East Hawaii News

Nagata Appointed to Third Circuit District Court Judge Position

April 13, 2016, 8:55 AM HST
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gavel pixabayDarien W.L. Ching Nagata was appointed by Chief Justice Mark E. Recktenwald to the District Court of  the Third Circuit.

Nagata will fulfill the role opened by Judge Barbara T. Takase’s retirement.

For the past 18 years, Nagata has worked as a deputy prosecuting attorney for the County of Hawai’i Office of the Prosecuting Attorney. In her most recent role, she supervises the District and Family Court Domestic Units. She has also supervised the Circuit Court Unit that handles child and adult sexual assaults, homicides, and violent crime cases.

Nagata was cross-deputized to serve as the Special Assistant United States Attorney for the District of Hawai’i from 2008 to 2014. In the role, she assisted with Project Safe Neighborhood.

In addition, Nagata has served as a two time President of the Hawai’i County Bar Association. Within the association, she has also been the representative to co-chair the committee to establish Hilo’s Self Help Center.


Nagata is an active member of the Committee on the Delivery of Legal Services to the Public, where she works to promote and provide legal services to the public, as well as the Diversity, Equality, & the Law Committee, developing programs to eliminate gender, ethnic, and other bias and discrimination in the legal profession and judicial system.


In 2013, the Hawai’i State Bar Association appointed Nagata as Commissioner of the Hawai’i Access to Justice Commission.  She has worked as a Neighbor Island representative, furthering the Commission’s goal of substantially increasing access to justice in civil legal matters for low- and moderate-income residents.

Nagata has served the Hawai’i Island community for nine years as a Volunteer Arbitrator for the Court Annexed Arbitration Program and as a Volunteer Mediator with the Hawai’i County Foreclosure Mediation Program.

In 1997, Nagata was admitted to the Hawai’i State Bar after she graduated from the University of Hawai’i William S. Richardson School of Law.


The Chief Justice appoints District Court judges from a list of no less than six nominees submitted by the Judicial Selection Commission.

If she is confirmed by the State Senate, Nagata will serve a term of six years.

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