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SACRAMENTO � Incoming Attorney General Jerry Brown has tapped a current state Department of Justice executive to direct his administration’s legal policy. James Humes, now head of the department’s civil division, will become chief deputy attorney general for legal affairs when Brown is sworn into office on Jan. 8. Current Chief Deputy Robert Anderson is retiring. “Many of you have worked with Jim, and know that he is an able administrator and skilled attorney,” Brown wrote in an e-mail sent Wednesday to Department of Justice employees. “I am confident that he will bring to this position both the necessary continuity and an openness to change and innovation.” Humes could not be reached for comment late Wednesday. In his current job, Humes oversees 600 lawyers and other department employees who defend and advise more than 200 state agencies. Humes also has served as senior assistant AG for the attorney general’s health, education and welfare section, and prior to that he was the lead supervising prosecutor of the correctional law office in San Francisco, which defends the state against civil rights actions brought by prisoners as well as cases involving the Department of Corrections and other law enforcement agencies. “He is an exceptional lawyer and a thoughtful and effective executive, and he is an outstanding selection for Jerry Brown,” Attorney General Bill Lockyer said in a prepared statement.
‘I am confident that [James Humes] will bring to this position both the necessary continuity and an openness to change and innovation.’

ERRY BROWN incoming AG

Humes earned his law degree from the University of Denver College of Law. He practiced in the Colorado attorney general’s regulatory law and tort litigation divisions before coming to California. In addition to working at the attorney general’s office, Humes lectures in the legal studies department at St. Mary’s College in Moraga. Humes joined the AG’s office in 1993 and has been head of the civil division for a little less than three years. In his e-mail to DOJ employees, Brown said he hasn’t decided what to do with the administrative chief deputy position now filled by Steve Coony. When Lockyer took office in 1999, he created two chief deputy positions, one that oversees the department’s legal policy � the job that Humes will take � and the administrative post that Coony now occupies. Brown also touched upon two areas “of immediate concern” for his administration: “to strengthen and focus the department’s law enforcement capacity and to implement � in a practical and effective way � California’s global warming legislation.” During his final months in office, Lockyer filed a public nuisance suit charging six automakers with contributing to global warming and other unhealthy conditions through their vehicles’ emissions. Brown has said previously that he will review the lawsuit before deciding whether to pursue it further.

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