Here is the Judicial Council news release about the completed investigation of the State Bar’s premature disclosure to law school deans of topics on a recent bar exam.  The Supreme Court commissioned the investigation.  The 19-page investigator’s report to the court is here.  The names of some State Bar staffers are redacted.

The report covers not only the exam topic disclosure, but, in general, the State Bar’s not altogether harmonious relationship with the Supreme Court.  The report states,  “Presently, the Supreme Court has been more active and engaged in overseeing the State Bar than it has in the past.  It is readily apparent that some at the State Bar have not adapted well to this enhanced oversight.”  Indeed, the State Bar response to the erroneous disclosure to the deans — emailing the topics to all test takers — was decided without court involvement.

Among other things, the report recommends that the court “consider further clarifying for the State Bar the Court’s view of the nature of its relationship with the State Bar and the Court’s expectations regarding when it should be involved in State Bar decisions.”

One who has apparently not adapted well to enhanced court oversight is the State Bar’s general counsel, Vanessa Holton.  The report says that, although most at the State Bar cooperated with the investigation, “Holton was at times recalcitrant during her interview.”


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