Commissioner Collins is a licensed attorney at law in California, admitted to practice in all courts of the State of California, as well as the California Northern, Eastern and Central Districts of the U. S. Federal courts.
Commissioner Collins was admitted to practice law in 1971 after having graduated from the Florida State University and thereafter Golden Gate University Law School in1970. Commissioner Collins thereafter matriculated at the London School of Economics in London, England, taking courses in International Law. Thereafter, Comm. Collins was hired by the San Mateo County District Attorney’s Office as a Deputy District Attorney.
After two years as a criminal prosecutor he left the DA’s office in 1974 and commenced a private law practice in San Mateo while simultaneously teaching at the College of San Mateo for several years before being hired by the San Mateo Law School where he taught law school courses such as legal ethics, remedies, contracts, California community property, and research and writing.
Commissioner Collins orally argued before the California Supreme Court in 1977, the court ruling in that case in his client’s favor which case became a landmark decision in criminal law in California outlawing California trial judges from continuing to advise deadlocked juries that a unanimous decision by the jury was preferable to the alternative that a criminal defendant was entitled to the individual opinion of each juror, irrespective of the number of jurors on each side of the deadlocked jury debate. Comm. Collins persuaded the California Supreme Court only six years after being admitted to State Bar to overturn many decades of contrary decisions by the Supreme Court in this regard.
Comm. Collins was the first president of a local homeowner’s association in the early 1970’s, was later a member of the Hillsborough Homeowners Association, and eventually obtained his California Real Estate Broker’s License. Comm. Collins has also delivered volunteer judicial services as a Judge Pro Tem of the San Mateo County Superior Court for many years.
Comm. Collins is married with three children and has lived in San Mateo County since 1972.