SAN JOSE -- As he was passed the baton to become the new administrative leader of Santa Clara County courts this week, Presiding Judge Brian C. Walsh gave kudos to his predecessor for his dedication to justice and fiscal prudence.
Walsh was chosen by his colleagues in September to take the reins from Judge Richard Loftus for the two-year term, and Judge Rise Pichon was selected for Walsh's former position as assistant presiding judge.
"Unquestionably, if it had not been for Judge Loftus' steady hand and his tenacious advocacy for Santa Clara County residents' access to justice, our court would be in a much more precarious fiscal position," Walsh said in a statement released Friday.
He said Loftus "challenged all of us to do more with less," and his tenure resulted in a "leaner, more efficient court."
Loftus' achievements include helping make the court's Family Justice Center a reality, with a groundbreaking scheduled for July. He also oversaw a transition to electronic documents and security improvements at the juvenile court.
Walsh, a San Jose native, was given high marks for integrity, knowledge of law and procedure, work ethic and judicial temperament in a survey of Santa Clara County Bar Association members in 2011. He has also served as president of several organizations, including the Santa Clara County Bar Association, Loaves and Fishes Family Kitchen and the Alexian Brothers Foundation board.
Contact Eric Kurhi at 408-920-5852. Follow him at Twitter.com/erickurhi.