Personal Biography
Judges/Commissioners > Personal Biography
 Judge Stephen C. Villarreal

Judge Stephen C. Villarreal
Trial Judge - Division 4
Arizona Superior Court in Pima County

Telephone: (520) 724-8690


   Judge Stephen C. Villarreal was born on July 15, 1946 in San Diego, California. He grew up in Morenci, Arizona, attending elementary and high school there. After graduation from high school in 1964, he attended Eastern Arizona College and the University of Arizona. He then entered active military duty with the U.S. Army in 1966 serving two years, including one year in Vietnam as a combat infantryman. After his release from active military service, he returned to the University of Arizona and graduated in 1972 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Sociology with a minor in Government. He then attended the University of Arizona College of Law graduating with a Juris Doctor degree in 1975.

   After passing the Arizona bar exam, he was employed by the Neighborhood Law Office, a Southern Arizona Legal Aid organization, for two years as a staff attorney providing legal services in poverty law. He then worked for the Tucson City Attorney's Office for a short time as a prosecutor before joining the Pima County Public Defender's Office as a trial attorney in 1977. While there, he provided legal services in criminal cases to indigent persons charged with serious felonies.

    In January 1980, he cofounded the law firm of Gonzales and Villarreal. His practice there evolved from criminal law into a general civil and criminal law practice. After a few years, he focused his practice on representing injured parties in personal injury matters including automobile accidents, products liability, toxic tort and crime victim litigation. Additionally, he represented several Fraternal Order of Police unions and the Arizona Education Association. In January 1997, he began practicing law as a sole practitioner exclusively representing plaintiffs in personal injury matters.

    In August 1998, Gov. Jane Hull appointed him to the Superior Court bench. He served as a trial judge on the Civil Bench from 1998-2001 where, among his other duties, he was the coordinator for the civil case settlement program. Between June 2001 and June 2004, he served as a judge in Juvenile Court in delinquency, dependency, severance and adoption matters. He was also the Associate Presiding Judge in Juvenile Court. He was assigned to the Criminal Bench from June 2004 through April 2008 and the Civil Bench from April 2008 through June 2012. Judge Villarreal is currently assigned to the Family Law Bench at Superior Court. He is a member of the Arizona Judges Association and the Arizona Minority Judges Caucus.

    Judge Villarreal is married and has two adult daughters and two grandsons. He enjoys traveling, running and hiking.

Last Updated: 7/31/2012 7:44:00 AM
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