Ming Chin

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Ming Chin
Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of California
Assumed office
March 1, 1996
Nominated by Pete Wilson
Preceded by Armand Arabian
Personal details
Born (1942-08-31) August 31, 1942 (age 72)
Klamath Falls, Oregon, U.S.
Spouse(s) Carol Joe (m. 1971)
Children Jennifer and Jason
Alma mater University of San Francisco (B.A., J.D.)

Ming William Chin (Chinese: 陳惠明; pinyin: Chén Huìmíng; born August 31, 1942) is an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of California. He was appointed to the California Supreme Court by Governor Pete Wilson on January 25, 1996, and confirmed by the Commission on Judicial Appointments and sworn in on March 1, 1996.[1] He was retained by the electorate in 1998[2] and 2010.[3] Justice Chin is of Asian descent.

In 1969, Chin was awarded an United States Army Commendation Medal and a Bronze Star for his service in the Vietnam War.

He authored the most majority opinions at the Supreme Court during 1997, his first full term.

He is well-known among California employment lawyers as one of the four current authors of the Rutter Group practice guide on employment litigation.

Notable cases[edit]

In 2008, Chin was part of the dissenting minority in In re Marriage Cases, a 4-3 decision legalizing same-sex marriage in California.


Personal life[edit]

Chin was born and raised in Klamath Falls, Oregon.[4] He wed Carol Joe, a pharmacist in 1971, with whom he has two children: Jennifer (b. 1974) and Jason (b. 1976).[4]

In August 2011, an ethics complaint was filed with the California Commission of Judicial Performance against Justice Chin because of his involvement with a non-profit entity which caters exclusively to Asian-Americans.[5][self-published source] In November 2011, and while the complaint was pending, Justice Chin abruptly quit said entity which caters exclusively to Asian American.[6][self-published source] The non-profit at issue is Pasadena-based Center for Asian-American United for Self Empowerment ("CAUSE"), which allegedly spends the money it collects for the purpose of voter-registration of API, as well as to lobby for furthering the appointments of APIs to various governmental positions.[7][self-published source]


Legal offices
Preceded by
Armand Arabian
Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of California
1996 – present
Succeeded by