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Longtime Court Administrator Pedersen Dies At 51

D. Kent Pedersen, court administrator at the San Diego Municipal Court, died Friday evening at the age of 51, the San Diego County Superior Court announced Monday.

Pedersen served the San Diego Municipal Court as its court administrator and the clerk of the court for 18 years. As the court's chief executive officer, he was the administrative leader of one of the largest municipal courts in the state. The California Judicial Council honored him with four Kleps Awards signifying excellence in improvements in the administration of the courts.

Born Aug. 6, 1948, in Salt Lake City, Pedersen was raised in Lompoc and obtained his undergraduate degree in political science in 1971 from Albertson College in Idaho. After a tour of duty in the U.S. Army, he began his career in court administration with the San Bernardino Superior Court in 1973. While working at the court, he completed his formal studies obtaining both a master's degree in Public Administration with Certificate in Judicial Administration from the University of Southern California in 1976. He earned his JD from the University of LaVerne College of Law in 1980. While at San Bernardino, he rose to the position of Jury Commissioner and assistant Superior Court executive officer. In 1980, he took over the administration of San Diego Municipal Court.

In addition to his wife, Jennifer, Pedersen is survived by his mother, Gwendolyn H. Pedersen of Fallbrook, his two brothers, Craig and Scott, and his sister, Janice D'Agostini.

Retired California Supreme Court Associate Justice Raymond L. Sullivan died recently at the age of 92 at his home in San Francisco. The 88th justice to serve on the Supreme Court, Sullivan was appointed to the state's highest court in 1966 by Gov. Edmund G. Brown Jr., and served until his retirement in 1977. During his tenure on the court, he served two terms on the Judicial Council, from 1969 to 1973, and from 1975 to 1977. Upon leaving the court, he began a new career as a professor of law at Hastings College of the Law, a position he held until his retirement in 1993. Prior to his appointment to the Supreme Court, Sullivan served on the Court of Appeal for the First Appellate District, Division One, first as Associate Justice from 1961 to 1964, then as Presiding Justice from 1964 to 1966. The California Trial Lawyers Association named him "Appellate Judge of the Year" in 1975.

Before his judicial career began, Sullivan practiced private law in San Francisco for 31 years. He earned a bachelor's degree in 1928, a JD in 1930, and an LL.M. in 1933, all from the University of San Francisco.

A memorial session will be held for Judge Sullivan at the Supreme Court's January oral argument session in San Francisco.

Quote of the Day

"A judge is unjust who hears but one side of a case, even though he decide it justly." -- Seneca

This Day in History

Oct. 26, 1962 -- During the Cuban Missile Crisis, President John F. Kennedy learned that work on nuclear missile bases in Cuba was proceeding without interruption, and began plans for a U.S. invasion of Cuba. The Russian embassy KGB chief, Aleksandr Fomin, met with John Scali, a State Department correspondent for ABC News, and asked Scali to transmit to the State Department a Soviet proposal for ending the crisis. The Soviets suggested that their missile bases in Cuba would be dismantled under UN supervision, and that Cuban leader Fidel Castro would accept a pledge to accept no more offensive weapons in return for a U.S. guarantee not to invade Cuba.

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