Fresno attorney Anthony P. Capozzi has been elected chairperson of the Commission on Judicial Performance, an independent state agency that is responsible for investigating complaints of judicial misconduct and disciplining judges.
Capozzi, who operates his own law firm, was elected March 23. Justice Ignazio J. Ruvolo, an appellate judge in San Francisco, was elected vice chairperson.
The commission, based in San Francisco, is composed of three judges, two lawyers, and six public members. It has jurisdiction over all of California’s Superior Court judges, and the state’s appellate and Supreme Court justices.
Capozzi has a bachelor’s degree in philosophy from the State University of New York in Buffalo and a law degree from the University of Toledo’s College of Law. He served as a law clerk to the Honorable Omer Poos, a U.S District Court judge for the Southern District of Illinois, from 1970 to 1973. From 1973 to 1979, he was a supervising assistant U.S. attorney in Fresno.
Since 1979, Capozzi’s private practice in Fresno has focused mainly on criminal defense law.
The commission is composed of three judges, two lawyers, and six public members. It has jurisdiction over all of California’s Superior Court judges, and the state’s appellate and Supreme Court justices.
Capozzi was initially appointed to the judicial performance commission by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger on April 6, 2010. He was reappointed by Gov. Jerry Brown on Dec. 23, 2013. His term ends Feb. 28, 2017.
His resume includes president of the Fresno County Bar Association and the Federal Bar Association, San Joaquin Valley chapter; lawyer representative and co-chair of the Ninth Circuit Judicial Conference; co-chair of the Bench Bar Coalition; elected member of the Board of Governors, State Bar of California, 2000 to 2003; president of the State Bar of California, 2003 to 2004; member of the Access and Fairness Commission, 2004 to 2005; and member of the Judicial Council of the State of California, 2005 to 2010.
Capozzi also is a fellow of the American Board of Criminal Lawyers, has an honorary doctorate of law degree from the Southern California Institute of Law, and is a fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers. In June of 2015, he was awarded the Bernie E. Witkin Lifetime Achievement Award from the Fresno County Bar Association.
Ruvolo is the presiding justice of Division Four of the Court of Appeal, First Appellate District. Before his appointment to the appellate bench, Ruvolo was a Superior Court judge in Contra Costa County and a trial attorney with the U.S. Department of Justice.