Hon. Darrell S. Mavis

Adjunct Professor of Law / Supervising Judge, Superior Court of California, County of Los Angeles


B.S., Economics, 1988, Massachusetts Institute of Technology; J.D., 1991, Harvard University; Member, California State Bar

Joined Southwestern: 1996

Career Highlights

Judge Mavis is the Supervising Judge of the Northeast and North Central Judicial Districts of the Los Angeles Superior Court which include the Pasadena, Burbank, Glendale and Alhambra courthouses. He presides over jury trials, conducts settlement conferences and supervises 40 civil and criminal judges. He has presided over 100 jury trials since his appointment to the Los Angeles Superior Court in 2006.

For 14 years, Judge Mavis tried over 100 jury trials as a prosecutor for the Los Angeles County District Attorney. He tried some of the District Attorney’s most complex and high-profile cases. Among his high-profile murder cases, he prosecuted one of California’s largest “no-body” murder cases and successfully tried a 17-year-old, double murder case that involved the killing of two Special Agents of the Drug Enforcement Administration as well as the almost fatal wounding of a third Special Agent during an international, undercover sting operation. He was also appointed Attorney Liaison at the United States Department of Justice, Office of International Affairs, where he worked on international criminal matters for state and local prosecutors throughout the United States for two years.

Judge Mavis has spoken on over 200 occasions at the California Center for Judicial Education and Research, Los Angeles Superior Court Judicial Education Seminars, the California State Bar and various state and national bar associations on topics including: conducting a jury trial, criminal law, evidence, experts, trial skills, dispute resolution, ethics, and civility. Since 2008, Judge Mavis has been a faculty member of the B.E. Witkin Judicial College of California, teaching judges throughout the state. For over a decade, he was a member of the Visiting Faculty for the Harvard Law School Trial Advocacy Workshop. For several years, he created and taught a Persuasive Speaking course at UCLA. Judge Mavis has published articles on scientific evidence, criminal street gangs, and consular notification. 

Honors and Awards

Past Chair - California State Bar’s Criminal Law Section Executive Committee

Since 2014 - Member, California Center for Judicial Education and Research Governing Committee which develops and delivers education to members of the California Judicial Branch

2008 -  "Judge of the Year" by the Constitutional Rights Foundation