Roster | Meetings are confidential
The Commission on Judicial Nominees Evaluation (JNE) assists the governor in the judicial selection process. Appointed by the State Bar Board of Trustees, JNE is charged with thoroughly investigating and evaluating candidates under consideration for appointment by the governor to California judgeships. The commission cannot nominate or appoint judges, but helps promote a California judiciary of quality and integrity by providing independent, comprehensive, accurate, and fair evaluations of candidates nominated for judicial appointment.
Pursuant to Government Code Section 12011.5, the governor must submit the names of all judicial candidates to the commission for review. JNE has 90 days, operating independently of the Board of Trustees, to complete its evaluation. JNE conducts its work under a strict code of confidentiality called for by law and by the Rules of the State Bar.
Before the JNE Commission's creation in 1979, the State Bar Board of Trustees (then called the Board of Governors) evaluated judicial candidates as a matter of practice, not as a requirement. The commission was formed to help ease the burgeoning load of trial court evaluations. That same year, legislators codified the commission's role after Lt. Gov. Mike Curb, acting as governor in the absence of Gov. Jerry Brown, decided to appoint a judge. Brown later rescinded the appointment. That appointment led to Government Code Section 12011.5, which now requires the governor to submit the names of all judicial candidates to the JNE Commission for review.
The 38-member commission (at least 27 and no more than 38) is made up of attorneys, nonattorney public members, and former judicial officers who represent a broad cross-section of California’s diverse legal profession and general population. To the extent feasible, at least 80 percent of the members must be active, licensed attorneys in good standing, and the balance public members. At least one of the licensed attorneys must be a former judicial officer. Commissioners serve a single three-year term. The commission chair serves a fourth year.
Licensed attorneys, nonattorney members of the public, and former judicial officers may apply to serve on the JNE commission by completing the appointments online application. The Board of Trustees reviews the applications and appoints individuals who have the requisite skills and experience to assess candidates for judicial appointment and to provide timely and well-written reports. Attorney commissioners must be active licensees in good standing with the State Bar of California.
Applications are accepted year-round. To apply, please complete an online application.
Workload and time commitment
Criteria for appointment
In making appointments to the JNE Commission, the board considers the duties and functions of the commission; the applicant's qualifications and ability to make the time commitment; the criteria mandated by Government Code section 12011.5(b); and Board policies on diversity and criteria for membership on State Bar committees.
The Board policies on diversity and criteria for committee members consist of a multitude of factors, including but not limited to:
Conditions of appointment and service
Questions about the application process? Contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Elgin Webb IV, 415-538-2085, email@example.com
Chair: Justin Palmer