Monday, January 22 , 2018, 2:34 am | Fair 44º


Local News

Arthur Garcia Named Presiding Judge for Superior Court

Santa Maria Juvenile Court Judge Arthur Garcia will serve as presiding judge of the Santa Barbara County Superior Court for the next two years, according to courts executive officer Gary Blair.

He served as assistant presiding judge in 2011 and 2012, and replaced Judge Brian Hill as presiding judge starting Jan. 1.

Garcia was appointed as a judge in 2003 by then-Gov. Gray Davis, filling the vacancy left when Judge Rick Brown retired.

He has served as presiding judge, presiding judge of the Juvenile Court and assistant presiding judge for Santa Barbara County Superior Court.

Before that, Garcia was appointed as court commissioner in 1996 and served in Santa Maria Juvenile Court. He was part of a successful private practice — Chern, Brenneman and Garcia — from the time after earning his bachelor of arts and juris doctor degrees from Loyola Marymount University.

He has handled felony and misdemeanor criminal cases in family and juvenile law, Blair said.

Garcia has also been a member of the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges, the California Juvenile Judges Association, the California Judges Association and the California Association of Drug Court Professionals.

Judge James Herman is Superior Court’s assistant presiding judge for the next two years. He handles the criminal arraignment court for Santa Barbara now. The court always has the presiding and assistant presiding judge from different divisions so they can represent the entire county’s court operations, Blair said.

Herman was appointed as a judge in 2005 after practicing as a complex civil litigation attorney for 20 years and serving as a deputy public defender before that. Since being appointed, Herman has presided over criminal and civil cases in both Santa Maria and Santa Barbara. He has also served as presiding judge over Juvenile Court.

Herman now serves as a member of the Judicial Council of California and is a former president of the State Bar of California and the Santa Barbara County Bar Association.

Blair also announced the appointment of Darrel Parker to the new position of chief deputy executive officer for countywide court operations. Parker has been the assistant executive officer for North County operations since 1997 and will work to find cost-saving efficiencies in the way courts operate, Blair said.

“The goal is to identify possible efficiencies in the organization, which will save the court money in light of multiple and continuing years of state funding cutbacks to all trial courts. The court must determine which core services are most important and better ways to perform the work of the court,” Blair said in a statement.

Parker will oversee all court operations except finance, human resources and information technology.

Noozhawk staff writer Giana Magnoli can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

  • Ask
  • Vote
  • Investigate
  • Answer

Noozhawk Asks: What’s Your Question?

Welcome to Noozhawk Asks, a new feature in which you ask the questions, you help decide what Noozhawk investigates, and you work with us to find the answers.

Here’s how it works: You share your questions with us in the nearby box. In some cases, we may work with you to find the answers. In others, we may ask you to vote on your top choices to help us narrow the scope. And we’ll be regularly asking you for your feedback on a specific issue or topic.

We also expect to work together with the reader who asked the winning questions to find the answer together. Noozhawk’s objective is to come at questions from a place of curiosity and openness, and we believe a transparent collaboration is the key to achieve it.

The results of our investigation will be published here in this Noozhawk Asks section. Once or twice a month, we plan to do a review of what was asked and answered.

Thanks for asking!

Click here to get started >

Support Noozhawk Today

You are an important ally in our mission to deliver clear, objective, high-quality professional news reporting for Santa Barbara, Goleta and the rest of Santa Barbara County. Join the Hawks Club today to help keep Noozhawk soaring.

We offer four membership levels: $5 a month, $10 a month, $25 a month or $1 a week. Payments can be made through PayPal below, or click here for information on recurring credit-card payments.

Thank you for your vital support.

Reader Comments

Noozhawk is no longer accepting reader comments on our articles. Click here for the announcement. Readers are instead invited to submit letters to the editor by emailing them to [email protected]. Please provide your full name and community, as well as contact information for verification purposes only.

Daily Noozhawk

Subscribe to Noozhawk's A.M. Report, our free e-Bulletin sent out every day at 4:15 a.m. with Noozhawk's top stories, hand-picked by the editors.

Sign Up Now >