The Hon. James K. Hahn is a judge for the Los Angeles Superior Court in California. He was appointed to the bench in 2008 by former Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger. He filled the vacancy created by the retirement of the Hon. Susan P. Spear.
He is a registered Democrat.
Judge Hahn graduated magna cum laude with his bachelor’s degree in English from Pepperdine’s Seaver College in 1972. He went on to earn his J.D. from Pepperdine University School of Law in 1975. While attending law school, Hahn served as a clerk for the Los Angeles County Deputy District Attorney’s Office.
After graduating from law school, Hahn became a deputy city attorney for the Los Angeles City Attorney’s Office in 1975. After four years as a city prosecutor, Hahn entered into private practice, becoming a partner for the law firm of Horner and Hahn in 1979.
Then in 1981 Hahn was elected to serve as the Los Angeles City Controller. He served a four-year term in that capacity.
Hahn then re-joined the Los Angeles City Attorney’s Office in 1985 as a city attorney. He remained with the city attorney's office until being elected to serve as the 40th Mayor for the City of Los Angeles in 2001.
Hahn served as the mayor of Los Angeles until his unsuccessful bid for re-election in 2005 when he was defeated by Antonio Villaraigosa. After his defeat, Hahn joined the Malibu law firm of Chadwick, Saylor and Co., Inc. as managing director. He remained at the firm until his appointment to the Superior Court in 2008.
During his time as mayor, Hahn successfully stopped the cities of San Fernando Valley, Hollywood, and San Pedro from their attempt to secede from the city of Los Angeles.
In 2014 Judge Hahn was honored by the City of Los Angeles when city officials named the City Hall East building after him. It was renamed the James K. Hahn City Hall East.