Two Bay Area litigators were named superior court judges on Wednesday by Gov. Jerry Brown, as the termed-out executive continues to fill judicial vacancies in his final months in office.
Rita Lin, an assistant U.S. attorney in the Northern District of California since 2014, will join the San Francisco Superior Court bench. She was a partner at Morrison & Foerster from 2012 to 2014, and worked as an associate at the firm in the prior eight years. Lin fills a vacancy created by the retirement of Judge Ksenia “Kay” Tsenin.
Evette Pennypacker, an intellectual property partner in the Redwood City office of Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan since 2007, was appointed to the Santa Clara County Superior Court. Pennypacker started as an associate at Quinn Emanuel in 2003. She also worked as an associate at Fenwick & West from 1999 to 2003. Pennypacker replaces Judge Mary Ann Grilli, who retired in 2017.
Brown named an additional eight trial court judges, including four in Los Angeles County. He also nominated two superior court judges for vacancies on the Fifth District Court of Appeal in Fresno: Kings County Judge Thomas DeSantos and Fresno County Judge Mark Snauffer. The appellate nominations must be confirmed by the Commission on Judicial Appointments, which consists of Chief Justice Tani Cantil-Sakauye, Attorney General Xavier Becerra and Fifth District Presiding Justice Brad Hill.
Brown has filled 123 trial court vacancies and nominated 11 appellate justices over the last seven months.
Here are the names of the superior court judges appointed by Brown on Wednesday: