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FCWL's Annual Justice Pauline Hanson Dinner


The Justice Pauline Hanson Annual Dinner, which celebrated its 30th year in 2017, is an annual dinner and awards banquet that honors the memory of the late Justice Paulin Hanson.


Pauline Davis was born July 13, 1922. She grew up on the family ranch in Selma, California – the same ranch where she died on August 19, 1989, after an almost three-year battle with cancer. Her achievements during her 67 years are remarkable: graduate of Stanford Law School; executive secretary to Assemblyman Charles Garrigus; the first law clerk; then the first principal attorney at the Fifth District Court of Appeal. In 1977, Governor Jerry Brown appointed her to the Fresno County Superior Court where she served for three years before being elevated to Associate Justice of the Fifth District Court of Appeal. She served there until her medical retirement in 1987.


Were one to have asked Justice Hanson to list her greatest accomplishments, it is unlikely she would have named many, if any, of the above. She might have recited: wife (of Bill Hanson), mother (of their three sons, Nels, Victor and Alfred), protector and advocate of children (during her two years as Fresno County’s first full time juvenile court judge), buffer between the state and the individual and friend to many. She would not have boasted “role model” nor “first woman to serve on either of the courts to which she was appointed,” which she was.


Pauline Davis Hanson would carefully craft appellate opinions one day and peddle fruit from the family ranch out of the back of a truck at a farmer’s market in Santa Cruz the next day – without any noticeable transition. She was indefatigable, laughed often and loved those who gathered around her like moths to a flame. She is missed sorely.

Fresno County Women Lawyers takes great pleasure in continuing to recognize Justice Hanson’s spirit and leadership through an annual dinner that we host in her honor and memory.


Each year we honor an individual with the Hanson Award, which is bestowed upon a deserving Fresno County attorney or legal professional who has made strides to advance the position of women in the legal community. We also present a law student with the Hanson Scholarship, an award of great monetary value that helps deserving law students who aim to practice law in the Central Valley upon graduation.


If you would like to nominate an individual for the Hanson Award, please email fcwl.president@gmail.com.


Click below to see pictures from past Hanson Dinners:


2007 - 2008 - 2009 - 2010 - 2011 - 2012 - 2013 - 2014 - 2015 - 2016 - 2017


Volunteer Activities


Fresno County Women Lawyers selects a non-profit organization to fundraise for every year.  Fresno County Women Lawyers is proud to announce that it selected the Marjaree Mason Center as its philanthropy for the year of 2019.

Marjaree Mason Center supports and empowers adults and their children affected by domestic violence, while striving to prevent and end the cycle of abuse through education and advocacy. Marjaree Mason Center provides emergency and longer-term Safe Housing, along with a wide variety of support services for victims of domestic violence in Fresno County.

Marjaree Mason Center’s website may be accessed at https://mmcenter.org/ for more information.

FCWL's Annual Judicial Reception


Every year, Fresno County Women Lawyers honors women who have been elected or appointed to the Superior Court, Court of Appeal, and the U.S. District Court in the past year. The annual Judicial Reception is typically held in May and honors recent female accessions to the bench through a well-attended cocktail hour and reception. The Reception honors women from both Fresno County and surrounding Central Valley counties.

Please click below to find pictures from past Judicial Receptions:


Click below to see pictures from past Judicial Receptions:


2008 - 2009 - 2010 - 2014 - 2015 - 2016 - 2017


Monthly MCLE Luncheons


In addition to our other benefits FCWL provides low-cost MCLE Luncheons on hot topics such as technology, judicial candidates, and elimination of bias. The luncheons are at The Palms Restaurant on 7550 N. Palm Avenue, #101, Fresno California. The price for 1 unit of MCLE plus lunch is $25.00 for members, $30.00 for non-members. See the EVENTS tab and our calendar for upcoming presentations.

P.O. Box 3084, Pinedale, California 93650

P.O. Box 3084, Pinedale, California 93650