Cal. Litig. 2019, Volume 32, Number 1

Running for Judge What I Gained Besides a Judgeship

By Hon. Syda K. Cogliati

Hon. Syda K. Cogliati

"One of our judges will be retiring at the end of his term, and I think you should run for his seat." When a Santa Cruz judge said that to me, I thought: "Me? Run a campaign for judge in a countywide election? No way." Of course I wanted to be a judge, but I was hoping that my path to the bench would be appointment by the Governor. Running in an election had never crossed my mind. My hesitations were typical. Who would help me run the campaign? How would I raise enough money to campaign successfully? What toll would it take on my family and my job? Would the voters think I’m a good candidate? Could I win? But after a few months of consideration, I took the plunge and put my name on the ballot for the county’s first judicial election in eight years. And I’m so glad I did. It was even more challenging than I thought it would be, but it was one of the best experiences of my life.

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