Who or what inspired you to become a lawyer?
I knew at a young age I wanted a career in public service and thought being a lawyer and one day a judge would be a great way to serve my community.
Who inspires you?
My parents. They have always loved and supported me. They led by example and taught me the value of hard work.
How do you relate your undergraduate degree to your practice on the bench?
My undergraduate degree is in communication. Although my family may say I over-communicate at times, I think it is an important skill, especially in the legal profession.
What community service have you pursued and why?
I have worked closely with Sulzbacher Center to create our Mental Health Offender Program. We serve some of the most vulnerable citizens in our community.
I also volunteer at San Jose Catholic Church and School. I think it is important that we give back to our community.
Do you currently serve on the JBA in any committee?
I serve on the Judicial Relations Committee.
What is your favorite book?
“To Kill a Mockingbird”: Atticus Finch is the epitome of integrity.
Do you have any special talents?
My children claim I make the best banana pudding in the world. In all candor, I am not sure they have ever had anyone else’s banana pudding.
If you weren’t a judge, what do you think you’d be?
A teacher. I love working with children and I am passionate about education.
Have you traveled anywhere exotic?
I am not sure if Hawaii counts as “exotic,” but I have been to Oahu and Maui. Any beach is my happy place.
If you could meet someone from history, who would it be and why?
My paternal grandfather, Jack Stephens. He passed away before I was born. I would want to thank him for choosing to adopt my dad. His and my grandmother’s decision changed so many lives for good.
What’s your favorite food?
A perfectly cooked medium rare steak with a complementary baked potato.
What’s your favorite holiday?
My favorite holiday is Christmas. It is a time to celebrate the birth of our Savior. It is also a time when we can slow down and enjoy time with family and friends.