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New State Bar Court judge named, two others elevated

By Amy Yarbrough
Staff Writer

The State Bar Court will welcome one new judge while two others were recently elevated. 

On Aug. 25, Assembly Speaker Toni G. Atkins named Yvette D. Roland to the State Bar Court’s Hearing Department in Los Angeles, Court Chief Administrative Officer Colin Wong said. Last month, the California Supreme Court announced the appointments of Judge Catherine D. Purcell as presiding judge and Judge Richard A. Honn to the Review Department.

Yvette Roland

A graduate of the University of California Los Angeles School of Law, Roland will begin her six-year term with the court on Nov. 1. She is currently a partner at Duane Morris LLP, practicing in the areas of complex civil and commercial litigation, insurance coverage and employment law. She has been practicing law since 1987, serving as lead trial counsel on an array of cases including copyright infringement, trademark infringement, defamation, environmental coverage and product liability.

She succeeds Judge Richard Platel, who was appointed by a previous speaker.

Catherine Purcell

Purcell, who has been with the State Bar Court since 2008, began filling the unexpired term of Judge Joann M. “Jodi” Remke on Sept. 9, following Remke’s appointment to the state Fair Political Practices Commission. Before joining the court, Purcell was a Kern County Superior Court judge, presiding over criminal, civil and family law cases. Her term as presiding judge runs through October 2018.

Richard Honn

Honn, a State Bar Court hearing judge since 2003, was appointed to a term that extends to Oct. 31, 2020. Prior to joining the court, he was in private practice, handling business and real estate transactions and litigation.

Honn’s appointment leaves one vacancy on the court, in the hearing department, which will be filled by the Supreme Court. 

The independent State Bar Court conducts hearings on disciplinary cases that have been filed by the State Bar’s Office of Chief Trial Counsel. The court has the power to recommend suspension or disbarment of attorneys who commit professional misconduct or are convicted of serious crimes.