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News Release

Commission to Consider Selection of Judge Kelli Evans to California Supreme Court

By Merrill Balassone Sep 21, 2022

SAN FRANCISCO—The Commission on Judicial Appointments will hold a public hearing on Nov. 10 at 10 a.m. in the Supreme Court Courtroom—located on the fourth floor of 350 McAllister Street in San Francisco—to consider the selection of Judge Kelli Evans to the California Supreme Court.

Judge Evans was selected by Gov. Gavin Newsom to fill the vacancy that would be created by the nomination of Associate Justice Patricia Guerrero to serve as California’s next chief justice.  Justice Guerrero was confirmed by this commission on Aug. 26 and must also be elected by the voters at the Nov. 8 election.

Seating in the courtroom will be limited—with some overflow seating also available in the Milton Marks Auditorium, located at 455 Golden Gate Avenue in San Francisco. Any mask requirements will be enforced as may be required by state and local health directives in effect at the time of the hearing. The hearing will be webcast live on the California Courts Newsroom.

The state Constitution specifies that a gubernatorial appointment to the Supreme Court is effective when confirmed by the Commission on Judicial Appointments.

The commission members who will consider the selection are Chief Justice of California Tani G. Cantil-Sakauye (Chair), California Attorney General Rob Bonta, and senior Presiding Justice of the state Court of Appeal Manuel A. Ramirez

Appointee Summary Biography

Judge Evans has served as an Alameda County Superior Court judge since 2021. Before that, she served as chief deputy legal affairs secretary in the Office of Governor Gavin Newsom, where she advised the Governor and executive agencies on a myriad of issues involving administrative proceedings and involving state and federal trial and appellate courts.

Judge Evans served as special assistant to the attorney general at the California Department of Justice from 2017 to 2019 and was senior director for the administration of justice at the California State Bar from 2014 to 2017. She was associate director of the ACLU of Northern California from 2010 to 2013, where she served as an attorney from 1995 to 1998. She was a partner at Independent Assessment & Monitoring LLP from 2006 to 2010 and an associate at Relman and Associates from 2001 to 2004. Judge Evans served as a senior trial attorney in the Civil Rights Division of the U.S. Department of Justice from 1998 to 2001 and as an assistant public defender at the Sacramento County Public Defender’s Office in 1995. She has served as a member of federal court-appointed monitoring teams for the Oakland and Cleveland Police Departments.

Instilled with the importance of education by her grandmother, Judge Evans excelled academically and was able to attend a top-rated high school after her family moved from a public housing project to a HUD-subsidized apartment. One of only a small number of students of color at the school, she managed to thrive and graduate among the top of her class while working 20 hours a week to help support her family. Judge Evans went on to attend Stanford University and earned a Juris Doctor degree from the University of California, Davis School of Law, where she received the Martin Luther King, Jr. Award for exceptional public service.

Testimony and Comment

Requests to testify or written comments on the selection must be received by the commission no later than 5 p.m. on Nov. 3. Anyone wishing to testify before the commission must state that request in writing and include a summary of the facts on which any testimony or opinion will be based.

Submissions via email to coja@jud.ca.gov are strongly encouraged. Hard copies are not required.

If you would like to mail your request, you may also reach the commission at:

Commission on Judicial Appointmentsc/o Chief Justice of California
Supreme Court of California
350 McAllister Street
San Francisco, California 94102
Attention: Secretary to the Commission

Guidelines for the Commission on Judicial Appointments are published in the appendix to the California Rules of Court and are posted on the California Courts website.

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