Distinguished Lawyer Memorial Honoree

Hon. Federico Castro

Judge Federico “Fred” Castro was a respected judge, community leader, and devoted family man. Born in Monolith, California, he excelled academically and athletically during his high school years. Federico attended Santa Clara University and later transferred to the University of California, Berkeley, where he graduated with honors in 1954. His passion for law led him to a successful career, starting as a Personnel Superintendent before becoming a lawyer.

In 1971, Federico achieved his Juris Doctorate from the University of San Diego School of Law. He fulfilled his dream of practicing law alongside his brother, Ramon Castro, and made a significant impact as a Deputy City Attorney in San Diego. Federico was appointed to the San Diego Superior Court by Governor George Deukmejian in 1987. Before transitioning to Juvenile Court, he served as a family law judge, handling delinquency and dependency cases.

Federico’s commitment to justice and the welfare of neglected children extended beyond the courtroom. He coordinated services between child protection officers in San Diego and Tijuana, Mexico, to improve the well-being of vulnerable children. Even after retiring in 2001, Federico continued to serve as a retired judge until 2010. His dedication to making a positive difference in the lives of families was widely recognized and earned him numerous awards from organizations such as Voices for Children, the Rotary Club, and the University of San Diego School of Law.

Outside of his professional endeavors, Federico found joy in his family. He married Rosa Ibarra in 1995, sharing a love for travel and exploring the world. Federico’s legacy is one of leadership, mentorship, and advocacy, particularly within the Latino community. In addition, his contributions to the legal field and his commitment to justice continue to inspire and leave a lasting impact.