Governor Gavin Newsom appointed Denise Hippach to the Santa Barbara Superior Court bench last week, making her the first Black judge to serve in Santa Barbara County. Hippach has worked as a senior deputy county counsel for the past five years; for the two before that, she worked with the Idaho Attorney General’s office. Hippach fills the seat of retiring judge James E. Herman. In addition, Newsom appointed Steve Foley to the bench as an interim appointment. Foley, a former prosecuting attorney in Santa Barbara, served as court commissioner for the past five years. Both Foley and Hippach are registered Democrats.