Jamila Benkato

Deputy County Counsel

Jamila Benkato joined the Office of the County Counsel in 2021.  She is a member of the Finance, Government Operations, and Technology team, advising County departments on a variety of legal issues.  Jamila is also a member of the Community Protection Team, representing the County in administrative proceedings to enforce various County ordinances.  Prior to joining the County, Jamila was a law clerk with the Honorable Jacqueline H. Nguyen on the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals.  Before that, she served as Counsel at Protect Democracy, litigating voting rights and rule of law issues, leading teams in drafting appellate and Supreme Court amicus briefs, and contributing to white papers and state policy work. 

Jamila’s professional expertise includes:

  • Civil litigation
  • Appellate litigation


  • University of California, Irvine School of Law, J.D. magna cum laude, 2016
    • U.C. Irvine Law Review
    • Chair, Student Bar Association
    • Pro Bono High Honors
  • University of California, Santa Barbara, M.A., 2012
  • Southern Methodist University, B.A., 2009

Prior Experience

  • Law Clerk to the Honorable Jacqueline H. Nguyen, United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit (2020-2021)
  • Counsel at Protect Democracy (2017-2020)
  • Law Clerk to the Honorable David O. Carter, United States District Court for the Central District of California (2016-2017)

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