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Kern County judge named to bar court review panel

Catherine D. Purcell

Catherine D. Purcell, a superior court judge in Kern County since 2001, was named a review judge of the State Bar Court last month. The Supreme Court made the appointment for a term that began Nov. 1.

Purcell, 52, presided over criminal and civil cases, including family law matters, on the Kern County bench, where she was supervising judge for a two-year term that ended last year. Before joining the bench, she was a deputy district attorney from 1989-91 and from 1993-2001. Prior to that, she was in private practice and clerked for the state Supreme Court.

She is active in continuing education for judges and has conducted ethics training for court personnel and lawyers who serve as pro tem judges.

Purcell received her law degree from Pepperdine School of Law in 1985, where she graduated magna cum laude and won the Benjamin N. Cardoza National Moot Court Competition. She received a nursing degree from California Lutheran College in 1980.

Purcell replaces Judge Madge Watai, who retired after 13 years as a bar court judge.

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