Issue:  Vol. 48 / No. 8 / 22 February 2018

Gay judge confirmed to CA appellate court

Luis A. Lavin was appointed to a seat on the state Court of Appeal. Photo: Courtesy Governor's office

Luis A. Lavin was appointed to a seat on the state Court of Appeal. Photo: Courtesy Governor’s office

A state commission that approves judicial appointments voted today to confirm the first openly gay justice to serve on California’s Second District Court of Appeal, which hears cases from the counties of Los Angeles, Ventura, Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo.

Luis A. Lavin, 56, who has served on the Los Angeles County Superior Court since 2001, was appointed in June by Governor Jerry Brown to be an associate justice of the appellate court’s Division Three based in Los Angeles.

The Commission on Judicial Appointments approved Lavin by a unanimous vote at a public hearing this morning (Thursday, July 23) held in the Supreme Court Courtroom at the Ronald Reagan State Office Building in Los Angeles. He fills the vacancy created by the death of Justice H. Walter Croskey.

Lavin, a Los Angeles resident and registered Democrat, becomes the third out appellate court judge in the Golden State as greater scrutiny is being paid to the dearth of LGBT judges on both the state and federal bench. As noted in a story in today’s Bay Area Reporter, of the state’s 58 counties, 45 have no self-identified LGBT judges on the local state superior court.

And just two of the state’s six appellate courts have out justices.

Last year, Brown named Therese M. Stewart to a seat on Division Two of the First District Court of Appeal. It marked the first time an out lesbian was named to the state’s appellate bench.

At the same time Brown named James M. Humes as the presiding justice of the First District Court of Appeal’s Division One. It marked the first time an out judge had been appointed to a presiding position on an appellate court.

With Lavin’s confirmation today, there are now three out judges among the 98 serving on courts of appeal in California.

— Matthew S. Bajko, July 23, 2015 @ 2:41 pm PST
Filed under: Uncategorized

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