About USC Gould
USC Gould is a top-ranked law school with a 115-year history and reputation for academic excellence. We are located on the beautiful 228-acre USC University Park Campus, just south of downtown Los Angeles.
Learn about our rigorous and interdisciplinary curriculum, our invaluable experiential learning opportunities, and the breadth and depth of our specialized areas of concentration and certificate offerings.
- Student Life
Participate in an unparalleled learning experience with diversity of people and thought. Get involved in the law school community and participate in activities that enhance your studies.
We work closely with students, graduates and employers to support successful career goals andoutcomes. Our overall placement rate is consistently strong, with 94 percent of our JD class employed within 10 months after graduation.
Our faculty is distinguished for its scholarship, as well as for its commitment to teaching. Our 12:1 student-to-faculty ratio creates an intimate and collegial learning environment.
- Alumni and Giving
Alumni and Giving
The global Trojan network of more than 10,000 law alumni and donors include recognized leaders in numerous fields who are deeply committed to supporting student and law school success.
Lecturers in Law
- FACULTY DIRECTORY
- LECTURERS IN LAW DIRECTORY
- EXPERTS DIRECTORY
- FACULTY IN THE NEWS
- SCHOLARSHIP AND PUBLICATIONS
- DISTINCTIONS AND AWARDS
- + CENTERS
- CENTER FOR TRANSNATIONAL LAW AND BUSINESS (CTLB)
- CENTER FOR LAW AND PHILOSOPHY (CLP)
- CENTER FOR LAW AND SOCIAL SCIENCE (CLASS)
- CENTER FOR LAW, HISTORY AND CULTURE (CLHC)
- INITIATIVE AND REFERENDUM INSTITUTE (IRI)
- PACIFIC CENTER FOR HEALTH POLICY AND ETHICS
- SAKS INSTITUTE FOR MENTAL HEALTH LAW, POLICY, AND ETHICS
- WORKSHOPS AND CONFERENCES
Mary Thornton House
Lecturer in Law
Last Updated: Friday, May 19, 2017699 Exposition Blvd. Los Angeles, CA 90089-0074 USA
Mary Thornton House now sits in Department 29 of the Stanley Mosk Courthouse presiding over trusts, wills, estate, conservatorship and guardian matter. Prior to her assignment to Probate, she was the supervising judge for the Northeast and North Central Districts which comprises the Pasadena, Alhambra, Glendale, and Burbank Courthouses for the Superior Court of Los Angeles County. She celebrated her 20th year on the bench, February 2016. She was appointed to the Pasadena Municipal Court by Governor Pete Wilson in January, 1997 and elevated to the Superior Court in 2000. Prior to her elevation, she was tasked as the first (and only) municipal court judge ever to supervise a Superior Court district. She presided over general jurisdiction cases in the Stanley Mosk Courthouse from 2005 to 2009, prior to returning to the San Gabriel and San Fernando Valley as one of its supervising judges. With the recent court reductions due to budget cuts, House assumed additional responsibilities as the Supervising Judge of Hub Operations. She now supervises the Unlawful Detainer, Collections, and Small Claims centralized hub courts throughout the County.
In March 2004, Los Angeles County honored her as one of its ‘Women of the Year’ for her efforts on behalf of women’s issues. In October 2004, she was recognized by the Pasadena Bar Association as their ‘Judge of the Year.’ In 2008, the California Judges Association awarded her the Bernard F. Jefferson’s Award for Excellence in Judicial Education. In June, 2010, she was elected and served for one year as Vice-President of the California Judges Association. In February 2011, the San Fernando Valley Bar Association awarded her the “Excellence in Judicial Administration” award. In March 2013, the San Fernando Valley Bar Association named her their “2013 Judge of the Year.”
House was the 2011 and 2012 Dean of California B.E. Witkin Judicial College which provides for education of all judicial officers in California. The college is a nationally recognized institution and exemplar for judicial education; she has been an instructor and seminar leader since 1997. House is a past and present member of many California statewide committees. Of note, she served six years as a member of the California Administrative Office of the Court’s Civil and Small Claims Advisory Committee. Prior to leading the workgroup that was instrumental in passing the new Expedited Jury Trials legislation in and court rules in 2010, she supervised the statewide conversion of legalistic pleading forms for small claims cases into a plain language format and was instrumental in the development of the universal judgment form in wide use today. She chaired a state-wide working group co-sponsored by the Judicial Council and the California Law Revision Commission established to recommend legislative and policy changes to the 3 Track Civil System that ultimately re resulted in increasing the Small Claims monetary jurisdictional amounts in California. This committee further investigated and caused the implementation of rigorous statewide training standards and programs for attorneys serving as pro tem judicial officers.
Prior to her appointment to the Pasadena Municipal Court in 1996 and subsequent elevation to the Superior Court in 2000, she was an Assistant City Attorney for the City of Los Angeles. In that capacity, she was initially a criminal prosecutor and then transferred to the civil branch to defend lawsuits against the City and its employees. In her last years prior to her appointment to the bench, she was general counsel to the Los Angeles Police and Fire Departments, defending departmental policies, programs, and the Police and Fire Chiefs in both state and federal courts.
House graduated from UCLA with a BA degree in English in 1975. She received her JD from the University of San Diego in 1978. She plays the viola with the Pasadena Community Orchestra and occasionally is able to play with the LA Lawyer’s Philharmonic. She is married to retired Los Angeles Fire Department Arson Investigator James Thornton and mother to Sarah and Kyle Thornton.
FACULTY IN THE NEWS
Daria Roithmayr was interviewed about the possible legal implications if President Donald Trump obstructed justice. “The probe has widened from Russian interference with US elections to possible obstruction of justice by President Trump,” Roithmayr explained. “The FBI frequently widens its investigation when it uncovers potential evidence of additional wrongdoing. That’s what has happened here. Mueller’s investigators are interviewing witnesses inside and outside the government in connection with Trump’s actions with regard to Comey and others in connection with the Russian inquiry. Mueller will make a set of findings about whether President Trump attempted to obstruct justice.”
“The Promise of a Subject-Centered Approach to Understanding Immigration Noncompliance.” Journal on Migration and Human Security 5 (2017): 285.
Abby K. Wood
“Measuring the Information Benefit of Campaign Finance Disclosure,” Southern California Law and Social Science (SoCLASS) Forum, Claremont-McKenna College, Claremont, CA.
2017 recipient of the Andrew Carnegie fellowship, Andrew Carnegie Fellows Program.