Voter's Edge California Voter Guide
Get the facts before you vote.
Brought to you by
League of Women Voters of California Education Fund
Tuesday November 6, 2018 — California General Election
Invest in unbiased information

With your support, we can reach and inform more voters.

Donate now to spread the word.


California State Court of AppealsCandidate for Justice, District 4, Division 1

Photo of William S. Dato

William S. Dato

Associate Justice, California Court of Appeal
1,566,856 votes (64.2%)Winning
Save your choice
Do you want to keep this judge for another term?
For more in-depth information on this candidate, follow the links for each tab in this section. For most screenreaders, you can hit Return or Enter to enter a tab and read the content within.
Candidate has provided information.

My Top 3 Priorities

  • Apply the Constitution and laws of the United States and State of California with fairness and impartiality.
  • Ensure that all parties before the court have the opportunity to be heard.
  • Maintain the highest standards for judicial integrity, independence, and ethics.



Profession:Associate Justice, California Court of Appeal
Judge, San Diego Superior Court (2003–2017)
Appellate Specialist/Partner/Associate, Milberg Weiss (1994–2003)
Senior Staff Attorney, California Court of Appeal (1984–1994)
Associate, Milberg Weiss (1982–1984)
Research Attorney, California Supreme Court and Court of Appeal (1980–1982)


University of California, Los Angeles Juris Doctor (1980)
San Diego State University Bachelor of Arts, Highest Honors, Phi Beta Kappa, Political Science and Economics (1977)


Justice William Dato was confirmed to the Court of Appeal, Fourth Appellate District, Division One in February 2017. Previously he was a judge of the San Diego Superior Court for 13 years, serving as supervising judge of the North County branch, presiding judge of the court’s appellate division, and in a variety of substantive assignments.  By appointment of the Supreme Court, Justice Dato currently serves as a member of the California Commission on Judicial Performance.

Before his appointment to the bench, Justice Dato was a certified appellate law specialist in private practice and worked as an appellate court staff attorney with the California Supreme Court and California Court of Appeal. He has also been an adjunct professor at both the University of San Diego School of Law and California Western School of Law, teaching appellate practice and products liability.

Married and the father of four children, Justice Dato is a native San Diegan. He received his law degree from University of California, Los Angeles in 1980 and his bachelor’s degree from San Diego State University in 1977.

Who gave money to this candidate?


More information about contributions

Source: MapLight analysis of data from the California Secretary of State.

Please share this site to help others research their voting choices.