Santa Barbara County Superior Court Judge Rogelio Flores was recently named the 2012 Judicial Officer of the Year by the Chief Probation Officers of California.
He will receive the award officially at the CPOC Annual Awards Luncheon on Dec. 13 at the Manchester Grand Hyatt in San Diego.
The CPOC is an organization representative of the chief probation officers from each of California’s 58 counties, whose mission is to provide leadership in the mobilization, coordination and implementation of probation programs and to provide for public protection, including detention and treatment, victim services and the prevention of crime and delinquency; and to ensure the provision of quality investigations and supervision of offenders for the courts.
Judge Flores has been a staunch supporter of probation’s role in the use of a continuum of interventions that incorporate evidence-based practices to promote positive offender change and effectively reduce recidivism.
“Judge Flores has been a true champion for all offenders in the county’s system of collaborative courts, and the impact that he has had on their lives and the lives of their families is immeasurable,” Chief Probation Officer Beverly Taylor said. “He has performed his judicial duties with enormous empathy while ensuring that offenders are held accountable. His passion is infectious and everyone entering his courtroom quickly senses that he cares about each individual before him. The leadership and innovation he has exhibited makes him most deserving of this recognition.”
Judge Flores has been assigned to various collaborative courts in Santa Maria, including the Substance Abuse Treatment Court (drug court), and drug treatment mandated by passage of Proposition 36. He has also been responsible for the Mental Health Court and calendars specializing in co-occurring disorders. He has presided over the DUI Treatment Court and organized the first Veteran’s Treatment Court in Santa Barbara County. Judge Flores is a guest lecturer at the National Judicial College in Reno, Nev.
Judge Flores sits on the Collaborative Justice Courts Advisory Committee for the Judicial Council of California. He is a past president of the Latino Judges of California, and he is a member of the National and California Association of Drug Court Professionals. He was elected to the Board of Directors of the National Association of Drug Court Professionals in 2008. He has lectured extensively both nationally and internationally on the topic of collaborative jurisprudence.
Recently, Judge Flores has been serving as a consultant to the Office of National Drug Control Policy and the U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Narcotics Affairs in overseeing the creation of drug courts in Mexico.
He has previously received Certificates of Recognition from the California State Legislature, Rep. Lois Capps, D-Santa Barbara, the National Latino Peace Officers Association, the County of Santa Barbara, the Santa Barbara County Probation Peace Officers Association, the City of Santa Maria, the Santa Maria Chamber of Commerce, the City of Santa Barbara and the Community Recovery Network, and he was granted the Achievement Award for 2001 by the Santa Barbara Hispanic Achievement Council. Judge Flores was elected as a Class A (non-alcoholic) Trustee to the General Service Board of Alcoholics Anonymous in New York in 2007.
— Brian Smith is a public information officer for the Santa Barbara County Probation Department.