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Learn more about Judge Kreis

Candidate Statment

Candidate Kick-Off Speech 12/13/23

Ladies and Gentlemen, Supporters, and Friends,

Thank you for joining me today in this momentous occasion as I stand before you to announce my candidacy for re-election as Humboldt County Superior Court Judge. It's truly an honor to see so many familiar faces and new friends who share a common vision for justice, fairness, and a vibrant community.

Reflecting on Our Journey:

As I look back on my journey, from arriving in this beautiful county in 1990 to my appointment as Superior Court Judge in 2017, I am reminded of the incredible experiences that have shaped my commitment to public service and the law. It all started here, at the College of the Redwoods and Humboldt State University, where I fell in love with the community and its people.

A Career in Service:

After earning a Bachelor of Arts in Social Science, I left to further my education and start a career in law. I worked in criminal defense law for over seven years before returning to Humboldt County in 2010 to join the Public Defender's Office. It was an opportunity to serve the community that had left an indelible mark on my heart.

In 2017, Governor Brown appointed me to the bench, a responsibility I embraced with humility and a deep sense of duty. I've presided over diverse cases, from traffic to family, criminal to civil, and currently, in dependency court. Every case, every decision, has been guided by a commitment to fairness and justice.

The Path to Non-Partisanship:

Raised in a Democratic family dedicated to public service, I made the choice to register as an Independent after becoming a judge. Why? Because judges, as non-partisan entities, must remain impartial. When I sit on the bench, political beliefs have no bearing on the decisions I make. It's a commitment to transparency and fairness that I take very seriously.

Leading Through Challenges:

For over six years, I've had the privilege of serving as Assistant Presiding Judge and, for the last two years, as your Presiding Judge. Together with an incredible team, we've navigated through power outages and the unprecedented challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic. As a court, we remained dedicated to providing access to justice, adapting to new technologies, and ensuring that every member of our community had their day in court.

Statewide Representation:

Beyond Humboldt County, I've represented our community on statewide committees for the Judicial Council of California. Whether on the Family and Juvenile Law Advisory Committee, the Tribal Court-State Court Forum, or the Family Law Curriculum Committee, I've carried the voice of Humboldt County to the broader legal landscape.

Community Wellness and Engagement:

Currently, I preside over the Family Wellness Court, collaborating with Hoopa Tribal Court and Yurok Tribal Court. It's a testament to the importance of community engagement and partnership in fostering a justice system that truly serves our unique needs.

The Heart of Our Campaign:

Now, as I announce my candidacy for re-election, I stand before you with a heart full of gratitude and a renewed sense of purpose. The heart of our campaign lies in a commitment to a judiciary that works for everyone, that listens to the concerns of our community, and that remains dedicated to upholding the principles of justice.

Your Support Matters:

I humbly ask for your support in this journey. Your endorsement is not just a vote; it's an investment in a justice system that reflects our values. Join me in this endeavor to continue serving Humboldt County with dedication, experience, and a passion for justice.

In conclusion, I want to express my deepest gratitude to each one of you for your support, encouragement, and belief in the principles that guide our legal system. Together, let's build a future where justice is accessible to all, where fairness prevails, and where our community thrives.

Thank you, and I look forward to the incredible journey ahead!

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I want to express my heartfelt appreciation for the support I’ve received. Your generosity and encouragement have been instrumental in fueling this campaign. I work to serve all of the people in Humboldt and believe that I’m making a positive impact. Together, we are building a stronger and more vibrant community. Thank you for standing by me. Your support is truly valued and makes a significant difference.

About Judge Kreis

Educational and Professional Background

Judge Gregory J. Kreis has been a vital part of the Humboldt County community for many years. He first fell in love with the area while pursuing his education at the College of the Redwoods and Humboldt State University (now Cal Poly Humboldt). In 1995, he obtained a Bachelor of Arts in Social Science with an emphasis in Ethnic/Native American Studies, Psychology, and Sociology.

Driven by a passion for justice and a commitment to public service, Judge Kreis left the region after graduation to further his education and embark on a career in law. During law school, he worked at California Indian Legal Services, building on his interests sparked at Humboldt State and fostering connections with tribal communities in the area.

Legal Career and Public Service

Upon completing law school, Judge Kreis dedicated over seven years to criminal defense law at the Law Offices of Mark Berg in Placer County, California. In 2010, he returned to Humboldt County and joined the Humboldt County Public Defender's Office. Within two years, he became the Supervising Attorney at the Public Defender Conflict Office, showcasing his leadership and legal expertise.

In 2017, Governor Brown recognized Judge Kreis's dedication to justice and appointed him to the Humboldt County Superior Court. This appointment marked a significant transition for Judge Kreis, aligning with his lifelong pursuit of new challenges and opportunities to positively impact people's lives.

Becoming a Judge: A Rigorous Journey

The path to becoming a judge involved a rigorous selection process. In 2016, Judge Kreis applied to the Governor's Office for a Superior Court Judge position. The Commission on Judicial Nominee Evaluations thoroughly vetted him, considering over 75 professional and personal references. Judge Kreis then underwent interviews with commissioners and ultimately with the Governor's Judicial Appointment Secretary and now current Associate California Supreme Court Justice, Josh Groban. Governor Brown appointed him to the bench in 2017.

Non-Partisan Commitment

Raised in a Democratic family dedicated to public service through public education, Judge Kreis chose to register as "No Party Preference"  after his appointment. Recognizing the non-partisan nature of the judiciary, he aimed to ensure that political beliefs would not influence his decisions on the bench.

Dedication to the Community: Serving as a Judge

With over six years on the bench, Judge Kreis has presided over a diverse array of cases, from traffic to family, criminal to civil, and currently, dependency court. He also oversees the Family Wellness Court in collaboration with the Hoopa Tribal Court and Yurok Tribal Court.


As the Assistant Presiding Judge for approximately four years and the current Presiding Judge for over two years, Judge Kreis has been an instrumental part of the court's leadership team. Together, they successfully navigated challenges such as power outages and the COVID-19 pandemic, ensuring continued access to justice for the community.


Judge Kreis has further contributed to the legal community by serving on several committees for the Judicial Council of California, including the Family and Juvenile Law Advisory Committee (2019-2023), Tribal Court-State Court Forum (2019-2022), and Family Law Curriculum Committee (2020-2021).

Grateful Acknowledgment - Request for Support

Judge Kreis expresses gratitude for the opportunity to work with an exceptional group of individuals, including employees, managers, bailiffs, and fellow judges, who collectively contribute to making the Humboldt County Superior Court a dedicated institution for justice. He would also like to thank the community that has come before him in court and trusted his reasoned decisions even when they disagree.  He hopes to continue serving the community and humbly requests your vote in the upcoming election.


Thank you all in advance for your consideration.

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