Randall J. Newsome was born in Dayton, Ohio on July 13, 1950. He graduated from Boston University summa cum laude in 1972 and from the University of Cincinnati College of Law in 1975. He was a judicial law clerk for U.S. District Judge Carl B. Rubin from 1975-77. He practiced law with Dinsmore & Shohl from 1978 to 1982.
From 1982 until 1988 he was a United States Bankruptcy Judge for the Southern District of Ohio in Cincinnati. He was reappointed as a bankruptcy judge in the Northern District of California in Oakland in 1988, and was Chief Judge of that court from 2004 until his retirement in 2010. He served as a visiting judge in the bankruptcy courts of the District of Arizona, Central District of California, the District of Nevada, and the Western District of Washington. He also served as a visiting judge in the District of Delaware from April of 2001 until January 1, 2004, where his work included overseeing five asbestos-related mass tort chapter 11 cases.
He is a fellow in the American College of Bankruptcy and a member of the American Law Institute. He has been an author for Collier on Bankruptcy since 1997.
In January of 2011 he joined JAMS, the largest alternative dispute resolution firm in the country. He launched Randall Newsome ADR and Consulting LLC in January of 2022.