2485 Natomas Park Drive
Sacramento, CA 95833
Fermín Villegas is a senior counsel in the Sacramento office. Mr. Villegas represents California public school districts, county offices of education, and community college districts in all areas of education law. Mr. Villegas’s practice focuses on personnel, labor, charter schools, student rights and discipline, board governance, and civil rights compliance matters.
Mr. Villegas recently served as a Deputy Attorney General in the Health, Education, and Welfare section of the California Department of Justice. In that role, he represented various state agencies, boards, and commissions in litigation and administrative hearings. Most notably, he successfully defended the State Board of Education (SBE) against a writ of mandate brought by a charter school and was part of the team representing the California Department of Education, the SBE, and the State Superintendent of Public Instruction in federal district court and the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in a long-running special education consent decree matter. Mr. Villegas also represented the Commission on Teacher Credentialing in various matters before the Office of Administrative Hearings, including the revocation of the credential of a teacher accused of sexual misconduct with students. Additionally, Mr. Villegas was assigned to provide in-house legal services to the California Community Colleges Chancellor’s Office (CCCCO), ranging from providing legal guidance to individual divisions within the CCCCO to reviewing appeals of discrimination complaints filed against community college districts.
Prior to law school, Mr. Villegas worked as a bilingual teacher in the Los Angeles Unified School District. He is fluent in Spanish and French.
Mr. Villegas earned his undergraduate degree from the University of California, Berkeley, with a double major in Political Economy of Industrial Societies and French. He spent a year in Lyon, France, through the UC’s Education Abroad Program.
Mr. Villegas received his law degree from UC Davis School of Law (King Hall), where he served as a Senior Symposium Editor on the UC Davis Law Review and as Co-Chair of the La Raza Law Students Association. Mr. Villegas also served in the UC Davis Immigration Law Clinic, representing indigent immigrants. Mr. Villegas was awarded King Hall’s Public Interest Law Certificate, which is given to students with a demonstrated commitment to public service.
Publications and Speaking Engagements
Mr. Villegas is a contributor to the firm’s education publications.