Patricia Guerrero sworn in as 1st Latina justice on California Supreme Court

Justice Patricia Guerrero was sworn in Monday as the first Latina justice on the California Supreme Court. Learn and españolGov. Gavin Newsom administered her oath on her grandfather’s bible during a ceremony at the Leland Stanford Mansion in Sacramento. Newsom said her appointment was about “meritocracy” and that she was “best in class.” | VIDEO BELOW | Gov. Gavin Newsom swears in Justice Patricia Guerrero to the California Supreme CourtGuerrero, who was unanimously confirmed by the Commission on Judicial Appointments last week, said she had “never dreamed” growing up that she would be sworn in as an associate justice on California’s Supreme Court. She said she “did not get here alone” and cited the courage, sacrifices and struggles of her parents and grandparents. They came to the United States in pursuit of the American dream, she said. “I am deeply honored and humbled by this historic nomination,” Guerrero said. Guerrero, 50, of San Diego, grew up in the agricultural Imperial Valley and has worked as a federal prosecutor, law firm partner, Superior Court judge and, most recently, as a justice on the 4th District Court of Appeal.The seven-member California Supreme Court is now made up of four justices nominated by Democrats and two by Republicans.Newsom has made diversity on the bench a priority. In 2020, he nominated the first openly gay justice, Martin Jenkins, who is the third Black person to serve on the court. Guerrero’s grandfather came to the US from the Mexican state of Sonora and got residency through a sponsor, she said. When her father arrived, he initially worked picking crops. Her mother, who recently died from breast cancer, emphasized the importance of reading and education and said there were no limitations on what her children could accomplish.Guerrero worked at a grocery store as a teen and was co-valedictorian at her high school. She graduated from the University of California, Berkeley and Stanford Law School. Guerrero has written opinions protecting consumer and individual rights while upholding the constitutional rights of criminal defendants.Despite the growing influence of Latinos, who make up the largest racial or ethnic group of California’s nearly 40 million residents, no Latina has served in a statewide constitutional office or as a U.S. senator, said Sonja Diaz, founding director of UCLA’s Latino Policy and Politics Initiative.Latinas sit on high courts in Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, New York and Texas, Diaz said. , but we are underrepresented in nearly every industry, including the California judiciary, ”said Sen. María Elena Durazo, chair of the California Latino Legislative Caucus. “When Latinas are absent from this critical branch of government, our experiences and perspectives are excluded, and this ripples throughout our communities in so many other ways.” Retired California Supreme Court Justice Carlos Moreno noted that Guerrero would also bring some geographical diversity to the court. The Imperial Valley, an impoverished agricultural region that borders Mexico and Arizona is an often forgotten part of the state. “With her extensive experience handling complex litigation matters, intellectual rigor and commitment to fairness and equality, Justice Guerrero is well-equipped to navigate the most complex legal issues in our court system and will make an excellent addition to our state’s highest court, “Moreno said.Guerrero will receive a salary of $ 274,000.– The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Justice Patricia Guerrero was sworn in Monday as the first Latina justice on the California Supreme Court.

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Gov. Gavin Newsom administered her oath on her grandfather’s bible during a ceremony at the Leland Stanford Mansion in Sacramento.

Newsom said her appointment was about “meritocracy” and that she was “best in class.”

| VIDEO BELOW | Gov. Gavin Newsom swears in Justice Patricia Guerrero to the California Supreme Court

Guerrero, who was unanimously confirmed by the Commission on Judicial Appointments last week, said she had “never dreamed” growing up that she would be sworn in as an associate justice on California’s Supreme Court.

She said she “did not get here alone” and cited the courage, sacrifices and struggles of her parents and grandparents. They came to the United States in pursuit of the American dream, she said.

“I am deeply honored and humbled by this historic nomination,” Guerrero said.

Guerrero, 50, of San Diego, grew up in the agricultural Imperial Valley and has worked as a federal prosecutor, law firm partner, Superior Court judge and, most recently, as a justice on the 4th District Court of Appeal.

The seven-member California Supreme Court is now made up of four justices nominated by Democrats and two by Republicans.

Newsom has made diversity on the bench a priority. In 2020, he nominated the first openly gay justice, Martin Jenkins, who is the third Black person to serve on the court.

Guerrero’s grandfather came to the US from the Mexican state of Sonora and got residency through a sponsor, she said. When her father arrived, he initially worked picking crops. Her mother, who recently died from breast cancer, emphasized the importance of reading and education and said there were no limitations on what her children could accomplish.

Guerrero worked at a grocery store as a teen and was co-valedictorian at her high school. She graduated from the University of California, Berkeley and Stanford Law School.

Guerrero has written opinions protecting consumer and individual rights while upholding the constitutional rights of criminal defendants.

Despite the growing influence of Latinos, who make up the largest racial or ethnic group of California’s nearly 40 million residents, no Latina has served in a statewide constitutional office or as a US senator, said Sonja Diaz, founding director of UCLA’s Latino Policy and Politics Initiative.

Latinas sit on high courts in Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, New York and Texas, Diaz said.

“Latinas make up nearly 20 percent of California’s population, but we are underrepresented in nearly every industry, including the California judiciary,” said Sen. María Elena Durazo, chair of the California Latino Legislative Caucus. “When Latinas are absent from this critical branch of government, our experiences and perspectives are excluded, and this ripples throughout our communities in so many other ways.”

Retired California Supreme Court Justice Carlos Moreno noted that Guerrero would also bring some geographical diversity to the court. The Imperial Valley, an impoverished agricultural region that borders Mexico and Arizona is an often forgotten part of the state.

“With her extensive experience handling complex litigation matters, intellectual rigor and commitment to fairness and equality, Justice Guerrero is well-equipped to navigate the most complex legal issues in our court system and will make an excellent addition to our state’s highest court,” Moreno said.

Guerrero will receive a salary of $ 274,000.

– The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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