Skip to main content

7th Annual Judicial Mixer was a Major Success

November 6, 2014

On October 30th, state and federal judges from San Diego County joined TJSL students, faculty, staff and alumni for a unique networking opportunity.

Every year since 2008, the TJSL Alumni Association along with Superior Court Commissioner Gary Bloch (Ret.) ‘81 has provided students with this chance to mingle with some of San Diego’s most respected and prestigious individuals from the bench.

Alumni Association President Jeremy Evans ‘11 kicked off the event, that took place on the eighth floor overlooking Downtown San Diego, by recognizing Board of Trustees members, Alumni Board members, as well as Dean Thomas Guernsey.

Dean Guernsey encouraged students to take advantage of the special event. “I want to thank all of the judges here tonight, if you could please raise your hand. I would like all of the students to focus on the people who have their hands raised because this is a mixer for you to go talk to them,” Dean Guernsey emphasized, before making a brief introduction of the almost twenty judges in attendance.

At this year’s event, attendees celebrated the Honorable David M. Gill for his over 40 years of service to the court. “I think everyone who has appeared in front of him is impressed by is intelligence, his kindness, his thoroughness and by his commitment to justice,” said Judge David Danielsen before presenting Judge Gill with an award on behalf of the Alumni Association.

“I have served on the law library board with Judge Gill for years and have always been inspired by his passion for social justice and compassion towards people who have problems accessing the legal system,” said Alumni Board member Lorena Slomanson ‘03. “He inspires me to be a better lawyer.”

The event attracted new as well as former attendees. “This is my second time coming. Last year, I had an enjoyable time and this year seems to follow suit,” said Janet Valenzuela 2L.

A veteran of TJSL’s judicial mixers, the Honorable Margie Woods spent valuable time with those students that approached her. “It’s important for students to see judges are people. You have to remember that judges were lawyers first, and before we were lawyers we were law students,” Judge Woods said.

Students were appreciative of the generous amount of time the Judges spent with them and the candor with which they answered their questions. “Meeting judges is exactly the type of networking that I wanted. Ultimately, that is where I want to end up and this was a great opportunity to get to know how they got to where they are now,” said Victoria Garcia 1L. “They were all really nice, really open, and I got some business cards but also some invitations to show up and spend time with them at the court.”

Shana Avery 2L, who volunteered for the event, was excited about building connections with many of the guests. “As a volunteer, I got to meet everyone – judges, alumni and students. It’s a great way just to get your name and your face out there, reinforcing your connections from prior events and making new ones.”

Alumni Board member Michael Jonas ‘09 was excited about the turnout of both judges and students. “Mixers like this are an important part of our school’s community,” Joans said. “They give all those involved an opportunity to talk and learn about various roles in the community.”

Alumna Andria Eguia ‘09 joined Jonas, adding, “The school has done so much for me. It’s a very family oriented environment and I appreciate being able to come back to be a part of it, continue to build community, and be able to give back to students.”