Hon. James P. Gray
Case Manager: Haward Cho
Tel: (949) 863-9800
After 25 years of service as a trial judge in the Orange County
courts, Judge Gray is available as a mediator, arbitrator and discovery
referee. Known for his work in creating novel programs aimed at curbing
repeat alcohol-related and juvenile offenses, Judge Gray began to
cultivate a reputation as an innovative jurist who proactively crafted
creative solutions to the problems before him. After being elevated to
the Superior Court in 1989, Judge Gray presided over calendars in civil,
criminal, probate, adoptions, mental health and juvenile courts.
Judge Gray’s experienced realism, creativity, practicality, and disciplined optimism make him an ideal neutral to address and resolve tort and business disputes, as well as problems based upon emotion and company politics. During his years on the Superior Court, Judge Gray became known for settling the “unsettleable” cases. For example, he settled what was probably the first Catholic priest child sexual molestation case in the country, resulting in positive institutional changes in the Orange County and Los Angeles Dioceses of the Catholic Church. He also settled the difficult Wade Boggs palimony case that had been bouncing around the courthouse for more than a year before it landed in his courtroom.
AREAS OF EXPERTISE
• Personal Injury
• Business / Commercial Contract Disputes
• Insurance / Bad Faith • Real Estate (Commercial, Residential, Landlord-Tenant, HOA)
• Discovery Reference
• Civil Rights
• Legal Malpractice
1966 University of California, Los Angeles, B.A.
1971 University of Southern California School of Law, J.D.
1989 – 2009 Orange County Superior Court Judge
1983 – 1989 Orange County Municipal Court, Central Orange County District
Legal & Trial Experience
1978 – 1983 Wyman, Bautzer, Rothman and Kuchel – Business litigation
1975 – 1978 Office of the United States Attorney – Assistant US Attorney
Prosecuted various frauds against the VA, FHA and other governmental agencies
1972 – 1975 Navy JAG Corps - Staff Judge Advocate and Criminal Defense Attorney
PAST & CURRENT MEMBERSHIPS
• Peace Corps Volunteer, Palmar Norte, Costa Rica (1966-68)
• California Judicial Council
• Orange County Board of Supervisors Alcohol Advisory Board
• California Department of Alcohol & Drug Programs Advisory Board
• Volunteer Center of Orange County Board of Directors
• Orange County Law Library Board of Directors
• Orange County Superior Court Executive Committee
• William P. Gray Chapter of the American Inns of Court, Founding President
• USC Law School Board of Councilors
• California Judicial Council Committee on Juvenile Justice
• Constitutional Rights Foundation of Orange County
• Association of Business Trial Lawyers
• Orange County Trial Lawyers Association
PUBLICATIONS & TEACHING
Over the years, Judge Gray has volunteered as a guest lecturer on numbers of professional subjects for the Continuing Education of the Bar (“CEB”), the College of Trial Advocacy (“COTA”), and the Business Litigation and the Probate Sections of the Orange County Bar Association. He has also taught an undergraduate class on the Criminal Justice System at Chapman University in Orange, California, and was a guest presenter at the Chapman University Law School in 2006 at their forum entitled “Are We at War?”
He is the author of three books and the composer of a high school musical:
Why Our Drug Laws Have Failed, and What We Can Do About It – A Judicial Indictment of the War on Drugs. 2001 by Temple University Press.
Wearing the Robe: the Art and Responsibilities of Judging in Today’s Courts. 2008 by Square One Press.
A Voter’s Handbook: Effective Solutions to America’s Problems. 2010 by The Forum Press.
“Americans All” – Full length and condensed versions by Heuer Publishing.
Judge James P. Gray is the son of the distinguished late Federal District Court Judge William P. Gray (1912 - 2002).
He has also been awarded honorary doctor of laws degrees by both Western State University School of Law and Chapman University School of Law, and the Constitutional Rights Foundation of Orange County annually names a recipient of the “Honorable James P. Gray Judge of the Year” award.
Judge Gray is married to Grace Walker Gray, has four children, including an adopted Vietnamese son, is a member of the Methodist church, lives in Newport Beach, California, and also writes a weekly column about issues of our day for The Daily Pilot newspaper.
Disclaimer: Please be advised that the contents of this web site and any other statements contained herein are for informational purposes only and are not intended to be represented as legal advice in any way.