The Hon. C. Don Clay is a judge for the Alameda County Superior Court in California. He was appointed to the bench in 2003 by former Governor Gray Davis. He filled the vacancy created by the death of the Hon. Richard Inglehart (deceased).
Judge Clay received his B.S. in computer science from the University of California, Berkeley. He went on to earn his J.D. from the University of California, Hastings College of the Law in 1981.
Clay began his legal career in private practice, where he practiced both criminal and civil law for several years. His areas of practice on the criminal side included misdemeanors, felonies, and white-collar crimes. While his civil side included business disputes, entertainment litigation, and personal injury cases. As an entertainment defense lawyer, he represented several Bay Area rappers such as Too Short, E-40, and Karupt.
Clay left the private sector in 2002 to join the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Northern District of California, where he would become the first assistant U.S. Attorney, second only to then-U.S. Attorney Kevin V. Ryan. Clay remained in that position until his appointment to the Superior Court a year later.
His memberships have included serving on the board of directors of the Wiley Manuel Law Foundation, and as a member of the Alameda County Bar Association, the Charles Houston Bar Association, the National Bar Association, and the California Attorneys for Criminal Justice.
His professional organizations have included serving on the San Francisco Juvenile Justice Commission, the San Francisco Juvenile Probation Commission, and the San Francisco Fire Commission.
While on the bench, Judge Clay has presided over a criminal trials calendar.