Judith L. Haller, Associate Justice

Judith L. Haller, Associate Justice

Justice Haller was born in Los Angeles in 1946. She is married and has two grown children.

She is a summa cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa graduate of UCLA and received her law degree from California Western School of Law. Justice Haller also has a master’s degree in history from San Diego State University.

Justice Haller was a deputy district attorney with the San Diego County District Attorney’s office for three years before entering private practice. From 1979 until 1989, she practiced law with the firm of Higgs, Fletcher & Mack. She was a partner in the firm’s litigation department when she was appointed to the bench.

On November 22, 1989, Governor Deukmejian appointed her to the San Diego County Superior Court. During her four and one-half years as a trial court judge, she spent two and one-half years as an independent calendar judge and served as a member of the court's executive committee. Governor Wilson nominated her to the Court of Appeal in 1994, she was rated "exceptionally well qualified" for the position, and she was unanimously confirmed by the Commission on Judicial Appointments on August 9, 1994.

Justice Haller is a former Chair and Vice-Chair of the California Judges Association Ethics Committee and a former director of the San Diego Inn of Court and the San Diego Chapter of the American Business Trial Lawyers Association. Prior to her judicial appointment, she was a Vice-president of the San Diego County Bar Association and served as secretary/treasurer of the San Diego Defense Lawyers (an association of civil trial attorneys).

In January 2013 Chief Justice Tani Cantil-Sakauye appointed Justice Haller to serve a four-year term on the Supreme Court Committee on Judicial Ethics Opinions. Justice Haller is a master of the American Inns of Court and was awarded the American Inns of Court 2012 Professionalism Award for the Ninth Circuit in August 2012.  Justice Haller is a director of the Board of Trustees of California Western School of Law, a former member of the San Diego County Bar Association Ethics Committee and is Chair of the Appellate Court Legacy Project. Recently, she served as the Chair of the Courts of Appeal 100th Anniversary Centennial Committee and as a special master for the Commission on Judicial Performance. Justice Haller is a frequent speaker at continuing legal education programs and a guest lecturer at the University of San Diego School of Law.

Justice Haller is the 2003 judicial recipient of the Bernard E. Witkin, Esq., Award which is presented annually for civic leadership and excellence in the teaching, practice, enactment, or adjudication of the law, presented by the Law Library Justice Foundation of San Diego County. In 2004, Justice Haller was awarded the Joan Dempsey Klein Distinguished Jurist Award by the California Women Lawyers for her excellence as a jurist, commitment to gender equity and the elimination of gender bias in the legal profession, and for her service as a role model and an inspiration to women lawyers.