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Monday, April 08, 2013

Judge Edward J. Davila '79 Keynotes UC Hastings Law Commencement

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As a judge in the San Jose Division of the United States District Court, Judge Davila presides over a wide variety of cases, from patent and intellectual property disputes, to criminal matters, class action lawsuits, and constitutional challenges.

The University of California Hastings College of the Law Class of 2013 Commencement ceremony will take place Saturday, May 11, 2013 at 2:00 p.m. in the Nob Hill Masonic Center. Federal Judge Edward J. Davila '79, will present the keynote speech.

Admission to the UC Hastings commencement ceremony is by ticket only. A limited number of tickets are provided free of charge to each graduate participating in the ceremony.

Judge Edward J. Davila 

Judge Edward J. Davila was born in Palo Alto and grew up in Mountain View, California.  He graduated from San Diego State University in 1976 with a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science.  He then attended Hastings College of the Law and received his Juris Doctor in 1979.  He joined the Santa Clara County Office of the Public Defender upon his graduation where he served as a Deputy from 1981 to 1989, representing the indigent accused.  In 1988 he established the criminal defense firm of Davila & Polverino.

As an attorney, Judge Davila participated actively in legal and community affairs.  He served as a member of the Santa Clara County Bar Association Board of Trustees from 1986 to 1994, President of the Barristers Club in 1989, Chair of the Judiciary Committee in 1989, Chair of the Minority Access Committee in 1993, and was elected President of the Bar Association in 1998.  An active member of the La Raza Lawyers Association of Santa Clara County since 1982, he served as President of that organization in 1989 and 1996.

In 2001, Judge Davila was appointed by Governor Gray Davis to Santa Clara County Superior Court where he served as a trial judge in criminal, juvenile justice and family law cases. In 2010, Senator Barbara Boxer recommended Judge Davila to the White House and President Barack Obama nominated him to the United States District Court.  The Senate Judiciary Committee voted unanimously to forward his name to the United States Senate.  He was confirmed by a unanimous vote of the United States Senate on February 14, 2011, and received his commission on March 3, 2011. He is the second Latino to sit in the Northern District of California, and the first for over twenty years.

Recognized throughout the legal community for his efforts to provide access to justice for all persons, Judge Davila received the Social Justice and Human Rights Award from Santa Clara University School of Law in 2010.  He was honored with the Justice Baryl Saltsman Award in 2006 by the Santa Clara County Bar Association. In 2003, the Latino Chapter of Hastings College of the Law Alumni Association recognized him as the Ralph Santiago Abascal Alumnus of the Year.  He also received the Unsung Heroes Award from the Santa Clara County Bar Association that year, and was recognized by the California State Assembly for his efforts to recruit minorities to the practice of law.  In 1999, Judge Davila was recognized by the Pro Bono Project for supporting legal representation for the indigent.  The Hispanic Business Magazine named him as one of the 100 most influential Latinos in the United States in October, 2011.  

As a judge in the San Jose Division of the United States District Court, Judge Davila presides over a wide variety of cases, from patent and intellectual property disputes, to criminal matters, class action lawsuits, and constitutional challenges.  

Commencement Speaker Selection Process

Each year, UC Hastings selects its official Commencement Speaker through an inclusive process. The Chancellor and Dean invites the Board of Directors, the Foundation Trustees, the Faculty Executive Committee, and the Associated Students of UC Hastings (ASUCH) to designate one to three individuals to serve as equal members on a Commencement Committee. The Director of Student Services also serves on this important body. The committee compiles a confidential potential list of speakers, discusses them, and recommends a "short list" to the Chancellor and Dean for selection.

Media Contact

Alex A.G. Shapiro, (415) 581-8842, shapiroa@uchastings.edu  

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