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Chief Justice Patricia Guerrero

On January 3, 2023, Justice Patricia Guerrero will assume the lead role on the California Supreme Court. The constitutional duties of the state's Chief Justice also include serving as chair of the Judicial Council and chair of the Commission on Judicial Appointments.

2002 to 2003: Assistant U.S. Attorney at the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Southern District of California

2013 to 2017: Judge at the Superior Court of San Diego County

2017 to 2022: Associate Justice at the Court of Appeal, Fourth Appellate District, Division One 

March 22, 2022: Justice Patricia Guerrero is confirmed as Associate Justice of the California Supreme Court (view), replacing Associate Justice Mariano-Florentino Cuéllar, who left the bench effective October 31, 2021

March 28, 2022: Governor Gavin Newsom swears in Justice Guerrero to serve on the state's high court (view

April 5, 2022: Participates in her first oral argument on the California Supreme Court (view)

August 10, 2022: Governor Gavin Newsom nominates Justice Guerrero to the position of Chief Justice of California. (On the same day, he names Judge Kelli Evans as her replacement.) 

August 26, 2022: Confirmed as next Chief Justice by Commission on Judicial Appointments--her name to appear on the ballot in the November general election (view)

November 8, 2022: Justice Guerrero receives 71% of the vote in the general election (view report)

January 2, 2023: Governor Gavin Newsom to swear in Chief Justice

Things you should know about Chief Justice-elect Patricia Guerrero (excerpted from the March 17, 2022, Commission on Judicial Nominees Evaluation report):

  • Graduated from Imperial High School
  • Obtained a B.A. degree in Legal Studies, and graduated magna cum laude in 1994 from the University of California, Berkeley 
  • Obtained her J.D. degree in June 1997 from Stanford Law School
  • Justice Guerrero has had an exceptional career as a litigator in both the private and public sectors, with criminal, civil, trial, and appellate experience
  • Chief Justice Tani G. Cantil-Sakauye precedes her