Friday, October 4, 2002
Superior Court Commissioner Eugene Siegel Sets Retirement
By a MetNews Staff Writer
Los Angeles Superior Court Commissioner Eugene Siegel said yesterday he will retire from the court after 12 years as a bench officer.
Today will be the 59-year-old jurist’s last day on the bench. He will officially retire, he said, when his accrued vacation time expires later this month.
“There comes a time when you’re ready to move on to other things,” he said. He declined to comment on whether there was any relationship between his decision and the round of budget cuts now affecting the courts, including the layoffs of several referees in the North District where he sits.
Siegel, a 1977 of Glendale University College of Law, said he has enjoyed serving the tight-knit legal community of the Antelope Valley. He was president of the Antelope Valley Bar Association in 1991 when local judges named him an Antelope Municipal Court commissioner, a post he left to become a Superior Court referee before becoming a Superior Court commissioner in 1995.
He currently sits at the court’s new civil courthouse in Palmdale.
“I was the only member of the Antelope Valley bar [to be] elected commissioner in the history of the Superior Court,” he noted, although other Antelope Municipal Court commissioners became Superior Court commissioners through court coordination and unification. He also won the AVBA’ s Schwabacher Award for his service.
Siegel, who practiced family law and criminal defense in Los Angeles and Lancaster before becoming a court commissioner, said he will continue to teach criminal law at Antelope Valley College and plans to become a private judge. He said he has no plans to affiliate with any private judging organization at this time, but that he expects his good relations with local lawyers and judges to stand him in good stead.
A native of Cleveland, Ohio, he worked as a jazz musician and record producer before going to law school.
Copyright 2002, Metropolitan News Company