Judge Maria D. Hernandez was one of three recipients of the Judicial Council’s 2016 Distinguished Service Award, the highest honor given by the state court system’s governing body. Now in its 23rd year, the award honors California judicial branch members for “extraordinary dedication, outstanding leadership, and significant contributions to advancing the council’s strategic goals for the judicial branch.” Judge Hernandez, an Adjunct Professor teaching Juvenile Law, was appointed to the Superior Court of Orange County as a commissioner in 2006 and later a judge by former governor Arnold Schwarzenegger in 2009. She currently serves as Presiding Judge of the Juvenile Court of the Orange County Superior Court. Judge Hernandez’s “personal dedication and extraordinary commitment to advancing and improving the juvenile justice system” are described in a recent news release by the California Courts newsroom. Chief Justice Tani Cantil-Sakauye presented Judge Hernandez with the award.
Professor Stacey Sobel spoke on a panel regarding lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) activism in the new millennium at the Gender, Work and Organization (GWO) Conference held at Keele University, Staffordshire, UK, June 29 – July 1. The GWO Conference provides an international forum for debate and analysis of a variety of issues related to gender studies. More than 400 international scholars from 38 nations attended the interdisciplinary conference. Professor Sobel’s presentation, “Culture Shifting at Warp Speed: How the Law, Public Engagement, and Will & Grace Led to Social Change for LGBT People,” was based on her recent article in the St. John’s University Law Review.
Professor Philip L. Merkel recently published Scholar or Practitioner? Rethinking Qualifications for Entry-Level Tenure-Track Professors at Fourth-Tier Law Schools, 44 Capital University Law Review 507 (2016). The article is based on an empirical study of recent law school tenure-track hiring patterns, with particular emphasis on the experience of fourth-tier law schools. It challenges these schools whose mission is to train practicing lawyers to hire individuals with significant, relevant practice experience for tenure-track positions rather than following the current trend of basing hiring decisions mainly on a candidate’s law school pedigree and the ability to produce academic legal scholarship. The article appears in an issue of the Capital University Law Review devoted to current topics in legal education.
Professors Jennifer Koh and Judge Halim Dhanidina (LA County Superior Court) have joined the Community Advisory Council for the nonprofit Asian Americans Advancing Justice’s Orange County office. Advancing Justice is the country’s largest legal and civil rights organizations for the Asian American, Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander (AANHPI) community. The newly created Community Advisory Council to the organization’s Orange County office is comprised of key leaders from the county’s nonprofit organizations, law schools, judiciary and bar associations, and will focus on building a strong coalition of AANHPI community leaders and groups.