The Honorable Suzanne Ramos Bolanos

San Francisco Superior Court, Department 504


The Hon. Suzanne Ramos Bolanos is a judge for the Superior Court of San Francisco County in California. She was appointed by former governor Gray Davis on September 30, 2003.

Bolanos earned a B.A. from the University of California, Berkeley. She then received a J.D. from Yale Law School in 1989.

Bolanos began her legal career as a staff attorney with the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund. While lobbying for this national Latino civil rights organization, she met Sen. Edward Kennedy, who hired her to serve as counsel for the United States Senate Labor and Human Resources Committee. She then moved to the Office of the Vice President of the United States. She served as a special assistant for domestic policy to former Vice President Al Gore, advising him on civil rights, immigration, and education issues.

Just prior to her appointment to the bench, Bolanos briefly worked as an associate at Wilmer, Cutler, and Pickering. She then served as an assistant U.S. Attorney. During her tenure in the Office of the U.S. Attorney, she prosecuted drug trafficking and alien smuggling cases. She also defended the government in civil cases and worked in its computer hacking and intellectual property unit.

Bolanos has served on the Board of Trustees for the San Francisco Law Library. She has also co-chaired the annual Color of Justice Program.

Her memberships have included the Hispanic National Bar Association, the California Latino Judge Association, the National Association of Women Judges, and the San Francisco La Raza Lawyers.

She was named Woman of the Year by the National Latino Peace Officers Association in 2004. She was a recipient of the Distinguished Leader Award from the San Francisco Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and the Unity Award from the Minority Bar Coalition of Northern California.

Bolanos was born in San Francisco. As the daughter of immigrants from Chile and Peru, Bolanos was the first Hispanic woman to serve on the bench in San Francisco.

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