Justice Teri L. Jackson (L'80)
Justice Teri L. Jackson was appointed to the California Court of Appeal, First Appellate District, in November 2019 by Governor Gavin Newsom. The Commission on Judicial Appointments confirmed her appointment in January 2020.
She is the first female African-American justice on the state’s First District Court of Appeal. Justice Jackson serves as an associate justice in Division Three.
Before joining the First District, Justice Jackson served as a trial court judge of the San Francisco Superior Court. She is the first African-American female, appointed in 2002 by Governor Gray Davis, to serve on the San Francisco bench.
From 2017 to 2019, she was the Presiding Judge of the court. Justice Jackson has served in a variety of judicial assignments: Assistant Presiding Judge; Complex Civil Litigation Department; Supervising Judge of the Criminal Division; Supervising Judge of the Asbestos and California Environmental Quality Act Department; Supervising Judge of the Criminal Grand Jury; civil and criminal trials; felony preliminary hearings; and the trial court’s Appellate Division.
In 2007, Chief Justice Ronald M. George reassigned Justice Jackson to work a special trial team in Riverside, California, to help reduce the criminal case backlog. This special trial team was able to reduce the criminal backlog by approximately 1,000 cases. After her special assignment, Justice Jackson served on various statewide judicial committees: the Judicial Council of California Criminal Jury Instructions Advisory Committee, Advisory Committee on Providing Access and Fairness, and Pretrial Detention Reform Work Group.
In 2020, Chief Justice Tani G. Cantil-Sakauye appointed her to serve on the Jury Selection Work Group. Justice Jackson served as an adjunct law professor at both University of California, Hastings College of the Law, and University of San Francisco School of Law.
Before her appointment to the bench, Justice Jackson worked at the firm of Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe, specializing in complex litigation, employer defense, real estate, trade secrets, and white collar defense.
She was a prosecutor for more than 15 years, first with the San Mateo County District Attorney’s Office and with the San Francisco District Attorney’s Office, where her last assignment was Managing Attorney of the Homicide Trial Team. She was the first woman to hold that position. She was also the Chair of the California Committee of Bar Examiners.
Justice Jackson received her B.A. in 1977 from the University of California, Santa Cruz, where she majored in politics. She earned her J.D. in 1980 from Georgetown University Law Center in Washington, D.C.