The Hon. Maria A. Audero is a U.S. Magistrate Judge of the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California, Western Division. She was appointed to the District Court in 2018. She filled the seat vacated by the Hon. Andrew J. Wistrich.
Judge Audero graduated with her B.A. in psychology from the University of California, Los Angeles in 1980. She went on to earn her J.D. from Southwestern University School of Law in 2000.
Audero began her legal career as an associate litigating insurance bad faith matters at the law firm Barger and Wolen LLP in 2000. Two years later, she joined the law firm Jeffer, Mangels, Butler, and Mitchell LLP as an associate, where she specialized in employment law. Then, in 2004, Audero became a partner in the Employment Law practice at Paul Hastings, where she would remain until her appointment to the District Court in 2018. While at Paul Hastings, Audero served as co-chair of the firms Los Angeles Employment Law Department. Her areas of practice included state and federal wage-and-hour nationwide class and collective actions, discrimination and pay equity cases, equal employment opportunity cases, and government contract affirmative action matters.
Audero was appointed by former Governor Jerry Brown in 2015 to serve as commissioner of the California Fair Political Practices Commission.
She has also served on the board of directors of the Inner City Law Center, the National Employment Law Council, the Employment Round Table of Southern California, and the Southern Advisory Board of the Women in Law Enforcement Forum.
In addition to her many memberships, Audero also provided pro bono legal assistance to several organizations which have included the Community of Friends, the ACLU of Southern California, the Children's Bureau of Southern California, the Constitutional Rights Foundation, the Junior Achievement of Southern California, and the Los Angeles Bar Domestic Violence Project.
For her pro bono work, the ACLU recognized Audero in 2013 with its Pro Bono Services Award. She was also recognized by the United Way with its Outstanding Women Leaders Champion Award.