Judge Harry M. Dorfman | Trellis: Legal Intelligence + Judicial Analytics

The Honorable Harry M. Dorfman

San Francisco Superior Court, Department 15 (website)

Court Info

San Francisco Superior Court, Department 15 (website)

Clerk phone: +1 (415) 551-0315

Court Reporter: +1 (415) 551-0615

Bailiff: +1 (415) 551-7515


The Hon. Harry M. Dorfman is a judge for the Superior Court of San Francisco County in California. He was appointed by former governor Jerry Brown on May 21, 2013, filling a vacancy created by the retirement of Judge Donna Little.

Dorfman earned a B.A. from Harvard University in 1979. He briefly taught high school in Santa Monica, California, eventually moving to San Francisco to study law at the University of California, Hastings College of the Law. He graduated with his J.D. in 1984.

Dorfman began his legal career as a law clerk for the Alaska Supreme Court. Then, in 1985, he returned to California, joining the Office of the District Attorney of San Francisco. During his tenure in the District Attorney’s Office, Dorfman worked in the Sex Crimes and Narcotics Unit. He was promoted to managing attorney for the Homicide Unit in 2010, a position he held at the time of his appointment to the bench.

Dorfman taught Legal Writing and Moot Court at the University of California, Hastings College of the Law from 1989 to 1997. Then, from 2001 to 2011, he taught Criminal Law at San Francisco Law School, where he was named Professor of the Year and Most Inspirational Teacher (2008).

Dorfman has represented the Institute for the Study and Development of Legal Systems, where he has participated in different legal reform projects throughout Bolivia, El Salvador, Egypt, Turkey, and India. He has also served as Chief Counsel for the California Assembly Committee on Public Safety.

Dorfman is a member of the State Bar Criminal Section Executive Committee.

He is registered as a Democrat.


J.D. from University of California, Hastings College of the Law (1984)

B.A. from Harvard University (1979)


Chief Counsel at California Assembly Public Safety Committee (1999 to 2000)

Assistant District Attorney at Office of the District Attorney in San Francisco County, California (1985 to 2013)

Law Clerk at Alaska Supreme Court (1984 to 1985)

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