Former Congressman James Rogan is a graduate of the University of California at Berkeley and the UCLA School of Law, where he served as a member of the UCLA Law Review.
As a Los Angeles County Deputy District Attorney (1985-1990), he specialized in the prosecution of gang murderers; California Lawyer Magazine named him as one of the state's most effective prosecutors. Appointed by Governor Deukmejian at age 33, he became California's youngest sitting judge at the time, and his colleagues later selected him as presiding judge.
In 1994, he won election to the California State Assembly. In his freshman term, colleagues elected him Majority Leader. California Journal Magazine named him the Assembly's most effective legislator, and it ranked him "number one in integrity" and "number one in effectiveness."
In 1996, he won the first of two terms in Congress, and was one of only two members of Congress to serve on both the prestigious House Commerce and House Judiciary Committees. His colleagues selected him to be one of the lead prosecutors in the historic United States Senate impeachment trial of President Bill Clinton.
In 2001, President George W. Bush nominated him to be Under Secretary of Commerce and Director of the United States Patent and Trademark Office. Confirmed unanimously by the United States Senate, he served as chief advisor to the president on all intellectual property matters. He left the Bush Administration in 2004 and returned to private law practice in Orange County until rejoining the bench in 2006 when Governor Schwarzenegger appointed him to the superior court, where he served as a felony trial judge and as supervising judge until his late 2023 retirement from the bench.
In 2004, Harper Collins published his autobiography, Rough Edges, which Reader's Digest named one of their top four nonfiction books that year. His second book on the behind-the-scenes maneuvering that led to President Bill Clinton's impeachment, Catching Our Flag, was published in 2011. His third book, And Then I Met.... was published in July 2014. His fourth book on Senator Robert Kennedy's 1968 campaign, On to Chicago, released in 2018 on the 50th anniversary of RFK's assassination. His fifth book, Shaking Hands with History, was released in 2020. His sixth book, The Notes: A Researcher's Guide to 'On to Chicago' and the 1968 Presidential Campaign, was released in 2021.
The parents of twin daughters, Congressman Rogan and his wife Christine live in Southern California.