A Year Later, Sonoma County Court Seat is Filled

Lawrence E. Ornell will now serve as a Sonoma County Superior Court judge.

After more than a year, Sonoma County has filled an empty seat in its lineup of judges.

Lawrence E. Ornell, a 52-year-old Santa Rosa resident, will now serve as a judge in Sonoma County Superior Court. Gov. Jerry Brown appointed Ornell to the position on Dec. 27.

He's taking the place of Judge Mark Tansil, who retired in 2012. The court's presiding judge told the Santa Rosa Press Democrat in November he was surprised it had taken so long for the governor to fill the position.

Ornell has been a commissioner at the court since 2004, and was a deputy district attorney for Sonoma County from 1993 to 2004, according to an announcement on the governor's website.

Prior to that, he was an attorney in private practice. He studied law at the Empire College School of Law and earned a bachelor's degree at California State University, Sacramento.

The total compensation for the job is $181,292, according to the governor's announcement. Ornell is a Democrat.


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