Judicial Mentor Program
The San Francisco Superior Court Judicial Mentor Program (the Program) is designed to increase the diverse background and experience of its bench. This program was designed by judges in collaboration with the Office of Governor Gavin Newsom. The primary objective of the program is to provide attorneys who are interested in becoming judges with a mentor to provide insight and encouragement throughout the process. Wherever possible, applicants will be paired with judicial mentors based upon shared backgrounds, professional experiences, and common interests.
Mentor judges will be available to those seeking guidance in applying to the bench. The role of the mentor judges is not to select or recommend candidates; rather it is to demystify the application and vetting process. Mentors and applicants will be expected to meet quarterly each year to set objectives, evaluate progress, and discuss future professional development goals.
This Program is designed to promote public trust and confidence in the judicial system by ensuring a judiciary that reflects the unique communities in San Francisco and California. Judges involved in the Program will work to support and encourage anyone who is interested in being a judicial officer.
- Assist in the recruitment of qualified and diverse judicial applicant pool.
- Connect judicial mentors with all qualifying individuals interested in pursuing a judicial career.
- Conduct educational outreach programs to provide information on the judicial application and appointment process and general criteria for appointment.
- Evaluate Program success by capturing data to measure overall effectiveness of the Program.
How the Program Works
This two-part program consists of a one-on-one mentor committee and a community outreach committee.
The San Francisco Superior Court bench is committed to the important work of mentoring people interested in applying to the bench. To assist in the recruitment and development of an outstanding, inclusive and diverse judicial applicant pool, the Court has appointed a formal panel of mentor judges who will be available to qualified persons seeking guidance in applying to the bench. Participants will be paired with a mentor judge who will discuss the prospective applicant’s career objectives, answer questions regarding the application and vetting process, and be available to assist in providing input as the candidate completes the application and progresses through the judicial appointments process.
Mentorship Outreach Committee
The Outreach Committee will work with all sectors of the legal community, including bar associations, public interest organizations, government attorneys, private law firms and solo practitioners. The Outreach Committee will coordinate with bar organizations that already have judicial recruitment programs and work to complement their efforts.
An applicant must:
- Have practiced law in the State of California for at least 8 years.
- Be in good standing with the State Bar of California.
- Be able to commit to meeting with assigned mentor at least four times a year.
Judicial Mentor Application Form
The Program is offered under the leadership of San Francisco Superior Court Presiding Judge Anne-Christine Massullo, Judge Linda Colfax, the Chair of the Judicial Mentorship Committee, and Judge Russ Roeca, Executive Committee Member of the California Judicial Mentor Program.
The Committee meets once a month to review applications, identify best practices, and if necessary, conduct additional training of judicial mentors. Additional meetings will be at the sole discretion of the chair.
The Committee will create a toolkit with education and training resources that will be available for all mentors and mentees and will collect and retain statewide data on judicial appointments.
How to Apply
Interested individuals should download the fillable Judicial Mentorship Program Application and submit their completed Application and Resume to JudicialMentors@sftc.org.
Participation in the San Francisco Superior Court Judicial Mentor Program does not guarantee the appointment of any applicant to the bench.