The Hon. Diane B. Altamirano (Ret.) was a judge for the Imperial County Superior Court in California. She was appointed to the bench by former Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger in 2010. Judge Altamirano did not seek re-election to the bench in 2018. Her vacancy was filled by the Hon. Monica Lepe-Negrete.
She was registered decline-to-state.
Altamirano received her B.A. from the University of California, Los Angeles. She went on to earn her J.D. from Loyola Law School.
Altamirano began her legal career as an associate at the Law Offices of Richard Morton, where she practiced briefly beginning in 1977. The following year, she worked as a clinical professor at her alma mater, Loyola Law School. Then, in 1980, she re-entered the private sector, practicing briefly as an associate at Mosten and Zipser, before then joining the law firm Boggust, Zimmerman, and Altamirano. During her nine-year tenure at Boggust, Zimmerman, and Altamirano, she would eventually be named a partner. While in private practice, Altamirano specialized in corporate, non-profit, probate, civil, family, and criminal law. She left the firm in 1990 to enter into solo practice. During her eight years as a sole practitioner, Altamirano served as a city attorney for the cities of Westmorland and Calipatria. During her time as a city attorney, she served as an advisor on issues regarding city management, as well as matters involving the police and fire departments.
In 1998, Altamirano began her tenure with the Imperial County Superior Court. During her first six years with the Court, she worked as a research attorney and self-help attorney. Later, in 2005, she served as a self-represented litigant facilitator for two years and then as a senior court managing attorney for another two years. Prior to her appointment to the bench, Altamirano had served as an access center manager since 2009 in the Imperial Superior Court's self-help center, which she was credited with founding.
She was also credited with founding the Binational Justice Project, a program that seeks to retrieve abducted children and to collect child support between Imperial County and Mexico. The program garnered recognition for the Imperial County Superior Court when it was awarded the Ralph N. Kleps Award in 2009.
During her time on the bench, Altamirano was appointed to serve as the Presiding Judge of the Court in 2018. At the time of her selection to the position, she held the distinction of being the first woman to serve as a presiding judge in the history of Imperial County. Prior to her appointment, Altamirano had served a two-year term as Assistant Presiding Judge of the Court.
Altamirano received the California Attorney of the Year Award from the Legal Aid Association in 2006.
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