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Orange County, CA June 3, 2014 Election
Smart Voter Full Biography for Jeff Ferguson

Candidate for
Superior Court Judge; County of Orange; Office 35

This information is provided by the candidate

I was a "Navy brat." My father was a career US Naval officer, who sailed aboard the heavy cruiser USS Indianapolis during World War Two. He survived her sinking in the Pacific, and stayed in the Navy. I spent most of my childhood on military bases in Japan and the Philippines.

When my family moved to Orange County in 1962, I worked at Disneyland as a teenager, then started a graphic design business in college. I attended the University of California at Irvine where I was Regional Director for Young Americans for Freedom. I earned two degrees: Bachelor of Science in biology and Bachelor of Arts in Social Ecology. I wrote for the univeristy newspaper newUniversity. While in college I worked as a graphic designer for the printing firm Theraprint, and also sold articles to several magazines.

For ten years I worked as Creative Director at Imagery, an advertising and communications firm. I did design work for many companies, including Exacta Financial, Roger Corman's New World Productions, World Press Association, Tomorrow Communications and others.

I entered the accelerated academic program at Western State University College of Law, graduating cum laude in two-and-a-half years. I served as technical editor for the WSU Law Review and as managing editor for the WSU International Law Journal. I co-authored a principal article on resolving court delay, authored a case note involving copyright and authored a review on terrorism. I was also Editor-in-Chief for WSU's college newspaper Dictum.

I have been a deputy district attorney in Orange County for 31 years. I joined the office in 1983 and was assigned first to juvenile court. In the ensuing years I did trials and hearings in every branch court throughout the County. In the 1990's I was promoted to Senior Deputy District Attorney and posted to the Major Narcotics Enforcement Team (NET). I led the Probation Offender Search and Seizure Enforcement (POSSE) task force, composed of thirty separate state and local police agencies. The program's spectacular success was praised before the United States Congress by the Office of President of the United States George W. Bush.

Moving to the Major Narcotic Vendor Program (MNVP) I prosecuted international criminal cartels moving thousands of kilos of cocaine, and large-scale methamphetamine manufacturers for over a dozen years, longer than any other prosecutor in our county. I was the first prosecutor in California to convict a made member of the Mexican Mafia prison gang under California's "Street Terrorism Act."

I was lead prosecutor for OPERATION BUYER BEWARE, an undercover anti-meth task force with over 20 state and local law enforcement agencies headed by the CA Department of Justice. Chasing methamphetamine traffickers from San Diego to Fresno, we shut down over two dozen labs and seized hundreds of pounds of methamphetamine. Sixty-five traffickers were jailed.

I then moved to OPERATION ORION, targeting street gang-related narcotics trafficking, gun-running and car theft rings. Spearheaded by the Santa Ana Police Department, it included agents from the California Department of Justice and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. I personally indicted 128 suspects, most of them criminal street gang members from Santa Nita, Brook Street, Sixth Street, and others. All but a handful were apprehended and went to state prison.

In 2000 I joined OPERATION GEMINI, targeting the VAGOS outlaw motorcycle gang in three states: California, Nevada, and Hawaii. Working with CA DOJ's Violence Suppression Unit, federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, and deputies from the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department, I was the first prosecutor in California to convict an outlaw motorcycle gang member under California's "Street Terrorism Act."

During this period I handled dozens forfeiture cases which are quasi-civil proceedings, affording me experience with the complexities and nuances of civil litigation.

In 2001 I was the Orange County District Attorney liaison to the California Anti-Terrorism Information Center (CATIC), working with local police to investigate and prosecute identity thieves and international drug traffickers funding overseas terrorist organizations.

Then in 2009 I was one of four Senior Deputy District Attorneys handpicked by District Attorney Tony Rackauckas to join the Felony Strike Team to address the problems posed by the economic downturn and explosion of felony cases clogging the trial courts.

I am now assigned to the District Attorney Parole Violator Working Group to establish policies and protocols for managing the influx of felony parole violators expected after CA shifted responsibility for these criminals from the state prisons to local counties. My aim, above all, is to insure public safety as best we can under the circumstances.

Through this cascade of years I was married and raised two sons. My first, Kevin, is now a producer and broadcast journalist for the program Offramp for 89.3 FM KPPC radio in Los Angeles. His wife Kelly is a certified child development instructor with a Masters Degree in English.

My second son Phillip is in 7th grade. He is a Boy Scout Star Class and is working hard towards Eagle Scout.

My wife Sheryl previously worked for both the Santa Barbara and Orange County Probation Departments and then for American Funds Service Company for almost 20 years. She took a leave of absence from the workforce to raise our son Phillip when he turned three.

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Created from information supplied by the candidate: April 24, 2014 09:46
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