Judge Barry LaBarbera was elected by his peers to be the presiding judge of San Luis Obispo County, and Judge Dodie Harman was voted to be assistant presiding judge.
They begin their two-year terms on Jan. 1. LaBarbera succeeds Judge Charles S. Crandall as presiding judge; he concludes a term as assistant presiding judge.
The California Rules of Court, which govern the state’s judicial system, require a presiding judge for courts that have two or more judges.
The county’s Superior Court of San Luis Obispo currently has 12 judges. The presiding judge is responsible for leading the court, establishing policies, and allocating resources “in a manner that promotes access to justice for all members of the public,” according to court officials.
LaBarbera, who was appointed to the bench by Gov. Pete Wilson in 1998, previously served as assistant presiding judge in 2000 and 2001 and presiding judge in 2002 and 2003.
Harman was appointed to the bench by Gov. Gray Davis in 2002.