Commission Members


Nanci E. Nishimura, Esq., Chairperson
Attorney – Appointed by the Governor
Appointment began May 12, 2011
Reappointed February 25, 2015
Term ends February 28, 2019

Honorable Michael B. Harper, Vice-Chairperson
Superior Court Judge – Appointed by the Supreme Court
Appointment began March 1, 2017
Term ends February 28, 2021

Anthony P. Capozzi, Esq.
Attorney – Appointed by the Governor
Appointment began April 6, 2010
Reappointed December 23, 2013
Term ends February 28, 2017

Honorable William S. Dato
Court of Appeal Justice – Appointed by the Supreme Court
Appointment began April 1, 2018
Term ends February 28, 2021

Honorable Eduardo “Eddie” De La Riva
Public Member – Appointed by the Speaker of the Assembly
Appointment began January 1, 2018
Term ends February 28, 2021

Ms. Sarah Kruer Jager
Public Member – Reappointed by the Senate Rules Committee
Appointment began March 1, 2016
Reappointed March 1, 2019
Term ends February 28, 2023

Ms. Kay Cooperman Jue
Public Member – Appointed by the Speaker of the Assembly
Appointment began March 7, 2019
Term ends February 28, 2023

Dr. Michael A. Moodian
Public Member – Appointed by the Governor
Appointment began July 16, 2015
Reappointed on February 21, 2017
Term ends February 28, 2021

Mr. Richard Simpson
Public Member – Appointed by the Senate Rules Committee
Appointment began September 7, 2018
Term ends February 28, 2021

Mr. Adam N. Torres
Public Member – Appointed by the Governor
Appointment began May 12, 2011
Reappointed February 25, 2015
Term ends February 28, 2019

Honorable Erica R. Yew
Superior Court Judge – Appointed by the Supreme Court
Appointment began December 10, 2010
Reappointed March 1, 2011 and March 1, 2015
Term ends February 28, 2019

Members’ Biographies

NANCI E. NISHIMURA, ESQ., CHAIRPERSON, was appointed to the commission as a lawyer member by the Governor May 12, 2011, and reappointed February 25, 2015; her term ended February 28, 2019, but she continues to serve pending appointment of a successor. Ms Nishimura was elected chairperson of the commission in March 2018. She served as acting vice-chairperson of the commission in 2017 and 2018. She resides in San Mateo County. Ms. Nishimura is a partner at Cotchett, Pitre & McCarthy, LLP, where her practice focuses on antitrust and business litigation. She was a legislative assistant to Senator Daniel Inouye, and a clerk to the Overseas Private Investment Corporation and the U.S. International Trade Commission. Prior to law, Ms. Nishimura was a business development consultant to major corporations in Japan. She served on the Judicial Nominees Evaluation Commission from 2004 to 2008. In 2015, Ms. Nishimura was selected to serve on the White House Initiative on Asian American Pacific Islanders, as part of the President’s Commission on Asian American Pacific Islanders, a select bipartisan coalition now known as the Leaders Forum, which provides strategic guidance on national policy initiatives. In 2015, she was appointed by U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer to serve on the Judicial Appointments Committee for the Northern District of California. In 2018, Ms. Nishimura was named one of the Top 100 Lawyers in California. She is involved in numerous professional and nonprofit organizations, including the Board of Trustees of the California Science Center Foundation and the Commission and Board of Trustees of the Asian Art Museum Foundation, San Francisco. Ms. Nishimura received her law degree from The Catholic University of America, Washington, D.C., and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology and Master of Arts degree in International Relations from the University of Southern California.

HON. MICHAEL B. HARPER, VICE-CHAIRPERSON, was appointed to the commission as a superior court judicial member by the Supreme Court to a term commencing March 1, 2017; his term ends February 28, 2021. He was elected vice-chairperson of the commission in March 2018. Judge Harper has served on the Trinity County Superior Court since his appointment in 2014, and he was retained by voters in a 2016 election. Since 2018, he has served as presiding judge of the Trinity County Superior Court. Judge Harper’s court assignments have included civil, small claims, dependency, and criminal cases. He has served as the court’s assistant presiding judge and presiding judge of the Juvenile Court, and administers the Peer Court. Judge Harper also provides judicial assistance, as required, to the neighboring superior courts in Humboldt and Shasta Counties. Prior to his appointment to the bench, Judge Harper served for 20 years conducting investigations and prosecutions as Trinity County District Attorney, and as deputy district attorney for Trinity, Sacramento, and Placer County District Attorneys’ Offices. He graduated from the University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law, and received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science from the University of California, Berkeley.

ANTHONY P. CAPOZZI, ESQ.,  was appointed to the commission as a lawyer member by the Governor April 6, 2010, and reappointed December 23, 2013; his term ended February 28, 2017, but he continues to serve pending appointment of a successor. Mr. Capozzi served as the commission’s chairperson from 2016 to 2017, and as its vice-chairperson from 2013 to 2016. He resides in Fresno and Monterey Counties. Mr. Capozzi received his Bachelor of Arts degree in Philosophy from the State University of New York at Buffalo in 1967 and his law degree from the University of Toledo College of Law in 1970. Mr. Capozzi served as a law clerk to the Honorable Omer Poos, a United States District Court Judge for the Southern District of Illinois, from 1970 to 1973. From 1973 to 1979, he was a Supervising Assistant United States Attorney in the Eastern District of California, Fresno Division. He has owned and operated the Law Offices of Anthony P. Capozzi since 1979, primarily focusing his practice in the area of criminal law. Mr. Capozzi is admitted to the Ohio, Illinois, and California bars. He has served as president of the Fresno County Bar Association and the Federal Bar Association, San Joaquin Valley Chapter; lawyer representative and co-chair of the Ninth Circuit Judicial Conference; co-chair of the Bench Bar Coalition; elected member of the Board of Governors, State Bar of California, 2000 to 2003; president of the State Bar of California, 2003 to 2004; member of the Access and Fairness Commission, 2004 to 2005; and member of the Judicial Council, 2005 to 2010. Mr. Capozzi has served as the legal and political analyst for ABC Channel 30, KFSN-TV in the Central Valley since 2005. He has served as chair of the Law School Advisory Committee for the State Bar accredited law schools and served as secretary of the Board of the Central California Blood Center. Since 2005, Mr. Capozzi has been a fellow of the American Board of Criminal Lawyers. In June of 2010, Mr. Capozzi received an Honorary Doctorate of Law degree from the Southern California Institute of Law. In March of 2013, Mr. Capozzi was inducted as a fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers. In June of 2015, Mr. Capozzi was awarded the Bernie E. Witkin Lifetime Achievement Award from the Fresno County Bar Association.

HON. WILLIAM S. DATO was appointed to the commission as the Court of Appeal judicial member by the Supreme Court April 1, 2018; his current term ends February 28, 2021. Justice Dato has been an associate justice of Division One of the Court of Appeal, Fourth Appellate District since 2017. Previously he was a judge of the San Diego County Superior Court for 13 years, serving as a branch supervising judge, presiding judge of the court’s appellate division, and in a variety of substantive assignments including civil, criminal, family law, and both adult and juvenile drug court. Prior to his appointment to the bench, Justice Dato was a certified appellate law specialist in private practice and worked as an appellate court staff attorney with the California Supreme Court and California Court of Appeal. He has also been an adjunct professor at both the University of San Diego School of Law and California Western School of Law, teaching appellate practice and products liability. Justice Dato received his law degree from University of California, Los Angeles in 1980 and his Bachelor of Science degree in Political Science and Economics from San Diego State University in 1977.

HON. EDUARDO “EDDIE” DE LA RIVA was appointed to the commission as a public member by the Speaker of the Assembly January 1, 2018; his term ends February 28, 2021. He resides in Los Angeles County. The Honorable Eddie De La Riva is currently Mayor of the City of Maywood. He previously served as council member of the Maywood City Council from 2014 to 2018. Mayor De La Riva received his Bachelor of Arts degree in Chicano Studies from the University of California, Los Angeles, with a minor in Public Policy and a specialization in Urban Planning.

MS. SARAH KRUER JAGER was appointed to the commission as a public member by the Speaker of the Assembly March 1, 2016; her term ends February 28, 2019. She resides in San Diego County. Ms. Kruer Jager is a partner of Monarch Group, a private real estate investment and development firm based in San Diego and focused on the entitlement, development, and acquisition of institutional quality apartment communities in the Western U.S. She joined Monarch in 2005. Ms. Kruer Jager works closely with Monarch’s founding partners to set the firm’s strategic direction and oversees day-to-day business activities for all of Monarch’s wholly owned and joint venture investments. In this capacity, she leads the acquisition, predevelopment, disposition, and asset management functions and manages relationships with Monarch’s capital partners. During her tenure at Monarch, Ms. Kruer Jager has acquired, developed, and sold over $1 billion in real estate investments throughout the Western U.S. Prior to Monarch, she worked at UBS Investment Bank in Chicago in the Mergers & Acquisitions and Diversified Industrials Groups. Ms. Kruer Jager is passionate about her community, as well as leveling the playing field for young women in sports and business. She is currently involved in the following civic and industry organizations in addition to the commission: Ms. Kruer Jager is a member of the Urban Land Institute and its Bronze Multifamily Council. She is also a founding advisory board member of Run Women Run. Ms. Kruer Jager graduated from the University of Michigan Stephen M. Ross School of Business with a Bachelor of Business Administration degree with High Distinction and received her MBA from The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania with a major in Finance. She was awarded a four-year full tuition athletic scholarship as a member of the University of Michigan Division I Varsity Women’s Golf Team. Ms. Kruer Jager’s academic and athletic honors include being named by the National Golf Coaches Association to the Division I All-American Scholar Golf Team and receiving Academic All-Big Ten Conference Honors.

MS. KAY COOPERMAN JUE was appointed to the commission as a public member by the Speaker of the Assembly March 7, 2019; her term ends February 28, 2023. She resides in Los Angeles County. Ms. Jue is a paralegal with Mitchell Silberberg & Knupp LLP, focusing on securities law. She has been interested in the law since her college days. After graduation, she worked as a newswire and newspaper reporter specializing in covering courts and legal affairs, including reporting on dozens of court hearings and trials and conducting interviews of judges and attorneys. In 1983, the Orange County Bar Association honored her with its Media Award for Excellence in Legal Reporting. She switched to television news, where she worked as a news writer, field producer, associate producer, and producer. She won an Emmy Award in 1993 for best 60-minute newscast in the Los Angeles market. After 20 years in news, Ms. Jue switched to public relations, working first at UCLA and later as a sole practitioner managing media relations for a law firm and a law school among other clients. She became a paralegal in 2011. Currently, she holds elected office as a member of the Palos Verdes Library District Board of Library Trustees. Ms. Jue earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in journalism and political science from California State University, Long Beach. She earned her paralegal certificate, graduating with distinction, from UCLA Extension’s Paralegal Training Program.

DR. MICHAEL A. MOODIAN was appointed to the commission as a public member by the Governor July 16, 2015, and reappointed February 21, 2017; his term ends February 28, 2021. He resides in Orange County. Dr. Moodian is a faculty member of Chapman University’s Attallah College of Educational Studies, and he serves as chair of the Santa Margarita Catholic High School Consultative School Board, a member of the UC Irvine Olive Tree Initiative Advisory Board, and former chairman of the World Affairs Council of Orange County. He edited a textbook in 2009 that examines the application of cultural comprehension to organizations and the measurement of intercultural competence. The book is cited by the Association of American Colleges & Universities in establishing national learning standards. Dr. Moodian has presented his research at various national and international conferences and has served as an expert commentator on several television and radio programs. Based on his interest in local history, he wrote a short book on the ranch history of South Orange County and North San Diego County. Dr. Moodian often speaks to K-12 and community groups on South Orange County’s indigenous American activity, the Portola Expedition, Mexican governance of the land, and 20th century ranching activity. Additionally, he was one of 18 Americans (and the only California resident) selected by the European Union to travel to Brussels in 2012 as a citizen diplomat to discuss education policy with EU officials. Dr. Moodian earned a Doctor of Education degree in Organizational Leadership from Pepperdine University, and a Master of Arts degree in Communications and Bachelor of Arts degree in Communications and Sociology from California State University, Fullerton.

MR. RICHARD SIMPSON was appointed to the commission as a public member by the Senate Rules Committee on September 7, 2018; his term ends February 28, 2021. Mr. Simpson previously served on the commission as a public member appointed by the Speaker of the Assembly from June 17, 2013 until December 31, 2017. Mr. Simpson served as vice-chairperson of the commission in 2017. He resides in Sacramento County. Mr. Simpson is a retired Deputy Chief of Staff for the Speaker of the California State Assembly. He served as a senior advisor for nine Assembly Speakers. He served for two years as Chief of Staff for the Senate Education Committee and for more than six years asChief Consultant for the Assembly Education Committee. In 1999, Mr. Simpson served for six months as the first Legislative Secretary for California Governor Gray Davis. He has either written or played a key role in developing most of California’s major education reforms of the past three decades, including the Class Size Reduction program, the laws creating California’s system of academic standards and assessment, California’s school facilities financing laws, and the recent law creating a new structure for school
accountability. Mr. Simpson also drafted the budget reform measures contained in Propositions 1A and 1B for the 2009 special election and the education sections of Governor Edmund G. Brown, Jr.’s Proposition 30 in 2012. Mr. Simpson was the Assembly’s lead negotiator on the annual budget for public education. He served for 12 years as an elected trustee of the Sacramento County Board of Education and was elected president of that board three times. Mr. Simpson is a frequent speaker at statewide conferences and has received numerous awards for public service including the Golden Oak Service Award of the California State PTA. He received his Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics from the University of California, Santa Cruz and earned a Master’s degree in Public Policy from the Graduate School of Public Policy at the University of California, Berkeley.

MR. ADAM N. TORRES was appointed to the commission as a public member by the Governor May 12, 2011, and reappointed February 25, 2015; his term ended February 28, 2019, but he continues to serve pending appointment of a successor. He resides in Riverside County. Mr. Torres is Executive Director of the San Manuel Gaming Commission where he oversees the commission’s operations with an emphasis on licensing, audit, compliance, investigations and surveillance. Previously, he was Managing Director of Business Intelligence and Investigations from 2011 to 2015 at an international risk management firm where his expert area of focus was white collar investigations, intelligence and due diligence, and security consulting. Mr. Torres also served on the California State Bar Discipline Standards Task Force where he assisted with review and revision of the Standards for Attorney Sanctions for Professional Misconduct. He was appointed by the President of the United States as the Marshal for the Central District of California from 2003 to 2010, where he was responsible for the protection of the federal courts, pre-sentenced federal prisoners, apprehension of fugitives, and asset forfeitures. At the Internal Revenue Service, Mr. Torres was a Supervisory Special Agent from 2000 to 2003, Special Agent from 1993 to 2000, and Revenue Agent from 1986 to 1992. As a Revenue Agent, he conducted audits of large and complex financial structures; and as a Supervisory Special Agent and Special Agent, he led and conducted criminal investigations for tax evasion, money laundering, public corruption, and a variety of other financial crimes and fraud. While at the IRS, he also served as an Equal Employment Opportunity Investigator conducting investigations of EEO violations for the Department of the Treasury. Mr. Torres has been recognized by a variety of governmental, private and professional organizations for outstanding service. He is a Certified Fraud Specialist and licensed Private Investigator and holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration/Accounting from California State University, San Bernardino.

HON. ERICA R. YEW was appointed to the commission as a superior court judicial member by the Supreme Court December 10, 2010, and reappointed March 1, 2011 and March 1, 2015; her term ended February 28, 2019, but she continues to serve pending appointment of a successor. Judge Yew served as the commission’s chairperson from 2013 to 2016, and as its vice-chairperson in 2012 and 2013. Judge Yew sits on the Santa Clara County Superior Court, to which she was appointed in October 2001. She was a member of the Judicial Council from 2009 to 2012, and a member of the California State Bar Board of Governors from 2000 to 2001. She serves on the Judicial Council’s Advisory Committee on Providing Access and Fairness and the California Commission on Access to Justice. Among her judicial assignments, Judge Yew has presided over a dependency drug treatment court and has spoken nationally on the topic of problem-solving courts. Judge Yew has also served on the Judicial Council’s Task Force on Self-Represented Litigants and has taught a number of topics for the Center for Judicial Education and Research and other entities. Prior to her appointment to the bench, Judge Yew was a civil litigator and graduated from the University of California, Hastings College of the Law and with honors from the University of California, Berkeley. She has received a number of awards for her community service and work as a judge, including Trial Judge of the Year in 2015 from the Santa Clara County Trial Lawyers Association and Outstanding Jurist of the Year in 2016 from the Santa Clara County Bar Association, as well as a 2017 Distinguished Service Award from the Judicial Council.