- Chief Justice Tani G. Cantil-Sakauye
- Civic Learning California Summit: Making Democracy Work
- Civic Learning Initiative
The steering committee reports to the Chief Justice.
The Chief Justice appoints members of the steering committee for two-year terms.
The Administrative Office of the Courts, Judicial and Court Operations Services Division staffs this steering committee.
Funding for Power of Democracy Steering Committee meetings is generously provided by a gift from the State Bar of California.
|Justice of the Court of Appeals involved in civics
education and public information
|Hon. Justice Judith D. McConnell, Chair|
Administrative Presiding Justice, Court of Appeal, Fourth Appellate District
Judicial officer of the superior court involved in
|Hon. Curtis E. A. Karnow|
Superior Court of California,
County of San Francisco
|Federal court representative||Hon. Frank C. Damrell, Jr. (Ret.)|
Cotchett, Pitre & McCarthy, LLP
|State Supreme Court representative||Mr. Frank G. McGuire|
Court Administrator and Clerk of the Supreme Court
|State Bar of California representative||Hon. Joseph Dunn|
President and Chief Executive Officer, State Bar of California
State Superintendent of Public Instruction
|Mr. Craig Cheslog|
Principal Advisor to the Superintendent of Public Instruction
California Department of Education
|California Bar Foundation representative||Ms. Sonia Gonzales|
California Bar Foundation
|Law school representative||Hon. Deanell Reece Tacha|
Duane and Kelly Roberts
Dean and Professor of Law
Pepperdine University School of Law
County Superintendent of Schools/representative
Mr. David W. Gordon
|Civic education leader||Dr. Michelle M. Herczog|
Consultant, History-Social Science
Los Angeles County Office of Education
Five schools received Awards of Distinction, and fourteen schools received Awards of Merit.
All recipients are presented the award at their school location by a member of the California bench. A list of all recipients is available here.
Funding for the Civic Learning Award program is generously provided by the California Bar Foundation.
• curriculum and instructional practice
• professional learning for teachers and staff
• student testing
• school accountability and
• partnerships with the community and business
The task force will make recommendations to:
• Chief Justice of CaliforniaTask Force Timeline: July 2012—Summer 2014
• State Superintendent of Public Instruction
• State Board of Education
• Chair of the Assembly Education Committee
• Chair of the Senate Education Committee
Commission for Impartial Courts
This body was formed in Sept 2007 by Chief Justice Ron George and was charged with researching issues around impartiality and the courts. The commission was chaired by California Supreme Court Justice Ming W. Chin. From 2007 to 2009, the commission met in private meetings and held public forums, created task forces concentrated on issues around impartiality, and formalized 71 recommendations that were accepted by the Judicial Council in 2009.
Implementation of CIC Recommendations
The CIC sunsetted after its final report was presented. This update on implementation activities was presented in Dec 2012.
The Your Constitution: the Power of Democracy Steering Committee will focus on the implementation of the following recommendation:
37. To improve transparency and better inform the public of the role and operations of the state court system and to enhance public outreach, the judicial branch should identify and disseminate essential information that would increase both the public’s access to justice and its opportunities for input. To that end, the following are recommended:
(a) A leadership advisory group should be appointed to oversee, identify, and coordinatepublic outreach programs and opportunities for public input; to establish benchmarks of good practice; and to promote the assembly of local teams to assist courts with local outreach programs; and
(b) The Administrative Office of the Courts (AOC) should collect, summarize, and evaluate public outreach resources and methods for public input that are currently available for judges and court administrators and should also collect, summarize, aevaluate educational materials for K–12 teachers and for judges and court administrators making classroom
43. Every child in the state should receive a quality civics education, and judges, courts, teachers, and school administrators should be supported in their efforts to educate students about the judiciary and its function in a democratic society. To that end, the following are specifically recommended:
(a) Strategies for meaningful changes to civics education in California should be supported, and a strategic plan for judicial branch support for civics education should be developed;
(b) Political support should be sought from leaders in the Legislature, the State Bar, the law enforcement community, and other interested entities to improve civics education;
(c) Teacher training programs, curriculum development, and education programs on civics should all be expanded to include the courts; and
(g) Recognition programs that bring attention to teachers, judges, and court administrators who advance civics education should be promoted.