U.S. Court of Appeals Senior Circuit Judge Arthur L. Alarcón Selected as Recipient of the Los Angeles County Bar Association’s Outstanding Jurist Award
The program will also feature John Van de Kamp, former California Attorney General and former Los Angeles District Attorney.
“Judge Alarcón was selected as this year’s Outstanding Jurist because of his life-long and significant contributions to the bench, the practice of law, and the community at large,” said LACBA President Patricia Egan Daehnke. “His influence is felt far beyond the courtroom as he made it his mission to counsel and promote the careers of young lawyers, to push for equality both inside and outside of the courtroom, and to provide for the betterment of the community.”
“I am deeply honored to receive the Los Angeles County Bar Association’s Outstanding Jurist Award,” said Judge Alarcón. “I am particularly delighted that this recognition has been given to me in the 50th year of my first appointment as a judge in 1964.”
Judge Alarcón’s public service career began in 1943 when he enlisted in the U.S. Army and served as a staff sergeant in the U.S. Army Infantry during World War II. He was awarded the Purple Heart for injuries received in combat, the Bronze Star, the Combat Infantry Badge, the Expert Rifleman Medal, and four Major Battle Stars on his European Theater Ribbon.
Following his honorable discharge, he attended UCLA on the G.I. Bill of Rights. When he became eligible to vote, he registered as a Republican because he wanted to be in the party of Abraham Lincoln.
Judge Alarcón served as a civil service deputy district attorney for the Los Angeles District Attorney’s Office for nine years and successfully prosecuted L. Ewing Scott for the murder of his wife, although her body has never been found.
He was appointed by Gov. Edmund G. Brown, a Democrat, to serve as his legal advisor and his executive assistant, although the Governor was aware Judge Alarcón was a Republican. Judge Alarcón also served as the chair of the Adult Authority, the California Parole Board for adult inmates.
Over the last 50 years, Judge Alarcón has served as a distinguished trial jurist on the Los Angeles County Superior Court, the California Court of Appeal, and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. He was appointed to each of these judicial positions by Democrats. He continues to serve voluntarily on the Ninth Circuit as a Senior Judge, although he could have retired with full pay in 1992.
In addition to his work on the bench, Judge Alarcón is a prolific writer of scholarly law books and law review articles, a distinguished lecturer, and a law professor. He taught criminal justice and the federal courts at the California College of Trial Attorneys, California Judicial College, Southwestern University School of Law, Loyola Law School, and University of Southern California Gould School of Law.
Judge Alarcón has spent an enormous amount of time and energy serving on the board of directors for a wide range of organizations including Las Familias del Pueblo, Jardin De La Infancia, the Coro Foundation, the Los Angeles Boys and Girls Club, the Performing Arts Council, and the Junior League of Los Angeles. He was also a founding member of the Mexican-American Scholarship Foundation Assisting Careers in Law (MAS FACIL) and the Council of Mexican-American Affairs.
His bar activities include having served as past chair of LACBA’s Committee on Criminal Justice and as past chair of the California State Bar’s Select Committee on Criminal Justice.
Judge Alarcón received his L.L.B. from the University of Southern California (1951) and was a member and on the editorial board of the Southern California Law Review (1950-51).
LACBA’s Outstanding Jurist Award is presented annually to a current or past member of the federal or state judiciary in Los Angeles County who has made significant contributions from the bench through judicial ability and experience, temperament and demeanor, knowledge of the law, and improvement or education of the legal community and the practice of law. For a complete list of the previous Outstanding Jurist Award recipients, please click here.
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