfilled, Chief Justice Tani Cantil-Sakauye recently observed. Also on Friday, Brown made one Superior Court appointment in Alameda County and two in Riverside County, as well as bestowing a judgeship in Sacramento on an aide.



Superior Court Judge appointee


Superior Court Judge appointee


Blancarte, 65, became a commissioner in 2016. He was of counsel to Alvarado Smith APC from 2014-16, where he had been a partner from 2009-14. His law degree is from UCLA.

Martella, 70, was hired as a commissioner in 2015. Before that, he was in private practice since 1981 and, which practicing, was a Board of Rights hearing examiner for the Los Angeles Police Department Police Commission from 2007-15. He received his law degree from the University of West Los Angeles.

Both appointees in Los Angeles will assume seats created through the conversion of commissionerships to judgeships.

Continuing a trend, the governor picked one of his deputy legal affairs secretaries for a judicial post. Kristina B. Lindquist, 37, was chosen to be a Sacramento Superior Court judge.

Brown previously placed three other aides on that court: Joginder S. Dhillon, 57, a senior adviser of his; Peter K. Southworth, 53, a  chief deputy legal affairs secretary; and Daniel J. Calabretta, 40, also a deputy legal affairs secretary.

Two other deputy legal affairs secretaries were picked for Court of Appeal seats, and have been confirmed. They are Gabriel P. Sanchez, in the First District,  and Peter Krause, in the Third District.

Brown appointed his senior legal advisor, Josh Groban, to the California Supreme Court. A conformation hearing is slated for Friday.

Also on Friday, Brown placed Patrick R. McKinney II, 45, assistant secretary for legal affairs and chief counsel at the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, on the Alameda Superior Court, and gave Riverside Superior Court judgeships to sole practitioner Cheryl C. Murphy, 56, and Riverside Deputy District Attorney Samah Shouka, 46.

Four of Friday’s appointees are Democrats; two—Martella and Shouka—have no party preference.


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