Calif. chief justice makes two appointments

Nick Rees Jul. 6, 2011, 11:51am


SAN FRANCISCO (Legal Newsline) - Two California associate justices have been appointed to chair the Judicial Council's Executive and Planning Committee and the Rules and Projects Committee.

Associate Justice Douglas Miller of the Court of Appeal, Fourth Appellate District, Division Two (Riverside), now chairs the Judicial Council's Executive and Planning Committee while Associate Justice Harry Hull, Jr., of the Court of Appeal, Third Appellate District (Sacramento) chairs the council's Rules and Projects Committee. Both assumed their new positions on July 1.

"I have long admired Justice Miller's and Justice Hull's collaborative skills and I look forward to working with them to guide California's judicial branch during these extremely difficult economic times," Chief Justice Tani Cantil-Sakauye said. "I am sure that everyone in the California court system will welcome Justice Miller's and Justice Hull's new roles with open arms and in the spirit of cooperation."

Miller, who previously chaired the Rules and Projects Committee, follows the departing Associate Justice Richard Huffman in chairing the Executive and Planning Committee. Huffman lead the committee for 14 years.

The Executive and Planning Committee is one of five internal committees of the Judicial Council. It is tasked with setting the agenda for the council's meetings, developing the council's long range strategic plan for the judicial branch, directing the nominations process for vacancies on the council and its advisory committees, and overseeing specific advisory committees and task forces.

Miller said that he intends to speak with trial court leaders statewide to hear their concerns in light of a $350 million reduction in state funding for the state courts for the 2011-2012 fiscal year.

"I am honored to have been asked to serve in this capacity by the Chief Justice," Miller said. "I think that the courts face difficult and challenging times and I am committed to involving the judicial branch and the Judicial Council in solving the issues that confront us."

Miller served in the Superior Court of Riverside County as both presiding judge and assistant presiding judge. He was a member of the council's Trial Court Presiding Judges Advisory Committee and vice-president of the California Judges Association and served on the Supreme Court Advisory COmmittee on Judicial Ethics.

Hull will replace Miller on the Rules and Projects Committee.

Hull was appointed to associate justice to complete the term previously held by Chief Justice Cantil-Sakauye when she served on the Court of Appeal, effective through September 14, 2011. He will serve a new three year term through September 14, 2014.

Hull began his judicial career in 1995 after being appointed to the Superior Court in Sacramento County. He was appointed to the Court of Appeal in late 1997 and was confirmed in early 1998. Since 2008, he has served on council's Appellate Advisory Committee. He is a former member of the Advisory Committee on Civil Jury Instructions and the Task Force on Jury Instructions, Civil Subcommittee. He currently chairs the Third Appellate District's Appellate Mediation Committee.

"I appreciate the chief justice's confidence in my ability to chair the Rules and Projects Committee," Hull said. "I will make every effort to be an effective chair of the committee."

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