Ryan Dibble may have recently come into the public eye in Los Angeles through his 2022 race for judge, but his commitment to justice and public service spans over a decade. Before endeavoring a career in law and running for office, Dibble was raised in the suburbs of LA County. He attended local public schools, where he was known for his competitive spirit on the debate team. This early interest in logic, reasoning, and communication foreshadowed Dibble’s future success as a lawyer and candidate.
Education and Early Legal Career
After graduating high school, Dibble began his undergraduate education at the University of Southern California. He took advantage of USC’s top-ranked programs by pursuing dual bachelor’s degrees in political science and accounting. Outside the classroom, Dibble was involved with student organizations and interned at local law firms. These combined experiences deepened his interest in the intersection of law, politics, and justice.
In 2005, Dibble graduated with his undergraduate degrees and immediately entered the USC Gould School of Law. Over the next three years, he excelled in his classes and served as editor-in-chief of the school’s law review journal. This further developed Dibble’s research and analytical abilities, preparing him for a legal career.
Work as a Deputy District Attorney
Upon receiving his Juris Doctor in 2005, Dibble took and passed the California bar exam. He then joined the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office as a deputy district attorney. This highly selective role allowed Dibble to rapidly gain firsthand experience with the criminal justice system in LA.
Notable Cases Worked On
In his early years as a prosecutor, Dibble handled a range of felony criminal cases including domestic violence, assault, drug offenses, theft, and attempted murder. He developed a reputation for his diligent trial preparation and strong litigation skills in the courtroom. A few notable cases Dibble worked on include:
- People v. Torres: Dibble successfully prosecuted a defendant charged with attempted murder, securing a conviction through key DNA and cell phone evidence.
- People v. Jackson: Dibble obtained justice for victims in a major embezzlement case, convicting the defendant of stealing over $500,000 through wire fraud.
- People v. Martin: Working closely with victims and investigators, Dibble convicted a repeat domestic abuser charged with assault, illegal gun possession, and violating a restraining order.
Decision to Run for Judge in 2022
After over 15 years prosecuting criminal cases and fighting for victims, Dibble felt a calling to seek judicial office in 2022. He had long considered running for judge, given his deep knowledge of the law and firsthand experience in the courtroom. Dibble also believed his perspective as a prosecutor could provide needed balance to the bench while still upholding civil liberties.
Primary Campaign and Platform
In early 2022, Dibble officially launched his campaign for an open seat on the Superior Court of Los Angeles County during the June primary. His core platform focused on improving public safety through common sense reforms, protecting victims’ rights, and ensuring equal access to justice. Dibble also emphasized his direct courtroom experience as preparation for serving as a fair, ethical judge.
Endorsements and Support
While Dibble’s campaign ultimately came up short in the primary, he did receive support from several prominent organizations and individuals. This included endorsements from the Los Angeles Police Protective League, the LA County Federation of Labor, and former California Assembly Speaker John Pérez. These backers recognized Dibble’s depth of legal knowledge and commitment to public service.
Primary Election Results
When primary election day arrived on June 7, 2022, Dibble’s hopes of advancing to the general election were unfortunately not realized. In a crowded field for the open judicial seat, he placed third with 26.7% of the vote behind Fernanda Maria Barreto and Elizabeth Lashley-Haynes. While no doubt disappointed, Dibble handled the loss with grace and remained positive about the future.
What’s Next for Ryan Dibble?
Although his judicial campaign fell short, Ryan Dibble still has a promising career ahead at just 40 years old. The 2022 election built his name recognition and network, potentially setting the stage for future runs for office. But in the near term, Dibble has exciting legal and civic opportunities to continue giving back.
Potential Future Campaigns
Despite his primary defeat, Dibble gained valuable campaign experience by running for judge in 2022. This could position him well for potential future races, whether seeking a judicial role or other elected office. Dibble has not publicly indicated plans to run again soon but will likely remain open to the idea down the road.
Continuing Legal Career
In addition to politics, Dibble has several promising avenues to develop his legal career in the coming years. His strong reputation and network within the LA legal community will open doors regardless if he holds elected office again.
Teaching and Mentorship
For instance, Dibble may look to increase his adjunct teaching at USC Law School where he currently serves as a guest lecturer. He could also mentor young lawyers at the DA’s office or take on pro bono cases to pay forward his expertise.
Alternatively, Dibble may consider joining a major law firm and transitioning to private practice. His litigation and trial advocacy skills would make him a top candidate at prestigious firms seeking to add criminal defense and civil litigation expertise.
Key Takeaways from Ryan Dibble’s Career
Regardless if he holds elected office again, certain themes and values have defined Ryan Dibble’s legal career so far. Both his years as a prosecutor and recent judicial run shed light on his strengths and passion for public service.
Commitment to Public Service
Above all, Dibble has shown a steadfast commitment to public service from an early age. This began with his undergraduate studies in political science and has continued through his work in the LA County DA’s Office. Even in defeat, Dibble’s dignified judicial campaign reflected his spirit of civic participation.
Focus on Community-Based Justice
Relatedly, Dibble has developed a firsthand understanding of how administering justice intersects with local communities. His experience as a prosecutor gave him direct exposure to how crimes affect victims, offenders’ rehabilitation, and public safety. This community-centered insight would serve Dibble well as a future judge.
Belief in Rehabilitation Over Punishment
Dibble has also evidenced a balanced approach to justice that emphasizes rehabilitation over strictly punitive measures. For example, he has supported increased access to diversion programs and alternatives to incarceration for nonviolent offenders as a prosecutor. This aligns with his broader efforts to develop a more holistic criminal justice system.
Losing with Dignity
Despite his electoral loss in the 2022 primary, Dibble handled defeat with poise and maturity. This ability to lose with dignity reveals strength of character and perseverance important for lawyers and public figures.
Gracefully Accepting Electoral Defeat
Rather than complaining about the outcome, Dibble offered gracious remarks conceding the race on election night. He thanked his supporters and vowed to continue serving the community in new ways going forward.
Remaining Positive and Forward-Looking
Dibble also maintained a positive, forward-looking mindset following the loss. He spoke hopefully about the future and the potential to run again down the road. This upbeat perspective shows resilience critical to enduring the ups and downs of elections and public life.
The Road Ahead for Ryan Dibble
As he reflects on 2022 and looks to the future, Ryan Dibble has diverse options to stay engaged in law, civic life, and perhaps future campaigns. While his first run for office may have fallen short, Dibble’s legal and prosecutorial career thus far shows great promise.
Potential Judicial Appointment
One pathway could be seeking judicial appointment, whether through election or gubernatorial nomination. Dibble has now gained greater visibility and credibility as a qualified judge given his strong 2022 campaign. As such, he could be well-positioned if a seat opens up.
Continued Work in the Legal Field
Of course, Dibble may also continue developing his legal career in other ways. He can leverage his litigation expertise in private practice or remain a prosecutor. Dibble is also well-suited to take on more teaching and writing roles given his passion for the law.
Public Interest Law
In particular, Dibble may be drawn to expand his pro bono work and involvement in public interest law groups. For instance, he could serve on boards of legal aid foundations or volunteer his skills to represent vulnerable clients in need.
Staying Engaged in Civic Life
Regardless of his day job, Dibble will likely continue finding ways to give back through community and political engagement. These activities would allow him to serve the public good and stay connected for future campaigns.
Community Organizations and Nonprofits
For example, Dibble may take on more leadership roles with civic organizations, legal associations, nonprofits, or his undergraduate alma mater USC. He could offer guidance by serving on boards, fundraising, or mentoring youth.
Political Activity and Endorsements
Dibble also brings credibility as an endorser now having run for office himself. He may stay involved in politics by making endorsements, volunteering on campaigns, or advising candidates interested in running for judge down the road.
The 2022 election did not go as Ryan Dibble hoped, but his career passion for justice and public service remains stronger than ever. Having gained invaluable experience as a candidate, Dibble is well-positioned to continue making a difference through law, civic engagement, and possibly future campaigns. Regardless of his specific path going forward, Dibble’s commitment to serving the greater good persists. Though the bench is further away after his primary defeat, his legal and prosecutorial career evidences a diligent, principled advocate committed to advancing justice however he can.
Q: What sparked Ryan Dibble’s interest in running for judge?
A: After 15+ years of working as a prosecutor, Dibble felt drawn to seek judicial office to serve the community and provide balance to the bench with his legal experience.
Q: How did Dibble’s primary election campaign go in 2022?
A: Dibble lost in the 3-way primary race, coming in 3rd place short of advancing to the general election despite endorsements and strong qualifications.
Q: How did Dibble handle his primary election defeat?
A: Dibble gracefully conceded on election night, thanking supporters and remaining positive about the future and potential to run again.
Q: What legal career paths may Dibble still pursue?
A: Options include private practice, teaching, pro bono work, nonprofit boards, and potentially seeking appointment as a judge down the road.
Q: How might Dibble stay engaged in civic life going forward?
A: Dibble can use his public profile to support community groups, make endorsements, advise future candidates, and engage in activism.