SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) — San Francisco Mayor London Breed appointed Manohar “Mano” Raju as the city’s new public defender to replace Jeff Adachi, who died last month.
Raju, the city’s Deputy Public Defender, has served in the San Francisco Public Defender’s office for the past 11 years and previously was a public defender for Contra Costa County. He received his law degree from the University of California, Berkeley.
“Mano has demonstrated a commitment to justice and equity on behalf of not only his clients, but also the entire community that Public Defender’s Office serves,” Breed said in a statement. “His advocacy for addressing systemic challenges to help those who need it most demonstrates that he will continue Jeff Adachi’s legacy of not only fighting in the courtroom, but also fighting to change policies and support innovative programs that make a difference in the community.”
WATCH: Mayor London Breed Introduces Mano Raju As Public Defender
“I’m humbled to be able to work in such an incredible office, where everyone lays it on the line for our clients, day in and day out. With commitment, with skill, and with empathy.” Raju said at a news conference Monday introducing the new Public Defender.
Raju plans to run in the upcoming election this November to fill the remaining three years of Adachi’s term.
Matt Gonzalez, who served as interim public defender after Adachi’s death, will continue to serve as Chief Attorney in the Public Defender’s Office.
Some city insiders thought Gonzalez would take Adachi’s place, but Gonzalez actually recommended Raju for the job.
“I’m very pleased with this choice. If I got to make the choice myself, I would have picked this attorney. He’s really, he’s an outstanding choice,” Gonzalez told reporters.
While Raju said he is different than Adachi, he said a lot of the late attorney’s values will carry over into his time in office.
“There was a lot of support from my office. So the people in the community, and the people in my office, and the families of our office know what I do,” Raju said.
Adachi, 59, passed away on Feb. 22 after having dinner with a friend in the city’s North Beach neighborhood. Police have ruled out foul play in the death.
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