Hon. Mark L. Eaton (Ret.)

Profile

Judge Eaton has a well-deserved reputation for being dedicated, innovative and a highly successful facilitator of settlements.  Such skills earned him the 1995 Trial Judge of the Year award by the Alameda-Contra Costa Trial Lawyers Association.

  • Judge of the Superior Court of California, County of Alameda, retired January 4, 1999
  • Currently specializes in mediation, in civil, family law and probate matters
  • January 12, 1982:
    Appointed Judge of the Superior Court, County of Alameda.  Unopposed for election (six-year term) 1982, 1988 & 1992
  • January 1997 – January 1999:
    Civil jury and non-jury trails, adoptions, case management and settlement calendars
  • June 1989 – January 1997:
    Supervising Judge of the Superior Court Eastern Division.  Presided over the Family Law, Probate, Adoption, Law and Motion, case management and settlement calendars
  • January 1987 – June 1989:
    Civil jury and non-jury trials
  • January – December 1986:
    Judge Juvenile Court
  • December 1982 – January 1986:
    Presiding Judge, Criminal
  • April 1, 1978 – May 30, 1978:
    Pro-Tem Justice, Court of Appeal, First Appellate District, division 2 (Assigned by Chairperson of the Judicial Council)
  • January 30, 1976:
    Appointed Judge of the Municipal Court Livermore/Pleasanton Judicial District, County of Alameda; Unopposed for election (six-year term) 1978

Employment

1966 – 1976   General Partner
Miller, Critchfield & Eaton (now Miller, Critchfield, Eaton & Noonan)
Specializing in general civil litigation, family law, guardianships, adoptions, business, and Workers’ Compensation.

1964 – 1966   Associate, Miller, Haygood & Critchfield

Education

  • Brandeis University – Waltham, MA (1956-1960)
    B.A. – History and Political Science
  • Stanford University School of Law – Palo Alto, CA (1960-1963) J.D.
  • California Bar Exam – Fall 1963. Admitted to Bar – January 1964
  • Mediation Training Program (40 hours) – Mediation Office of Steven Rosenberg (2000)
  • Numerous seminars and courses presented by the CA Judges Association, CA Center for Judicial Education and Research (CJER), CEB, and Rutter group on all areas of law including employment, landlord-tenant, evidence, family, contracts, settlement techniques, etc. (1976 – 1999)
  • 1962 – 1963 School year – Volunteer student legal aid advisor (10 hours/week)
    Santa Clara Legal Aid Society – received award as outstanding student legal aid advisor – May 1963
  • 1964 – 1968 Reader – State of California Bar Examiners – grading Spring and Fall bar examinations and summer first year bar examinations

Professional Activities

  • Member, California Judges Association (1976 – present)
  • Member, California Alameda & Eastern Alameda County Bar Associations (1964 – present)
  • California Center for Judicial Education & Research (CJER)
    o   Seminar leader for one-week orientation session for newly-appointed judges
    March 1977 – March 1981
    o   Faculty member (Criminal pre-trial and law and motion)
    New Judge Orientation Sessions (3) – 1985
    o   Faculty member (sentencing misdemeanants – 4 hours and criminal law and motion – 16 hours)
    Continuing Judicial Studies Program – January 1981
    o   Seminar leader for two-week session for newly-appointed judges – July 1986
    o  Seminar leader for Family Law and Procedures Institute – March 1990
    o   Alameda County Bar Association Faculty Member – success in Law & Motion Seminar – Spring 1993-1997
    o   The Rutter Group Faculty Member – Family Law Update – 1995
  • Instructor – Alameda County Sheriffs Academy – 1976-1985
  • Trustee, Vice President & President, Alameda County Law Library (1988 – 1997)
  • Alameda-Contra Costa Trial Lawyer Association
    o   1995 Trial Judge of The Year
  • Valley Memorial Hospital – Livermore, CA – Director, July 1982–July 1985
  • Pacific Health Care – Director, September 1985–June 1989
  • Alameda County Legal Aid Society – Director, 1970-1992
  • Moderator for Livermore-Pleasanton Community Television panel shows (3)
  • Judge Pro Tem in San Leandro-Hayward Municipal Court, Livermore-Pleasanton
  • Municipal Court, Livermore Justice Court and Pleasanton Justice Court
  • Volunteer legal advisor for over 30 non-profit corporations and associations including
    o   Southern Alameda County Head Start Program, Inc.
    o   CAPE (Community Association for Pre-School Education)
    o   Health Care Concerns Committee, Inc.
    o   Nursery School Scholarship Fund
    o   Project Southwest
    o   Latin Organization for Betterment, Inc.
    o   Livermore Cultural Arts Council, Inc.
    o   Livermore Civic Chorus
    o   Livermore Bicentennial Organization
    o   Valley Ecology Center
    o   Churches (16)
    o   PTA’s (4)

Community Activities

Student Education Loan Fund, Director, 1968-1976; President, 1971-1972

  • Livermore Active 20-30 Club, Member, 1964-1968; President 1967-1968
  • City of Livermore Beautification Committee (Appointed by City Council), Member, 1968-1971; Vice Chairperson, 1968-1969
  • City of Livermore Ad Hoc Human Relations Commission (Appointed by City Council), Member, 1968
  • Valley Communities Economic Opportunities Organization, Member, Legal Advisory Board – 1966-1967
  • Livermore Chamber of Commerce, Director, 1966-1972; Education Committee Chairperson, 1966-1968; Vice President (civic development), 1968-1969
  • ACCORD (A Coordinating Committee to Overcome Racial Division), Member, 1968-Present
  • Livermore Valley Jewish Community Center Trustee, 1970-1971
  • TEAM (Elementary School PTA), Executive Committee, 1974-1975

Took active role in support of all school and park district bond and /or tax elections as follows:

Livermore Schools
1969: Finance Chairperson
1971: Area Chairperson
1975:  Area Chairpersonoo

Chabot College
1972: Area Chairperson

Park and Recreation District
1972: Executive Committee

  • Valley Memorial Hospital – Director, 1983 – 1986
  • Axis Community Health – Director, 2001 – Present
  • Tri Valley Conservancy – Director, 2001 – 2011
  • Livermore Valley Performing Arts Center – Director, 2014 – Present
  • Congregation Beth Emek – Trustee, 2015 to present

Representative Cases