LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) — Former NFL player turned civil rights attorney Martin Jenkins has been nominated to the California Supreme Court by Gov. Gavin Newsom.
Jenkins, 66, will also be the first openly gay California Supreme Court justice and only the third Black man to ever serve on the state’s high court.
“Justice Jenkins is widely respected among lawyers and jurists, active in his Oakland community and his faith, and is a decent man to his core,” Newsom said in a statement.
Jenkins was born and raised in the Bay Area. He played briefly in the NFL, signing a contract with the Seattle Seahawks in 1977. Jenkins went on to continue his education, becoming a civil rights attorney and later becoming a prosecutor in Alameda County.
Jenkins will fill the vacancy created by the retirement of Associate Justice Ming W. Chin and must still be submitted to the State Bar’s Commission on Judicial Nominees Evaluation and confirmed by the Commission on Judicial Appointments.