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EX-DEFENDER WORKS PEOPLE SKILLS ON BENCH COURT:Alameda County Superior APPOINTED:Aug. 13, 2003, by Gov. Gray Davis BORN:Aug. 4, 1945 LAW SCHOOL:Lincoln Law School, 1980 PREVIOUS JUDICIAL EXPERIENCE:Alameda County Superior Court commissioner, 1996-2003 When the Alameda County bench picked Beverly Daniels-Greenberg to be a commissioner 11 years ago, local family law attorneys had a fit. She was a deputy public defender then, and they wanted a family law attorney for the spot. But it didn’t take long for the new commissioner to win them over. Just a year into her first assignment in the family law court, several family law attorneys wrote letters to the court asking that she not be reassigned. The letters came as a welcome compliment, though the court has changed her assignment repeatedly over the years. A judge since 2003, Daniels-Greenberg now presides over a high-volume misdemeanor pretrial calendar court at the Wiley W. Manuel Courthouse in Oakland, where on-the-spot decisions and disruptions from impatient defendants are part of her daily routine. In Daniels-Greenberg’s courtroom, it’s not uncommon for defendants who are waiting for their cases to raise their hands, walk up to any lawyer they see, and tap him on the shoulder, according to Deputy Public Defender Cole Powell, one of the four public defenders assigned to the courtroom. A defendant might even call out to Daniels-Greenberg directly and ask her to call their case, the judge added. “It’s like a zoo,” Powell said. Despite that, Daniels-Greenberg keeps her cool and remains courteous to defendants, according to lawyers who regularly appear in her courtroom. The judge says she realizes that when people speak out of turn or act inappropriately, it’s because they don’t understand the court process. “One of the skills a model judge has � and that I strive for daily � is to try and perfect my people skills,” Daniels-Greenberg said. In the last two judicial surveys conducted by the Alameda County Bar Association, which came out in 2002and earlier this year, lawyers consistently gave Daniels-Greenberg high marks as a commissioner and as a judge. Powell, like many attorneys in her courtroom, says the judge is generally fair. But Powell added that in domestic violence cases, the judge doesn’t always see both sides of the story and tends to be tough on those defendants. Powell said that when it comes to people accused in domestic violence cases, the judge tends to set high bails and keep them in custody longer. A handful of other attorneys, however, said they couldn’t think of any criticisms of Daniels-Greenberg. From the judge’s perspective, she’s not any tougher on domestic violence cases than she is on any other case involving violent assault. “I take a real hard look at [assault] cases,” said Daniels-Greenberg, who admits she tends to be harder on releasing people on their own recognizance in violent assault cases. “I have to be concerned about public safety,” she said. “I live in Oakland and am very concerned about my city.” According to local attorneys, dealing with people � especially difficult people � is her best quality. “Everybody that walks out of that courtroom comes out with a feeling that they have been heard and they have been respected,” said Arthur Mitchell, an Oakland solo defense attorney. Just the other day, Powell said, a disgruntled defendant flippantly remarked as she walked out that she would not come back to Daniels-Greenberg’s courtroom. Powell recalled the judge simply said, “Madame clerk, please note that in the record.” Based on her previous jobs, Daniels-Greenberg was working on her people skills long before becoming a judge. Among them, she was a bank teller, a flight attendant, and during the 1970s era of political activism, a director of student activity at a university in Chicago, where she ended up mediating between students and university administrators. The judge says she hadn’t dreamed of becoming a lawyer. Her plan was to become a psychologist, but she says she “chickened out” of a long Ph.D. program. Instead, she spent four “long” years putting herself through night school at Lincoln Law School while working part-time. A psychologist’s approach is sometimes helpful. Daniels-Greenberg said there are times when defendants lash out, for example, when she doesn’t release them on their own recognizance. Angry defendants have called her a bitch, she said. In those situations, she added, she simply tells them they can’t talk that way in court, and gives them time to cool off. They usually come back with an apology, she said. Then she tells them to forget about what happened and that they’ll start from the beginning. “She has such style and class,” said Deputy Public Defender William Muraoka. Deputy DA Scott Jackson says he rarely disagrees with Daniels-Greenberg’s decisions. “I trust her so much that there are cases that the public defender says, ‘What do you want on this case?’ And I’ll say, ‘Deal with Judge Daniels-Greenberg.’” Often, particularly in cases where the defendants are young, Daniels-Greenberg will call them up to the bench and give what she calls a private “sermon,” telling them they need to think about their lives and what they want to do with them. While some judges run a more formal environment, Muraoka said, Daniels-Greenberg fosters an open atmosphere, where clients and attorneys feel free to ask questions. Daniels-Greenberg also monitors defendants after their cases have been resolved, for example, making sure they’re completing their anger management classes or paying restitution. Her 16 years as a public defender, she said, gave her a “tough skin.” “I’ve seen the bad, the ugly, the cruel, the hostile, the dangerous,” she said. Having worked in the criminal justice system from an attorney’s point of view, she says, “I think it’s helped me.” You can order past judicial profiles of more than 100 Bay Area judges hereor by calling 415-749-5406.

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