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LAWYER Volume 27, Number 1 | January 2014

Your Bar Association

Member-Only Benefits page 22

Meet Your 2014 Board President & Section Leaders pages 7, 11



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Contra Costa  2014 BOARD OF DIRECTORS Stephen Steinberg President Candice Stoddard President-Elect Nicholas Casper Secretary Elva Harding Treasurer Jay Chafetz Ex Officio Philip Andersen Dean Barbieri Amanda Bevins Oliver Bray Denae Hildebrand Budde Mary Carey

Michelle Ferber Peter Hass Reneé Livingston Katherine Wenger James Wu

CCCBA   EXECUTIVE   DIRECTOR Lisa Reep | 925.288.2555 | CCCBA main office 925.686.6900 |

LAWYER Volume 27 Number 1 | January 2014

The official publication of the

B   A   R        A   S   S   O   C   I   A   T   I   O   N

FEATURES MEET YOUR NEW BOARD MEMBERS: Michelle Ferber and Katherine Wenger




Stephen Steinberg

Jennifer Comages Theresa Hurley

Membership Coordinator Associate Executive Director

Emily Day Barbara Arsedo









Systems Administrator and LRIS Coordinator Fee Arbitration Coordinator

Dawnell Blaylock

Communications Coordinator


925.258.9300 925.930.6000 Nicole Mills Matthew  Guichard 925.351.3171 925.459.8440 Harding BOARD LIAISON Elva 925.215.4577 Candice Stoddard 925.942.5100 Patricia Kelly 925.258.9300 COURT LIAISON Craig Nevin Stephen Nash 925.930.6016 925.957.5600 David Pearson PRINTING 925.287.0051 Steven’s Printing Marlene Weinstein 925.681.1774 925.942.5100 PHOTOGRAPHER James Wu Moya Fotografx 925.658.0300 510.847.8523

The Contra Costa Lawyer (ISSN 1063-4444) is published 12 times a year - 6 times online-only - by the Contra Costa County Bar Association (CCCBA), 2300 Clayton Road, Suite 520, Concord, CA 94520. Annual subscription of $25 is included in the membership dues. Periodical postage paid at Concord, CA. POSTMASTER: send address change to the Contra Costa Lawyer, 2300 Clayton Road, Suite 520, Concord, CA 94520. The Lawyer welcomes and encourages articles and letters from readers. Please send them to The CCCBA reserves the right to edit articles and letters sent in for publication. All editorial material, including editorial comment, appearing herein represents the views of the respective authors and does not necessarily carry the endorsement of the CCCBA or the Board of Directors. Likewise, the publication of any advertisement is not to be construed as an endorsement of the product or service offered unless it is specifically stated in the ad that there is such approval or endorsement.

LRIS Membership Makes Good Business Sense





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Shown on the cover (left to right): Kai Steinberg, Christine Chestnut, Stephen Steinberg and Nyana Steinberg





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OFFICERS TO BE INSTALLED BOARD MEMBERS Stephen Steinberg, President  | Candice Stoddard, President-Elect Nicholas Casper, Secretary | Elva Harding, Treasurer Jay Chafetz, Ex Officio Philip Andersen | Dean Barbieri | Amanda Bevins | Oliver Bray Denae Hildebrand Budde | Mary Carey | Michelle Ferber | Peter Hass Reneé Livingston | Katherine Wenger | James Wu

SECTION LEADERS Peter Mankin, Alternative Dispute Resolution | Gary A. Watt, Appellate David Arietta, Bankruptcy Law | Marta Vanegas, Barristers/Young Lawyers Kent Parr, Business Law & Corporate Counsel | Mary P. Carey, Criminal Law Joseph Morrill, Elder Law | Michele Lane, Employment Law Mark Frisbie, Estate Planning & Probate | Paul Bonnar, Family Law Stuart West, Intellectual Property | Rhonda Wilson-Rice, Juvenile Law Geoffrey Steele and Marissa Nebenzahl Sinha, Litigation Samantha Sepehr and Peggy Bristol-Wright, Pro Bono Mike Durkee, Real Estate | Andrew McCall, Solo Practice & Small Firm Rebecca Harris and Jennifer Navalle, Student Christina Ortega, Taxation | Doris Mitchell, West County Crystal Van Der Putten, Women



REGISTER TODAY! $35 CCCBA Members $45 Non-members 1 hour MCLE Credit Menu choices: Cuban Pork Loin Poached Atlantic Salmon Filet ~ OR ~ Vegetable Wellington Photo Session for the 2014-15 Member Directory 11 am to noon ~ AND ~ 1:30 to 2 pm To register, contact Theresa Hurley at (925) 370-2548,, or at

Meet Yo

ur New



1997. Since that time, she has become involved in both the legal and local community. Michelle is a former president of the CCCBA Employment Section and former member of the Board of Directors of the CCCBA Women’s Section. She is a former vice president of Beth Chaim Congregation, and was an integral part of the process of building its first permanent home in Danville. Michelle also serves at Dougherty Valley High School as its founding attorney mock trial coach and a member of its Athletic Boosters Association.

ichelle Ferber practices in the areas of labor, employment and business law and has successfully tried these cases in state and federal courts. In addition to her litigation practice, Michelle regularly advises clients on employment law issues in the workplace. Michelle provides her clients with the advice and litigation expertise they need to stay current and compliant in the ever-changing landscape of employment laws and regulations, while recognizing the balance of business realities and economics. Michelle’s client base is varied, but she most enjoys her personal relationships with local retailers and restaurants. She can often be found doing business over a meal downtown or over at the high school. Her business relationships with varied nonprofit organizations provide personal satisfaction, and she considers it a privilege to be

Michelle Ferber involved in the various missions of these groups. Originally from Southern California, Michelle moved to Danville in

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Michelle is a 1987 graduate of California State University, Northridge, where she majored in journalism and wrote for the college newspaper. She received her J.D. in 1990 from Southwestern University School of Law, receiving various awards for excellence in academics and writing. In law school, Michelle served as an extern for the Honorable Arthur Alarcon of the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals. Michelle started with her current firm back in 1999 and is proud of the firm’s continued commitment to community service. Michelle and her husband, Rick, are the proud parents of Ally, who is in her junior year at Sonoma State University earning her teaching credential, and Andrew, a graduating high school senior who is planning on playing soccer at Carnegie Mellon University in Pennsylvania.



New Board Members, cont. from page 5


atherine Wenger has been practicing business and real estate litigation since 2002, developing a strong track record of assisting clients to successfully resolve a variety of complex business disputes, both inside and outside the courtroom. Katherine was born and raised in Texas, but after finishing high school, she left to attend Wellesley College in Massachusetts. She graduated Magna Cum Laude in 1999, receiving a bachelor’s degree in political science and psychology. In college, Katherine was involved with student government, serving for several years in the student senate. She began law school at the University of Chicago, but ultimately was unable to escape all that California had to offer, and in 2002, graduated from the University of California, Berkeley. While in law

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school, Katherine interned for the Juvenile Division of the San Francisco Public Defender’s Office. Following law school, she began her legal career with a large firm in Silicon Valley working on corporate governance, securities and shareholder disputes. From 2005 to 2011, she practiced at Morgan Miller Blair in Walnut Creek, with a focus on complex business and real estate litigation. She is currently a partner at Brown Church & Gee LLP, a firm formed in 2011 by former Bar Presidents Audrey Gee and Michael Brown with the goal of bringing a fresh approach in providing legal services and delivering value to their clients. While Katherine has practiced in courts throughout California, she has always particularly enjoyed her work before the Contra Costa County bench and involvement with

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Katherine Wenger the Contra Costa County Bar Association. She is a former president of the CCCBA’s Women’s Section, has served as a scorer for the county’s Mock Trial Program and has had significant involvement with many aspects of the Bar throughout her practice in Contra Costa County. Katherine is also a member of East Bay CREW (Commercial Real Estate Women) and the East Bay Professional Women’s Association. Katherine lives in Contra Costa County with her husband and daughter, and enjoys her involvement in the local community. s

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Meet Yo

ur New


e recently caught up with incoming CCCBA President Steve Steinberg over openfaced meatball sandwiches in Lafayette...

jored in religion, with a focus on Chinese religions and particularly Confucianism. When I was applying to law schools, I decided I had to get back to someplace warm.

Tell us about your family.

I got into Arizona State right off the bat, and even found an apartment and attended orientation there. Then at the last minute, I heard from UC Hastings that I got in off the waitlist, and had to accept within 30 minutes and be back for orientation three days later. I did it, and thank goodness I did, because I met my future wife at orientation.

My wife, Christine Chestnut, is also a lawyer practicing in Contra Costa County. She is Staff Counsel at Save Mount Diablo. We have two children. Our daughter, Nyana, is four years old, and our son, Kai, is one and a half. My parents live in Alamo and take care of our kids two days a week. My mother-in-law lives in San Rafael and takes care of our kids one day a week. We are very lucky to have so much help from our families.

Where are you from? I was born in Walnut Creek. When I was in fifth grade, my parents moved to Alamo. I have lived or worked in Contra Costa all my life with the exception of college.

Are you the first attorney in your family? No. My paternal grandfather was an attorney and CPA in New York City. He worked for the city for most of his career.

Where did you go to school? I went to college at Princeton University in New Jersey, where I ma-

It looks like you graduated from law school in two years. How did you do that?

Board Pr


Stephen Steinberg

It was two and a half years. I was able to do that because during the first summer, I participated in a summer internship program and classes through Santa Clara University for credit in Hong Kong.

of law clerks working for judges, so when I showed up, the judge didn’t know what to do with me at first. It was a learning process for the two of us. I also externed in a barristers chambers, and worked with a barrister on a personal injury trial that had a successful result.

Tell us about externing with a Hong Kong judge.

Did you wear a wig?

The common law system is used there too, so researching cases is similar, and legal proceedings are conducted in English, though many witnesses and other participants require translation.

Does your work now involve Asian countries?

However, they have no tradition

You had to be a barrister or judge to get a wig.

My firm, Vasquez Benisek & Lindgren, does a lot of work with Chi-



New Board President, cont. from page 7

nese and Taiwanese technology companies, as well as American companies, helping them with intellectual property disputes, including patent and trademark infringement and misappropriation of trade secrets, and other complex business cases.

Where have you worked? I started at Morrison & Foerster in Walnut Creek, when it was above Spiedini’s restaurant. I worked there for a little over two years and then joined Morgan Miller Blair. My first connection with Morgan Miller Blair was playing on their softball

go to trial, including some in the Eastern District of Texas where many such cases are filed. I’ve spent time in trial in Tyler and Marshall, Texas. It’s a different world down there. But like most other practice areas, 95 percent of the cases settle.

What kinds of things have you done on the Bar Board? I have been on the Bar Board for six years. A big priority of mine since joining the Board has been trying to modernize communications with our members, our website, and the ways we publicize and take signups for events, advertise our lawyer referral service and publish the Contra Costa Lawyer magazine.

“For me personally, communications continues to be a priority ... We can do a better job of helping people find out about our events and programs.” team because MoFo didn’t have one anymore. Then about five and a half years ago, we started Vasquez Benisek & Lindgren.

How did you come upon your focus in IP work? By accident. At MoFo, I worked on a wide variety of real estate, energy, intellectual property and antitrust litigation. Then at Morgan Miller Blair, I was initially doing a mix of real estate and IP, and other technology-related cases. Over time, our technology and IP practice grew such that when we opened Vasquez Benisek & Lindgren, the focus was almost exclusively on intellectual property and technology litigation. That’s what I have been doing since then.

Do those cases ever go to trial? We’ve had several big patent cases



I was heavily involved with the redesign of the CCCBA website, which was an enormous amount of work for the Bar staff, me and other Board members. I think it came out really well, and it got good reviews in our membership survey last year. Traffic has grown every year since we launched the new website. People are finding out about and registering for events online. I was also involved in hiring a communications coordinator for the Bar dedicated to handling our digital and print communications, advertising and putting together the magazine. That was a key change. Modernizing our communications has been a major part of connecting with younger lawyers, and I have participated in other efforts to better serve younger lawyers. I have also chaired our delegation to the Conference of California Bar Associations, which has managed to get new laws approved by the conference, passed by the Legisla-

ture and signed by the governor in three of the last four years.

What’s next in terms of the Bar’s use of technology? The new frontier is mobile devices—people searching our website, reading our email broadcasts and CC Lawyer magazine, and signing up for events on smartphones, iPads and other mobile devices. Mobile traffic on our website has grown from under 3 percent in 2011 to nearly 17 percent in 2013, and will probably continue to grow rapidly. It is a trend across society, and lawyers are leading the way, with 90 percent of lawyers using smartphones. One task for this year may be making our website and other communications more mobilefriendly. What works well on a smartphone or iPad is different from what works well on a desktop computer.

What are your priorities as president? We recently got input from section leaders about priorities for the coming year, and at our annual Board retreat we will be discussing them further. I am eager to hear what the Board has to say. For me personally, communications continues to be a priority, and particularly working on our mobile communications. We can do a better job of helping people find out about our events and programs. Also, helping integrate younger lawyers into the profession and the Bar Association has always been a priority for me.

Give me an example of how young lawyers would be integrated. In 2011, we had a Bar leaders/barristers mixer at Pyramid, with all the

section leaders and the Bar Board and only barristers invited to attend. The idea was to have barristers learn what the sections and the Bar have to offer, while giving the sections the opportunity to recruit new members and new leaders. In 2013, we had a “Meet the Bar” event at JFK law school, which was an opportunity for section leaders to introduce their sections to law students. I’d like more of those kinds of events.

GET INVOLVED Learn more about the CCCBA, its sections, committees and upcoming events at

Any other challenges you see in the coming year? Lisa Reep will be stepping down as Executive Director after 20 years at CCCBA. I credit her with much of the success of the Bar Association since I have been involved. Ensuring a proper sendoff for her, and a smooth transition to the next Executive Director, will be important tasks.

Should the Bar Association speak out and take some stands on issues of the day?


We have done some good work on access to justice issues, and I would like it to continue in 2014. s



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Considering our roles as attorneys, we have an obligation to stand up for the legal system and the rights of the people who interact with that system. At the same time, we are a membership organization with members of different political views. In terms of fighting for court funding, the right to a court reporter, the right to trial, we have played a role, lobbying in Sacramento and assisting our local bench in trying to deal with financial cutbacks. As to taking stands on more general political issues, the feedback from our members is mixed. So I think we should try to focus on issues that are specific to our role as lawyers.


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Meet Yo

ur Sectio

Alternative Dispute Resolution

Peter Mankin

n Leader


Bankruptcy Law

I initially joined CCCBA because...

I initially joined CCCBA because...

In the late 1970s, CCCBA was a closeknit group with lots of camaraderie. It was great to go to monthly Bar Luncheons and know most of the lawyers there.

I was an associate at a small law firm and wanted to meet other attorneys in the area. I also was interested in the Barristers Section and their softball league. I am still playing softball on that team almost 20 years later.

I stay at CCCBA because...

It has evolved into a very professional Bar Association, thanks mostly to Lisa Reep. The sections have become the lifeblood of the CCCBA. The educational opportunities are great and I still enjoy the camaraderie, although it’s not quite as personal.

David Arietta

I stay at CCCBA because...

I am a Section Leader because...

My best and strongest referral sources are fellow attorneys that I have met at the Bar Association. I like the continuing opportunities to meet new people and stay in touch with those that I have known for a while now. I also enjoy having the ability to sign up for the variety of educational programs offered by different sections.

I am committed to the continued growth and contribution the ADR Section is making to the legal community.

I am a Section Leader because...


I initially joined CCCBA because... The Bar Association is a great way to network and brainstorm with other members of the profession.

Barristers/Young Lawyers

I stay at CCCBA because... Gary A. Watt

I want to be sure that the section is available as a resource both for its members and the general Bar membership. There is great value in having consistent educational programs, as they provide not only a venue for keeping up on the law but also foster a sense of community among the membership. Being a sole practitioner, I usually come to an event with a particular question or war story to share.

The Bar Association provides highquality opportunities for continuing legal education, contribution to the community and much more.

I initially joined CCCBA because... My law school’s career counselor told me to join the county bar where I wanted to work. I knew I wanted to work where I lived, and wanted to network with like-minded professionals.

I am a Section Leader because... Section leadership allows me to give something back to the legal community by taking on this responsibility. Marta Vanegas

I stay at CCCBA because...

There is no better resource for finding affordable, high-quality MCLE programs, networking CONTRA COSTA COUNTY BAR ASSOCIATION CONTRA COSTA LAWYER


Section Leaders, cont. from page 11

events and amazing individuals! I find myself becoming more and more engaged with several different sections of CCCBA as I am finding out which areas I would like to specialize in. Some sections also unite attorneys in divergent practices along some other attributes, such as the Women’s Section or the Solo Practice & Small Firm Section.

Business Law & Corporate Counsel

I initially joined CCCBA because... I believed it was expected by my law firm at the time.

I am a Section Leader because...

I stay at CCCBA because...

I admire the work of the sections, and want to participate in the effort. Being a Section Leader allows me to engage and develop my leadership potential and has led to finding mentors and friends within the Bar Association.

It is a good source for keeping current in recent legal developments, and for meeting other lawyers in a non-adversarial setting.

Kent Parr

I am a Section Leader because... I was asked to do so, and I felt it would be a service to the CCCBA.



Criminal Law

Employment Law

I initially joined CCCBA because...

I initially joined CCCBA...

I wished to maintain membership in a vibrant legal community after leaving government law for private practice.

To enjoy the support offered by the Bar Association, meet fellow attorneys and gain a better knowledge of the county legal community and court system.

I stay at CCCBA because... Mary P. Carey

There are opportunities to expand my intellectual, social, professional and philanthropic interests.

I am a Section Leader because... I enjoy working with my colleagues to put together useful continuing education programs, maintain a pulse on the criminal justice community in Contra Costa and engage in leadership activities.

Elder Law

Michele Lane

I stay at CCCBA because...

Over the past 25 years, I have enjoyed all of the benefits of associating with fellow attorneys, getting to know the judges and others in the legal community and participating in the highquality continuing education programs provided.

I am a Section Leader because... It gives me an opportunity to work with a variety of seasoned and exceptional attorneys in my area of practice. I gain knowledge and practical practice information as well as enjoying associating with dedicated attorneys willing to serve the section with their time and talent.

Chair: Joseph Morrill

Estate Planning & Probate

I initially joined CCCBA because... I began practicing in Contra Costa County in 1999. I had just turned 29 years old and knew very few attorneys located in the county. It was the best way to meet people who could provide me insight into the local practices, collaborate on legal and practical questions, and help introduce me to other professionals both in the legal field and beyond.

I initially joined CCCBA...

I stay at CCCBA because...

For the reasons I joined and because I save money on the cost of attending programs and events.

I enjoy the events and MCLE activities, and discovered that the CCCBA is a great way to stay up to date on developments in my field of practice, interact with the bench, and cultivate relationships with other practitioners.

I am a Section Leader because... I was asked by the former section leader to join the board of the Elder Law Section. After serving as a board member for a few years, I was asked if I was interested in being the Section Leader. I thought it would be a great way to help develop knowledge and interest regarding issues in the field, both for elder law practitioners and others who are faced with elder law issues.

To meet other local practitioners and keep informed about developments in our local courts.

I stay at CCCBA... Mark Frisbie

I am a Section Leader because... It is my turn to serve for the benefit of those in my field of practice, as others have for me in the past.

Family Law

I initially joined CCCBA because... I heard everyone joined. At that time, the only section was West Contra Costa; we did not have sections by practice area.

I stay at CCCBA because... Paul Bonnar

It allows all of us together to work



I am a Section Leader because...

Section Leaders, cont. from page 13

CCCBA offers many excellent programs that keep me “in touch” with current legal news and a large population of the legal community.

to improve our role in the courts to better serve our clients.

Juvenile Law

I am a Section Leader because... The Family Law Section provides professional education and development. It helps me become more effective in looking out for my clients’ interests and provides opportunity for fellowship with colleagues.

I initially joined CCCBA because... Of the membership benefits. Belonging to a section helps so much with professional development that you can’t get elsewhere.

Intellectual Property

I stay at CCCBA... Rhonda Wilson-Rice

I wanted the opportunity to network with other CCCBA members practicing in other fields of law.

I am a Section Leader because...

I stay at CCCBA because... CCCBA affords me the opportunity to get out of the office and interact with other members of the legal community.

Stuart West


I enjoy helping members know what’s going on with Juvenile Law.



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For the same reasons; it is a great connection with my colleagues.

I initially joined CCCBA because...

I initially joined CCCBA because... I belong to several bar associations—it is a great way to get to know other lawyers in the area Geoffrey Steele and to find people who you can confidently refer cases outside your own discipline. Since my main base is in Contra Costa County, the CCCBA is the one that I always make sure I am a member of. I cannot imagine practicing in Contra Costa County and not being a member of the local bar, as I would think it would put me at a disadvantage in not getting to know the judges and court through the brown bag programs, luncheons, MCLE programs, etc.

I stay at CCCBA because... The programs alone are worth the price of admission, but it is also the

support for the member attorneys that keeps me on as a member of the CCCBA.

Pro Bono

I am a Section Leader because... Being a Litigation Section chairperson has been a nobrainer for me. The Litigation Section is the one section that crosses over most of the other disciplines, covering a wide variety of legal issues, including insights regarding practicing before the Contra Costa courts. The Litigation Section’s MCLE programs and mixers are opportunities to meet attorneys that you might not otherwise get to know. In addition, the Litigation Section is involved in several of the pro bono workshops in Contra Costa County. Those workshops afford our members great opportunities to hone their skills and give back to the community. I have met other Litigation Section members from all over the Bay Area, which has allowed me to confidently refer cases to attorneys I have gotten to know and respect, and I have had referrals from other Litigation Section members back to me. Most likely, they may not have gotten to know me other than our participation as a Litigation Section chair.

We initially joined CCCBA because...

Samantha Sepehr

We were both exposed to and heavily involved with the CCCBA while attending law school. We realized it was an active Bar Association with a variety of MCLE events to attend and learn from. Upon graduating, we both knew this would be the best association to immediately join.

We stay at CCCBA because... They provide opportunities for developing relationships and networking amongst our legal community.

We are Section Leaders because... Peggy Bristol-Wright

We enjoy providing educational opportunities to our colleagues to help promote the need for pro bono services in various areas of the law.

Co-Chair: Marissa Nebenzahl Sinha

I initially joined CCCBA because...

Real Estate

I wanted to become involved in the local legal community. I believe that getting to know other attorneys and judges on a more personal level is just as important to the practice of law as substantive knowledge.

I initially joined CCCBA because...

I stay at CCCBA because...

It was a way for me to connect to where I live by becoming part of the local business/legal community.

I have had a lot of fun! I love showing up to appearances and local events and seeing faces that I know.

I stay at CCCBA because...

I am a Section Leader because... I don’t think anyone in their right mind could have refused a charming offer from Geoff Steele to co-chair the Litigation Section with him!

Mike Durkee

Participation in the local legal community is very rewarding to me.

I am a Section Leader because...

I want to give back to my practice area. My predecessors did a great job building the Real Estate Section into one of the most active in the CCCBA. Our current Board shares that vision. We REAL ESTATE  BUSINESS PLANNING  ESTATE PLANNING meet once a month for breakfast and an hour’s presentation on current XIT UCCESSION STATE LANNING topics in real estate, land use, environmental and related topics. We atFOR USINESS AND ROPERTY WNERS tract talented presenters and are well attended. Additionally, attendance LENCZOWSKI LAW OFFICES HUBERT LENCZOWSKI, J.D., M.A.* will help better acquaint one with other local real estate practitioners. ATTORNEYS AT LAW 212 1615 Bonanza Street, Suite 204 C. JOSEPH DOHERTY, J.D. Walnut Creek, CA 94596 * Adjunct Professor Taxation Golden Gate University T (925) 280 7788 Law School, LL.M. Taxation Program


,S B

&E P




Section Leaders,


cont. from page 15

Co-Chair: Rebecca Harris

Solo Practice & Small Firm

I initially joined CCCBA because...

The firm I worked for signed up all new associates as CCCBA members.

I was interested in gaining more footing in the Contra Costa legal community. I knew that as a member, I would get the opportunities to network and hear from others in various arenas of the law.

I stay at CCCBA because...

I stay at CCCBA because...

I initially joined CCCBA because...

Of the many benefits of membership, including the LRIS, which has provided me with many good clients Andrew McCall over the years. The MCLE programs are good, relevant and reasonably priced. CCCBA events are great for networking.

I am a Section Leader because... I have enjoyed the Solo/Small Firm Section’s events over the years, especially the breakfasts and the MCLE Spectacular presentations, so I want to be more involved in the section to make sure it continues its events, and to give back some of my time and efforts to the cause.

It has given me the opportunities that I was seeking and more. I have had the chance to hear amazing speakers and learn about topics in the law that I might not have otherwise.

I am a Section Leader because... I have been able to meet and work with dedicated attorneys. They have shown me what it will be like once I join them on the other side, and I would be honored to join their ranks. Co-Chair: Jennifer Navalle

I initially joined CCCBA because... I knew being a member would give me opportunities to meet attorneys who could share their stories and advice on graduating law school and passing the bar exam, which I look forward to completing and eventually joining them!

I stay at CCCBA because... Various areas of law are always evolving and CCCBA is a great resource for keeping up with those areas through various seminars and speakers that are offered throughout the year.

I am a Section Leader because... I feel it is important for the law students at JFK University to be aware of CCCBA. It’s our greatest tool to help gain interest about various areas of the law and join other dedicated attorneys in the Contra Costa legal community.





I initially joined CCCBA because...

I initially joined CCCBA...

I wanted to be a part of the legal community in Contra Costa County, and get to know other attorneys in the county where I reside.

To connect with other attorneys in Contra Costa County and be involved in the local legal community.

I stay at CCCBA because...

I stay at CCCBA because... It provides many opportunities to Christina Ortega establish professional relationships and network with attorneys and other professionals in my community. The educational programs I have attended have been excellent, and have helped me in my practice.

I am a Section Leader because... I want to contribute to the CCCBA community, promote the talented tax professionals in Contra Costa County, and have meaningful discussions and presentations on topics in my area of practice.

Crystal Van Der Putten

Of the wonderful people I have met. It is a great organization that provides opportunities and support for its members.

I am a Section Leader because... I saw an opportunity to make a difference. We have a phenomenal Women’s Section, which provides many benefits to its members—not the least of which is support for one another. I wanted to be a part of that at the leadership level. s

West County

I initially joined CCCBA...

Doris Mitchell

To be part of a group of attorneys who appreciate the value that comes from the exchange of ideas and from the support of one another.

I stay at CCCBA because... I have learned a lot from the educational events put on by the Bar Association and have met some great people.

I am a Section Leader because... I hope to advance the idea that we are a community that can support one another in each other’s endeavors to ensure our own success and that of our clients.


Palmer Madden has conducted more than 1,000 mediations since 1981. One jurisdiction reported that he has over a 90% settlement rate.

experience His 25 years of experience as a trial attorney gives him an understanding about clients that has proven time and again to be critical in tough cases.

efficiency He does not carry the overhead of other mediation firms (no administrative fees) which means the price is always right!

palmer brown madden 925.838.8593 | WWW. ADRSERVICES.COM Over 25 years’ experience as an ADR neutral



Superior Court of Contra Costa County

2014 JUDICIAL ASSIGNMENTS ~ UPDATED NOVEMBER 25, 2013 ~ Barry P. Goode Presiding Judge

Steven K. Austin

Assistant Presiding Judge

MARTINEZ Family Law Criminal Trials (Martinez)

Supervising Judge: John W. Kennedy

Supervising Judge: Jill Fannin

ŠŠ Judge Diana Becton ŠŠ Judge Charles “Ben” Burch ŠŠ Judge Theresa J. Canepa ŠŠ Judge Lewis A. Davis ŠŠ Judge John W. Kennedy ŠŠ Judge Clare Maier ŠŠ Judge Mary Ann O’Malley ŠŠ Judge Patricia Scanlon

ŠŠ Judge Christopher R. Bowen ŠŠ Judge Jill Fannin ŠŠ Judge Susanne Fenstermacher (60%) ŠŠ Judge Barbara C. Hinton ŠŠ Commissioner Anita Santos (DCSS) ŠŠ Judge Edward G. Weil

Criminal Calendars (Martinez)

ŠŠ Judge Barry Baskin (Specialty Courts) ŠŠ Judge Bruce C. Mills (Calendar) ŠŠ Judge Terri Mockler (Calendar) ŠŠ Judge Barbara Zúñiga (Motions Calendar)





Supervising Judge: Brian Haynes ŠŠ Judge Brian Haynes ŠŠ Judge Judy Johnson ŠŠ Judge Cheryl Mills ŠŠ Judge Charles “Steve” Treat ŠŠ Vacant (D18)

RICHMOND Supervising Judge: Leslie G. Landau

Juvenile (Martinez)

ŠŠ Judge Joni T. Hiramoto ŠŠ Judge Leslie G. Landau ŠŠ Judge Nancy Davis Stark ŠŠ Judge Trevor White ŠŠ Vacant (D22)

Supervising Judge: Lois Haight ŠŠ Judge Lois Haight ŠŠ Judge Rebecca Hardie ŠŠ Judge John Laettner ŠŠ Judge Thomas M. Maddock ŠŠ Vacant (D6)


Traffic Supervising Judge: Thomas M. Maddock ŠŠ Commissioner Ronald Creighton (Walnut Creek) ŠŠ Commissioner Lowell Richards (Pittsburg/Richmond)


Supervising Judge: Judith Craddick

Supervising Judge: John H. Sugiyama

ŠŠ Judge Steven K. Austin ŠŠ Judge Laurel S. Brady ŠŠ Judge Judith Craddick (Complex Litigation) ŠŠ Judge George V. Spanos

ŠŠ Judge Susanne Fenstermacher (40%) ŠŠ Judge John H. Sugiyama



Parole Violations ŠŠ Stephen Houghton, Hearing Officer

Superior Court Announces New CEO


he Contra Costa Superior Court is pleased to announce that Stephen Nash has been hired to serve as its Court Executive Officer effective December 2, 2013.

Nash was serving as the Court Executive Officer of the San Bernardino Superior Court. There, he supervised nearly 1,000 employees and a budget approaching $100 million. Presiding Judge Barry Goode said, “We are delighted that Stephen will be our new CEO. He has been a leader in the judicial branch for many years. His experience, knowledge, integrity and personal qualities are second to none. Our court and the people of our county will be very well served by his leadership.” Nash has had a distinguished career in state government. Before moving to San Bernardino County, he was the Director of Finance of the Administrative Office of the Courts. He has also served as a budget analyst for the

Stephen Nash Court Executive Officer

California Department of Finance and as Deputy Director of Administrative Services for the California Department of Youth Authority. Nash has had significant responsibilities within the judicial branch. His counsel is highly valued. Chief Justices have appointed him to serve in many capacities, including as a member of the Trial Court Executives Advisory Committee, the Trial Court Budget Working Group, the Court Facilities Working Group, the SB 56 Working Group and the Joint Legislation Working Group. s

Tax & Estate Attorneys Individual & Business Tax Issues Tax Preparation • Tax Planning • Tax Controversy Sophisticated Estate Planning • Estate Administration Trust & Estate Litigation • Probate

YOUNGMAN & ERICSSON 1981 N. Broadway, Suite 300 | Walnut Creek, CA 94596 | (925) 930-6000

Walter C. Youngman, Jr., Attorney-CPA Chastity A. Schults, Partner Mark S. Ericsson Christina P. Ortega, LL.M in Taxation Dani Altes, Paralegal Mayra Aviles, Paralegal



19th Annual

MCLE Spectacular! Friday, November 22, 2013 Walnut Creek Marriott Prof. Erwin

Breakfast Kickoff Speaker




ief Trial Counsel, State Bar of California

y, Dean, UC

Irvine Schoo

l of Law

PREMIUM SPONSORS The LaMusga Company Scott Valley Bank Thomson Reuters Westlaw

Luncheon Speaker


Afternoon Plenary Session Speaker


sor JAMS

vent Spon

lar E Consultant, The Other LE Spectacu MCBar


Dean, UC Irvine School of Law

SPONSORS The ACE Fiduciary Group ADR Services, Inc. Certified Reporting Services JFK University College of Law LexisNexis

Jayne Kim

, Chief Tri al Counse State Bar of Califo l, rnia

Lisa Reep and Theresa Hurley

ther Bar

ltant, The O



n, Consu David Man

Family Law Section Holiday Party Friday, December 6, 2013 Becky Huffaker, Mike Huffaker and Nancy Huffaker

Mark Ressa and Paul Bonnar

Vincent Dizon, Selam Gezahegn and Mariela Verdin

Tammy Gallerani, Meghan Oliveri and Dan Harkins

Comm. Anita Santos, Karen Johnson, Marlene Weinstein, Tracy Lindsey and Kim Kirkpatrick





Airport Parking

Computer & IT Consulting

Health & Wellness

Park SFO

195 North Access Rd. South San Francisco, CA 94080 Contact Nancy at 800-996-9214

Brian Trota 206 Washington St. Jersey City, NJ 07302 1 (877) 404-7667

Discount: Free membership to PARK SFO Club (normally $100.00 a year), personalized membership card, free upgrade to valet parking, coupons good for one free day of parking (one per visit) & auto detailing discounts.

Pacific Computer Consultants, Inc.

Contact: David Jordan (925) 215-3559 x101 Discount: 30-day free trial of our Office In The Cloud (hosted email and hosted file storage) and free no obligation in-person network health check.

Discount: 10% discount to all CCCBA Members for all products and services purchased online. Use discount code: CCCBA10.

Insurance (Life & Health)

Floral Arrangement & Plants Expresso Airport Parking

Jory’s Flowers

880 Doolittle Dr. San Leandro, CA 94577

1330-B Galaxy Way Concord CA 94520 (925) 689-0966

Discount: Enter “con” (all lower case) and print off discounted coupon. Present coupon and photo ID at checkout to receive discount.

Discount: 10% discount for CCCBA members.

Businesses featured here offer discounts to CCCBA members that would not otherwise be available. Simply identify yourself as a current CCCBA member to the participating business at the time of your transaction.



Colleen Callahan Insurance Services Colleen Callahan, CLU, CASL, LUTCF CA License # 0771524 (925) 363-5433 association-members.html 140 Gregory Lane, Ste. 170 Pleasant Hill, CA 94523

Discount: 10% discount available to CCCBA members on individual disability and business overhead expense policies offered by The Guardian.

Workers Compensation, Business Office Packages and Accidental Death Insurance plans for members of the State Bar of California is available at calbar.

Myers-Stevens-Mello & Co., Inc. LaMusga Company Insurance, Financial Services, Divorce Planning Gary LaMusga, Financial Advisor; Certified Divorce Financial Analyst (925) 287-1567 Discount: CCCBA members receive a 10% discount when applying for the Standard Disability Insurance Policy.

Dental, Vision, Life and Disability Insurance Plans (877) 741-4843 Discount: For an overview of available plans, please visit www.cccba. org/attorney/build-your-practice/ member-benefit-insurance.php

Lawyers’ Malpractice Insurance, Professional Liability Insurance

Insurance (Liability) Attorneys & Professionals Insurance Services, Inc.

MassMutual Financial Group 2121 N. California Blvd., Ste. 395 Walnut Creek, CA 94596 Todd Friedman | (925) 979-2342 or

Michele Epstein, AAI, AIS, ACSR,CISR, CPIW, DAE 1255 Treat Blvd., Ste. 346 Walnut Creek, CA 94597 (925) 688-2396 | Fax: (925) 688-2399 Discount: Broker fees waived for professional liability for CCCBA members. Savings of $200+.

Jane Louie, CFBS, CLTC | (510) 7892432 or Discount: CCCBA members and their families have a special 10% discount on long-term care insurance as well as access to other discounts.

Polaris Risk Management & Insurance Services

Mercer Health & Benefits Insurance Services, LLC 345 California St., 13th Floor San Francisco, CA 94104 (800) 339-9122 Fax: (415) 983-5696 richard.o’ Discount: Information regarding Health Insurance, Life Insurance,

Jeffrey Little, Vice President (925) 349-2026 | Fax: (925) 677-7401 Discount: Discount for specializing in 50% or greater area of practice.

Judicial Council Forms Software Martin Dean’s Essential Forms 1 (800) 286-0111 Discount: Purchase of Essential Forms entitles CCCBA members to choose two local county modules of their choice from the 51 counties available (a $338 value).

Legal Fee Recovery Services

DSG Collect Jerry Kane 1824 W. Grand Ave., Ste. 200 Chicago, IL 60622



Member Benefits, cont. from page 23

Legal Research

(888) 494-7900 or (312) 374-0068 Fax: (877) 566-6009 Discount: 28% contingency rate (regularly 33%).

Legal & Business Publications

The Recorder Circulation 1035 Market St., Ste. 500 San Francisco CA 94103 (415) 490-1057 Discount: For new subscribers, $299 annually for CCCBA members with 11 or more attorneys; $199 annually for members with 10 or fewer attorneys (applicable taxes apply). Regular price $389 annually. Subscriptions include exclusive daily legal news and case alert emails, weekly newspaper and access to

Lexis-Nexis Michelle Wyllie Bay Area Territory Manager (415) 245-9254 | (925) 300-3391

Discount: 30% Discount, plus other seasonal promotions: All print, CDROM, and Lexis Advance online subscriptions qualify. (Desktop code books are excluded.)

Subscription Department 44 Montgomery St., Ste. 500 San Francisco CA 94104 (866) 531-1492 Discount: New subscribers: Discounted rate of $324 (plus tax), 58% off the regular annual rate of $765. Subscriptions include daily (Monday-Friday) print delivery plus access to subscriber site and subscriber emails.


Office & Virtual Office Solutions

Laptop Lounge, Home of Reliable Receptionist Advertising Magic/ AdMagix Marketing Rosalind Robe’ Boukis 2116 N. Main St., Ste. G Walnut Creek CA 94596 (925) 939-1111

Shared workspace, meeting rooms and telephone receptionist services Victor Mataraso 3000 Citrus Cir., Ste. 208 Walnut Creek, CA 94598 (925) 627-4200 Discount: CCCBA Members receive 50% off initial setup fees, a $25-$75 value depending on options selected.

Merchant Services Richard Wood 383 Diablo Rd., Ste. #217 Danville CA 94526 (925) 788-5057 Discount: provides the payment gate-


Turn YOUR iPhone or Android phone into a credit card terminal. The Payment Jack application is fully encrypted from the app to the swipe device. Free swiper with proof of CCCBA membership.

Marketing & Promotions

Discount: Free Screen or set-up charge on all new orders. San Francisco Daily Journal

way for card-not-present transactions. Accept credit card and electronic check payments quickly and affordably, without having to pay more, or purchasing a physical terminal, and we will waive the setup fee with proof of CCCBA membership.

Regus Discount: Regus, the leader in flexible office solutions, is now offering CCCBA members a complimentary Businessworld Preferred membership ($150 value). This membership provides 5 free visits to over 1,500

business lounges, including locations in Walnut Creek, Oakland, & San Francisco.

Rental Cars

Translation Services

Upon activating, members will also receive: •

10% discount on meeting room, day office, and videoconference services

Special rates on office and virtual office

The Hertz Corporation

Two complimentary business lounge guest passes

Members-only toll-free number: (800) 654-2210, use your Hertz CCCBA CDP# 438042.

Website: Activate Now! Use Promotion Code: CCCBA

Practice Management & Support

Discount: 10% discount off Hertz Daily Member Benefit Rates; 5% or greater off Hertz Leisure Rates, all car classes (advance reservations required). Discounts in Europe and worldwide; and Hertz #1 Club membership, computerized driving directions, Hertz NeverLost, express return, and 24-Hour emergency roadside assistance.

Time Capture Software Thomson Reuters Westlaw

Keylingo Translations Expert Document Translation Service 1255 Treat Blvd., Ste. 300 Walnut Creek, CA 94597 (925) 478-8384

Discount: 15% off your first translation and 8% off all future translations.

Wireless Services

Heather Grabowski (415) 344-5175 heather.grabowski@ Discount: All CCCBA members have the exclusive opportunity to purchase one seat of Firm Central and Time and Billing for $45 ($60 retail). Also, with the purchase of this product we also offer our WestlawNext California Special includes CA Cases & Codes, KeyCite, and entire Rutter Practice Guide Series for a member discount price of $165/ month for solo attorneys (retails at $275/month). With the above plan, CCCBA members are also eligible for five months of free premium WestlawNext practice area content. Choose content from a variety of practice areas, including: family law, business law, employment law, bankruptcy, estate planning, and more. Firm Central offers free customer support and training. Visit for more information.

Chrometa Software that captures your billable time automatically. Brett Owens (888) 340-6425 x1

Discount: Two free months with a new subscription purchase. Free 14-day trial available, 20% discount. Plus free phone, email and training support.

Verizon Wireless Cynthia Davis, NPP 1100 Olive Way, Ste. 1020 Seattle, WA 98101 (800) 810-3909 | Direct: (206) 625-7441

Discount: Members with calling plans of $34.99 or higher may qualify for discounts; for details, visit




MEMBER-ONLY BENEFITS PROVIDERS More details about our Member-Only Benefits Providers, including contact information and details about the discounts they offer to CCCBA members, can be found on our website,, under Assistance & Services > Member Only Benefits.



Northern California Mediator / Arbitrator 18 years as Mediator 27 years as Arbitrator 35 years in Civil Practice


1333 N. California Blvd., Ste. 620 Walnut Creek, CA 94596 Phone: (925) 937-1517 Fax: (925) 891-9929



Roger F. Allen 510.832-7770 Ericksen, Arbuthnot 155 Grand Avenue, Suite 1050 Oakland, CA 94612

• Training includes Mediation Course at Pepperdine University 1995 • Serving on Kaiser Medical Malpractice Neutral Arbitrators Panel • Settlement Commissioner, Alameda and Contra Costa Counties • Experienced in all areas of Tort Litigation, including injury, property damage, fire loss, malpractice, construction defect



Social & Fundraising Events Offered

MCLE Programs Offered $68,000 in collective savings by CCCBA membership

2,091 total attendees


4,574 total attendees

Visits to the CCCBA Website

157 MCLE credits offered

4,500 Clients Scheduled Through LRIS


Visits to the Online Magazine


Raised for CCSLS Through the Bar Fund Gala

$1 million goal


Reached by Food From the Bar for the Contra Costa/Solano Food Bank

Free Legal Workshops Offered 402 volunteer hours donated



Grow your business with our Lawyer Referral & Information Service (LRIS)

LRIS MEMBERSHIP MAKES GOOD BUSINESS SENSE WHAT IS LRIS? Our Lawyer Referral & Information Service (LRIS) staff handles over 12,000 calls and online requests each year from members of the public who contact us with legal-related problems; nearly 4,500 of those calls result in client consultations with members of our LRIS each year. Clients are carefully screened to determine whether a consultation with an attorney or a referral to another agency is the most appropriate course of action. When it is clear that the caller would benefit from consulting with an attorney, a 30-minute consultation is scheduled with an LRIS panelist who has met specific experience requirements, maintains malpractice insurance coverage* and who practices in the geographic and subject matter areas that match the client’s needs.


Referral & Information Service, this program offers reduced-fee representation in family law, immigration, and elder law matters. The program is designed to make legal services available for those who do not qualify for pro bono services but who still do not have the means to retain attorneys at their usual rates. Moderate Means clients pay participating attorneys a modest retainer and hourly rate that fit within the program guidelines. Panel attorneys come from all different legal backgrounds and experience levels.


The LRIS is a public service of the Contra Costa County Bar Association, a nonprofit organization. Our Lawyer Referral & Information Service is certified by the State Bar of California (Certification #0018) and meets American Bar Association Standards.

Also an adjunct to LRIS, the FLARe program provides a mediation alternative for parties with a family law situation who agree to attempt resolution of their dispute using this process. A 90-minute session at a much-reduced rate is offered to give clients the opportunity to determine if mediation would be useful in attempting to resolve their entire family case. The FLARe program is never offered where domestic violence is a factor.



Help make quality legal support a reality for moderate income clients by joining the Moderate Means Program! As an adjunct to the Lawyer

We do the marketing for you: We get over 12,000 calls each year from people who are looking for


legal representation. Rather than spend money on expensive advertising, hoping that prospective clients might need your services some day, your LRIS membership gives you access to the people who really need your help today. LRIS referrals are paying clients: Over $1 million in attorney fees are collected annually from clients referred by our LRIS. Although not every case leads to a paying client, there are rewards realized even from prospective clients who only come in for a consultation. An initial consultation can lead to a long and profitable attorney-client relationship, as well as future referrals to colleagues, friends and family. Better clients as a result of the LRIS: There is a growing distrust of what are often perceived as selfserving online ads and TV infomercials. The public is looking for a referral source that can be trusted. Our LRIS is certified by the State Bar of California and approved by the ABA as an independent provider of competent and reliable legal representation. Join the LRIS now by contacting the Contra Costa County Bar Association at (925) 686-6900 or by visiting our website at Affordable LRIS malpractice insurance coverage is available to solo practitioners through Lawyers’ Mutual Insurance Company. Please call 1 (800) 252-2045 for rates and details.


WHAT LRIS CLIENTS HAVE TO SAY These quotes are taken from our regular client surveys.

About LRIS panelist Anna Evans: “I was impressed with the referred attorney. I would definitely recommend this service. Also, I appreciated the initial representative, Barbara. She was professional and responded quickly to my call.” About LRIS panelist Stuart West: “The total experience was very positive. Upon calling the LRIS, I spoke with a very kind person, Emily, who took down the information regarding my needs. She called back very quickly with a referral and appointment, and the attorney she referred me [to] had the exact skills and knowledge I needed. In addition, his office was located within 10 minutes of my home. I would definitely use this service again. Emily was the key to making this a positive experience.” About LRIS panelist Virginia Ekelund: “I was extremely satisfied with the service I was provided by both the LRIS as well as the attorney to whom I was referred. Virginia Ekelund was extremely professional and offered her expertise in a very honest and candid manner. I would highly recommend the LRIS to anyone needing this type of assistance and would also definitely seek the advice of Virginia Ekelund again if the need arose in her field of law.”

NEED MORE MCLE CREDITS? MCLE Compliance Group 3 Deadline: Feb. 3, 2014 The State Bar has significantly increased the number of MCLE compliance audits they conduct: 4,700 attorneys from the last compliance group were audited in 2013. Visit our calendar to browse upcoming MCLE programs. .org/attorney/ http://www.cccba calendar/index.php .org/attorney/mcle/ http://www.cccba p

Or choose from our MCLE Self-Study courses. We offer self-study articles, audio and video programs.


Discovery Facilitator Volunteers To volunteer as a discovery referee, you must have at least 10 years of experience in civil or probate litigation, and of course, be willing to volunteer your time. To be added to the list of approved attorneys, please fill out the Discovery Facilitator Application. The application and other information is available online at On the home page under Information and Notices, click on the link to “Discovery Facilitators.” Please return the application to the Court ADR Office by fax to (925) 957-5689 or by email to:

ConServAtorShiPS ProBAteS CriMinAl DefenSe David B. Pastor

CCCBA MeMBer SinCe 1977

• Free Consultation •

Law Offices of

DAviD B. PAStor 1280 Boulevard Way, Suite 212 • Walnut Creek, CA 94595 925-932-3346 •





WE WANT YOUR ARTICLES! We invite you to take the opportunity to get your articles published. Please take a look at our 2014 editorial calendar below for upcoming themes and deadlines. If you think of a timely, interesting article, write it up and send to us. Or turn it into an MCLE Self-Study article and get MCLE credits! We have editorial guidelines available on our website at


2014 EDITORIAL CALENDAR Print issues are listed in bold, online-only issues in regular font. Themes are subject to change. Check our website for the most up-to-date information.




February 2014 Jan 7, 2014 ADR March 2014 Feb 3, 2014 Tax April 2014

Mar 11, 2014

The Contra Costa Family

May 2014 Apr 4, 2014 Insurance June 2014

May 6, 2014

Law Practice Management

July 2014

June 4, 2014

Estate Planning & Probate

August 2014 July 8, 2014 The Secret Lives of Contra Costa Lawyers September 2014 Aug 1, 2014 Employment October 2014 Sept 9, 2014 Litigation/Bankruptcy November 2014

Oct 3, 2014

Bench/Bar Issue

December 2014

Nov 11, 2014

Open Forum





(Based on projections as of mid-December. Staff and overhead expenses are not reflected under individual categories. )

INCOME EXPENSES NET PROFIT / (LOSS) MEMBERSHIP 280,690.00 7267.00 273,423.00 Dues, mailings, committee meetings, applications, State Bar swearing-in ceremonies, recruitment campaigns, networking mixers, annual leadership meetings, holiday party, printing costs.


322,013.00 19,727.00 302,286.00

Consultation fees, membership fees, percentage fees, advertising, brochures and marketing, phone system, postage, supplies, client surveys, committee meetings, staff education, Moderate Means Program, FLARe (Family Law Mediation program), Limited Representation program, marketing and panel recruitment, State Bar re-certification fees, free community legal workshops.

FEE ARBITRATION/MEDIATION AND CLIENT RELATIONS PROGRAMS 18,110.00 1,256.00 16,854.00 Filing fees, State Bar reimbursements, refunds, postage, committee meetings, supplies.

BAR-SPONSORED PROGRAMS AND EVENTS 59,690.00 32,574.00 27,116.00 MCLE Spectacular, committee meetings, State Bar provider status renewal.

PUBLICATIONS 106,754.00 46,123.00 60,631.00 Contra Costa Lawyer and Pictorial Membership Directory: Printing, postage, production, mailing house, MCLE self-study tests, committee meetings, photography, directory practice area listings, advertising revenue (incl. website and weekly broadcast), stock photography, blog book, video-editing software, etc.


Staff (does not include Criminal Conflicts Program) 444,024.00 (444,024.00) Payroll, payroll taxes, payroll service, pension disbursements, medical, dental and vision benefits, workers’ comp insurance, staff education, expense reimbursements.

Executive Director 6,944.00 (6,944.00)

Education and travel, dues/membership fees, expenses, etc.

Office Equipment 35,546.00 (35,546.00)

Computers, computer consulting services, database, photocopier, fax machine, printers, postage machine and meter, etc.

General 18,608.00 200,706.00 (182,098.00) Conference room rental income, rebates (LMIC, Marsh Affinity Group, New Media on-line MCLE, JobTarget), interest and dividend income (including replenishing reserves used for 2010 website development), office rent and overhead, property insurance, office supplies, credit card processing fees, phone system, staff meetings, accounting, miscellaneous taxes, etc.

OFFICERS AND BOARD of DIRECTORS 4,125.00 18,067.00 (13,942.00) Installation luncheon, Board meetings, bar leader conferences, strategic planning meetings, gavels and plaques, miscellaneous committee meetings, Errors & Omissions Insurance.

SECTION SUPPORT 8,877.00 788.00 8,089.00 Email broadcasts, section leaders’ meetings, program registration, handbooks, postage and mailings.

CONFERENCE of DELEGATES 3,071.00 (3,071.00) Planning meetings, registration and hotel, materials, etc.

INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY 1,833.00 (1,833.00) Website modifications/updates, SPAM filter, Internet connection.

EDUCATION OUTREACH PROGRAM 316.00 (316.00) Court Tours docents training and court staff thank you luncheon, postage and mailings, materials.

COURT SUPPORT 625.00 (625.00) Bench/Bar meetings, Fast Track Bench/Bar roundtable.

TOTAL INCOME AND EXPENSES 818,867.00 818,867.00 (0.00) TOTAL RESERVES AS OF 12/31/13: $414,000.00




McNamara, Ney, Beatty, Slattery, Borges & Ambacher, LLP Miller Starr Regalia

Firms with 20-29 attorneys: Bowles & Verna, LLP

Firms with 15-19 attorneys: Clapp Moroney Bellagamba Vucinich Beeman Scheley Gagen, McCoy, McMahon, Koss, Markowitz & Raines Littler Mendelson, PC

Firms with 5-14 attorneys: Bramson, Plutzik, Mahler & Birkhaeuser, LLP Brown, Church & Gee Buchman Provine Brothers Smith, LLP Casper, Meadows, Schwartz & Cook Cooper, White & Cooper, LLP Craddick, Candland & Conti Doyle Golde Grossman Family Law Group Edrington, Schirmer & Murphy Frankel Goldware Ferber, LLP Galloway, Lucchese, Everson & Picchi Gillin, Jacobson, Ellis, Larsen & Lucey Greenan, Peffer, Sallander & Lally, LLP Hartog & Baer, PC Livingston Law Firm, PC Morison Holden & Prough, LLP Steele, George, Schofield & Ramos, LLP Timken Johnson, LLP Vasquez, Benisek & Lindgren, LLP Whiting, Fallon, Ross & Abel, LLP

Steele, George, Schofeld & Ramos, LLP | Timken Johnson, LLP | Vasquez, Benisek & Lindgren, LLP | Whitng, Fallon, Ross & Abel, LLP

Archer Norris

Greenan, Pefer, Sallander & Lally, LLP | Hartog & Baer, PC | Livingston Law Firm, PC | Morison Holden & Prough, LLP

Firms with 30+ attorneys:

Frankel Goldware Ferber, LLP | Galloway, Lucchese, Everson & Picchi | Gillin, Jacobson, Ellis, Larsen & Lucey


Craddick, Candland & Cont | Doyle Golde Grossman Family Law Group | Edrington, Schirmer & Murphy

Litler Mendelson, PC | Bramson, Plutzik, Mahler & Birkhaeuser, LLP | Brown, Church & Gee Buchman Provine Brothers Smith, LLP | Casper, Meadows, Schwartz & Cook | Cooper, White & Cooper, LLP

Clapp Moroney Bellagamba Vucinich Beeman Scheley | Gagen, McCoy, McMahon, Koss, Markowitz & Raines

Archer Norris | McNamara, Ney, Beaty, Slatery, Borges & Ambacher, LLP | Miller Starr Regalia | Bowles & Verna, LLP

We gratefully acknowledge our

Thank you for your support and commitment! For additional information, contact Membership Coordinator Jenny Comages at 925.370.2543 or email CONTRA COSTA COUNTY BAR ASSOCIATION CONTRA COSTA LAWYER


What You Missed in December’s Online Issue Pro Bono edition Features: • Pro Bono for CCC Residents: Bay Area Legal Aid - Eric Berkowitz • Pro Bono for Children: Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) - Gregg Chavaria • Pro Bono for Students: Center for Economic and Civic Education - Carla Young Garrett • Pro Bono for Seniors: Free and Low-Cost Legal Services - Verna Haas • Pro Bono for the Disabled: Rubicon Programs - Raegan Joern • The Ethics of Pro Bono Service - Carol M. Langford


To read these and other articles, go online to

• CCCBA’s Bar Fund Receives Generous Cy Pres Award - Candice Stoddard • Summer Program Gives Students a “Crash Course” in the Realities of Being a Lawyer - Andrew R. Gillin • WriterCoach Connection: It’s About Writing and So Much More - Maureen Dixon

Columns: • President’s Message – Final Thoughts - Jay Chafetz • Inside Guest Column - The Editorial Board

News & Updates: • Bar Fund Gala Reception [photos] • Court Volunteer Appreciation Reception [photos]

More: • Get Involved: Free Legal Workshops/Education Outreach Program - Theresa Hurley • Immunity Project • Coffee Talk: How do you plan to contribute to your community in 2014?




Health Insurance for the Spouse COBRA, Affordable Care Act, Employers and Unions Limiting Benefits more details on page 36 January 17 | ADR Section

Top Five Reasons Mediations Fail and How To Avoid Them more details on page 36 January 24 | CCCBA

Annual Officer Installation Lunch more details on page 4 January 28 | Employment Law Section

Employment Law Update for 2014

February 4 | Bankruptcy Law Section

Gold Mines and the Land Mines of the Means Test more details on page 36 February 5 | Family Law Section

State of the Court - Family Law Division more details on page 36 February 6 | CCCBA

Get to Know Your Local Judges more details on page 37 February 28 | Barristers Section

Bridging the Gap more details on page 37

more details on page 36 January 31 | Estate Planning & Probate Section

Annual Probate Luncheon more details on page 36

— WANTED — Will/Estate Contests Conservatorships

You handle the estate, we do the contest. Cases, except conservatorships, often handled on a contingent fee basis, but can be hourly. Referral fee where appropriate. Pedder, Hesseltine, Walker & Toth, LLP oldest partnership in Contra Costa County (since 1955)

For up-to-date information on programs, please visit and/or subscribe to our weekly “News & Upcoming Events” email. To subscribe, text CCCBA to 22828.

Youngman & Ericsson, LLP 1981 North Broadway • Suite 300 Walnut Creek, CA 94596

Tax Lawyers.

p 925.283-6816 • f 925.283-3683 3445 Golden Gate Way, P.O. Box 479 Lafayette, CA 94549-0479 AV Martindale-Hubbell

(925) 930-6000



January 8 | Family Law Section

Health Insurance for the Spouse COBRA, Affordable Care Act, Employers & Unions Limiting Benefits Speaker: Jordan Shields Time: 12 pm – 1:15 pm Location: Contra Costa Country Club 801 Golf Club Rd., Pleasant Hill MCLE: 1 hour general credit Cost: $50 for section members and law student members, $75 for CCCBA members, $100 for non-members Registration: Go to the Family Law website at More Info: Contact Therese Bruce at (925) 930-6789

January 17 | Alternative Dispute Resolution Section

Top Five Reasons Mediations Fail and How To Avoid Them What’s most likely to kill your success in mediation? What should you be looking out for most keenly and how can you equip yourself to handle each of the most likely traps? Based on the collective centuries of experience from the Bay Area’s most successful mediators, this workshop brings you their most useful insights. Come interview Judge James and Ron Kelly on how you can avoid the most common causes of failed mediations. Speakers: Hon. Ellen James (Ret.) and Ron Kelly Time: 8:30 am – 1 pm Location: CCCBA Office, 5th Fl. Conference Rm. 2300 Clayton Road, Concord

January 28 | Employment Law Section

Employment Law Update for 2014 Buffet Breakfast included. Speaker: James Y. Wu, Law Office of James Y. Wu Time: 8 am – 9:30 am Location: Scott’s Seafood Restaurant 1333 N. California Blvd., Walnut Creek MCLE: 1 hour general credit Cost: $35 for section members, $30 for law student members, $40 for CCCBA members, $50 for non-members Registration: Online at More Info: Contact Theresa Hurley at (925) 370-2548

MCLE: 3 hours general credit Cost: $90 for section members and law student members, $95 for CCCBA members, $100 for non-members Registration: Online at January 31 | Estate Planning & Probate Section

Annual Probate Luncheon Speakers: Hon. John Sugiyama and Hon. Susanne Fenstermacher Time: 12:15 pm – 1:30 pm Location: Contra Costa Country Club 801 Golf Club Rd., Pleasant Hill MCLE: 1 hour EP/T & Probate Specialization credit Cost: $40 for section members, $30 for law student members, $50 for CCCBA members, $55 for non-members Registration: Online at More Info: Contact Theresa Hurley at (925) 370-2548

February 4 | Bankruptcy Law Section

February 5 | Family Law Section

Gold Mines and the Land Mines of the Means Test

State of the Court - Family Law Division

A discussion of the pitfalls and undiscovered treasures that can make or break a Chapter 7 or 13 bankruptcy filing. Lunch will be provided.

Speaker: Hon. Jill Fannin

Speaker: Kenneth Sanders, Leading Edge Consulting

MCLE: 1 hour general credit

Time: 12 pm – 1:30 pm Location: CCCBA Office, 5th Fl. Conference Rm. 2300 Clayton Road, Concord MCLE: 1 hour general credit Cost: $25 for section members and law student members, $35 for CCCBA members, $45 for non-members Registration: Online at More Info: Contact Theresa Hurley at (925) 370-2548



Time: 12 pm – 1:15 pm Location: Contra Costa Country Club 801 Golf Club Rd., Pleasant Hill Cost: $50 for section members and law student members, $75 for CCCBA members, $100 for non-members Registration: Go to the Family Law website at More Info: Contact Therese Bruce at (925) 930-6789

February 6 | CCCBA

Get to Know Your Local Judges Join us for an opportunity to get to know members of our local bench on a one-to-one basis. Enjoy refreshments and conversation with Judges Craddick, Brady and Spanos. Hosted by Frankel Goldware Ferber. Time: 5:30 pm – 7 pm


Location: Frankel Goldware Ferber 2603 Camino Ramon, Ste. 385, San Ramon Registration: Online at

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More Info: Contact Theresa Hurley at (925) 370-2548

If your answer is yes... Here’s your chance to have a new photo taken for the 2014-2015 Membership Directory! February 28 | Barristers/Young Lawyers Section

Bridging the Gap New Lawyers, Young Lawyers, Lawyers new to the county - Take this opportunity to get acquainted with the Contra Costa County Bar Association, the Superior Court and local judges, local practitioners...and much more! Breakfast and lunch included.

Photography sessions for the Membership Directory are free. No appointment is necessary; simply show up during one of the following scheduled photo shoots:

FRIDAY, JANUARY 24 | 11 am - noon & 1:30 - 2:30 pm (in conjunction with the Annual Installation Luncheon) Contra Costa Country Club, 801 Golf Club Road, Pleasant Hill

TUESDAY, JANUARY 28 | 8 am - 5 pm

Time: 8:30 am – 1:15 pm

Miller Starr Regalia 1331 N. California Blvd., 5th Floor, Walnut Creek

Location: CCC District Attorney’s Office, Community Room, 900 Ward St. (Entrance is on Court St.), Martinez

THURSDAY, JANUARY 30 | 8:15 am - 2 pm

MCLE: 4 hours general credit COST FOR NEW ADMITTEES IS WAIVED! If you qualify as a NEW ADMITTEE for 2014 (1st year of practice only/never practiced before), join the CCCBA online and pay your $25 dues. Once you have become a member, simply click on the “Member Sign-up” button on the event page to register for free. Cost: $10 for section members, $20 for CCCBA members, $35 for non-members

Community Room, District Attorney’s Office Corner of Green & Court Streets, Martinez – across from the post office. Alternatively, you may forward a camera-ready photo for inclusion in the directory (head and shoulders, plain background) to: Dawnell Blaylock, Communications Coordinator | CCCBA | 2300 Clayton Road, Suite 520 | Concord, CA 94520 or email a photo (minimum of 300 dpi) to Reminder: You must be a current member by March 1, 2014, to be included in the annual pictorial Membership Directory.

Registration: Online at More Info: Contact Theresa Hurley at (925) 370-2548



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Contra Costa Lawyer January 2014