The National Labor Relations Board announced today that Judge Gerald Etchingham has been selected as the new associate chief administrative law judge in charge of the San Francisco office of its Division of Judges. He will succeed Judge Mary Miller Cracraft, who is stepping down after serving 8 years, with distinction, as associate chief judge. She will, however, continue as an active trial judge.
The San Francisco office of the Judges Division dockets and handles cases in the western part of the United States. The Judges Division, which also has offices in Washington, D.C., Atlanta and New York, is responsible for docketing cases, conducting hearings and issuing initial decisions in unfair labor practice cases arising under the National Labor Relations Act. Those decisions may thereafter be appealed to the five-member Board, an independent agency created in 1935 to administer and enforce the Act, whose decisions are subject to review by the United States Courts of Appeals.
During his term as an NLRB judge in San Francisco, Judge Etchingham served at times as acting associate chief judge. He also served as an administrative law judge with the Department of Labor and the Social Security Administration. Before his appointment as an administrative law judge, Judge Etchingham spent 15 years in private practice specializing in civil litigation in state and federal courts and as a teacher of employment and business law courses. Judge Etchingham, who obtained his B.S. degree from Augustana College and his J.D. degree from the University of California, Hastings College of Law, will assume his new duties on December 29, 2012.