Sacramento Magazine August 2023

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The year 2023 marks the 27th anniversary of the personal injury firm of Ashton & Price. Whether the loss is minor, or catastrophic, Christopher A. Price and Craig F. Ashton, as well as the other lawyers and sta at Ashton and Price, are deeply honored by the trust bestowed on them by their clients as they shepherd them through some of the most challenging times of their lives. With every action, on every case, Ashton and Price strives to make sure that the trust bestowed on them is earned every single step of the way. Everyone at Ashton and Price would like to thank our clients, past and present, for their trust over the decades and is hoping that the Sacramento region continues to not “Think Twice” and calls on “Ashton and Price” for decades to come.


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SACMAG.COM August 2023 7 Table of Contents / Staff Box / Editor’s Note / Contributors August 38 INTO THE WILD Eight backpacking trips take hikers deep into nature. By Phillip Reese 60 HORSE SENSE Equine therapy does good work for mental health. By Angela Knight 68 SACRAMENTO MAGAZINE’S TOP LAWYERS LIST When you need an attorney, you want the best. Profiles by Elena M. Macaluso gabriel teague ) Desolation Wilderness
8 SACRAMENTO MAGAZINE August 2023 Contents 27 60 ON THE COVER The 916 20 ON THE BOULEVARD Curtis Park’s Franklin stretch 22 COLLECTED: SCENTS OF A WOMAN Susanna Myers’ perfume bottles 23 PICNIC TIME Mabel’s Farm Box 24 SUSTAINABLE SAC Examining the Rise of Teleworking 105 Bravo 105 RENAISSANCE WOMAN Imani Mitchell Sonora Pass ) Taste 112 TO MARKET, TO MARKET In Davis on Saturdays 114 CHILLING OUT WITH MEXICAN BEER Cervezalandia 114 LIKE BABA USED TO MAKE Ukrainian desserts at Hawks 116 DINE Restaurant guide Re�ect 122 SPORTING SHORTS Showing some leg 112 Essay 27 THE FIRST POOL Swimming at the Governor’s Mansion Imani Mitchell ) Clydesdale from Horses Healing Heroes Wellness 31 WEIGHT-LOSS GAME-CHANGER Semaglutide Davis Farmers Market ) gabriel teague
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It’s quite an honor to be named one of Sacramento’s Top Lawyers by one’s peers, and the attorneys in our special section have earned this distinction through education, hard work and legal savvy. Let’s meet some of them, starting on page 77.

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STORY IDEAS Have you spotted something appropriate for editorial coverage in Sacramento Magazine? Please submit as much information as possible about the subject to Darlena Belushin McKay at Keep in mind that we maintain a relatively strict local boundary— Sacramento, El Dorado, Placer and Yolo counties— and our lead times run long, with most issue lineups completed four months prior to publication.


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Behind the Scenery

While avid hiker Phillip Reese wrote this issue’s cover story about backpacking trips, art director/photographer Gabriel Teague began planning his own excursions. For every hike, Gabe wanted original photos. After all, the views are a lot of the reason people head into the wilderness.

Flipping through the 22-page feature, one of the largest we’ve ever done, I’m struck by the enormity of it all: the no-words-for-it scenic magnificence, all within a few hours’ drive of Sacramento, and the project itself—weekends devoted to walking into the wild and living out of a backpack. Add to it a compressed time frame (deadlines, deadlines), way too much snow in the high country, a camera that died along the way . . .

Along the trail, as with life, hurdles appeared. Cache Creek roared too high to cross safely. Firstcome, first-claimed campsites: all already taken. Yosemite gridlock. Ticks. Snakes—including a rattler that leaped out striking, barely missing fellow hiker Jose’s ankle in Henry W. Coe State Park. Foreshadowing, perhaps: Later, in the Sonora Pass wilderness, Jose tore his foot open during a creek crossing. With no cell coverage, 8 miles from the trailhead, no first-aid kit (“hard lesson,” said Gabe) and way too much blood, the guys panicked a little. A neighboring backpacker who happened to be a nurse had plenty of first-aid supplies. She slowed the bleeding, bandaged up Jose, then the next morning, she and some men helped Jose across the creek and rebandaged his foot. Gabe and Jose limped back to the trailhead, then hightailed it straight to the Sonora ER. It was too late for stitches, but Jose got a tetanus shot and antibiotics.

Besides all the basics (and a first-aid kit!), Gabe lists the following as musthaves: water filter, Jetboil stove with fuel, bear canister, waterproof boots, good wool socks, quick-dry towel, sunblock, sunproof hat, cheap sunglasses, bug repellent, headlamp with extra batteries, little shovel and TP, lightweight day bag, rope. For dehydrated meals, he and his buddies recommend MaryJanesFarm (available online), and Starbucks Via does the job for coffee. It’s also great if someone in the group can squeeze in a few luxury items such as a hammock, solar lantern and binocs. (See the “And There’s More” note about pack weight.)

In all, the guys’ adventures only served to enhance their love for the outdoors and the wild. “We were blessed with amazing sunrises and sunsets,” says Gabe, and the panoramic payoffs made every hard trudge worth the effort. On their trips, they saw bears and deer, cold-plunged beneath waterfalls and wandered through fog into sun-drenched tangles of grasses and wildflowers. Magic.



About backpacking: Pack as light as possible. Splurge on a superlight pack—and a featherweight sleeping bag, says Gabe. “When you’re going up 150 switchbacks or longer than 5 miles, you’re going to wish you didn’t bring that cheap sleeping bag that weighs 5 pounds or all those extra snacks and clothes you think you might need.” With a sleeping bag and pad that weigh less than a pound each and a lightweight tent, even with a few luxury items, he can keep his pack to about 25 pounds for a weekend trip. There’s a lot you can live without for a few days, he says.

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Phillip Reese

“One of the best things about hiking in the Sierra or the Trinities is how you can find a quiet place all to yourself,” says writer Phillip Reese. But your trip won’t necessarily be a breeze. “The Sierra always throws an extra challenge at you. In June, the creeks are high. In July, the mosquitoes are out. In August and September, wildfire smoke is in the air. In October, it gets really cold. Don’t let any of it get you down. Be careful, but also accept that it will rarely be perfectly pleasant, clear or easy.”

Robin Hagy

“I have gained great respect for equine therapy,” says photographer Robin Hagy, who wandered into horse pastures for this issue. “The passion and compassion left me with a full heart. The sense of fulfillment and accomplishment on each student’s face! The teachers witness such happiness and freedom in the minds and bodies of the students. The connection between student and horse is why I love the equine field so much. The intuitiveness from the horse to rider is not something I can explain, except to say that horses heal hearts and refresh souls.”

Sean Stiny

A Sacramento native, Sean Stiny went back to his ’90s childhood for a story of swimming in the Governor’s Mansion pool with his family. The pool was inviting on those heat-drenched summer evenings after they snuck in for a swim. A UC Davis English grad, he’s a marketer who writes and does woodworking in his spare time. He lives in Petaluma alongside the turkeys and deer and winemakers. His work has appeared in The Los Angeles Review, Grit Magazine and Catamaran Literary Reader. He no longer sneaks into bureaucratic swimming pools to cool off.

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Back Where It Belongs

In early July, the Sunday farmers market returned to its prime location under the W/X freeway at Eighth and W streets. Displaced to a sun-baked Arden Fair parking lot more than two years ago due to Caltrans’ Fix 50 highway project, the market now operates in cool concrete shade once again. Market goers can expect the usual fare: tables piled high with fresh fruits and veggies, coolers packed with meats from local ranches, buckets full of flowers, plenty of coffee and pastries and breads, and lots of community spirit. The market runs every Sunday 8 a.m. till noon.

The 916

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inside: Franklin Boulevard / Perfume Collector / Picnic Store / Not-So-Green Workstyle
susan yee

On the Boulevard

The tree-lined stretch of Franklin Boulevard between Broadway and Sutterville in the heart of Curtis Park has experienced a rejuvenation of late, with a number of new shops and restaurants joining existing businesses in livening up the neighborhood.

Erica Sanchez, who opened Tangelo Salon on Franklin in 2015, has witnessed the renewal firsthand. “From the time we started until now, I’ve seen more pride in the neighborhood. It’s cleaner, people take care of each other,” says Sanchez. “We know our local homeless and we


Clients are treated like family by Erica Sanchez and company at her cheerful salon just south of Broadway. Services for men, women and kids include cuts, color and blowouts. 2500 Franklin Blvd.; (916) 475-1252;


These veteran caterers attract happy repeat customers thanks to fresh ingredients and solid execution. They also offer a convenient event venue, The Spare Room, that’s ideal for small gatherings. 2502 Franklin Blvd.;(916)715-1592;


More than a yoga studio, The Space offers meditation classes and massage in addition to alternative wellness therapies such as infrared sauna and cold plunge pools. 2512 Franklin Blvd; (916) 452-1582;


This convivial neighborhood joint founded by ace restaurateur Rob Archie boasts one of the city’s most intriguing selections of beer and cider, while the kitchen turns out elevated pub grub. 2743 FranklinBlvd.;(916)454-4942;


The purveyor of what is arguably Sacramento’s best ice cream is also home to the city’s finest people watching, a welcome distraction when the lines here wrap around the block. 2801 Franklin Blvd.; (916) 457-6646;


A new arrival on the boulevard (but not new to Sacramento), Naked Coffee serves up all the usual caffeinated suspects along with fan favorites like Toast and Jam latte. 2901 30th St.;

try to keep an eye on them. We have no problems; it’s a safe neighborhood.”

She and her customers also enjoy the ease of doing business close to where they live and work.

“I like the convenience of being in a neighborhood on the outskirts of midtown where my clients who work in midtown and downtown can access it easily and have convenient parking,” she says.

Delcy Steffy, who opened Good Things to Eat with her daughter, Elinor Steffy, last summer, describes Franklin Boulevard as “a classic commercial high street with residential side

streets,” similar to what she experienced as a child living in Queens, New York. “There seems to be a desire to have walkable businesses on the part of people in the neighborhood.”

Delcy adds that she shaped her eatery around serving repeat customers from the neighborhood. “It’s a more sustainable option,” she explains. Dining local is also a source of connection—and comfort. “We’ve got a very small place, and when people come in, they say they feel like they’ve walked into their mom’s kitchen.”— CATHERINE


Described as a “neighborhood listening room,” this cozy, 125-seat music venue run by John Green brings in local and touring musical acts playing jazz, bluegrass, Americana, honky tonk and more. 2900 Franklin Blvd.;


Come for the Neapolitan-style pizza made in a wood-fired pizza oven, stay for the welcoming patio out back where friends and families gather for laid-back fun. 2904 Franklin Blvd., (916) 476-3889;


This unconventional floral studio and gift shop features bold arrangements by Da’Reen Reichenberg and ceramic vases by Kevin Reichenberg. The husband-and-wife owners also host classes and community events. 2908 Franklin Blvd.;


This serene, nature-focused yoga studio offers classes in-house and outdoors as well as glamping retreats and other wellness-centered community events. 2910 Franklin Blvd.; (916) 443-6535;


A homespun neighborhood restaurant (takeout only, for now) and caterer with a focus on sustainability, Good Things to Eat lives up to its name and then some with an eclectic, culture-crossing menu that changes regularly. 2995 Franklin Blvd.; (916) 529-7455; IG: @goodthingssac


Creative entrepreneur Lien Glankler plans to open the doors to her latest endeavor—a nail salon with cocktail service—sometime this year. 2905 30th St.; IG: @moonshineco


This fashion-forward hair salon with a spare yet sunny interior is also home to Leo Leo, a retail shop featuring an on-trend selection of new and vintage home goods. 3247 Franklin Blvd.;

The 916 20 SACRAMENTO MAGAZINE August 2023
gabriel teague Franklin Blvd. Broadway 12th Ave. Curtis Park McClatchy Park
SACMAG.COM August 2023 21 gabriel teague 1 2 3 4 5 6 8 9 10 11 12 13
Erica Sanchez

Scents of a Woman

Susanna Myers of Folsom was a little girl in the early 1950s when she received a Christmas gift that left a lasting impression. “My mother had wrapped a little perfume bottle and set it under the tree for me,” she recalls. “It was probably nothing expensive, but it was fragile and pretty and I just loved it.” A lifelong fascination with perfume bottles was born. Myers continued to receive perfume as a gift from her parents over the years, including a bottle of Chanel No. 5 when she was in high school—a true luxury for a teen accustomed to the Avon fragrances that were popular in the day. “I knew it was French, and I loved the romance surrounding it,” says Myers. She credits her parents, who operated a gift shop in Chico for several decades, for igniting her passion for exquisite objects. “I just really like lovely things.”

Most of the 50 or so delicate vessels in Myers’ collection were produced from the 1920s through the 1940s, an era when many bottles were handcrafted from mercury glass and packaged in ornate boxes with elaborate instructions on how to apply the contents. “Some of the marketing materials are quite amusing to read now,” says the collector.

Myers appreciates the intricate beauty and detailed craftsmanship of each vial, but even more fascinating to her is imagining the lives of the women who originally owned them. One set she purchased two decades ago is said to have been discovered in the attic of a French chateau.

“Thinking of the women who used these perfumes, it’s almost like a movie in my mind,” she says. “I love to think about the lifestyles of these women. It takes me somewhere that’s pure fantasy.”

The 916 22 SACRAMENTO MAGAZINE August 2023

Picnic Time

Life isn’t always a picnic, but don’t tell Shelley Dunning: She recently opened a charming little store in downtown Davis that carries everything you need to stage the perfect alfresco feast.

Called MABEL’S FARM BOX , the shop sells portable foodstuffs along with classic picnic wares such as wicker baskets, wine glasses, corkscrews, sunscreen and fresh flowers. You can select your own picnic fare from the store’s offerings—cheeses from Cypress Grove and Marin French Cheese Co.; charcuterie from Olympia Provisions; tinned fish from LA’s Fishwife; locally made jams and mustards; and French macarons from Savor Patisserie—or let Dunning create a cheese or charcuterie box for you.

The store carries other picnic essentials, such as outdoor games, portable fire pits, slate cheese boards and picnic blankets. There are themed baskets, including a game basket complete with a Frisbee, a deck of cards and lawn dice, and a proposal basket packed with wine glasses and a very nice-looking, albeit fake, “diamond” engagement ring.

Along with picnic necessities, Dunning is happy to supply some picnic etiquette. “Put your phone away, play music and bring food that feels decadent and out of the ordinary,” she advises. “And don’t forget something fun to drink.” Then, maybe, life will be a picnic after all. Mabel’s Farm Box, 227 E St., Davis; (530) 902-3880; mabels —

SACMAG.COM August 2023 23
Shelley Dunning

Green Tip of The Month



Examining the Rise of Teleworking

Stepping out of that cubicle and into your home office may not be such a green act after all.

What percentage of working-age Sacramentans, Sacramento Countians and/or Californians telework? Exact, to-the-moment statistics are not readily available, but a few things are safe to say.

1. Many more people telework now than they did before the COVID19 pandemic erupted in the United States in March 2020. Initially, the impact was pronounced: In late 2020, the Pew Research Center reported that 71% of Americans whose jobs could be converted to a virtual format were working from home (or at least remotely). This past fall, The Sacramento Bee found that 91% of California state workers in 37 departments were spending more than 90% of their workdays toiling away from the old o ce.

The website earlier this year calculated that Sacramento County had the state’s 11th-highest proportion of teleworkers (22.8%, or nearly 715,000 people). San Francisco County was No. 1, with 45.6%.

2. The forced return of workers to their traditional workplaces might not be happening, despite the waning nature of the coronavirus outbreak. Earlier this year, Fortune magazine said that due to pressures from happy-at-home workers and some unions, back-to-workplace mandates were encountering sti resistance. “It’s likely that 2023 will see a slight expansion of employees working remotely,” Forbes concluded.

3. The rise in teleworking surely has been good for the environment and contributes to a more sustainable way of life. Stop right there! Possible misconception alert!

The 916 24 SACRAMENTO MAGAZINE August 2023
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The Harvard Business Review last year published an article— “Is Remote Work Actually Better for the Environment”— that uses gray language to counter what seemed to be a black-and-white proposition. Teleworking, upon reflection, is not necessarily green. Consider these four factors: Energy. The HBR article suggests that working from home could eat up more electricity. “Impacts can vary substantially by employee’s individual characteristics (e.g., awareness, attitudes, family size, wealth), home infrastructure (e.g., building energy ratings, supplier), and even situational factors (e.g., geographic location and season).”

Travel. Sure, there might be fewer single-vehicle commuters, but “there is emerging evidence of rebound effects, including increased non-work travel and more short trips.” It is also conceivable that many a remote-based employee is “working” from the beach, the mall, the mountains or the golf course. People tend to drive to those locations.

Technology use. Obviously, remote workers are likely to spend considerably more time online, which leaves a carbon footprint. Furthermore, there’s a strong possibility of their being given mobile employer-owned devices that duplicate devices they probably personally possess. If you have a desk job with the state, for example, odds are you have been issued a cellphone and laptop, and they’re often fired up alongside your own tech stuff. Waste. There might be less of it when you’re home-based, in terms of food packaging, paperproduct use and the like. However, HBR points out, “there is also a risk of increased electronic and electrical waste (e-waste)—an estimated 50 million tons a year globally, only 20% of which is formally recycled.”

To summarize: If you are prone to approach life in a sustainable fashion, as a teleworker you have an opportunity to lessen your negative impact on the environment. But alas, there are no guarantees.

SACMAG.COM August 2023 25
The Sacramento Bee found that 91% of California state workers in 37 departments were spending more than 90% of their workdays toiling away from the old office.
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The First Pool

A writer recalls sneaking into the unchlorinated, kidney-shaped pool at the Governor’s Mansion on warm summer nights.


SACMAG.COM August 2023 27
0823 lars leetaru
inside: Swimming on the sly

On the sweltering August nights of a Sacramento summer three decades past, my father would drive us 20 minutes downtown so we could slip past the gates at the Governor’s Mansion and swim in the pool within the fenced grounds. We’d park down the block, shoulder our towels and slap our sandals on the sidewalk as we made the short walk to the white Victorian mansion at 16th and H streets. We didn’t have to fuss with sunscreen at that dusk hour. We also didn’t have to deal with hair greened by chlorine—with no splashing bodies expected, the pool was chemical free. We did have to contend with the automatic pool cleaner and its mechanical whir on the cement bottom, it like a one-tentacled octopus scouring the depths of that pelagic kidney.

There was just one condition as we dipped in and out of the pool in our waterlogged trunks as the restless sun made its last stand. Silence. Absolute, unequivocal silence. My father didn’t want to have to explain to a passing police officer how we had gotten there. Nor did he want the brass at the Golden State bureau of open spaces and antiquities (er, California State Parks) to know about this small peccadillo. Though we would’ve gotten off scot-free, he didn’t want this inconspicuous summer luxury to come to an abrupt end.

My father changed light bulbs at the Governor’s Mansion. He put up velvet rope barriers around exhibits, dusted rickety reading desks and assembled signs telling visitors tiresome details like which politico had brought with him a Steinway after he’d claimed electoral victory and mansion residence. (See George Pardee, 1903.) My dad quite possibly took my BB rifle once in the early gray morning and picked off a pigeon or two from its roof perch so as not to have to deal with their excrement, though he’d never confirm or deny this pre-dawn ornithological sniper attack. Through his bulbchanging rank, my father had the keys to this proverbial castle. Regular padlock keys, not the ornate blacksmithed ones you’d imagine. As for any lingering Parks employees, it was a haunted mansion the moment the Capitol bell rang out a lateafternoon five-count. The only occupants: squirrels that spastically dashed up and down the palms’ thick trunks,

relieved the coiled sun was beginning to retreat and bearing silent witness to our poolside interloping.

The pool, built in 1959, was severed from the main residence by an open-air breezeway and walled in from H Street by a lofty fence and palms that stood sentry. Despite its status as the First Pool, it was pure function, water in concrete, nary the slightest resemblance to a Gatsby poolside soirée. There was a simple diving board that sandpapered my bare feet—no adjoining hot tub, no teak chaise in which to lounge. A raucous cannonball off the diving board? Out of the question. A feeble pencil, maybe.

The water was cool. So cool after a day so stricken with heat. Shuffling through the padlocked wrought-iron gate that’d give a little rasp as we gingerly closed it behind us, we’d shed our towels and Tshirts, kick off our flip-flops, then ease into the restorative drink. Swimming the short distance from one side of the kidney

to the other, attempting to hold our breath the entirety, back and forth, back and forth, alleviated from the afternoon oven in the shadow of the rooftop finial. Devoid of a beach ball to catch or penny to throw or noodle to straddle. A floating basketball hoop? Forget about it. The coolness, the cleansing from the stale sweat of the day, t hat was enough, even for a boy of 12.

When we’d had enough and the shadows were at their vanishing edge, we’d slink back to our car along the tree-lined Sacramento streets, a little more slap in our wet flip-flops.

The governor wouldn’t have cared in the least about our not-very-illegal but not-very-authorized trespass. Twelve such heads of state and their first families called the mansion home over 16 gubernatorial terms. The actor Ronald Reagan took up residence in the mansion in 1967, although his tenure was short. By that time, State Parks had taken over the grounds, and Reagan stayed only a few

28 SACRAMENTO MAGAZINE August 2023 Explore

months before finding a more genteel villa in nearby East Sacramento. The post-Reagan governors all followed suit, finding aristocratic suburban manors to domesticate. By 1970, the mansion had become a museum and opened to a mostly indifferent public.

My father was appointed to his museum technician post at the mansion and held it until he graduated to curator. He went from dusting the sofas and lampshades to arranging them. He once even displayed Patty Reed’s doll, the one she carried on her journey through the snowpacked Sierra as members of her Donner Party warily consumed each other. Still, nothing agitated my father more than the overflowing holiday season. Strands of lights were tacked to mansion walls, and trees with knife-sharp wire branches were erected. The mansion looked festive and attracted paying gawkers, but the roughshod installation of these dec orations broke every tenet of museum curatorship.

Through August, the pool’s water ran sharp; it’s remarkable the feasting sun didn’t turn it into a bubbling hot spring each delirious afternoon. To and fro we paddled, diving with our eardrums tightening, resurfacing with a silent pop. Quietly coughing out mouthfuls of water so as not to alert anyone passing by to our presence. Every few nights, all summer long. Saturday nights were unquestionably the best, the most freeing. The city streets were quieter and we could stay a bit longer, the cool of the night lying ahead. Monday was too distant on the horizon to ponder.

Like all structures, the mansion grew older and, little by little, more battered. State Parks took adequate care of it, but it weathered and chipped nonetheless. In time, we moved to a house farther from downtown, nearer a neighborhood pool in Arden-Arcade. My father was eventually reassigned to a nearby fort where daily he could hear the cannon explode its black-powder charge while

revelers, mostly schoolchildren, plugged their soft ears. I too grew older, and the mansion began to yellow in the corners of my memory.

Politics shifted in the state, as they do, becoming more dire and exhaustive. New governors were elected, one even recalled and replaced by a bodybuilder. A few probably toured the mansion as an uninterested courtesy, but none took up permanent residence in the cold house. My term in the city eventually ended and I too moved away, though on occasion I’d read some tidbit about the newly elected governor and his family making the move to the city of trees. Did they know about the oppressive heat that lay in wait a few frenetic months after their January inauguration?

In 2015, Jerry Brown and his wife, Anne Gust Brown, moved into the mansion after it underwent extensive renovations to modernize the rooms deemed livable. Coincidentally, this was Brown’s second stint as governor after his inaugural term in 1975. A bachelor then, he had refused to live in the “Taj Mahal” Victorian his first go-around, instead taking up residence in a $250-a-month apartment nearer the Capitol. Not coincidentally, his father, Pat Brown, had in fact been the last governor to live full time in the mansion.

Pat Brown’s legacy includes one minor footnote from the summer of 1959, his first stifling one in the Capitol. In the rare instance he found a break in his feverish schedule, Brown often fancied a dip in whichever swimming pool was closest and most accessible. A few breaststrokes, a backstroke, perhaps a butterfly for the midlifer. The Mansion Inn hotel across the street from its namesake had a pool where he could do just that. But for the governor, slipping damp-haired back to his mansion via the public crosswalk in his tattered robe and sopping swim trunks was certainly less than dignified. Pat’s friends pooled enough private funds

to gift him that concrete kidney dug into the hardpack ground. (Dennis Pool Company was contracted for the dig.)

Gavin Newsom, the chic suit-coated governor-elect in 2019, arrived in the capital city to claim his post. As Jerry Brown boxed up his bureaucratic knickknacks and leather-bound encyclopedias, Newsom and his young family remarkably took Brown’s place in the Governor’s Mansion. But briefly. Just enough time for the new governor to take the oath, say farewell to the rejected and retiring lawmakers and make his first rounds at the Capitol. Unsurprisingly, he soon found more modern and pragmatic digs in the suburbs, like his recent predecessors. It was probably better that way. The sitting rooms, parlors and studies sheathed in velvet ropes would’ve undoubtedly succumbed to the curiosity of Newsom’s four children. Bored one day while their father was proselytizing at the Capitol, the Newsom children may have ventured out to the pool to regard its shimmering blue. I doubt they dared a cannonball—it would’ve been January. But maybe they imagined how exhilarating it would be.

Nowadays, the four of us in my family are distant in both mileage and heart. The evening swims on those Saturday nights decades past were seemingly the simplest times, certainly when we were closest. Those days of sweating and swimming and skulking through the gate are a lucid memory now. I wonder if we were the last to cool our flesh in its water, to hold our breath in its depths, to muffle our voices and send a squirrel skedaddling as it looked for a lost acorn tangled among the towels. It felt enigmatic, exotic, like we were secret members of the upper crust, a clandestine club that handed out membership cards only to my mother and father, my younger brother and myself. Our pseudo-aristocratic little family, freed from the merciless heat of an inescapable Sacramento summer.

SACMAG.COM August 2023 29

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Weight Loss GameChanger

In the seemingly neverending quest for weightloss treatments, one medication has stood out: semaglutide. Here’s what you need to know.

SACMAG.COM August 2023 31 0823 Wellness inside: A trendy anti-obesity drug
Debbie Hurst

It wasn’t the celebrity Tweets or the obnoxiously overplayed commercial jingle (“Oh, oh, oh, Ozempic”) that prompted Kelly Thompson to give weight-loss injectables a try. It was social media stories from real people—people just like her.

“There was a gal I followed on Instagram who had lost 30 or 40 pounds, and one day she posted something like ‘Thank God for this tool I found,’ and I was like, ‘Wait a minute,’” recalls Thompson (not her real name). A Folsom resident and working mom in her mid-40s, Thompson was tipping the scales at 200 pounds when her doctor referred her to a weight management program at Sutter Health, where she was prescribed Wegovy, the only semaglutide injectable currently FDA approved for weight loss.

Where phentermine, Jenny Craig, the keto diet and other methods have failed her, this stuff—plus scaling way back on the lasagna—works, she says. After just two months of a weekly Wegovy shot, Thompson dropped 20 pounds, with a goal of losing 15 to 20 more. “It’s been absolutely life-changing for me,” she says. The injection is no biggie, she says, even though it’s self-administered.

It’s not a magic bullet, and it’s not for everyone. But Wegovy and its sister semaglutide injectable Ozempic—a diabetes drug not FDA approved for weight loss, but popularly used that way—are making headlines, and with good reason: For many, they work. In a landmark study published in The New England Journal of Medicine, people with obesity who used 2.4 mg of injectable semaglutide weekly in combination with lifestyle interventions lost nearly 15 percent of their body weight, averaging 34 pounds.

Could this drug be a game-changer in the fight against obesity, which affects more than 100 million Americans and is linked to nearly every life-threatening condition you can name?

Maybe. But as local experts interviewed for this story shared, questions hover—like, is it safe to take this medic ation forever?—and shortages have been a nightmare, especially for patients with diabetes who critically need the medication.

OH, OH, OH INDEED—The short story on injectable semaglutide goes like this: In December 2017, Ozempic was FDA approved to lower blood sugar levels in

adults with Type 2 diabetes. In 2021 came Wegovy, approved for weight loss for people with obesity or who are overweight with a comorbidity, such as high blood pressure. The two drugs are exactly the same, with one key difference: Wegovy boasts a higher dose of semaglutide, 2.4 mg; Ozempic’s maximum is 2 mg.

While no one expected Ozempic to morph from diabetes drug to trendy weight loss product, the medication’s fringe benefits didn’t come as a surprise to Adeela Ansari, M.D., an endocrinologist with Dignity Health Mercy Medical Group in Elk Grove. “Historically when we’ve prescribed semaglutide, we’ve noticed that even though our primary intention was to get blood sugar under better control, the added benefit was weight loss,” she says. In addition to the two injectables, semaglutide is available in pill form under the brand name Rybelsus, which is FDA approved to treat Type 2 diabetes.

Semaglutide’s recent rise to fame may give it the sheen of a shooting star, but it’s not a new drug, says Ansari. It’s been nearly six years since Ozempic was introduced, and drugs in its classification—glucagonlike peptide-1 (GLP-1) receptor agonists— have been around even longer; the FDA approved the first of its class in 2005. How do they work? By mimicking the GLP-1 hormone released in the gut after eating, the medication signals the stomach to empty more slowly, creating a feeling of fullness and reducing appetite. It also prompts the pancreas to produce more insulin, reducing blood sugar (glucose). Thompson says the medication also seems to quiet the mind, shutting off ob -

sessive thoughts about food. “I used to wake up in the morning thinking, ‘What am I going to have for lunch today?’” she says. “You could say I have a food addiction. But this [medication] clears the noise out of my head about food and cravings so I can focus on healthy eating. Instead of wanting mashed potatoes with my chicken, I’m wanting vegetables. Who is this person?”

How the drug affects the brain is a bit of a mystery, says Mohamed Ali, M.D., who has spent some 20 years trying to unravel such things. Along with being chief of foregut, metabolic and general surgery at UC Davis Health, Ali is executive director of its Center for Alimentary a nd Metabolic Sciences, where scientists study the underlying factors that affect metabolic health.

“There’s no reason why a drug that works on the digestive system should be informing someone’s brain, right?” he says. “To me, the biggest revelation here is that by targeting the gastrointestinal system, you actually affect behavior. And that’s fascinating.”

Targeting the GI system can also wreak havoc in the form of side effects such as nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, constipation, bloating and abdominal discomfort. Thompson says she’s one of the lucky ones, with only a few brief bouts of nausea that lasted “maybe five minutes.” Not everyone is so lucky, but her experience may not be uncommon: Preliminary studies suggest most side effects are mild to moderate in severity, and transient. “Every patient responds differently,” says Anthony Huynh, D.O., a weight-management specialist

32 SACRAMENTO MAGAZINE August 2023 Wellness

with Sutter Medical Group in Sacramento. But most tolerate semaglutide well, he says, especially at lower doses.

Less tolerable for many is the exorbitant cost of the drug when insurance won’t cover it—a common plight for those who don’t meet patient criteria.


For individuals who qualify for Wegovy or Ozempic, the cost is about the same, says Huynh—typically anywhere from $25 to $100 a month, depending on deductible. But things get stickier when prescribing Ozempic offlabel for weight loss. “It is possible to prescribe Ozempic for nondiabetics who have obesity, but because it’s off-label it’s paid out of pocket,” Huynh explains. Out-ofpocket costs for Ozempic run more than $1,000 a month, says Huynh, but some are willing to pay it.

Consumers unable to obtain the drug through traditional channels are finding other potentially risky avenues, including online marketplaces and private clinics. Compounding pharmacies offering semaglutide at cheaper prices are another common source. But such costcutting measures may come at a price. In May, the FDA said it had received reports of adverse events from consumers who used compounded forms of semaglutide, whose formulations may be different from the FDA-approved version and potentially unsafe.

Overwhelming demand for the drug has led to critical shortages, curtailing supply to patients whose very survival may depend on it. “It’s been a nightmare,” says Dignity Health’s Ansari. For three months last year, she says, she and other doctors struggled to obtain the medication for longtime patients whose diabetes had been in check for years. “Keep in mind this is a patient population that are at risk of the kinds of uncontrolled complications that can happen if they don’t get their medications,” she says. As of June, Ozempic and Wegovy both remained on the FDA’s list of drug shortages.

STOP THE MEDICATION, REGAIN THE WEIGHT? —Supply and demand issues wax and wane. But for those using sema-

glutide for weight loss specifically, one overarching concern persists: sustainability. What happens when the medication is stopped? Do the pounds just pile back on?

Pretty much, say local experts, who have seen how this movie ends with other weight-loss drugs. “We know the minute they stop the medication and no longer have the help with appetite suppression, they will gain the weight back,” Huynh says.

Early research suggests the same. According to a large-scale study published last year in the journal Diabetes, Obesity and Metabolism, participants who stopped semaglutide and adjunct lifestyle interventions regained two-thirds of their weight loss within a year.

For UC Davis’ Ali, such findings prompt a larger question. “If the disease comes back when people stop treatment,” he asks, “what’s the point of that treatment?”

That’s not to suggest throwing the baby out with the bathwater. “Just because a treatment is imperfect doesn’t mean that you don’t use it,” he says. “It may be the best you have at the time.”

But being effective in the short term and durable in the long-term are two different things, cautions Ali. What will happen down the road to the thousands of people now using it?

Thompson hasn’t been using Wegovy long, but she’s already pondering that question. “That’s the part I don’t know yet,” she says. “What happens when I get to my goal weight and want to go off these meds?”

The last thing she wants, she says, is to lose all that weight only to put it right back on.

MORE THAN WILLPOWER—The notion that people like Thompson shouldn’t need medications at all, that willpower alone should do the trick, should be checked at the door, says Ali.

Obesity is a complex disease, he says, and science is still trying to understand it.

“I believe the biggest gap in treating obesity in 2023 is that we don’t really understand the disease itself,” he says.

Not everyone will lose weight by simply eating less and exercising more, he says, because everyone is different.

“There is no disease that we would ever think is the same disease for everybody, yet we think of obesity that way,” he says. Lack of understanding about the disease leads to misjudgments about treatment , he says, and also leads to stigma.

LIFESTYLE INTERVENTIONS KEY—Experts emphasize that patients who use semaglutide or any other obesity treatment also need to do the work. Adopting healthy eating habits, increasing physica l activity, behavior modification—all are necessary for success, they say, not just for weight loss, but to improve health overall.

Doctors call these “lifestyle interventions.” It’s not a new message.

Thompson, who is eating more salads these days, says she’s clear on that. “If you don’t do the work, if you continue to eat doughnuts and cookies all day, medications alone are not going to help,” she says. Sutter’s weight management program helps to keep her in check, she says, with a team of experts to guide her, plus monthly appointments and medical monitoring to ensure she’s staying healthy and on course.

NOT FOR EVERYONE— Semaglutide is not for everyone, and doctors need to exercise caution when prescribing it, Ansari says. The most prudent approach, she suggests, is reserving it for those who are prediabetic or predisposed to other weight-related conditions—not those who just want to shed a few pounds.

Even aspirin or other seemingly benign OTC drugs can have side effects, she says, so doctors prescribing semaglutide need to be sure benefit outweighs risk, especially when the product is in short supply.

Whether it’s safe to use long term is still unknown. Experts aren’t yet seeing any serious side effects from its continued use, Ansari says. But only time will tell.

“My gut feeling is that we’ll find out you can’t stay on this medication forever,” says Ali. While it can be a “great option and very effective” for the short term, he says, lasting success is harder to come by—so patients are advised to put a longrange plan in place.

SACMAG.COM August 2023 33

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INT O th e W ILD

8 backpacking trips not too far from Sacramento


The Sierra offers thousands of miles of hiking trails and off-trail opportunities, thousands of feet above sea level, just a few hours to the east. The coast range, a few hours to the west, offers the experience of hiking for days on mountains with sweeping views of the


ocean. As a bonus, the Trinity range offers big mountain scenery and solitude several hours to the north.

I’ve backpacked more than 2,000 miles in the past seven years, mostly on weekends, and mostly within driving distance of Sacramento. I could do that again for the next seven years and still feel like I haven’t seen it all.

These are eight of the best hikes I’ve completed. All of them follow three simple rules:

• They are within a four-hour drive of downtown Sacramento.

• They can be completed in three nights/four days or less.

• Most consist of 6 to 8 miles of hiking per day—a bit more if you’re day hiking from a base camp.

SACMAG.COM August 2023 39

Trinity Alps


The views in the Trinity Alps are just as awe inspiring as anything found in the Sierra. But most days, the Alps are not nearly as crowded. This hike will take you to a basin surrounded by waterfalls and expansive views of the Alps’ sawtooth peaks.

Start at Canyon Creek Trailhead. The first few miles of the trail is a walk through the forest, with regular glimpses of the Alps peaking through the trees. You’ll hit Canyon Creek Falls after about 3.5 miles. The falls loudly cascade down a long hillside. It’s easy to find a spot overlooking them for a break.

After another 3 miles, you’ll arrive at the turnoff for Boulder Creek Lakes. Head west and cross Canyon Creek—it’s shallow, but waterproof shoes are helpful. Next comes a challenging 2.5-mile climb on a brushy trail. The very end of the trail requires a slight amount of scrambling, likely using your hands for balance.

It’s all worth it. Pick a campsite on the granite overlooking the lakes and you will enjoy panoramic views. Early in the season, waterfalls abound, flowing into the lakes. The view of the Alps to the east makes for great photos or quiet reflection. If you go on a weekday, you might even have this entire basin to yourself.



4 hours

DURATION 2 nights, 3 days


• Day 1 7 miles to Boulder Creek Lakes

• Day 2 Explore and relax

• Day 3 7 miles back

GETTING THERE I-5 north to Redding. Then Highway 299 west

through Weaverville and onto Canyon Creek Road. On Google Maps, enter “Canyon Creek Trailhead.”

BEST SEASON Late May–October. Trail is usually covered in snow from November to May.




PERMITS Yes, easy to get at Weaverville Ranger Station

SACMAG.COM August 2023 41
The basin is surrounded by waterfalls and expansive views of the Alps’ sawtooth peaks.

Sonora Pass

This is one of the most accessible, beautiful ridgeline hikes in the Sierra, with a view every step of the way. Unless you plan to hitchhike, you’ll need two cars to make this work. Park the first car at Kennedy Meadows trailhead; take the second to the top of the pass.

You’ll head south on the Pacific Crest Trail. By Sierra standards, the first climb is pretty tame—about 1,000 feet over 2 miles. Another 3 miles of relatively flat but rocky hiking along the Sierra crest will bring you to Latopie Lake. This is a wonderful spot to camp, but be careful on the scree-heavy descent down to the lake. The best sites are at the southern end of the lake, with views of a large, lake-filled valley.

The next morning, get back on the PCT. You’ll quickly enjoy expansive views of Kennedy Lake and the valley surrounding it. You’ll also see water flowing into it from a different lake in the distance that seems to hover over the valley. That’s Lost Lake, which you can visit if you take a few extra, adventurous days and extend the loop into the heart of the Emigrant Wilderness.

You’ll cross a pass and come to the trickiest part of the hike: a use trail that winds down toward Kennedy Lake. This is not a ranger-maintained trail, and it drops about 500 feet over half a mile. (If you’d rather not do this part, instead spend an extra night at Latopie Lake and make Day 2 a day hike to this turnoff.) The trail remains faint until you arrive at Kennedy Lake, but your destination is always right in view, so you won’t get lost. Spend the night at Kennedy Lake, then hike back to your car. Or, if you aren’t quite ready to leave, make a short detour and extend your trip with a night at Relief Reservoir, which is full of good campsites but gets very crowded on weekends.



3 hours, 30 minutes

DURATION 2 nights, 3 days


• Day 1 5 miles to Latopie Lake from Sonora Pass Trailhead

• Day 2 9 miles to Kennedy Lake

• Day 3 7 miles to Kennedy Meadows

GETTING THERE U.S. 99 south to Highway 4 east. Right on O’Byrnes Ferry Road to Highway 108 east to Sonora Pass. On Google Maps, enter “Sonora Pass Trailhead.”


BEST SEASON July–October. Trail is usually covered in snow from November to June.

DIFFICULTY Mostly moderate, but with strenuous, short, steep use trails* at mile 5 (Latopie Lake turnoff) and mile 11 (Kennedy Lake turnoff)


PERMITS Yes, self-register at trailhead or via Summit Ranger Station


According to the website, a use trail is an unofficial trail pounded into the ground by the passage of hikers. These trails are generally narrow and almost never have signage; they tend to go steeply up and down hillsides. Obscure parts of a use trail are sometimes marked by cairns (small piles of three or more stones).

It’s one of the Sierra’s most accessible, scenic ridgeline hikes, with a view every step of the way.
SACMAG.COM August 2023 43



A lot of people look at El Capitan, North Dome and Yosemite Falls and wonder, “What’s it like up there?” This trail lets you find out.

Start with a big climb up Yosemite Falls. The elevation gain is relentless—except for a wonderful stretch about 2 miles from the trailhead that gives you stunning views of upper Yosemite Falls. Keep going and, if it is early summer, you’ll feel the mist from the falls on your face as you continue your ascent. At the rim, take a moment to refill your water bottle and enjoy the views of Yosemite Valley, 2,500 feet below.

Head east toward North Dome and the crowds will thin. North Dome offers unparalleled views of Half Dome, just across the valley. Camping is not allowed on North Dome itself, but you can camp before you get to it and still get great views into the night, especially if the moon is full. Warning: There are no good water sources nearby, so make sure you have enough to last the evening.

The next day, hike west, retracing your steps and once again passing Yosemite Falls. Continue west through the woods, steadily gaining elevation. A side trip up to Eagle Peak about 2 miles after the Yosemite Falls junction is worth it for the huge views. You’ll arrive at El Capitan after about 2 more miles. It’s an easy, surprisingly long hike toward the rim, where you will be surrounded by views of Yosemite Valley on all sides. There are plenty of good, safe spots not too close to the rim where you can camp. Next morning, head back out via Yosemite Falls Trail.


DURATION 2 nights, 3 days


• Day 1

7 miles to North Dome from Yosemite Falls Trailhead

• Day 2

8 miles to El Capitan

• Day 3

8 miles back to trailhead

GETTING THERE U.S. 99 south to Highway 4 east. Right on O’Byrnes Ferry Road to Highway 108 east to Highway 120 toward Yosemite, which turns into Big Oak Flat Road. On Google Maps, enter “Yosemite Falls Trailhead.”

BEST SEASON Late May–October


DIFFICULTY Very strenuous


PERMITS Yes, via

SACMAG.COM August 2023 45

A lot of people look at El Capitan and wonder, “What’s it like up there?” This trail lets you find out.

SACMAG.COM August 2023 47

Striking views of the Pacific Ocean, walks on the beach and even an oceanfront waterfall are highlights.

Point Reyes


This loop is one of the best coastal hikes in California. Just 25 miles from downtown San Francisco, you’ll feel like you are in the middle of nowhere for much of this hike. Striking views of the Pacific Ocean, walks on the beach and even an oceanfront waterfall are highlights.

Park at Bear Valley Visitor Center and follow Bear Valley Trail for about 3 miles, a gentle, pleasant walk in the trees. Turn onto Glen Trail. You’ll climb through some hills and the trail will narrow. Look out for poison oak. Glen Trail joins with Stewart Trail, which will take you to the famous Wildcat Campground. You’ll have cliffside views of the ocean from your campsite. The short hike down the beach to Alamere Falls is a must. Waterfalls right next to the ocean? Enjoy.

The next day will feature the best hiking. You’ll spend the day with the ocean to your left, a view around every bend, as you hike Coast Trail. Once you arrive at Coast Campground, set up and then take a barefoot walk on the beach.

Head back toward your car on the final day via hilly, treecovered Woodward Valley and Sky and Meadow trails.

Important: The campsites for this loop book fast. Plan to log onto at 7 a.m. exactly three months before your planned start date to snag a permit.



2 hours

DURATION 2 nights, 3 days


• Day 1

6 miles to Wildcat Campground from Bear Valley

• Day 2

8 miles to Coast Camp

• Day 3

6 miles back to Bear Valley

GETTING THERE I-80 west to Vallejo. Then Highway 37 west to Novato. Several different rural roads will get you the rest of the way. On Google Maps, enter “Bear Valley Visitor Center.”

BEST SEASON Year-round


DIFFICULTY Moderate to strenuous


PERMITS Yes, via

SACMAG.COM August 2023 49

Cache Creek Wilderness

It’s been less than a decade since the federal government established Berryessa Snow Mountain National Monument, a 330,000-acre wildland within easy reach of Sacramento. In an area that big, there is a lot of diversity—and choices about what to explore. This route offers golden rolling hills and solitude less than two hours from Sacramento.

Redbud Trail quickly winds up the side of a hill, gaining about 500 feet, with sweeping views at the top, before switchbacking down the other side to Baton Flat. This is a great place to sit and rest under a big tree with a snack or lunch. There’s a large campsite where you can easily spend an hour relaxing while you watch Cache Creek flow a few feet away.

Cross Cache Creek—an unwise proposition when the water is high in late spring—and head across an oft-muddy stretch to more rolling hills, with a view of Cache Creek as your constant companion on the left. Finally, you’ll descend into Wilson Valley. This is a long, wide-open spot that you usually won’t need to share with many other people—your own valley for the evening. The next day, either cross the creek again and hike to your shuttle car at the Judge Davis Trailhead, or go back the way you came.



1 hour, 45 minutes

DURATION 1 night, 2 days


• Day 1 7 miles to Wilson Valley

• Day 2 7 miles back

GETTING THERE I-5 north to Williams, then Highway 20 west to trailhead. On Google Maps, enter “Redbud Trailhead.”

BEST SEASON October–April.

Cache Creek is often too high to cross in late spring. The trail is too hot for fun in the summer.


DIFFICULTY Moderate to strenuous


PERMITS Not needed

SACMAG.COM August 2023 51
Discover a roaring creek, undulating hills and solitude less than two hours from Sacramento.

Desolation Wilderness


This hike will take you to five of the most beautiful lakes in a wilderness known for them. Start at Glen Alpine Trailhead. Get there early if you can. There is plenty of parking, but it goes fast. Hike a couple of mostly flat miles and arrive at the site of the long-defunct Glen Alpine Springs resort, where exhibits along the trail give a nice history lesson. A healthy climb with about 1,000 feet of elevation gain follows until the trail flattens and Susie Lake breaks into view. Find a campsite on the eastern or southern shores. This will be your base for the next few days.

Backtrack just a little the next morning until you hit the Pacific Crest Trail. Head north up the hill until you reach Gilmore Lake. In a wilderness known for its abundant lake views, the south shore of Gilmore Lake ranks toward the top: 1,000 feet of steep granite looms over the large, circle-shaped lake.

If you can tear yourself away, head south back down the PCT and, after a mile or so, follow the signs leading north to Half Moon Lake. Prepare to be amazed as you see a series of small lakes in the shadow of monumental Dicks Peak. The best views are from the south shore, though navigating the granite on that side is a little tricky.


Next morning, head in the opposite direction from your campsite and you’ll quickly hit Heather Lake, hunkered in a steep ravine. Not much camping here! It can even be hard to find a flat spot to enjoy the view. Even so, crawling up the hill from a trail in search of a good rock to sit on is worth the effort.

After Heather Lake, keep going east to Lake Aloha, a massive, shallow body of water. There’s likely to be a lot of people around this lake on a summer weekend, but it’s large enough for you to find a quiet spot. You can end your day hike with lunch just beyond Aloha at the aptly named Lake of the Woods. Head back to your campsite and leave the next day.

A warning: Camping in Desolation Wilderness is a popular endeavor, and the Susie Lake camping zone is a particularly hot ticket, so make sure to get your permits well in advance.


2 hours, 15 minutes

DURATION 3 nights, 4 days


• Day 1

4 miles to Susie Lake from Glen Alpine Trailhead

• Day 2

6-mile day hike to Half Moon and Gilmore Lakes

• Day 3

7-mile day hike to Heather Lake, Aloha Lake and Lake of the Woods

• Day 4

4 miles back to trailhead

GETTING THERE U.S. 50 east to North Upper Truckee Road. Left on Lake Tahoe Boulevard, then left on Tahoe Mountain Road and left on Fallen Leaf Road. On Google Maps, enter “Glen Alpine Trailhead.”

BEST SEASON July–October. Trail is usually covered in snow from November to June.


DIFFICULTY Moderate to strenuous


PERMITS Yes, via

SACMAG.COM August 2023 53

You’ll reach five of the most beautiful lakes in a wilderness known for them.

SACMAG.COM August 2023 55

Hetch Hetchy


This is a thrilling hike—you could get wet!—in a less crowded corner of Yosemite that is often snow free early in the backpacking season.

The trail starts at O’Shaughnessy Dam with views of the reservoir and mountains beyond. Then the trail takes you through a dark, damp tunnel for about a quarter of a mile—a great cooldown on a hot day.

You’ll climb gradually for another 2 miles until a series of wooden bridges guides you over massive, powerful Wapama Falls. Be careful! People have lost their footing and died on this crossing, and sometimes the park shuts down the trail when the falls are running too fast. But on a regular late-spring day, it’s a thrilling experience to be so close to a waterfall and to get soaked as you walk by.

The trail follows the shore of Hetch Hetchy Reservoir for another 3 miles. At that point, you’ll come across photogenic, cascading Tiltill Creek running alongside the trail. Another 2 miles and you will reach a large, flat area that is clearly marked as the preferred place for backpackers to camp. The camp sits very close to Rancheria Falls. After you set up, climb the hill and spend some time lost in the sight and the roar of the falls. Head out the next day the way you came.

It’s a thrilling experience to be so close to a waterfall and to get soaked as you walk by.


DURATION 1 night, 2 days


• Day 1

6 miles from Hetch Hetchy Trailhead, camping near Rancheria Falls

• Day 2

Hike out via same route

GETTING THERE U.S. 99 south to Highway 4 east. Right on O’Byrnes Ferry Road to Highway 108 east to Highway 120 toward Yosemite. Left on Evergreen Road. On Google Maps, enter “Wapama Falls Trailhead.”

BEST SEASON May–June; September–October. This relatively low-elevation trail can get hot in the dead of summer.



SOLITUDE Some, especially on weekdays

PERMITS Yes, via

SACMAG.COM August 2023 57

Henry W. Coe State


Henry W. Coe State Park is a hidden gem. But missing this park is a mistake. It’s hard to beat the feeling of peace and solitude that may come over you as you nestle in the shade of a live oak and look out over the vast rolling hills of the Diablo Range. Permits to camp in the most popular sites are usually available. The rangers at the visitor center will help you find a good spot, although you may need to be a little flexible on location. The hike to Willow Ridge is one of the more challenging options available from the visitor center. It’s about 7 miles to the campsite, over a mixture of single-track trail and old dirt roads.


2 hours, 45 minutes

DURATION 2 nights, 3 days


• Day 1

7 miles to Willow Ridge campsite

• Day 2

10 miles day hiking in the area

• Day 3

7 miles back

GETTING THERE I-80 west toward San Francisco to 680 south. Then U.S. 101 south toward Los Angeles until exit 366 for East Dunne Avenue. Follow East Dunne to the visitor center. On Google Maps, enter “Visitor Center Coe Ranch.”

BEST SEASON October–April. The trail is often too hot and dry in the summer.




PERMITS Yes, easy to get at ranger station



The trail starts with a descent, losing approximately 1,000 feet on the way to Poverty Flat, where you will find a gentle creek. Then it’s back up the hill to the Willow Ridge camp, a large, flat area with expansive views. A spring slowly fills a tub of drinking water at the campsite but sometimes goes dry in the summer.

Leave your heavy backpack behind the next day and do a day hike down to Coit Lake via Pacheco Creek Trail. Coit Lake is surrounded by hills, oaks and brush, but it shouldn’t be too hard to find a flat, shady spot for lunch. To make a loop out of the day, follow Willow Ridge Road back to your campsite. Hike back to headquarters the next day.

SACMAG.COM August 2023 59
It̓s hard to beat the feeling of peace and solitude that may come over you as you nestle in the shade of a live oak and look out over the vast rolling hills of the Diablo Range.

Horse S ense


It’s 9:10 a.m. and John Michael Reza is ready for his weekly lesson at Project R.I.D.E. in Elk Grove. He’s wearing a riding helmet with his name printed on the back and worn cowboy boots. Despite the occasional loud whinny, it’s serene inside the arena. It smells of wood shavings and horses.

John Michael is riding Cruzer, a Tennessee walker with a zippy gait. Along with John Michael’s sister, Jamie Reza, I watch as instructor Rise Grover, a former teacher, leads the lesson with help from a couple of volunteers, or “side walkers.” John Michael smiles a lot, especially when he and Cruzer do what Grover asks: cross the arena at a diagonal; go to the right of a barrel; head toward one of the letters posted on the wall; trot.

Cruzer carries John Michael like precious cargo. Later, Grover tells me she worked with John Michael on remembering, sequencing, executing and recognizing cues, using games and activities.

Founded more than 40 years ago, Project R.I.D.E. works with children and adults who have special needs or a disability.

SACMAG.COM August 2023 61
Ginny Hunt with Jessie at Hawthorn Ranch

John Michael has been coming to Project R.I.D.E. since he was in elementary school. He’s 31 years old now and rides independently.

He has learning and speech impairments, according to Jamie. She says Project R.I.D.E. has helped with his listening skills, ability to follow directions and goal setting. “Therapeutic recreational horseback riding,” the verbiage Project R.I.D.E. uses on its website, is one way to describe John Michael’s weekly lessons.

This is the tricky part. According to PATH International, a professional membership association that provides accreditation to facilities such as Project R.I.D.E. and credentialing to individual service providers, terminology is important.

Adaptive or therapeutic horsemanship, equine-assisted therapy (provided by a licensed medical or health professional) and equine-assisted learning fold into the same broadly used term (i.e., equine-assisted services), but they’re distinct from one another. The unifying element is the equine.

Horsemanship has been used to promote health and wellness for a long time, perhaps even in ancient times, says Kaye Marks, director of marketing and communications for PATH, but it really took o in Europe in the 1950s and spread to the United States.

PATH was formed in 1969 to “address safety, consistency and e ectiveness” in this growing field. Marks says pending legislation is aimed at providing needed funding for career resources, and PATH is currently working with researchers at Colorado State University to provide “consistent data to determine outcomes.”

I talked to Dr. Claudia Sonder, the former director of the Center for Equine Health at UC Davis, about the di culty researchers have gathering and analyzing quantifiable data to document the e ectiveness of equine-assisted services.

L–R: Rise Grover, Mica Rothwell, Nancy Myers, Donna Schiffer, John Michael Reza and Karen Russell with horse Mickey at Project R.I.D.E.

“I think that’s part of our problem,” she says. During her time as director, the center, along with the School of Medicine, hosted the Connected Horse Dementia Project, which worked with patients who’d been diagnosed with dementia and their caregivers.

“The School of Medicine elected not to go forward with publication because there was not enough quantitative data,” Sonder says. “There was beautiful qualitative data. And I do think we’re struggling with that. At the time, we were also looking for the impacts of the interaction on the horse. How is the horse? Is this something the horse even wants to do?

“Those several months that I spent in this program, I saw some of my favorite things in my life. I saw humans activated. I saw horses doing incredible things. There’s something there; we know that. We saw significant improvements in [the participants’] mobility, physical presence, strength, facial expression, pace of movement. It would be very interesting to know if those things were sustained over time.”

I’m driving my old Toyota pickup on County Road 102 outside Woodland, and it’s a rough ride. This afternoon, I’m visiting the nonprofi t organization Therapeutic Riding and O -Track Rehabilitation, better known by the acronym T.R.O.T.R. It started as a recreational riding program working primarily with homeschooled kids, says Heidi Bond, T.R.O.T.R.’s program director.

With 50-plus horses, T.R.O.T.R. o ers equine-assisted services to kids and adults who have been diagnosed with everything from ADHD to cerebral palsy to ASD (autism spectrum disorder). There are 100 current students, along with a growing wait list, Bond says.

A yellow crop duster is skimming nearby fields while bumblebees and birds add to the rural backdrop. It’s hard to pick one thing to focus on; the ranch is loaded with horses, goats, chickens, cows and pigs—including an overweight rescue pig named Delilah.

Today is Brooklyn Hatton’s fourth visit to T.R.O.T.R. Brooklyn, who is 12 years old, was diagnosed with ASD when she was a toddler, her mom says; she’s also been diagnosed with sensory processing disorder and global developmental delay.

When Brooklyn sees Arlo, a patient pony who’s pushing 20 years old, she flaps her hands and makes repetitive sounds. This is progress, according to Corrie Hart, Brooklyn’s mom. “When we fi rst came [here], she didn’t want to come near him.” Brooklyn didn’t want to get out of the family’s van, either.

Brooklyn doesn’t want to touch Arlo and tries to step in the pigs’ mud. She doesn’t seem to like the goats or Delilah either, but she does high-five Bond’s daughter 10 times. Toward the end of the lesson, she walks across the indoor arena holding hands with the instructor. This, too, is progress, as “Brooklyn doesn’t do well with strangers,” Hart says.

Socialization is Brooklyn’s biggest challenge. “The pandemic set her back,” Hart says. Brooklyn’s social skills su ered. The di cult part is when Brooklyn goes into fight-or-fl ight mode, she says—a possibility when she sees a bumblebee. She’s not a fan of anything that fl ies.

Brooklyn comes here once a week for an hour. Alta California Regional Center, an organization that “assist(s) people with developmental disabilities and their families,” funds her lessons as part of its self-determination program, Hart says. “The ultimate goal is to get her on a horse.” She’d like the whole family to ride together.

Update: Brooklyn got on a horse in early June.

SACMAG.COM August 2023 63
At T.R.O.T.R., Brooklyn Hatton rides Arlo with help from Corrie Hart (baseball cap) and Nicole Richter.

CBC Riding Academy, the brainchild of Brittney Chambers, is located at Brookside Equestrian Park in Elk Grove. Chambers has been around horses her whole life (her dad was a trainer), and she holds degrees in social science, alcohol and drug counseling, and criminal justice. She’s also certified through PATH. She works with people who have mental health issues, including anxiety, di culty focusing and low self-esteem, as well as those who just want to ride.

Some 30% to 40% of her students come to CBC for mental health reasons, she estimates, but she also works with a 70-yearold student who had learning to ride on his bucket list.

This morning, I’m meeting her student assistants, Mikaela Davis, Hannah Ho man and Laila Jin, as well as CBC’s lesson horses. There’s Misty, Princess, Lucky, Charlie and the new guy, Spike. Chambers also introduces me to Wanda and Maybelline, a couple of guinea pigs, and their feline friend, who insists on sleeping in their cage.

Mikaela, Hannah and Laila are shy and mostly quiet. The pandemic was hard on all three, Chambers says, and riding was their social outlet. “We saw a huge increase [in students] of all ages. There was a lot of anxiety and some social issues going on.”

You’ve likely seen statistics to back that up. Reports of anxiety disorders are on the rise. According to Forbes Health, “due to the COVID pandemic,” anxiety disorders worldwide increased by 25% and depression by 28%.

We may be getting better at talking about mental health, in

particular with teenagers, but how are we addressing it? There are apps and traditional therapies, but equine-assisted therapy might be a hard sell. Why? It can be scary to work with a large animal—say, a 1,100-pound horse.

Most participants pay out of pocket for services. Perhaps not too far in the future, doctors will write prescriptions for equineassisted services and insurance companies will pony up the costs.

The lesson plan at CBC today is dealing with anxiety, but Chambers doesn’t use that term. Instead, her students play musical horses. She says it’s good to experience other horses and their quirks and take people out of their comfort zones.

Charlie chews and licks his stall guard as Mikaela brushes him. She tells me he does that when he’s nervous. Hannah seems disappointed she’s to ride Princess, who Chambers describes as “energy sensitive.” Laila is riding Lucky today, but she doesn’t complain. He’s one of the horses that may need coaxing.

I watch as they ride around the outdoor arena while Chambers gives encouragement and recommendations. Her delivery is kind and fi rm. At one point, she asks, “How does everyone’s horses feel?”

The previous month, a group of kids from the Jack and Jill Foundation visited CBC. One 5-year-old boy was very anxious and nervous, Chambers tells me. She worked with him through the process: breathing, focusing, scanning the body for tension, relaxing. Horses feel all that tension; they’re mirrors, she says. By the end of the lesson, he’d made it around the arena.

Brittney Chambers (blue socks) with (L–R) Laila Jin (Princess), Jenna Busse, Mikaela Davis (Spike), Laniah (Charlie), Hannah Hoffman (Misty)


Equine-assisted therapy is not a typical treatment modality at The Anxiety Treatment Center in Rancho Cordova. “It’s a smaller piece of what we do,” Dr. Robin Zasio says. She’s included the Eagala model—involving mainly groundwork—in her practice for 10 years and offers it to her patients about once a month, weather permitting.

Horses are social animals, Zasio explains, and they want to please. They’re also insightful and sensitive and can sense anxiety and fear. Zasio relies on her personal trio of equines, as well as 48 years of riding experience, to conduct her sessions.

Here’s a quick overview of the process: First, the patient chooses their equine. They have to brush them, clean their hooves and feed them. They practice mindfulness exercises along the way. Then they navigate the equine through a course that contains props, which are meant to prompt a dialogue. What if the horse doesn’t want to go? The patient has to figure it out. The results can be sudden and impressive. Sometimes patients tell the equine information that they haven’t yet disclosed to their therapist, she says.


SACMAG.COM August 2023 65
Hannah Hoffman at CBC Riding Academy

I’m at the Sacramento Stand Down event near Mather Airport, a former Air Force base, in early May. Stand Down provides services to veterans. Kidd Rock, a 7-yearold Clydesdale, has shown up all three days, but it’s time to go home. About 200 veterans attended the event.

A strapping 17 hands high, Kidd has those familiar Budweiser-horse hooves. This afternoon, he’s wearing a headband with red deely bobbers and a T-shirt. Kidd has already ripped down the signs that read “Don’t feed the horse.”

He’s one of 12 horses—all donated or rescued—that are part of Deborah Larson’s Horses Healing Heroes program in Herald. Her dad, a World War II veteran who developed PTSD and alcoholism, was the inspiration behind the organization. After he died, Larson wanted to do something concrete for others. The program is tailored for veterans, fi rst responders and law enforcement o cers.

Although Larson is not a therapist, there’s a licensed marriage and family therapist on sta —for when therapy is needed and wanted. That doesn’t appeal to all veterans, Larson says, because they may have been exposed to so much of it. Her main goal is to give participants a safe place to breathe and decompress.

Deborah Larson with Kidd Rock

This morning, I’m at Hawthorn Ranch in Wilton to meet Kris Lawson and her horse, Hannah. Lawson, who previously worked extensively in the Head Start program and published the book “Take the Reins! How a Little Horse Sense Can Help You Raise Confident, Responsible Children,” says that equine-assisted learning combines her love for kids with her love for horses. Together with a licensed counselor, she plans to start a program for families who are dealing with addiction issues. Lawson is the parent of a former addict.

A typical fi rst lesson would start with a discussion about safety. I’m comfortable around horses (I rode as a teenager), so we go straight to putting a halter on Hannah. The 18-yearold horse waits patiently as I fumble with the halter clips.

Lawson talks about personal space and how that translates to parenting, particularly parenting an addict. When someone is high, they have no boundaries. You have to decide how big your bubble is, she says. My bubble is pretty large, it turns out, and I remind Hannah several times she must respect it. Like children, horses push boundaries.

Correction is a three-step process: I start by shaking my fi nger or the rope to get Hannah to back up (which she does). The second would be to step into her space. The third is to move more aggressively into Hannah’s space or smack her lightly with the lead rope.

In the arena, I lead Hannah around the barrels. Lawson reminds me to look up. My job is to be the leader so Hannah feels safe and doesn’t try to take over my role.

After the lesson, I meet Ginny Hunt—one of Lawson’s former students. Hunt says she has a lot of anxiety and used to let people walk all over her. One day, Lawson pointed out that Hunt was comfortable letting her horse or Lawson call the shots. “Who did you just give your power away to?” Lawson asked her. Remembering that moment, Hunt starts to cry.

Her life has changed for the better. “Kris has pushed me forward so now I have a trainer that I work with every week for riding. Before, I couldn’t even canter without freaking out. And now I’m cantering and even starting jumping lessons on another horse.”

SACMAG.COM August 2023 67
Kris Lawson, horse Hannah and Ginny Hunt



We sometimes wonder how lawyers maintain decent self-esteem. After all, no one ever wants t o retain the services of a lawyer. But boy, if you need a lawyer, you want the best you can find! (And afford.)

We can help. Every year, Sacramento Magazine contracts with Professional Research Services, which asks Sacramento area attorneys to n ominate three colleagues they would recommend in their area of law. All nominees are reviewed to ensure they have up-to-date licenses and are in good standing with The State Bar of California. Those who receive the highest number of votes make the list.

Along with publishing the list of Top Lawyers, every year Sacramento Magazine profiles a few of the top lawyers from the list. Specialties include personal injury, immigration, criminal defense and litigation. This year, we asked our picks to answer questions about why they chose their area of law, a funny thing that happened to them professionally, what’s on their bucket list and advice they would give to their younger selves. The questions are lighthearted in nature but intended to give you a sense of who the person is inside and outside of the courtroom. (Provided they go to a courtroom.) We hope you don’t need a lawyer if you don’t want one, but if you do, we hope this list will be of service to you.

The professionals listed herein were selected by their peers in a survey conducted by Professional Research Services Company of Troy, Michigan. Professionals may be screened and selected through the verification of licensing and review of any infractions through various applicable boards, agencies and rating services. For further information visit or email PRS at


Melissa Blair Aliotti

Judicate West

Cecily Bond


Edward J. Corey Jr.

Weintraub Tobin

Ben Davidian JAMS

Kenneth D. Harris

Law Office of Kenneth D. Harris

Ernest A. Long

Ernest A. Long ADR

Nicholas Kirk Lowe

Law Offices of Nicholas K. Lowe

Stephen J. Meyer

Downey Brand LLP

Julia Perkovich

Perkovich Law Office

David L. Perrault

Judicate West

Donald R. Person


Bret R. Rossi

Kronick Moskovitz

Tiedemann & Girard

Daniel I. Spector

Law Office of Daniel I. Spector

Bradley S. Thomas

Judicate West

Russ J. Wunderli

Judicate West

Daniel Yamshon

Daniel Yamshon Arbitration & Mediation


Brendan J. Begley

Weintraub Tobin

Harry W.R. Chamberlain II

Buchalter, APC

Michael E. Chase

Boutin Jones Inc.

Jay-Allen Eisen

Downey Brand LLP

Stephanie J. Finelli

Law Office of Stephanie J. Finelli

Alexandra K. LaFountain

Downey Brand LLP

Sheila Wirkus Pendergast

Sheila Pendergast Law Corp

C. Athena Roussos

C. Athena Roussos, Esq.

John A. Whitesides

Angelo, Kilday & Kilduff

Attorneys at Law


Melissa Blair Aliotti

Judicate West


Gary L. Bradus

Weintraub Tobin

James K. Dyer Jr.

Buchalter, APC

Gabriel P. Herrera

Kronick Moskovitz

Tiedemann & Girard

Benjamin M. Heuer

Buchalter, APC

Gregg D. Josephson Buchalter, APC

Douglas H. Kraft

Gavrilov & Brooks

Robert S. McWhorter

Buchalter, APC

Jarrett S. Osborne-Revis Buchalter, APC

Ian A. Rambarran

Klinedinst PC

Bret Rudell Rossi

Kronick Moskovitz

Tiedemann & Girard


Bashar Ahmad Boutin Jones Inc.

Joe Angelo

Gale Angelo Johnson & Patrick PC

J. Russell Cunningham

Desmond, Nolan, Livaich & Cunningham

Jamie P. Dreher Downey Brand LLP

Daniel L. Egan Wilke Fleury LLP

Gabriel P. Herrera

Kronick Moskovitz

Tiedemann & Girard

Val Loumber

Gavrilov & Brooks

Mo Mokarram

Mo Mokarram, Attorney at Law

Thomas G. Mouzes

Boutin Jones Inc.

Jarrett Osborne-Revis Buchalter, APC

Paul J. Pascuzzi

Felderstein Fitzgerald

Willoughby Pascuzzi & Rios LLP

Thomas R. Phinney

Felderstein Fitzgerald

Willoughby Pascuzzi & Rios LLP

Jennifer L. Pruski

Trainor Fairbrook

Jason E. Rios

Felderstein Fitzgerald

Willoughby Pascuzzi & Rios LLP

Bret Rudell Rossi

Kronick Moskovitz

Tiedemann & Girard

Steven Williamson Wilke Fleury LLP

Thomas A. Willoughby

Felderstein Fitzgerald

Willoughby Pascuzzi & Rios LLP


Bashar Ahmad Boutin Jones Inc.

Islam M. Ahmad Wilke Fleury LLP

Annie S. Amaral Downey Brand LLP

Meghan M. Baker Downey Brand LLP

Dale C. Campbell

Weintraub Tobin

Bradley C. Carroll Downey Brand LLP

Eliezer Cohen

Gavrilov & Brooks

Kevin T. Collins Buchalter, APC

Wesley Ehlers Ehlers Law Corporation

Joshua H. Escovedo Buchalter, APC

Jaclyn Powell


I KNEW I WANTED TO BE A LAWYER WHEN: I worked in my father’s law firm as a teenager.

I CHOSE THIS AREA OF LAW BECAUSE: I wanted to help small businesses. It is really fulfilling to be there for a small business in the best of times and the worst of times.

THE FUNNIEST THING THAT EVER HAPPENED TO ME PROFESSIONALLY : My kids and dogs have frequent appearances on Zoom meetings. At this point, I think everyone just expects it and they are disappointed when they don’t show up.

MY FIRST JOB WAS: Children’s tutor.

IF I WASN’T A LAWYER, I WOULD BE A: Therapist. A big portion of my job involves working through people’s feelings, so I get a lot of practice.


I UNWIND FROM A LONG DAY BY: Snuggling with my kids.

ONE PIECE OF ADVICE I WOULD GIVE TO MY YOUNGER SELF IS: Don’t rush to adulthood. It’s a trap.

SACMAG.COM August 2023 69

Monica Hans Folsom

Delfino Madden O’Malley

Coyle & Koewler LLP

Ognian A. Gavrilov

Gavrilov & Brooks

Louis A. Gonzalez Jr.

Weintraub Tobin

Kurt A. Kappes

Greenberg Traurig, LLP

Bradley A. McDowell

Smith, McDowell & Powell, A Law Corporation

Michael Muse-Fisher

Buchalter, APC

Port J. Parker

Parker Taylor Law Group

Bruce A. Scheidt

Kronick Moskovitz

Tiedemann & Girard

C. Jason Smith

Smith McDowell & Powell

Daniel S. Stouder

Boutin Jones Inc.

Robert D. Swanson

Boutin Jones Inc.

Myles G. Taylor

Parker Taylor Law Group

William R. Warne

Downey Brand LLP

Adrian J. Webber Reynolds Tilbury Woodward LLP


Justin M. Borrowdale

Weintraub Tobin

Gary L. Bradus

Weintraub Tobin

Leah C. Capranica

Parker Taylor Law Group

Sheila Lamb Carroll Carroll & Associates, PC

Ian Carter

Carter West

Christopher Chediak

Weintraub Tobin

Anna V. Crivelli Buchalter, APC

Mike De Angelis

Weintraub Tobin

Melanie De Marco

BPE Law Group, PC

Chris Delfino

Delfino Madden O’Malley

Coyle & Koewler LLP

D. Keith B. Dunnagan

BPE Law Group, PC

James K. Dyer Jr. Buchalter, APC

Michelle Rowe Hallsten

Greenberg Traurig, LLP

Steven B. Hymas II

Downey Brand LLP

Michael K. Iwahiro

The Burton Law Firm

Elizabeth Leet Jackson

Delfino Madden O’Malley

Coyle & Koewler LLP

Gregg D. Josephson

Buchalter, APC

C. Kevin Kelso

Weintraub Tobin

Jeffrey M. Koewler

Delfino Madden O’Malley

Coyle & Koewler LLP

Stephen K. Marmaduke

Wilke Fleury LLP

Dennis E. Michaels Boutin Jones Inc.

Iain Mickle Boutin Jones Inc.

John Oehmke

Downey Brand LLP

Jonathan W. Peters

The Burton Law Firm

Jaclyn L. Powell Smith, McDowell & Powell, A Law Corporation

R. Shane Quigley

Parker Taylor Law Group

Kristina M. Reed Law Office of Kristina M. Reed

Silvio Reggiardo III

Downey Brand LLP

Christopher L. Russell Stoel Rives LLP

Robert Sanders

Robert Sanders, Attorney at Law

Eric W. Spears

Murphy Austin Adams Schoenfeld LLP

B.J. Susich

Murphy Austin Adams Schoenfeld LLP

Myles G. Taylor

Parker Taylor Law Group

Belan K. Wagner

Wagner Kirkman Blaine Klomparens & Youmans LLP

Ashley West Carter West

Douglas L. Youmans

Wagner Kirkman Blaine Klomparens & Youmans LLP


Clayeo C. Arnold

Arnold Law Firm

Ian J. Barlow

Kershaw Cook & Talley

Andrew Bluth

Singleton Schreiber

William A. Kershaw

Kershaw Cook & Talley

John R. Parker Cutter Law PC

Chris Rodriguez

Singleton Schreiber

Stuart C. Talley

Kershaw Cook & Talley


Benjamin M. Heuer Buchalter, APC


J. Scott Alexander

Murphy Austin Adams Schoenfeld LLP

Jennifer L. Dauer

Diepenbrock Elkin Dauer McCandless LLP

Jennifer Mouzis


Eileen M. Diepenbrock

Diepenbrock Elkin Dauer

McCandless LLP

John D. Fairbrook

Trainor Fairbrook

Sean J. Filippini

Downey Brand LLP

Daniel J. Foster

Wilke Fleury LLP

David A. Frenznick

Wilke Fleury LLP

George A. Guthrie

Wilke Fleury LLP

Karen L. Jacobsen

Jacobsen McElroy PC

Christopher Miles Kolkey

Downey Brand LLP

Scott D. McElhern

Downey Brand LLP

Lisa D. Nicolls

Murphy Austin Adams

Schoenfeld LLP

William L. Porter

Porter Law Group, Inc.

John S. Poulos

Lewis Brisbois Bisgaard & Smith LLP

Jessica A. Robison

Trainor Fairbrook

Matthew R. Schoech

Schoech Law Group, PC

D. Michael Schoenfeld

Murphy Austin Adams Schoenfeld LLP

Kenneth I. Schumaker

Murphy Austin Adams Schoenfeld LLP

Daniel M. Steinberg

Weintraub Tobin

Sean Thomas-Thompson

O’Connor Thompson

McDonough Klotsche LLP

Treven I. Tilbury

Reynolds Tilbury Woodward LLP

Matthew J. Weber

Downey Brand LLP

Arthur G. Woodward Reynolds Tilbury Woodward LLP


John J. Casey III

Law Offices of John J. Casey III

Michael Lawrence


Chastaine Jones

Isaac W. Choy Jr.

Law Office of Isaac W. Choy, Jr.

Alison L. Cohen

Cohen Defense Group

Eric Hintz

Law Offices of Eric H. Hintz

Joseph A. Hoffman

Law Offices of Hoffman & Hoffman

Jason R. Holley

Holley Defense Law Offices

Martin Jones

Chastaine Jones

Emily S. Koehler

Law Offices of Emily S. Koehler

Zachary Merliss

Cohen Defense Group

Joshua A. Olander

Mastagni Holstedt, APC

William J. Portanova

Portanova & Associates

Mark Reichel

Law Office of Mark Reichel

Joel Weinstein

Mastagni Holstedt, APC

Michael J. Wise

Wise Law Group

Barry Alan Zimmerman

Cohen Defense Group


Kresta Daly

Barth Daly LLP

Alan Donato

Donato Legal Group

Candice Lynn Fields

Candice Fields Law

Susan Gellman

Cohen Defense Group

IF I WASN’T A LAWYER, I WOULD BE : A sociologist. I would love to study isolated populations.

I KNEW I WANTED TO BE A LAWYER : When I was 8 years old. My dad thought I would be a good lawyer. Twenty years later, I was sworn in as a member of the bar.

I CHOSE THIS AREA OF LAW BECAUSE : The criminal justice system impacts everyone in our community and I wanted to be a positive force in an often difficult and impactful system.

MY FIRST JOB WAS : Working at a neighborhood restaurant stemming strawberries for their pies.

I UNWIND FROM A LONG DAY BY : Cooking. Cooking has always been a comfort to me in times of stress. Focusing on making others happy, even with a good meal, makes me forget the stresses of the day.

ONE OF THE ITEMS ON MY BUCKET LIST IS : To explore China, including sailing down the Yangtze River and walking on the Great Wall of China.

ONE PIECE OF ADVICE I WOULD GIVE TO MY YOUNGER SELF IS : Not to allow others to define my goals, abilities or moral compass.


Patrick K. Hanly

Law Offices of Patrick K. Hanly

Thomas A. Johnson

Law Office of

Thomas A. Johnson

Jennifer Mouzis

Mouzis Criminal Defense

Todd A. Pickles

Greenberg Traurig, LLP

William J. Portanova

Portanova & Associates

Malcolm Segal Segal & Associates, PC


William T. Chisum

Kronick Moskovitz

Tiedemann & Girard

Gary Livaich

Desmond, Nolan, Livaich & Cunningham

Brian Manning

Desmond, Nolan, Livaich & Cunningham

Kristen Renfro

Desmond, Nolan, Livaich & Cunningham


Jeff Chang Best Best & Krieger

Attorneys at Law

Wendy Gilligan

Employee Benefits

Law Group PC

Jenni Krengel Buchalter, APC

James Nelson

Greenberg Traurig, LLP

Marcel Weiland

Employee Benefits

Law Group PC



Ryan E. Abernethy

Weintraub Tobin

Christopher Alvarez

Fisher & Phillips LLP

Ellen Arabian-Lee

Arabian-Lee Law Corporation

Meagan D. Bainbridge

Weintraub Tobin

Brittany V. Berzin

Shimoda & Rodriguez Law, PC

J. Edward Brooks

Gavrilov & Brooks

Christina Bucci Hamilton

Duggan Law Corporation

Carolyn G. Burnette

Jackson Lewis PC

Corey J. Cabral

CDF Labor Law LLP

Philip Chan Buchalter, APC

Lukas Clary

Weintraub Tobin

Katherine (Katie)

A. Collins

Weintraub Tobin

Daniel J. Coyle

Delfino Madden O’Malley

Coyle & Koewler LLP

Sean D. Currin

Mastagni Holstedt, APC

Anthony J. DeCristoforo

Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Stewart, PC

Jennifer E. Duggan

Duggan Law Corporation

Gage C. Dungy

Boutin Jones Inc.

Leslie D. Ellis Ellis Investigations

Law Corporation

Cassandra M. Ferrannini

Downey Brand LLP

Kevin A. Flautt

Kronick Moskovitz

Tiedemann & Girard

Jeffrey D. Fulton

Law Office of Jeffrey D. Fulton

Jason H. Jasmine

Messing Adam & Jasmine LLP

Carolee G. Kilduff

Angelo, Kilday & Kilduff Attorneys at Law

Timothy Long Greenberg Traurig, LLP

Kimberly A. Lucia Boutin Jones Inc.

Jennifer Randlett Madden

Delfino Madden O’Malley

Coyle & Koewler LLP

David E. Mastagni

Mastagni Holstedt, APC

Kathleen N.

Mastagni Storm

Mastagni Holstedt, APC

James E. McGlamery

Law Offices of

James E. McGlamery

Laura C. McHugh

Duggan Law Corporation

Alex Medina

Medina McKelvey LLP

Connor W. Olson


Christopher Onstott

Kronick Moskovitz

Tiedemann & Girard

Lissa Oshei

Boutin Jones Inc.

Charles L. Post

Weintraub Tobin

Robert L. Rediger

Rediger Labor Law LLP

Robert Sarkisian

Stoel Rives LLP

Jill L. Schubert

Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Stewart, PC

Jennifer Shaw Shaw Law Group, PC

Mark S. Spring

CDF Labor Law LLP

Elizabeth B. Stallard

Downey Brand LLP

Bruce M. Timm Boutin Jones Inc.

David W. Tyra

Kronick Moskovitz

Tiedemann & Girard

Joel M. Van Parys

CDF Labor Law LLP

Jacqueline N. Vu Buchalter, APC

Kelsey A. Webber

Weber Law Group

Benjamin L. Webster

Littler Mendelson PC

Liz ”Beth” V. West Weintraub Tobin

Christopher F. Wohl

Palmer Kazanjian Wohl Hodson LLP


Joshua L. Baker Day Carter & Murphy LLP

Andrew B. Brown

Ellison Schneider Harris & Donlan LLP

Robert E. Donlan

Ellison Schneider Harris & Donlan LLP

Jedediah J. Gibson Downey Brand LLP

Jeffery D. Harris

Ellison Schneider Harris & Donlan LLP

Jonathan Kendrick Buchalter, APC

Michael N. Mills Stoel Rives LLP

Scott A. Morris

Kronick Moskovitz

Tiedemann & Girard

Meredith E. Nikkel Downey Brand LLP

Gwenneth O’Hara Buchalter, APC

Heraclio Pimentel Jr. Stoel Rives LLP

Eric N. Robinson

Kronick Moskovitz

Tiedemann & Girard

Rebecca R.A. Smith Downey Brand LLP

Ann L. Trowbridge Day Carter & Murphy LLP


Carissa M. Beecham

Kronick Moskovitz

Tiedemann & Girard

Christina Berglund

Remy Moose Manley, LLP

Mona G. Ebrahimi

Kronick Moskovitz

Tiedemann & Girard

Elizabeth P. Ewens Stoel Rives LLP

Steven H. Goldberg Downey Brand LLP

Nicole E. Granquist Downey Brand LLP

Jennifer Hartman King Hartman King PC

Janelle S.H. Krattiger Stoel Rives LLP

Alanna Lungren Hartman King PC

Carissa Beecham



PRACTICE AREA : Environmental and Natural Resources, Land Use and Water Law

I KNEW I WANTED TO BE A LAWYER WHEN: A partner from my first firm job told me very confidently that I, too, was a litigator; he was right. I then gravitated toward the attorneys and clients in the environmental and land use space—all working to build a better future. I landed in water, where I work with the brightest and most ambitious people tackling some of the toughest issues in California.

THE FUNNIEST THING THAT EVER HAPPENED TO ME PROFESSIONALLY: Was when opposing counsel read my name into the record with a short “i” instead of a long “e.”

MY FIRST JOB WAS : An intern for local government lobbyist Don Peterson. I would write advocacy letters in the morning and sneak him Jim-Denny’s at lunch.

BESIDES MY FAMILY, THE THREE THINGS I LOVE THE MOST ARE : Live music, good food and dressing up.

I UNWIND FROM A LONG DAY BY: Going for a run through our midtown neighborhood listening to French pop.

ONE OF THE ITEMS ON MY BUCKET LIST: Was checked off for my 40th birthday when I took my two children and mother to Paris for a week and then my husband and I danced through Greece.

SACMAG.COM August 2023 71

Patrick Gihana


I CHOSE THIS AREA OF LAW BECAUSE: I wanted to fight for the fair and humane treatment of immigrants. This cause is dear to my heart given my own background. I am a child of refugee parents, and I have lived as an immigrant in many countries prior to coming to America.

MY FIRST JOB WAS : Clerk, driver, tech support and everything my dad wanted me to do at his law firm. I learned a lot from that experience.

BESIDES MY FAMILY, THE THREE THINGS I LOVE THE MOST ARE : Traveling, connecting with people on a deeper level and trying and learning new things.

I UNWIND FROM A LONG DAY BY : Exercising like running, biking and playing tennis. That’s the official answer. In reality though, watching TikTok videos and the latest Twitter feud work as well.

ONE OF THE ITEMS ON MY BUCKET LIST IS : Walking Spain’s famous pilgrimage trail, El Camino de Santiago.

ONE PIECE OF ADVICE I WOULD GIVE TO MY YOUNGER SELF: Relax, because no one has it figured out.

Andrea A. Matarazzo

Pioneer Law Group LLP

Osha Meserve

Soluri Meserve

James Grether Moose

Remy Moose Manley, LLP

Daniel J. O’Hanlon

Kronick Moskovitz

Tiedemann & Girard

Eric N. Robinson

Kronick Moskovitz

Tiedemann & Girard

Rebecca R.A. Smith

Downey Brand LLP

Stuart L. Somach

Somach Simmons & Dunn

Robert P. Soran

Downey Brand LLP

Timothy M. Taylor Stoel Rives LLP

Tiffany K. Wright

Remy Moose Manley, LLP


Elise S.F. Baker

Placer Law Group, APC

Stacey K. Brennan

Boutin Jones Inc.

Kay U. Brooks

Weintraub Tobin

Penelope R. Brown Boutin Jones Inc.

Kimberly Buchholz Law Office of Kimberly Buchholz

Jeb U. Burton The Burton Law Firm

Kristin N. Capritto

Downey Brand LLP

Janet Z. Chediak

Weintraub Tobin

Donna L. Courville Boutin Jones Inc.

Tyler Dahl

Law Office of Tyler Q. Dahl

Kelly E. Dankbar

Weintraub Tobin

Danielle F. Diebert

Weintraub Tobin

Benjamin Fox Huber Fox, PC

Margaret Heiser Fulton Fulton Law

Jeffrey S. Galvin

Downey Brand LLP

Kimberly Garner Garner Law

Alexandria Goff Goff Legal, PC

Edward W. Goldkuhl Goldkuhl, LLP

Jenni L. Harmon Wagner Kirkman Blaine Klomparens & Youmans LLP

Elliott M. Harry

Law Office of Tyler Q. Dahl

Tyson E. Hubbard Downey Brand LLP

Jonathan P. Huber

Huber Fox, PC

N. Aaron Johnson

Meissner Joseph Palley & Ruggles, Inc.

Heather Johnston

Sapphire Law Group

Daniel C. Kim

Weintraub Tobin

Gina L. Lera

Lera Tiberini PC

L. Stuart List

Boutin Jones Inc.

Grey R. Lund

Buchalter, APC

Alexis G. Ortega

The Burton Law Firm

Bryan Phipps Buchalter, APC

Jarom Phipps Buchalter, APC

Tracy M. Potts

Legacy Law Group

Silvio Reggiardo III

Downey Brand LLP

Hannah A. Shakin

Downey Brand LLP

Kent W. Silvester

Boutin Jones Inc.

Colin T. Smith

The Law Offices of

Colin T. Smith

Trevor L. Stapleton

Wilke Fleury LLP

Carlena L. Tapella

Weintraub Tobin

Kathleen (Kate) C. Willcox

Boutin Jones Inc.

Michael Yee

Yee Law Group, PC


Tiffany L. Andrews

Law Office of Tiffany

L. Andrews, PC

Beth M. Appelsmith

Beth M. Appelsmith

Alexandra A. Baron

Baron Family Law

Hal D. Bartholomew

Bartholomew & Wasznicky LLP

Sally Callahan

The Law Offices of

Sally K. Callahan, PC

Christy M. Carlisle

The Carlisle Law Firm, APC

Fredrick S. Cohen

Law Offices of Fredrick S. Cohen

Kristine S. Cummings

Law Office of Kristine

S. Cummings

Dianne M. Fetzer

The Law Offices of

Dianne M. Fetzer

Neil M.E. Forester

Forester Family Law PC

Melissa J. Harman

Purcell Stowell PC

Jennifer Hemmer

Hemmer & Barr LLP

Charlotte L. Keeley

Keeley Family Law

Victoria S. Linder

Law Offices of

Victoria S. Linder, PC

Bobby P. Luna

The Law Offices of Bobby P. Luna

Thomas Marrs

Marrs Law, PC

Mary J. Martinelli

Downey Brand LLP

Wazhma Mojaddidi

Mojaddidi Law

Mary C. Molinaro

Law Office of Mary Molinaro

Keeley L. Nickelson

Rojas Family Law, Inc.

Elizabeth N. Niemi

Law Office of Elizabeth N. Niemi

Robert J. O’Hair

Woodruff, O’Hair, Posner & Salinger, Inc.

John P. O’Malley

Delfino Madden O’Malley Coyle & Koewler LLP

Julia Perkovich

Perkovich Law Office

Kelly L. Pope

Downey Brand LLP

Matthew K. Purcell Purcell Stowell PC

Angelina Ray

Pacem Tempestate Law, APC

Tara M. Rojas

Rojas Family Law, Inc.

Linda D. States States Family Law

Brooke N. Stephens Merus Law

Michelle L. Stowell Purcell Stowell PC

Sara S. Thompson Law Office of Sara S. Thompson

Stephen J. Wagner Dick & Wagner

Diane E. Wasznicky

Bartholomew & Wasznicky LLP


Corey M. Day Stoel Rives LLP

Max Fujii Stoel Rives LLP

John C. McCarron

Downey Brand LLP

Dale A. Stern

Downey Brand LLP


Annie S. Amaral

Downey Brand LLP

Bradley A. Benbrook Hick Thomas LLP

Andrew T. Caulfield Caulfield Law Firm

Eliezer M. Cohen

Gavrilov & Brooks


Alice Kessler


PRACTICE AREA : Government Law and Policy

I KNEW I WANTED TO BE A LAWYER WHEN: My mother said, “You can choose between being a lawyer or a doctor. Which one do you pick?”

I CHOSE THIS AREA OF LAW BECAUSE : The legislative and public policy arenas lend themselves to dynamic and creative strategies for clients, and the stakes are typically high. Call it a lot of things, but it is never boring!


Louis A. Gonzalez Jr.

Weintraub Tobin

Michael J. Kuzmich

Boutin Jones Inc.

Jeffrey E. Levine

Matheny Sears Linkert & Jaime, LLP

Richard Stone Linkert

Matheny Sears Linkert & Jaime, LLP

J. Gage Marchini

Stoel Rives LLP

Michael Martucci

Martucci Law

Mikhail Parnes Buchalter, APC

Daniel S. Stouder

Boutin Jones Inc.


Steven G. Churchwell

Buchalter, APC

Jennifer L. Dauer

Diepenbrock Elkin Dauer McCandless LLP

Cynthia Larsen

Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP

Shawn C. Loorz


member of the LGBTQ+ community, giving back to that community through avenues such as my service on the board of directors for the CARES Foundation, and spreading compassion and kindness in as many small ways as I can each day.

I UNWIND FROM A LONG DAY BY : Listening to music on my commute home, usually the stuff my family refuses to let me play when they are in the car with me!

PEOPLE MIGHT BE SURPRISED TO KNOW THAT LAWYERS : Often struggle with depression and substance abuse.

ONE OF THE ITEMS ON MY BUCKET LIST IS: Visiting the Great Barrier Reef in Australia.

Jeremy A. Meier Greenberg Traurig, LLP


Christopher F. Anderson

Weintraub Tobin

James Andrew Caprile Buchalter, APC

Aaron R. Claxton Wilke Fleury LLP

Michael J. Daponde

DSR Health Law

Anthony R. Eaton

DSR Health Law

Eunice C. MajamSimpson

DSR Health Law

Devan McCarty Buchalter, APC

Mikhail Parnes Buchalter, APC

Michael G. Polis

Wilke Fleury LLP

Megan A. Rowe

DSR Health Law

Jennifer A. Scott

Kronick Moskovitz

Tiedemann & Girard

Brian M. Taylor Boutin Jones Inc.

Anna G. Thomas Buchalter, APC

Jeanne L. Vance Weintraub Tobin


Patrick Gihana Law Office of Patrick Gihana

Ann Kanter Kanter & Romo Immigration Law Office


Mary P. Derner

Caulfield Law Firm

Daniel J. Foster Wilke Fleury LLP

George A. Guthrie Wilke Fleury LLP

Sandra L. Sava Downey Brand LLP

Alexander F. Stuart

Murphy Austin Adams Schoenfeld LLP

Anthony Louis Vignolo Downey Brand LLP


Kevin Hughey

Hughey Gentry, LLP

Audrey A. Millemann

Weintraub Tobin


Nick S. Avdis

Avdis & Cucchi, LLP

Christina Berglund

Remy Moose Manley, LLP

G. Braiden Chadwick

Mitchell Chadwick LLP

Meghan Dunnagan

BPE Law Group, PC

Laura M. Harris

Remy Moose Manley, LLP

Rob Hofmann

The Hofman Legal Group

Ryan M. Hooper

Law Offices of

Gregory D. Thatch

Patrick G. Mitchell

Mitchell Chadwick LLP

Christopher L. Powell Mitchell Chadwick LLP

Andrew Skanchy Downey Brand LLP

John Taylor Taylor & Wiley, APC

Timothy M. Taylor Stoel Rives LLP

Gregory D. Thatch

Law Offices of Gregory D. Thatch

Tina Thomas

Thomas Law Group

Tiffany K. Wright

Remy Moose Manley, LLP


Kenneth E. Bacon

Mastagni Holstedt, APC

Jeffrey S. Einsohn

Parker Taylor Law Group

Mark E. Ellis

Ellis Law Group LLP

Karen M. Goodman

Goodman Law Corporation

Christine E. Jacob

Hansen Kohls Sommer & Jacob LLP

PRACTICE AREA : General Litigation

I KNEW I WANTED TO BE A LAWYER WHEN: I did Mock Trial in high school and wanted more!

A COMMON MISCONCEPTION ABOUT LITIGATORS : Is that we pick fights and create problems. We find solutions for problems. Disagreements and conflict often happen along the way, but the end goal is always to solve the problem.

IF I WASN’T A LAWYER, I WOULD BE : An intelligence analyst or detective.

I UNWIND FROM A LONG DAY BY : Going for a trail run. I’m most relaxed with a high heart rate and dirt under my feet.

PEOPLE MIGHT BE SURPRISED TO KNOW THAT LAWYERS : Need to have creative minds! Strategy is not always predictable or obvious, and good lawyers are constantly innovating solutions that fit the situation in front of them.

ONE OF THE ITEMS ON MY BUCKET LIST IS: To run a 100-mile race and/or the Zion Traverse.

ONE PIECE OF ADVICE I WOULD GIVE TO MY YOUNGER SELF IS: Lose the long sideburns— they do not look as cool as you think they do.

SACMAG.COM August 2023 73

Jeffrey M. Schaff


PRACTICE AREA : Personal Injury

I CHOSE MY AREA OF PRACTICE BECAUSE : It was the best intersection of my interests: trying cases and helping people.

THE FUNNIEST THING THAT EVER HAPPENED TO ME PROFESSIONALLY : One of the first civil cases that I tried involved an escaped cow.

A COMMON MISCONCEPTION ABOUT PERSONAL INJURY LAW : Personal injury law is more than billboards and big jury verdicts. There is a great deal of empathy and guidance needed in our practice.

MY FIRST JOB WAS : At Folsom Outlets selling kitchen products.

IF I WASN’T A LAWYER, I WOULD BE : A teacher, an architect or a park ranger.

BESIDES MY FAMILY, THE THREE THINGS I LOVE THE MOST ARE : Cooking, eating and afternoon naps.

I UNWIND FROM A LONG DAY BY : Sipping bourbon on the couch with my dogs.



ONE PIECE OF ADVICE I WOULD GIVE TO MY YOUNGER SELF IS : The measure of success is how you define it.

Daniel V. Kohls

Hansen Kohls Sommer & Jacob LLP

John A. Mason

Gurnee Mason Rushford Bonotto and Forestiere LLP

Port J. Parker

Parker Taylor Law Group

Natalie P. Vance Klinedinst PC

Ernest A. Long

Ernest A. Long ADR

Brandon McKelvey

Medina McKelvey LLP

Donald R. Person



William L. Brelsford

Danielle Lawrence

Law Office of Tyler Q. Dahl

Nancy P. Lee

Nancy P. Lee, PC

Dale A. Stern

Downey Brand LLP

Ashley West Carter West




Alice L. Kessler

Greenberg Traurig, LLP

Patrick Shannon

Greenberg Traurig, LLP

Stan O. Van Vleck Downey Brand LLP


Robert S. McWhorter Buchalter, APC


Meghan M. Baker Downey Brand LLP

Corey M. Day Stoel Rives LLP

David Diepenbrock

Weintraub Tobin

Suliman Khan Parker Taylor Law Group

Josiah M. Prendergast Weintraub Tobin


Dustin M. Amrein Downey Brand LLP

Benjamin J. Codog III Stoel Rives LLP

Daniel M. Steinberg Weintraub Tobin


Kaitlyn M. Bigoni Parker Taylor Law Group

Daniel J. Foster Wilke Fleury LLP

Shawn C. Loorz

LeVangie Law Group

Darcy L. Muilenburg DSR Health Law


Michael J. Thomas Downey Brand LLP


Edward J. Corey Jr. Weintraub Tobin

Brelsford Androvich & White

William C. Callaham

Wilcoxen Callaham, LLP

Adriana C. Cervantes

Wilke Fleury LLP

Thomas J. Doyle

Schuering Zimmerman & Doyle, LLP

Sarah C. Gosling

Schuering Zimmerman & Doyle, LLP

Michelle C. Jenni

Wilcoxen Callaham, LLP

Nicholas Leonard

Ikuta Hemesath LLP

Neal C. Lutterman

Wilke Fleury LLP

Mark Muro

Muro & Lampe, Inc.

Dominique A. Pollara

Pollara Law Group

Eric J. Ratinoff

Eric Ratinoff Law Corp.

Ian A. Scharg

Schuering Zimmerman & Doyle, LLP

David E. Smith

Smith Zitano Law Firm

Kat Todd

Schuering Zimmerman & Doyle, LLP

Barry Vogel

LaFollette Johnson

R. Parker White

Brelsford Androvich & White

Daniel E. Wilcoxen

Wilcoxen Callaham, LLP


Christopher Chediak

Weintraub Tobin

Brooke E. Condran

Greenberg Traurig, LLP

Michael De Angelis

Weintraub Tobin

Michelle Rowe Hallsten

Greenberg Traurig, LLP

Eric J. Stiff

Lewis Brisbois Bisgaard & Smith LLP

Ashley West Carter West


Cameron L. Hess

Wagner Kirkman Blaine

Klomparens & Youmans LLP

Joseph Anthony Androvich

Brelsford Androvich & White

Brian P. Azemika

Law Office of Brian P. Azemika

Joseph J. Babich

Dreyer Babich Buccola

Wood Campora, LLP

Robert B. Bale

Dreyer Babich Buccola Wood Campora, LLP

Robert A. Buccola

Dreyer Babich Buccola

Wood Campora, LLP

Chuck Caraway Del Rio & Caraway PC

Daniel Del Rio

Del Rio & Caraway PC

John Demas

Demas Law Group, PC

Ryan L. Dostart

Dreyer Babich Buccola

Wood Campora, LLP

Roger A. Dreyer

Dreyer Babich Buccola Wood Campora, LLP

Kevin L. Elder

Penney & Associates

Justin M. Gingery

Gingery Hammer & Schneideman Law Group

Hank G. Greenblatt

Dreyer Babich Buccola

Wood Campora, LLP

Glenn Guenard

Guenard & Bozarth LLP

Seth T. Madden

Penney & Associates

David P. Mastagni

Mastagni Holstedt, APC

Phillip R.A. Mastagni

Mastagni Holstedt, APC

Jordan Maurer

Maurer Law Corporation

Eric S. Meyer

Meyer Injury Lawyers

Robert Nelsen

Tower Legal Group

Bryan Nettels

Gavrilov & Brooks

Daniel L. Osier

Mastagni Holstedt, APC

Priscilla M. Parker

Gavrilov & Brooks

Sean M. Patrick

Law Offices of

Sean M. Patrick

Frederick W. Penney

Penney & Associates

Robert Allen Piering

Piering Law Firm


Eric J. Ratinoff

Eric Ratinoff Law Corp.

Eliot Reiner

Elliot Reiner, APLC

Ryan K. Sawyer

Law Office of

Ryan K. Sawyer

Jeffrey M. Schaff

Schaff Law Group

Craig C. Sheffer

Dreyer Babich Buccola Wood Campora, LLP

Jason J. Sigel

Dreyer Babich Buccola Wood Campora, LLP

John T. Stralen

Arnold Law Firm

Kirill B. Tarasenko

Tarasenko Law Office

Justin L. Ward

The Ward Firm

Grant A. Winter

Mastagni Holstedt, APC

Christopher W. Wood

Dreyer Babich Buccola Wood Campora, LLP


Robert B. Bale

Dreyer Babich Buccola Wood Campora, LLP

Gina M. Bowden

Arnold Law Firm

Robert A. Buccola

Dreyer Babich Buccola Wood Campora, LLP

Brooks Cutter Cutter Law PC

Joceline M. Herman

Porter Scott Attorneys

John O’Brien

O’Brien & Zehnder Law Firm

Brad Schultz Demas Law Group, PC

Jason J. Sigel

Dreyer Babich Buccola Wood Campora, LLP

Grant R. Zehnder

O’Brien & Zehnder Law Firm


Kenneth E. Bacon

Mastagni Holstedt, APC

Jason J. Sommer

Hansen Kohls Sommer & Jacob LLP


Russell J. Austin Murphy Austin Adams Schoenfeld LLP

Joshua L. Baker Day Carter & Murphy LLP

Jarrod Burch Boutin Jones Inc.

Colby A. Campbell Trainor Fairbrook

Joseph W. Carroll

Law Offices of Joseph

W. Carroll, PC

David W. Creeggan

Weintraub Tobin

Bradley J. Elkin

Diepenbrock Elkin Dauer McCandless LLP

Mark E. Ellinghouse

Weintraub Tobin

Matthew W. Ellis Downey Brand LLP

Alison E. Geddes

Weintraub Tobin

Louis A. Gonzalez Jr. Weintraub Tobin

Candice B. Harper Trainor Fairbrook

Amara Harrell

Kronick Moskovitz

Tiedemann & Girard

Jonathan Kendrick

Buchalter, APC

Shawn M. Kent

Weintraub Tobin

Michael J. Kuzmich Boutin Jones Inc.

Bradley A. McDowell Smith, McDowell & Powell, A Law Corporation

James R. Moore Boutin Jones Inc.

Louis A. Gonzalez Jr.


PRACTICE AREA : Litigation and Real Estate Litigation

I KNEW I WANTED TO BE A LAWYER WHEN : My high school English teacher told me to stop arguing with her—and that I should be a lawyer.

I CHOSE THIS AREA OF LAW BECAUSE : It’s interesting, complicated and creative. I am always amazed by how much benefit clients bring to the community when they create new buildings, homes, shops and services.

Nancy A. Park Best Best & Krieger Attorneys at Law

Gregory R. Philipp Boutin Jones Inc.

Jaclyn L. Powell Smith, McDowell & Powell, A Law Corporation

Kristina M. Reed

Law Office of Kristina M. Reed

Danielle R. Stephens Downey Brand LLP

Charles W. Trainor Trainor Fairbrook

Vincent K. Wong

Murphy Austin Adams Schoenfeld LLP


P. Addison Covert Parker & Covert LLP


Scott E. Bartel

Lewis Brisbois Bisgaard & Smith LLP

Julie E. Green

Weintraub Tobin

C. Kevin Kelso Weintraub Tobin

Christopher L. Russell Stoel Rives LLP


Olivia R. Clark

Kronick Moskovitz

Tiedemann & Girard

Mona G. Ebrahimi

Kronick Moskovitz

Tiedemann & Girard

Jonathan P. Hobbs

The City Attorney’s Office (Elk Grove)

Scott E. Huber

Cole Huber LLP

Jeffrey A. Mitchell

Kronick Moskovitz

Tiedemann & Girard

Ruthann G. Ziegler

Law Office of Ruthann G. Ziegler


Brian P. Bowen

Murphy Austin Adams

Schoenfeld LLP

Jeb U. Burton

The Burton Law Firm

Matthew D. Carlson

Boutin Jones Inc.

Jonathan E. Christianson

Boutin Jones Inc.

James (Jim) Clarke

Weintraub Tobin

Eric J. Coffill

Eversheds Sutherland

Jeffrey W. Curcio

Murphy Austin Adams

Schoenfeld LLP

Nikki Dobay

Greenberg Traurig, LLP

Robin Klomparens

Wagner Kirkman Blaine

Klomparens & Youmans LLP

James L. Leet

Boutin Jones Inc.

Jennifer Miller Moss

Moss and Locke

Attorneys at Law

Ulises Pizano-Diaz

Meissner Joseph Palley & Ruggles, Inc.

Silvio Reggiardo III

Downey Brand LLP

Robert R. Rubin

Boutin Jones Inc.

Belan K. Wagner

Wagner Kirkman Blaine

Klomparens & Youmans LLP

William F. Webster

Boutin Jones Inc.

Kathleen (Kate) C. Willcox

Boutin Jones Inc.

Betty J. Williams

Law Office of Williams & Associates, PC

A COMMON MISCONCEPTION ABOUT REAL ESTATE LAW : Is that it is limited to residential real estate. I practice commercial real estate law and litigation, and that involves land, development and commercial buildings.

MY FIRST JOB WAS : Paper boy. I “inherited” a couple of routes from my cousins, so it was gogo-go from the very beginning.

BESIDES MY FAMILY, THE THREE THINGS I LOVE THE MOST ARE : My friends, the outdoors and my dog, although not always in that order!


Minna C. Yang

Wagner Kirkman Blaine

Klomparens & Youmans LLP

Douglas L. Youmans

Wagner Kirkman Blaine

Klomparens & Youmans LLP


James D. McNairy

Boutin Jones Inc.

Charles L. Post

Weintraub Tobin

Daniel E. Richardson

Castle Law

Dylan W. Wiseman

Buchalter, APC


William D. Taylor

Hanson Bridgett LLP

Kirk E. Trost

Law Office of Kirk E. Trost


Jonathan D. Char

Mastagni Holstedt, APC

John R. Holstedt

Mastagni Holstedt, APC

Tom R. Johnson

Tom R. Johnson

Attorney at Law

Jason M. Marcus

Marcus, Regalado, Marcus & Pulley, LLP

Marc G. Marcus

Marcus, Regalado, Marcus & Pulley, LLP

Donald P. Novey

Novey Law Group

Kyle K. Tambornini

Eason & Tambornini, A Law Corporation

John P. Tribuiano III

Tribuiano & Yamada, LLP

Stuart C. Woo

Mastagni Holstedt, APC

Roy Yang

Law Offices of Roy Yang

SACMAG.COM August 2023 75

James J. Banks BANKS & WATSON

James J. Banks has more than 35 years’ experience counseling attorneys on legal ethics, law firm practice management issues, and law firm partnership disputes and dissolutions. He has represented lawyers throughout the Sacramento region and elsewhere in legal malpractice and malicious prosecution claims. He has tried numerous jury and bench trials, binding arbitrations and administrative hearings. Mr. Banks regularly represents attorneys in disciplinary and admission matters before the State Bar of California and has tried cases in the State Bar Court. Mr. Banks is certified by the California State Bar as a specialist in Legal Malpractice Law and has testified as an expert on the subjects of legal ethics and an attorney’s standard of care. He serves as a mediator and arbitrator and is a graduate of the Straus Institute for Dispute Resolution at the Pepperdine University Caruso School of Law. Mr. Banks frequently lectures on legal ethics and law firm risk management.

Top Lawyer Profiles

Special Advertising Section Meet attorneys who were selected by their peers to be honored as 2023 Top Lawyers* in their legal specialties. 2023
The Sacramento region is home to many exceptional lawyers.
1520 Eureka Road, Suite 100, Roseville, CA 95661 (916) 325-1000 • *Survey conducted by Professional Research Services of Royal Oak, Michigan to determine the 2023 Top Lawyers for Sacramento Magazine.
The Largest Private Criminal Defense Firm in Placer County Serving Northern California Counties: Placer, Sacramento, Yolo, El Dorado, Yuba, Sutter, Nevada, and more.
Front Row: Ryan J. Couzens, Alison L. Cohen, Barry A. Zimmerman, Susan K. Gellman, Zachary P. Merliss Back Row: Matthew A. Friedman, Matthew A. Lanthier, Amber L. Zehrung, Danielle N. Nygren, David G. Cohen, Camille M. Halley

The Cohen Defense Group is Placer County’s largest private criminal defense firm. Our attorneys have repeatedly been recognized as Top Lawyers by Sacramento Magazine. This year that honor goes to Susan Gellman, Zachary Merliss, Alison Cohen, and Barry Zimmerman, who runs a thriving Personal Injury practice in addition to his criminal work. The Cohen Defense Group has two State Bar Certified Specialists in Criminal Law and the most experienced juvenile defense team in Placer County. This year, we are pleased to announce the addition of three new lawyers. Ryan Couzens was previously an Assistant Chief Deputy District Attorney in Yolo County, supervising the trial teams, the charging unit, and the Major Crimes Unit. He is the author of legislation now adopted as Penal Code Section 13370, the Justice Data Accountability and Transparency Act (JDATA), and Penal Code Section 741, requiring prosecuting agencies to implement race-blind charging in criminal cases. Ryan brings a unique perspective and a wealth of trial experience to the firm, and we are thrilled to welcome him to the Cohen Defense team. Camille Halley and Matthew Lanthier are both graduates of the prestigious U.C. Davis School of Law. Camille was awarded the 2022 CLEA Award for Outstanding Clinic Student for handling

claims against prison and jail officials in the U.C. Davis Civil Rights Clinic. She now handles cases in misdemeanor and domestic violence courts. Matthew was a member of the King Hall Trial Practice Honors Board, competed in the National Pretrial Competition, and was named Best Advocate at the Frances Carr Trial Practice Competition. He now represents children in delinquency court and adults charged with misdemeanors. The Cohen Defense Group is proud to have developed a team of lawyers whose education, training, and experience ensure the availability of the right lawyer for you or your loved one. With offices in Roseville and Auburn, the Cohen Defense Group represents people in Placer, El Dorado, Nevada, Yuba, Sutter, Yolo, and Sacramento counties, at all stages of proceedings including pre-charging representation, pretrial negotiations and motions, jury trials, DMV hearings, and post-conviction proceedings (record sealing, expungement, removal from the sex offender registry.) Our team is qualified to handle cases in all criminal courts in California, including juvenile delinquency and federal courtrooms.

The best lawyers are supported by the best team, and the lawyers and staff of the Cohen Defense Group are here to help you when you need it most.

Top Lawyer Profi les SPECIAL ADVERTISING SECTION 919 Reserve Drive, Suite 130, Roseville CA 95678 • (916) 596-2700

Diepenbrock Elkin Dauer McCandless LLP

Diepenbrock Elkin Dauer McCandless LLP has a long history in the California legal community, with practices focusing on construction, real estate, government contracts, business transactions, and litigation. Firm attorneys work cohesively to serve client interests, focusing on cost-effective solutions to difficult legal challenges.

The Firm is proud to congratulate following Firm attorneys on their selection as 2023 TOP LAWYERS!

Bradley J. Elkin – Real Estate

Jennifer L. Dauer – Construction/Government Contracts

Eileen M. Diepenbrock – Construction/Litigation

555 University Avenue, Suite 200, Sacramento, CA 95825

Wilcoxen Callaham, LLP

Premier Sacramento Personal Injury Firm Wilcoxen Callaham, LLP is proud to congratulate our partners Daniel Wilcoxen, William Callaham and Michelle Jenni for being recognized once again by their peers as Top Lawyers in Sacramento.

Daniel Wilcoxen: Medical Malpractice

Willam Callaham: Medical Malpractice

Michelle Jenni: Medical Malpractice

The Wilcoxen Callaham team has built their 40+ year reputation on excellence and the ethical practice of law. Our firm is committed to achieving the best possible results for our clients who have been injured and are seeking compensation for their damages. We represent clients who have sustained damages due to Catastrophic Injuries, Birth Injuries, Medical Malpractice, Non-Medical Negligence, Motor Vehicle/Trucking Accidents, Slip and Fall Injuries, Defective Products and other personal injuries. Our attorneys have extensive litigation and trial experience in both state and federal courts. Several of our partners belong to the American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA) which has strict trial experience criteria for membership.

2114 K Street Sacramento, CA 96816 • (916) 442-2777 •
Pictured, from left to right: Bradley J. Elkin, Jennifer L. Dauer, Eileen M. Diepenbrock

Alison Cohen, Esq. | Cohen Defense Group

A founding partner of the Cohen Defense Group, Alison is the most experienced juvenile delinquency attorney in Placer County. She currently supervises the Cohen Defense Group’s Juvenile and Appellate Units. Juvenile Delinquency law is close to Alison’s heart and has been her primary focus for the last twenty-two years. Alison has helped children with cases ranging from low-level misdemeanors to serious felonies with consequences under the

Three Strikes Law. She has successfully diverted cases out of court, protected clients from transfer to adult court, and worked to ensure that juvenile records get sealed whenever possible. Juvenile law is always evolving. Alison keeps her team on the cutting edge with frequent trainings on the science of adolescent brain development, the residual effects of trauma on children, and evidencebased therapeutic interventions so that they are

prepared to defend their clients with multiple levels of information. Alison’s unique combination of experience and training make her an exceptionally successful advocate for her young clients, and she is thrilled to be building a team of attorneys who share her passion and commitment to excellence. This is the second time Alison has been chosen as a Top Lawyer for Sacramento Magazine.

1515 Lincoln Way, Auburn, CA 95603 • (530) 823-7700 • Top Lawyer Profi les SPECIAL ADVERTISING SECTION


The Arnold Law Firm has represented people in the Sacramento region and throughout California for more than 40 years. Our personal injury lawyers are well respected within the legal community.

Clayeo C. Arnold, Esq., has dedicated an impressive 48 years of his legal career to advocating for the rights of Californians who have suffered injuries due to the wrongful acts of others. As a Sacramento native, the Founder and President of the Arnold Law Firm, he has battled insurance companies and large corporations to secure full compensation for his clients. Recognizing the unique nature of each client’s circumstances, Mr. Arnold approaches each case individually. He leverages the expertise of top professionals in accident reconstruction, machinery design, manufacturing, and medical causation to ensure the best possible outcomes. Through Mr. Arnold’s approach, he has achieved rewarding results for his clients and has shaped the firm’s distinct methodology, enabling The Arnold Law Firm to tackle complicated cases and formidable opponents with success.

John T. Stralen, Esq., stands out as one of the select few attorneys in the Sacramento Region who has achieved the esteemed distinction of Board-Certification as a Specialist in Trial Advocacy. His exceptional qualifications extend further, as he proudly holds membership in the exclusive American Board of Trial Advocates, an invitation-only organization comprised of highly accomplished trial lawyers who have met rigorous admission criteria. Earlier this year, Mr. Stralen received well-deserved national recognition as a “Super Lawyer.” With his focus dedicated to cases involving catastrophic injury or wrongful death, his legal practice regularly obtains seven and eight-figure outcomes for his clients. A number of Mr. Stralen’s cases have not only yielded substantial results but, importantly, have compelled corporate defendants to implement important policy changes and adopt enhanced safety practices, effectively safeguarding the public from future harm. Mr. Stralen’s steadfast commitment to achieving justice has solidified his reputation as a truly outstanding legal advocate and as a vital force at the firm.

Gina M. Bowden, Esq. graduated “With Great Distinction” from the McGeorge School of Law in 2007, where she was on the Board of Editors of the McGeorge Law Review and was bestowed with numerous awards for academic excellence. Since that time, she has established herself as a prominent figure in the field of personal injury, product liability, and complex litigation. In addition to her outstanding ability to take on the toughest legal challenges, Ms. Bowden deeply connects with her clients, many of whom have experienced life-altering injuries or the loss of a loved one. Her ability to protect, fight for, and support her clients throughout the litigation process has made her an invaluable

Clayeo C. Arnold, Esq.

asset at the Arnold Law Firm. Throughout her accomplished career, she continues to achieve remarkable results for her clients. Recently, she secured an impressive $10 million settlement in a product liability case. Ms. Bowden is highly regarded for her unwavering professionalism, civility, and relentless pursuit of justice. Serving as an inspiration to her peers and colleagues, she exudes a positive attitude that empowers and encourages those around her to achieve their goals.

The Arnold Law Firm comprises a diverse team who share a commitment to providing the highest quality legal representation to their clients. Clayeo C. Arnold, Gina Bowden, John T. Stralen, and all members of the Arnold Law Firm stand united in their mission to protect the rights of victims and tirelessly pursue justice on their behalf. The Arnold Law Firm excels in its personalized approach to each case. Understanding the distinct nature of each client and situation, the attorneys at the Arnold Law Firm invest the necessary time and resources to achieve a thorough understanding of the unique

circumstances involved in each case. This comprehensive method empowers our attorneys to construct customized strategies that are precisely aligned with the individual needs and objectives of our clients. By closely collaborating with top experts across multiple disciplines, the Arnold Law Firm provides their clients with legal representation that leaves no stone unturned.

The Arnold Law Firm takes great pride in its exceptional team of lawyers and highly skilled staff members, who are all deeply committed to the pursuit of justice. Clayeo C. Arnold, John T. Stralen, and Gina M. Bowden embody the firm’s values and serve as key motivators within the practice. With their dedication, extensive experience, and proven track records, they provide the highest quality legal representation protecting the rights of victims and obtaining justice for their clients. Clients of the Arnold Law Firm can rest assured that they will receive unwavering support, steadfast advocacy, and relentless pursuit of justice for their injuries and losses.

Gina M. Bowden, Esq. John T. Stralen, Esq.
865 Howe Ave Sacramento, CA 95825 • (916) 777-7777
Personal Injury Lawyers

Law Offices of Eric H. Hintz

Eric H. Hintz is a criminal defense attorney who represents clients throughout Northern California. A lifelong resident of the Sacramento area, Mr. Hintz received his undergraduate degree from the University of California at Davis and received his law degree from the University of California, Hastings College of the Law in San Francisco. Upon graduating from law school, Mr. Hintz returned to Sacramento, where with his wife, Ronda, he has raised four sons. One of his sons, Brandon, has joined him in the practice of law. With more than 30 years of legal experience, Mr. Hintz remains committed to a personal, hands-on approach to practicing law. Practice areas include, but are not limited to, criminal defense, DUI, domestic violence, sex crimes, financial crimes, computer crimes and juvenile crimes. New business comes almost exclusively via referrals from satisfied clients or other attorneys.

2150 River Plaza Drive, Suite 140 Sacramento, CA 95833 (916) 465-6500

Mark E. Ellis Ellis Law Group, LLP

Mark is a litigator and a trial attorney. His boutique law firm tries cases – that’s what it does. It doesn’t draft contracts; it doesn’t write wills. It goes to trial.

Mark is certified by the California State Bar as a specialist in Legal Malpractice, and he has been for the last 12 years.

Mark has been named as a Northern California SuperLawyer for the last 15 years.

Mark has been named as one of the “Best Lawyers in America” for the last 12 years.

Mark’s law firm, Ellis Law Group, LLP, has been named as a Top-Tier small law firm by U.S. News & World Report for the last 10 years.

Mark has been named in Sacramento Magazine as a Top Sacramento Lawyer for the last six years.

Mark’s firm handles serious legal disputes. He understands his clients’ reputations and financial futures are at risk. For these reasons, he and his attorneys provide aggressive, professional representation to every client.

1425 River Park Drive, Suite 400, Sacramento, CA 95815 (916) 283-8820


Tyler Q. Dahl is a bilingual Spanish speaking attorney and founded Dahl Law Group (formerly the Law Offices of Tyler Q. Dahl) in 2014. He has developed an expertise in estate and succession planning for business owners, business law, and tax law, and has been recognized as a Super Lawyers Rising Star of Northern California for 7 consecutive years. With a thorough academic background, Mr. Dahl earned a Master’s (L.L.M.) in Tax Law, further enhancing his expertise. As a Certified Tax Coach, he is also equipped to navigate the federal and state tax code to maximize tax savings for his clients through court tested, forward thinking, IRS approved tax strategies. He has been a distinguished speaker for prominent organizations such as the Sacramento Bar Association, Vistage International, the Financial

Planning Association of Northern California, the Sacramento Law Library, and the California Association of Business Brokers. Mr. Dahl stands at the helm of Dahl Law Group and is proud that all the attorneys of the firm were honored as a Top Attorneys in Sacramento, California, by Sacramento Magazine.

Dahl Law Group recognizes, appreciates, and respects the unique circumstances, goals, and complexities of each family and business. The firm fosters a client-centered approach and a deep understanding of each clients’ needs. By investing time in understanding clients and their specific needs, the firm crafts personalized estate, business, and tax strategies that offer long-term peace of mind and protection for both present and future generations.

At Dahl Law Group, the focus extends beyond being a conventional law firm. It is about serving as a trusted advisor for clients, providing unparalleled personalized attention and customer service, and supporting them through all stages of their personal and business journeys. This is accomplished through developing long-term relationships, understanding clients’ aspirations and challenges, and offering tailored solutions and recommendations to safeguard their interests. With a strong belief in cultivating trusting relationships, Dahl Law Group stands as a reliable partner, providing support and guidance as clients’ families and businesses evolve.

You’ve put blood, sweat, and tears into your family and your business. Now it’s time to protect it!

555 University Avenue, Suite 110, Sacramento, CA 95825; 916-545-2790, Top Lawyer Profi les SPECIAL ADVERTISING SECTION

Hartman King PC

Jennifer Hartman King is the founder and President of Hartman King PC. She launched the firm in 2014 after serving as Deputy Legal Affairs Secretary to Governor Gray Davis and practicing in BigLaw. She has received several awards for excellence in her industry, including CREW’s 2022 Women of Influence Award.

Alanna Lungren is a Principal at Hartman King PC and joined the firm in 2016. In 2021, she received Sacramento Business Journal’s 40 Under 40 award. Hartman King PC proudly represents clients ranging from Fortune 100 trailblazers to some of the most visionary drivers of our economy. Together with their team, Jennifer and Alanna represent business, agriculture, and industry clients in a wide range of environmental and regulatory matters, including providing compliance advice, defending agency enforcement actions, and handling com p lex civil litigation. Also, Jennifer and Alanna are nationally known experts in weights and measures law. They are very honored to receive this award.

Jennifer Hartman King, Esq. | President

Alanna Lungren, Esq. | Principal

2150 River Plaza Drive, Suite 320, Sacramento, CA 95833 (916) 379-7530

CDF Labor Law LLP

CDF is an award-winning labor and employment law firm in California, defending employers in single-plaintiff, class action and PAGA lawsuits, representing employers in union relations issues, and advising employers on related legal compliance. CDF understands the challenges employers face in navigating the complex landscape of labor laws and strives to minimize risks and safeguard their clients’ interests. Our Sacramento office has nine attorneys, backed by a total of fifty attorneys spanning California. Our attorneys possess a deep understanding of the legal risks associated with running a business or maintaining operations in California and recognize the impact that litigation and unionization can have on a client’s business.

CDF Sacramento attorneys listed to Sacramento Magazine’s Top Lawyers list:

Mark S. Spring, Chair of CDF’s Traditional Labor Practice, opened our Sacramento office in 1997, and has over 30 years of experience representing private sector businesses of all types and sizes. His practice is focused on the representation of management in union-management relations and handling litigation triggered by all types of employment-related disputes. Corey Cabral, Chair of CDFs PAGA Litigation Practice, and Partner Joel Van Parys have a special emphasis and deep experience defending clients in high-stakes class actions and PAGA lawsuits alleging various wage and hour violations.

Our strong presence and leadership in Sacramento makes us well-equipped to handle the diverse range of employment law issues faced by private sector employers in the area.

900 University Avenue, Ste. 200, Sacramento, CA 95825 • (916) 361-0991

Pictured left to right: Mark S. Spring, Chair of CDF’s Traditional Labor Practice; Joel M. Van Parys, Sacramento Office Co-Managing Partner; Corey Cabral, Chair of CDFs PAGA Litigation Practice

Located in the heart of the capital region of one of the largest economies in the world, the attorneys in Buchalter’s Sacramento office have committed themselves to delivering outstanding legal guidance to clients in the Sacramento Region for decades. With a wealth of experience and specialized knowledge, we have successfully supported clients throughout their journeys of development and transformation, guaranteeing meticulous attention and proficiency in fulfilling their legal requirements.

Buchalter offers a comprehensive range of legal services across multiple practice areas. Our skilled attorneys are well versed in litigation, corporate and banking law, intellectual property (including


trademark, copyright, and trade secrets), commercial finance, energy, estate planning, government contracts, healthcare, and labor and employment, among others. This diverse expertise enables us to assist clients from various industries, tailoring our strategies to suit their specific needs and objectives. As part of Buchalter, our Sacramento office benefits from the collective strength and resources of a full-service business law firm. With 11 offices strategically positioned in major cities throughout the West, we have access to a vast network of legal professionals and a wealth of knowledge and experience. This extensive support enables us to deliver comprehensive and effective solutions to

our clients.

Recognizing the growing prominence of Sacramento as a significant business center, Buchalter established its Sacramento office in 2017 and has grown to nearly 30 lawyers. Our presence in this dynamic, thriving community allows us to forge strong connections with local businesses and entrepreneurs. By actively engaging with the local business community, we have developed a deep understanding of the unique challenges and opportunities they face. This local insight and our creative problem-solving skills position us as an ideal partner for resolving legal matters swiftly and efficiently.

Capitol Mall, Suite 1900, Sacramento, CA 95814-4762 • (916) 945-5170
Pictured (alphabetically): Harry W.R. Chamberlain II, Phillip Chan, Steven Churchwell, Kevin Collins, Anna Crivelli, James Dyer, Josh Escovedo, Benjamin Heuer, Gregg Josephson, Jonathan Kendrick, Jenni Krengel, Grey Lund, Devan McCarty, Robert McWhorter, Gwenneth O’Hara Jarrett Osborne-Revis, Mikhail Parnes, Bryan Phipps, Anna Thomas, Jacqueline Vu, Dylan Wiseman Not Pictured: James Drew Caprile, Michael Muse-Fisher, Jarom Phipps.


With over 150 years of collective experience, the attorneys at BPE Law Group bring a wealth of legal experience and practical experience in assisting our clients in their business and real estate needs. Our attorneys routinely work with investors, developers, property owners, businesses and professionals on business succession planning, business transitions, real estate transactions, financing, litigation, estate planning and human resource issues. Our attorneys work collaboratively with clients to find practical, costeffective legal solutions.

We are honored to have the following attorneys named in the 2023 Top Lawyers list:

Meghan Dunnagan—Land Use/Zoning

Melanie De Marco—Business/Corporate

D. Keith B. Dunnagan—Business/Corporate

2339 Gold Meadow Way, Suite 101 Gold River, CA 95670

Parker Taylor Law Group, PC

The firm is honored to have its attorneys selected as Top Lawyers for 2023:

Port J. Parker Legal Malpractice & Business Litigation

R. Shane Quigley


Myles G. Taylor Business Litigation & Business/Corporate

Suliman Khan Litigation Commercial

Jeffrey S. Einsohn

Legal Malpractice

Leah C. Capranica


Port J. Parker founded Parker Taylor Law Group in 2018. For years, Port and his partners Myles G. Taylor and Jeffrey S. Einsohn have been recognized as some of Sacramento’s Top Lawyers in their fields. The firm handles a variety of matters involving business litigation, professional malpractice, corporate counsel, trust and estate disputes, and real property.

Parker Taylor Law Group represents individuals and businesses from many industries, including real estate, construction, biotech, agriculture, retail, financial and professional services, and food and beverage. Their strong team of attorneys and professionals work to provide the best representation possible for their clients.

555 Capitol Mall, Ste 1230, Sacramento, CA 95814 • (916) 996-0400 •

Mark Reichel, Attorney At Law

Mark Reichel has 32 years of remarkable victories in complex criminal and civil matters. A seasoned trial attorney with a long history of outstanding client advocacy, Mark maintains a small caseload to ensure the highest quality of representation. Right out of law school, Mark had a federal victory featured in a 1992 Life Magazine article. By 1995, he obtained a dismissal in a large federal loan fraud case that had toppled two Savings and Loans. In 2009, Mark obtained an outright dismissal against the Main Justice Department in the largest federal terrorism case ever brought, concerning the alleged planned invasion and overthrow of the government of Laos, in USA v. Lo Cha Thao. That year Mark was also the lead attorney for the largest fraud and arson case in California’s federal courts. By 2013, Mark was hired to represent the defendant in “Operation Open Market”, the nation’s largest international cyber identity theft case; the case was featured in Wired Magazine. In 2015, he obtained the distinction of garnering the first and only acquittal ever before U.S. District

Judge Garland Burrell, Jr., in the judge’s 23 years on the federal bench, with the acquittal of the lead defendant in a large white collar fraud case. The Sacramento Bee writes that Mr. Reichel is “A topnotch lawyer...a fiery veteran of trench warfare in the federal courts”, with “A history of no holds barred advocacy when opposing federal prosecutors.”

For his work on National Security cases, he was featured in the 2010 Sacramento News & Review “100 Most Interesting People of Sacramento”. Now a veteran of over 1,000 federal criminal cases, Mark’s clients have included national and local celebrities, businesses, banks, foreign nationals, politicians, musical artists and cyber hackers. A graduate of the National Criminal Defense College (1995), he has handled federal cases in Alaska, Washington, Oregon, Nevada, Texas, Utah, Massachusetts, Kansas, Illinois, and New York. Mark’s resume includes not guilty verdicts and successful civil victories in federal and state courts, and tremendous success in federal appeals. He has a very rare distinction

for any lawyer: Mark argued a criminal case before the United States Supreme Court in 2006, United States v Grubbs. His cases have been made into movies, documentaries and feature-length stories in national magazines. He was featured in the Global “Who’s Who” of Trial Lawyers, the Top 100 National Trial Lawyers, and since 2008, a Northern California Super Lawyer. Mark is a contributor for the Washington Post Opinion Section, and as a legal expert, he is relied upon for commentary by major television news programs like CNN, ABC, NBC, FOX, MSN, CBS, NewsNation, and PBS as well as local news outlets, magazines and print media. He has appeared over 300 times in Sacramento media interviews, and has been featured often in the New York Times, New Republic, Elle Magazine, Salon. com, as well as The Wall Street Journal, Newsweek, Time and People Magazine, Rolling Stone, The Los Angeles Times, The Guardian, The London Times, and many more. Mark Reichel, experienced, smart, respected and tough.

455 Capitol Mall 8th Floor Suite 802, Sacramento, CA 95814 • (916) 498-9258 • Top Lawyer Profi les SPECIAL ADVERTISING SECTION

Rediger Labor Law LLP

Rediger Labor Law LLP is a family-owned law firm that advises and represents employers in labor and employment-related matters. Our clients range from small businesses to Fortune 500 companies, many of which we have advised and represented for decades.

The attorneys of our firm have successfully represented companies in:

c ountering union organizing campaigns, NLRB elections, an d unfair labor practice proceedings, multi-employer collective bargaining negotiations with various unions,

c lass actions and representative PAGA actions alleging violations of wage and hour laws, discrimination proceedings involving the DFEH, and in federal court against the EEOC, jur y trials to verdict, and appeals.

We continue to be peer rated “AV” by Martindale-Hubbell, its highest ratings for legal ability and ethics, and included in the Bar Register of Preeminent Lawyers in the category of Labor and Employment Law. We enjoy the highest Client Rating of 5.0 on

555 Capitol Mall, Suite 1240, Sacramento, CA 95814 (916) 442-0033

Greenberg Traurig, LLP.

Greenberg Traurig’s Sacramento office provides high quality legal services to companies and trade associations doing business in California, including a long list of Fortune 500 clients. It makes Greenberg Traurig one of the very few firms to offer experienced advocacy in California’s Legislature, state agencies, and courts. Our attorneys have decades of experience with the legislative process and the long-term relationships necessary for legislative success. Members of our team have lobbied the Legislature on hundreds of public policy issues concerning the environment, technology, civil justice, general business practices and industry-specific legislation. Our history of cooperative relationships and aggressive action gives us the capability to follow legislation through implementing regulation and into court.

GT Sacramento is truly full service, backed by 45 offices worldwide – and growing. Our nationally recognized attorneys handle business disputes, class action, environmental, labor and employment, government procurement, ERISA, Proposition 65, trade secret, attorney general, appellate, and products liability litigation. Our attorneys also assist clients by conducting independent investigations in connection with allegations of misconduct, as well as representing entities and individuals in connection with white collar criminal investigation and prosecutions by federal, state, and local authorities. Our corporate group advises public and privately held companies on M&A, corporate restructurings, recapitalizations and reorganizations, venture and private equity capital, securities offerings, SEC and corporate governance matters.

400 Capitol Mall, Suite 2400, Sacramento, CA 95814 (916) 442-1111

• • • • •
Pictured: Candice K. Hanratty, Justin Rediger, Robert L. Rediger and Arielle M. Rediger.


Prior to founding Yee Law Group, Inc., Michael Yee was an attorney at one of the most well-respected real estate law firms in Sacramento. His practice focuses on estate planning and probate law. Michael is a descendent of Sacramento pioneers and comes from a long line of professionals serving the community. His great-great grandfather, an herbalist, named Dr. Wah Hing, arrived

in California during the Gold Rush. Michael’s grandfather, a retired dentist, Herbert Yee, is also a longtime Land Park resident, commercial real estate investor and community leader. Michael chose the legal field instead of the medical field to better serve his family’s commercial property investments and help families looking for legal expertise in the areas of estate planning. Michael

enjoys sitting down with families to educate them on the benefits of having an estate plan in place and guides families who have lost loved ones that may need help navigating through the process of probate.

See our awesome reviews on Yelp!

4010 S. Land Park Drive, Suite B, Sacramento, CA 95822 • 1024 Iron Point Road, Suite 1008, Folsom, CA 95630 • 919 Reserve Drive, Roseville, CA 95678 (916) 927-9001 • (916) 927-9001 Fax • •


Thank you Sacramento Magazine for once again recognizing Michael Wise and the Wise Law Group as a Top Law Firm in the Sacramento Region! Mr. Wise founded the Wise Law Group after working several years as a prosecutor in both Contra Costa County and Sacramento Counties. Mr. Wise has earned the respect of his adversaries and the courts for being a professional, and tenacious trial advocate for the accused. He represents clients from all walks of life, and handles a wide variety of criminal cases, ranging from simple DUI and petty theft to Murder, gang shootings, domestic violence allegations, assault, narcotics, embezzlement and fraud. He teaches law enforcement officers on ethical courtroom testimony as well. The Wise Law Group has long held an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau and Mr. Wise has been recognized by the American Trial Lawyers Association as one of the Top 100 Trial Lawyers in California for several years.

The Wise Law Group can be located online at and in person at 455 Capitol Mall, Suite 305, Sacramento, CA, 95814

Kershaw Talley Barlow

With over 75 years of experience between the three named partners, Kershaw Talley Barlow has earned a reputation as one of the most successful complex litigation firms in Northern California. KTB has built its reputation upon a steadfast commitment to integrity, robust client communication, and relentless advocacy. The success of the firm relies upon the exemplary leadership of its three partners: William A. Kershaw, Stuart C. Talley, and Ian J. Barlow. With their combined experience, they have served as lead or co-lead counsel in numerous national class action and mass tort proceedings, often earning appointments to the executive or plaintiffs’ steering committees.

KTB attorneys fight for the rights of victims of defective medical devices, dangerous pharmaceuticals, water contamination, wildfire injuries, insurance fraud, sexual harassment and abuse, corporate misconduct, nursing home and elder abuse, and personal injury. The attorneys at KTB are supported by a hardworking and dedicated staff that prioritizes the needs of their clients.

Kershaw Talley Barlow’s efforts have been instrumental in recovering over a billion dollars from pharmaceutical companies, automotive manufacturers, delinquent corporations, and other entities that have failed in their obligations to the public. Kershaw Talley Barlow has, and will continue, to operate under the principle that every client matters.

401 Watt Avenue, Ste. 1, Sacramento, CA 95864 (916) 520-6639 •


Candice Fields Law, PC, now at 400 Capitol Mall, represents individuals and businesses in federal white-collar crime cases. These matters tend to involve long, complex, and far-reaching investigations into complicated financial transactions. People with no criminal history are often involved and have no idea how to respond to a federal investigation. With more than twenty-five years of experience representing clients in the Eastern District of California, throughout California, and nationwide, Candice Fields provides both proactive and compassionate counsel. Recognized by her peers for the caliber of her legal skills in white-collar criminal defense, she has been designated one of Sacramento Magazine’s Top Lawyers each year since the inception of the List in 2015. The best time to retain a lawyer is before a federal investigation gets formally charged. Candice Fields stands ready to provide representation and, if needed, a strong defense. She is available for in-person or video consultation.

400 Capitol Mall, Suite 1620, Sacramento, CA 95814 • (916) 414-8050

Andrew Bluth, Chris Rodriguez, Singleton Schreiber

Congratulations to Andrew and Chris on their ongoing recognition as two of Sacramento’s Best Lawyers!

Singleton Schreiber is one of the premier plaintiff law firms in the western United States, representing thousands of individuals who have been harmed by wildfires, automobile accidents, product defects, toxic torts, and other catastrophic incidents. With a roster of topflight trial lawyers like Chris and Andrew at the helm, Singleton Schreiber continues its journey to seek justice nationwide. With 13 offices throughout the western United States, Singleton Schreiber provides counsel on Personal Injury, Wildfire and Environmental Litigation, Consumer Protection, Mass Torts, Class Actions, and more. Singleton Schreiber accepts referrals from lawyers in all industries, having paid over $42 million in referral fees last year alone.

1414 K. Street, Suite 470, Sacramento, CA 95814 (916) 248-8478

Judge Ben Davidian (Ret.)

Judge Ben Davidian (Ret.) is a full-time JAMS neutral, with decades of experience as an attorney, government official and as a judge in the Sacramento County Superior Court from 2009-2021. Judge Davidian was appointed to the Superior Court and served over 12 years, including his final assignment of almost seven years as the supervising civil settlement conference judge in Department 59.

Judge Davidian presided over more than 150 jury trials and conducted or managed thousands of mandatory and voluntary settlement conferences, including nearly 200 virtual conferences during the temporary court closure. He also managed thousands more settlement conferences performed by judges pro tem.

For his service on the bench, Judge Davidian was honored by being named Judge of the Year by the Capital City Trial Lawyers Association (CCTLA) in 2017 and Judge of the Year by the Sacramento Valley Chapter of the American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA) in 2018.

Judge Davidian is a veteran of the U.S. Air Force, serving as a flight-rated navigator and attaining the rank of captain. His service included a combat tour in Southeast Asia.

Judge Davidian is available in person or remotely as a mediator, arbitrator, and referee/special master to resolve personal injury, automobile and truck accidents, professional liability, business/ commercial, employment, construction defect, health care, insurance, elder abuse, landlord/tenant, PAGA, government/ public agency, and real property/real estate issues.

To learn more about Judge Davidian’s practice or availability, please contact his Case Manager, Dayo Horton, at 916-830-7124 or

Zachary Merliss, Esq. | Cohen Defense Group

We call him “The Hangman” because he’s hung so many juries. Rapidly becoming one of the Cohen Defense Group’s most experienced trial attorneys, Zachary Merliss is a fierce litigator. He has been recognized by SuperLawyers Magazine as a Northern California rising star in the field of DUI defense, and by the National Trial Lawyers as one of the “Top 40 Under 40” in California for criminal defense. Zach regularly litigates DMV hearings, motions to suppress evidence, and jury trials, and lectures on legal aspects of DUI’s at Auburn’s First Offense DUI school. An active member of the National College

of DUI Defense, Zach hones his skills by undergoing the same training programs that qualify police officers for DUI investigation: he successfully completed the 3-day “Standardized Field Sobriety Test Academy” and the 2-day “Advanced Roadside Impaired Driving Enforcement Training” designed for experienced police officers. He also attended a 6-day “Serious Science” seminar where he prepared alcohol blood samples in a lab, learning the process first-hand in order to more effectively challenge admissibility and reliability of blood evidence in court. Passionate about the 4th Amendment’s

guarantee of freedom from unreasonable searches and seizures, Zach is a skilled advocate who is intimately familiar with this large and complicated body of law and the protections it affords his clients. According to founding partner David Cohen, “Zach is a bulldog. He is making the prosecutors work overtime by challenging every potential act of police misconduct. That kind of zeal reaps great results for our clients.” Zach graduated from the University of Southern California School of Law in 2016.

1515 Lincoln Way, Auburn, CA 95603 • (530)823-7700 • Top Lawyer Profi les SPECIAL ADVERTISING SECTION

Angelina Ray, Esq.


We are committed to providing quality representation and, above all, personal attention to the special needs of our clients. As a well-established, our clients receive the benefit of our many years of experience. At Pacem Tempestate Law, apc, we have a simple but important belief: “we are the peace in the midst of the storm.”

O ur pledge and commitment to our clients is to provide honest, aggressive, competent, and dependable legal services. We recognize that our clients retain us to obtain favorable results for them. Therefore, our goal and objective is to always provide superior legal services to achieve maximum success and positive results for our clients in a timely and professional manner.

Pacem Tempestate Law, APC is a place of healing and wholeness. Each person who is a part of the Pacem Tempestate Law team will support you through the challenges you are facing. Our goal is to bring peace to every client interaction. We understand the stress you are facing and want to support you in reaching swift and appropriate resolution. PACEM

Wagner Kirkman Blaine Klomparens & Youmans LLP

For more than 40 years, our experienced attorneys have helped countless clients and professionals achieve outstanding results on the toughest legal issues. This year many of those same attorneys have been recognized for their excellent work in their respective practice areas which include business, real estate, taxation, litigation, nonprofit organizations, estate planning & probate. WKBK&Y would like to congratulate Jenni Harmon, Cameron Hess, Robin Klomparens, Belan Wagner, Minna Yang and Douglas Youmans for being selected to Sacramento Magazine’s Top Lawyer List in 2023. In addition to their strong expertise in federal and state taxation, the attorneys at WKBK&Y are able to assist both individual and business clients with tax planning, negotiation and structuring complex business and real estate transactions, estate planning, trusts, estates, corporate governance, and entity formation. Their litigation practice is agile in controversy and litigation involving taxation, business and real estate transactions, construction, lending and guarantees, trust and estates, employment and personal injury. At WKBK&Y we work tirelessly to achieve prompt and effective results and strive to cultivate long-lasting professional relationships by providing immediate, personal attention. When you collaborate with us, you’re always informed and engaged. Find out how we can guide you through whatever complex legal issues you might be facing. Call us at (916) 920-5286, or visit our website at

10640 Mather Blvd., Suite 200, Mather, CA 95655

1350 Treat Blvd., 430, Walnut Creek, CA • (916) 920-5286

TEMPESTATE LAW, APC 9075 Elk Grove Blvd #230, Elk Grove, CA 95624 • (916) 667-3262


Emily Koehler is an accomplished attorney with over 12 years of experience in the field of criminal defense. As a dedicated legal professional, she has successfully represented numerous clients facing a wide range of criminal charges and has built a reputation for her commitment to protecting their rights.

Ms. Koehler began her legal career as a Public Defender, where she honed her skills and developed a deep understanding of the criminal justice system. Her invaluable experience working in this challenging role equipped her with the necessary knowledge and expertise to navigate even the most complex cases. She has a long record of outstanding successes at trial ranging from simple misdemeanors to serious felonies. Her most recent

not guilty verdict resulted in a full acquittal of eleven felony counts that included charges of homicide and premeditated attempted homicide.

In April 2021, Ms. Koehler took a leap of faith and established her own firm, driven by her strong belief that everyone deserves a vigorous defense. As a female attorney in a predominantly male profession, she has overcome barriers and shattered glass ceilings, paving the way for future generations of women in the legal field.

Known as a fighter, hard worker, and fierce advocate, Ms. Koehler leaves no stone unturned when it comes to protecting her clients’ rights. She understands that criminal charges can have life-altering consequences and is dedicated to providing

staunch support throughout the legal process.

With her meticulous attention to detail and relentless pursuit of justice, Ms. Koehler is prepared to stand by the sides of her clients and provide the fight that each of them deserves. Her in-depth knowledge of criminal law, combined with her strategic approach, allows her to craft strong defenses tailored to each client’s unique situation.

Through her dedication to her clients and unwavering pursuit of justice, Ms. Koehler continues to make a profound impact, offering hope and support to those facing challenging legal circumstances. Her contributions not only reshape the lives of her clients, but also set a standard of excellence for the legal profession as a whole.

901 H Street, Ste. 614, Sacramento, CA 95814 • (916) 572-6345 Top Lawyer Profi les SPECIAL ADVERTISING SECTION


These are exciting times at Caulfield Law Firm! For the second year in a row, Andrew T. Caulfield and Mary P. Derner have been named Top Lawyers for General Litigation and Insurance, respectively. Bolstering the Firm’s ranks are Joe Little (Associate Attorney), Richard H. Caulfield (Of Counsel, not pictured), and Natalie Bradburn (Office Manager, not pictured).

In business for over 11 years, Caulfield Law Firm has emerged as a premiere small law firm in the Sacramento area with significant future growth expected. The Firm specializes in the defense of public entity and corporate clients in civil litigation cases filed in state and federal courts as well as insurance coverage in a variety of matters.

1101 Investment Blvd., Ste. 120 El Dorado Hills, CA 95762

Ph: (916) 933-3200

Fax: (916) 605-4075

Mastagni Holstedt, A Professional Corporation

In over 47 years of practice, the law firm of Mastagni Holstedt, APC has grown into a comprehensive firm that provides unparalleled representation to public employee associations, law enforcement, firefighters, and private sector unions and private citizens. The firm’s labor practice has obtained some of the largest public employee labor contracts in the state and established case law protecting the rights of public employees and their organizations. The firm has secured favorable outcomes in complex litigation involving product liability, aviation accidents, and catastrophic injuries, protecting civil rights and seeking fair employment compensation. Mastagni Holstedt, APC is a full-service law firm dedicated to providing clients with effective and aggressive representation in a diverse range of practice areas, including labor and employment, personal injury, criminal defense, and workers’ comp ensation. 2023 Top Lawyer honorees notated by an asterisk next to their names.

Making a false or fraudulent workers’ compensation claim is a felony subject to up to five years in prison or a fine of up to $50,000 or double the value of the fraud, whichever is greater or by both imprisonment and fine.

1912 I Street, Sacramento, CA 95811 • With locations throughout California (916) 446-4692

Back Row L to R: Stuart Woo*; Jonathan Char*; Kenneth Bacon*; Sean Currin*; Daniel Osier*; Joel Weinstein*; Grant Winter*; William Baird; Joshua Olander*; and Brian Dixon. Front, L to R: Steven Welty; Taylor Davies-Mahaffey; Carly Moran; David E. Mastagni*; John Holstedt*; David P. Mastagni*; Kathleen Mastagni-Storm*; Phillip Mastagni*; Joseph Hoffman and Sean Howell


Susan has been voted a Sacramento Magazine Top Lawyer for three years running and is a 2023 Super Lawyer. For more than 30 years, she has represented clients with fierce advocacy and compassion. After a successful trial career in the Philadelphia Defender’s elite Special Defense Unit and defending capital murder cases in the deep south, Susan moved to El Dorado County, where she litigated high profile cases, including the Jaycee Dugard case. Susan believes that each client’s unique circumstances drive their defense. She is proud to defend those accused

of all offenses, from DUI to sexual assault, human trafficking to homicide. Susan is certified in defense-based mitigation and has developed working strategies for sentencing in difficult cases. She is passionate about pursuing justice to help people reform their lives in post-conviction proceedings, such as sentence reductions, pardons, dismissals, and record sealing. Susan is at the forefront of efforts to assist persons seeking relief from sex offender registration and has written extensively on the subject: https://

offender-law-get-me-off-the-registry/ She has a 100% success rate litigating contested petitions to remove clients from the sex offender registry. Using a creative and holistic approach, Susan has created opportunities for people otherwise ineligible for removal from the registry by seeking reduction of felony charges to misdemeanors and pursuing pardons and certificates of rehabilitation to secure relief. Susan practices in the Superior Courts of California and in the US District Courts of California

919 Reserve Drive, Suite 130, Roseville CA 95678 • (916) 596-2700 • Top Lawyer Profi les SPECIAL ADVERTISING SECTION

Bartholomew & Wasznicky, LLP

Hal Bartholomew and Diane Wasznicky are experienced, caring divorce lawyers who know that the issues clients face are complex, difficult and emotional. They do everything possible to help clients to divorce with respect, consider the best interests of their children, make wise financial decisions and move forward in their lives. The firm offers a complete range of services for both simple and complex legal needs. While many cases require some degree of litigation to achieve their clients’ objectives, Hal and Diane recognize people desire to reach amicable agreements with their spouse/partner/ other parent on contentious issues. Offering collaborative divorce and divorce mediation, when feasible, contributes to a healthier resolution of disputes. They pride themselves on maintaining the highest standards for integrity and quality representation for their clients in a difficult time.

4740 Folsom Blvd., Sacramento, 95819 (916) 455-5200


Attorney and Partner Daniel Del Rio has more than a decade of experience passionately representing those who have been injured or whose loved ones have died as the result of another’s negligent behavior. With 13 years of recognition by SuperLawyers, and a member of the Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum, Mr. Del Rio gets results for his clients. Mr. Del Rio is a board member for the Capital City Trial Lawyers Association working alongside his peers to advance the professional standards of Sacramento Trial Attorneys.

Attorney and Partner Charles D. Caraway has spent his life defending the rights of those that need it. Whether it be his tenure as a U.S. Marine, Deputy Sheriff, or Attorney, he passionately defends anyone that requires assistance. Mr. Caraway is willing to take a case through trial in order to ensure that a client is properly compensated for their loss. Mr. Caraway has been selected as a SuperLawyers

“Rising Star for 7 years, “Top 40 under 40” with both state and national organizations, and has an award for “Best Client Service in California’ for the last two years.


2335 American River Drive, Suite 200, Sacramento, CA 95825 O - 916.378.4705 • F - 916.378.4706

Tiffany L. Andrews, CWLS, CFLS

Tiffany L. Andrews, CWLS, CFLS is a Certified Family Law Specialist and Child Welfare Law Specialist who has been practicing in dependency law since 2006 and in family law since 2008. She is one of the few dual specialists that actually specialize in these two areas of practice, together! Ms. Andrews has offices in both Folsom, CA and Fairfield, CA and practices throughout the greater Sacramento area. Her office is an award-winning local family law practice having won 2019 Best of the Best in the City of Folsom with the Folsom Telegraph, 2019 Top Lawyer in Family Law in Sacramento Magazine and 2018 AVVO Client’s Choice Award. Ms. Andrews has remained a designated Super Star for 2018 and 2019 with Super Lawyers for the past 5 years running! In Ms. Andrews’s downtime she enjoys spending time with her 3 children, traveling and volunteering her time to work on legislation to strive to close the gap between the two legal systems she practices in, i.e. dependency and family law. Ms. Andrews believes very strongly that “the same similarly abused child should NOT be treated differently depending upon which system ends up protecting the child!”

6611 Folsom Auburn Rd., Suite H, Folsom, CA 95630 (916) 790-8440 Office • (916) 988-8440 Fax

Alexandra A. Baron, Esq.

Alexandra A. Baron, Esq., founding attorney of Baron Family Law, is dedicated to transforming the landscape of family law in Sacramento, CA. She has developed a distinctive approach to guide clients through divorce, custody disputes, property division, and domestic violence cases, using her exceptional legal expertise and her extensive training in alternative dispute resolution and positive psychology.

Alexandra obtained her Dispute Resolution Certification from Pepperdine Law School’s Straus Institute for Dispute Resolution, the top-ranked institution in the field, adding to her repertoire of skills and knowledge.

Recognition from peers and clients confirms

Alexandra’s commitment to excellence. She has been named a Super Lawyer’s Rising Star, an honor granted to only 2.5% of Northern California attorneys from 2020 to 2023.

Alexandra’s objective is to be her clients’ trusted adviser and lifelong resource. In addition to offering expert legal representation in family law matters, she guides clients through the complex process of drafting comprehensive estate plans that balance family protection, wealth preservation, and cherished family values.

Alexandra actively contributes to community and civic causes. She has been nominated for the Outstanding Women Leaders Award by NAWBO in 2022 and participated in Leadership Sacramento,

Class of 2021, and the Anti-Defamation League’s Glass Leadership Institute. She serves on the Solo/ Small Firm Division of the Sacramento County Bar Association board as part of her commitment to the legal profession.

Client testimonials reflect the impact she strives to make. They share stories of realizing the need for professional counsel, achieving positive outcomes, and recommendations to the firm for her care and dedication.

Whether you are facing a family law matter or are contemplating an estate plan, Alexandra and Baron Family Law will provide unwavering support and help you navigate the challenges to build a brighter future.

641 Fulton Ave STE 200, Sacramento, CA 95825 • (916) 905-0024 Top Lawyer Profi les SPECIAL ADVERTISING SECTION

Patrick Mitchell G. Braiden Chadwick

Mitchell Chadwick LLP is the premier natural resources and environmental boutique law firm in California. We are honored to have winning attorneys Patrick Mitchell (Land Use/Zoning) and Braiden Chadwick (Energy & Natural Resources, Land Use/Zoning) from the 2023 Top Lawyers poll. We are the legal advisors to mining, land use, energy, mitigation and renewable resource companies operating in California. We work for numerous Fortune 500 companies, including some of the state’s largest ski resorts, alternative energy and mining companies, agricultural concerns, and oil/gas producers. O ur attorneys are nationally recognized for providing high-quality legal services to some of the largest natural resource companies in the world.

Not pictured:

Michael Sherman, Natalie Mitchell, and Erica Brinitzer-Graff

3001 Lava Ridge Ct #120, Roseville, CA 95661 (916) 462-8888 •

Brandon McKelvey McKelvey Resolution

As a mediator, Brandon is a unique combination of former plaintiffs’ attorney, defense attorney, business owner, and negotiator. Relentlessly working to find the common ground as a litigator and mediator has yielded over 700 successful employment law resolutions in a 23-year career. His career highlights include resolving large 7- to 9-figure employment cases, serving as a partner at the defense firm Seyfarth Shaw, starting a popular employment law blog, arguing employment cases in state and federal appellate courts, co-starting Lawyers vs. Hunger, and co-founding the employment defense boutique Medina McKelvey LLP and the employment compliance company California Compliance Solutions (CCS). In addition to holding executive positions at Medina McKelvey and CCS, Brandon spends most of his time mediating class action, PAGA, multi-plaintiff, and single-plaintiff employment lawsuits all over the state, while donating 10% of his fees to fight human trafficking.

925 Highland Pointe Drive, Suite 300, Roseville, CA 95678 916-960-2211

Law Office of Brian P. Azemika, APLC

With close to twenty years of experience in personal injury law, Brian P. Azemika has helped personal injury victims obtain the compensation they deserve for the traumatic physical and emotional injuries they have suffered. Mr. Azemika works tirelessly, seeking to maximize the compensation his personal injury clients receive, and he has the track record to prove it. Mr. Azemika has litigated many types of injury cases, including auto accidents, truck accidents, motorcycle accidents, slip/trip and fall cases, dog bites, wrongful death cases, and premises liability claims. In doing so, he has secured millions of dollars in settlements and verdicts on behalf of his clients as he takes on the stress of dealing with insurance companies, which allows his clients to focus on their physical and mental healing following an accident. More importantly, Mr. Azemika prides himself on his open and direct communication with all of his clients no matter the size of their case.

2270 Douglas Blvd., Ste. 218, Roseville, CA 95661 (916) 245-5059


ALAN J. DONATO, ESQ. Donato Legal Group

W ith a proven track record of winning for his clients and passionately advocating for the rights of those who have been accused of committing a crime, Alan J. Donato celebrates his third year being selected by Sacramento Magazine as one of the top lawyers in Sacramento. He is the owner and principal attorney at the Donato Legal Group. Representing clients in California for the past 14 years, Mr. Donato is experienced in all areas of complex criminal litigation.

Mr. Donato earned his Juris Doctorate, graduating in the top 10% of his class at the University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law. While in law school, he was also certified in oral advocacy, and for his skills in courtroom advocacy, he was given high honors and inducted into the Order of Barristers. After graduation, he worked for 8 years as an adjunct professor at his alma mater where he had the chance to help train young lawyers in trial advocacy.

In 2023, Mr Donato was awarded Litigator of the Year by the American Institute of Trial Lawyers, and he has been selected to Super Lawyers for

the past 5 years in a row. Sacramento Magazine previously named Mr. Donato one of Sacramento’s Top Lawyers in 2021 and 2019, and the Donato Legal Group was recognized as one of the 10 Best Criminal Defense Law Firms in California by the “Best of the Best” in 2021. Mr. Donato is a member of the National Trial Lawyers: Top 100 Criminal Defense Attorneys. Additionally, the American Institute of Criminal Law Attorneys, as well as, Attorney and Practice Magazine both named Mr. Donato one of the 10 Best Attorneys in California, and he was inducted as a member in the Lawyers of Distinction National Honor Society.

I n addition to his success in criminal litigation, Mr. Donato has gained notional media attention for his success in litigating administrative appeals of cannabis abatement penalties imposed on unsuspecting homeowners due to the actions of their tenants. Last year, National Public Radio published a piece about one of Mr. Donato’s cases whereby a Sacramento Superior Court Judge dismissed a $270,000 fine against his client and ruled the City of Sacramento violated his client’s

constitutional rights to fair notice and due process when it fined her for the illegal cannabis operation o f one of her tenants. The City was forced to dismiss the case and the lien against his client’s home.

Mr. Donato is respected by his colleagues, opposing counsel, and his clients. A Sacramento District Attorney noted, “Alan is a skilled attorney who’s work ethic is matched by his integrity. He is a worthy adversary who fights for his clients.” A former client commented, “Alan is the perfect example of someone you want standing by your side when you are in need of a lawyer.” Another former client remarked, “The Dude’s the man!”

In addition to his legal career, Mr. Donato takes pride in being a devoted husband and father to four amazing children. When he is not in the courtroom, you can find him coaching softball for Land Park Pacific Little League. If you or a loved one are in trouble and need compassionate and knowledgeable legal representation from one of the most successful and zealous advocates in Sacramento, please call the Donato Legal Group.

1395 Garden Highway, Suite 100, Sacramento, CA 95833 (916) 716-7177 office • (916) 803-6268 cell Top Lawyer Profiles SPECIAL ADVERTISING SECTION

Law Offices of Bobby P. Luna

The Law Offices of Bobby P. Luna is a premier Northern California law firm exclusively limited to Family Law. The practice was founded with an emphasis on experienced, competent, and reasonable cost representation. The law firm’s three attorneys, three paralegals and compassionate support staff have the bandwidth to promptly tackle complex negotiations, settlement, and full-blown litigation. The firm has significant experience in conducting trials on family law issues ranging from business valuations, property characterization/division, support, and child custody/visitation.

Mr. Luna and his Senior Associate, Jennifer Holdener are both Certified Family Law Specialists and can handle the most complex issues in family law. In addition, Mr. Luna has had the pleasure of co-teaching Family Law at McGeorge School of Law and was honored when asked by the law school to return next year to co-teach the course with co-professor, Tara Rojas. At the Law Offices of Bobby P. Luna, we utilize a commonsense approach to assist in the navigation of your family law issues.

1545 River Park Drive, Suite 300, Sacramento, CA 95815 (916) 514-9349 • (916) 514-9373 Fax

Renaissance Woman

SACMAG.COM August 2023 105
08 23
Imani Mitchell is an actor, filmmaker and so much more.
justin sotelo
inside: A multihyphenate artist takes Sacramento by storm.

When describing Imani Mitchell, one word just won’t suffice. She’s an actor, writer, director, producer, activist, mother—many descriptors that add up to one towering creative mind in the body of a 30-yearold multidisciplinary artist.

“I’m interested in the gray of life,” says Mitchell, a proud Sacramento native and Sacramento City College alumna. “We all know that the polarizing thinking of ‘that’s wrong’ or ‘that’s right’ isn’t life. I’m interested in showing the messiness of all of us and the humanity in everything.”

Mitchell’s projects, from short films to stage plays, do just that. Listen in as we discuss her inspiration across an impressive spectrum of creative pursuits.

How did you first get into writing? I’ve been writing since I was a kid—I was always into creative fiction. I didn’t have plans to be a novelist or anything, but I knew I liked creating stories and characters. The first [screenplay] I ever wrote was for [the feature film] “Whirlpool” in 2018. I went for the full shebang—I had never written a script before, but I did a ton of research and went to YouTube “university.” After that I wrote a short film, so I kind of worked backwards. Then I got into stage plays, like “Zora & Langston” (which Mitchell will also direct for Expressions Theatre Company sometime this year or next). I have other shorts and concepts that haven’t been actualized yet, but right now I’ve completed a total of five project s. What inspires the content of your writing? It comes from my experience as an actor. The stories I’m drawn to writing are what I wish was out there. Finding characters with substance, meat and grit to them was hard to define, which is what fueled my writing “Whirlpool.” I’m drawn to talking about things that are uncomfortable or complex or difficult for people, topics that resonate and are relatable. The short film I wrote and just finished shooting and acting in, “The Second Pill,” covers the topic of abortion. I write about topics like that— things that are uncomfortable and taboo, but very real things people go through.

“Whirlpool” is now on Amazon Prime and your other short films, “Invisible Man” and “I Remember Yesterday,” are available on YouTube. How do you decide where to release your projects? Submitting to festivals is expensive and you’re taking a gamble—you won’t know if they’ll like your work. I’m of the belief that we create art to be consumed. I want people to see it. When I put “I Remember Yesterday” up on YouTube, Justin

Bravo 106 SACRAMENTO MAGAZINE August 2023

I also did an in-person screening. That’s the most rewarding part: to connect to the audience and talk about what resonates with them. You say that acting has informed your writing. What kinds of projects have you been involved in? I’ve done a wide gamut of things. I got my start in theater. It was my first love and it’s where I received most of my training as an actor. I’ve worked at Celebration Arts, Capital Stage, B Street Theatre and I recently understudied at Sacramento Theatre Company. I’ve done a little bit of fi lm (including acting in her own projects) and I just signed with a Cast Images agent, so I’m getting more into commercial work. Commercial work is good but very technical— you’re in your head a lot and you’re not really emoting.


What have been some of your favorite acting experiences? I had a really cool opportunity to perform a staged reading of a one-woman play, “Re/Memori” by Nambi E. Kelley, at B Street as part of the National New Play Network. I played three di erent characters and I was up there for 25 minutes—just me—and it made me so happy. I’m not always able to show what I can do. Not to be braggadocious, but I’m sometimes confined to roles that are one-dimensional. People were coming up to me (after “Re/ Memori”) saying, “Oh, you can act!” It really got my gears going. A one-woman show is a remarkable type of feat.

Do you fi nd that you’re type-cast into specifi c roles? The way a lot of these theaters have been systemically run, the default (casting) is white. It’s not necessarily malicious; it’s just something

that’s done. When I got cast in “The Nether” at Capital Stage, I played a detective. The part doesn’t indicate the race of anyone in the play and the part had nothing to do with race. I was just solving crimes. It was great! I’ll also be in “JUMP” at B Street in a couple months. The show is about a young woman grieving the loss of her sister—I’m playing the sister, Judy. When I read it, I thought, “Wow!” [It shows] a Black family going through grief and loss. Those are the stories I’m really interested in. We experience the spec trum of human emotion jus t like everyone else does: grief, heartbreak, immense joy. Those are the stories I really want to tell.

Did acting get you into directing? Yes! Being an actor onstage, you’re seeing the director work and it’s such a cool job—to have a vision and bring it to life, to craft moments. I love acting, but you’re also just there to act. If you have opinions, that’s not really your job. I kept thinking about how I would do things a little bit di erently. Then I realized, maybe I should just direct. “Whirlpool” was my fi rst venture into directing and got me more comfortable with it. It helped me understand the artistic side, of course, but also the leadership of directing. You set the tone of the set and the cast. You have to create an environment where actors feel comfortable enough to be vulnerable; otherwise it just doesn’t work.

It seems like you’ve caught the directing bug. You’ve done a lot of projects since then! Yes, I directed my fi rst stage play, “Pipeline” by Dominique Morisseau, at Celebration Arts in 2021. I also directed a virtual production of “Bulrusher” by Eisa Davis for them during the pandemic. Directing during the pandemic was so di erent and oddly very technical. You had to decide when people should change their Zoom background, when to turn o the cameras,

SACMAG.COM August 2023 107
On the set of “I Remember Yesterday” Mitchell wrote, directed and acted in “The Second Pill”

when people should exit. I might not do (a virtual production) again, but it was a way to keep theater alive during the pandemic. Then last year I directed “Love & Baseball” by Jerry Montoya at B Street and “What to Send Up When It Goes Down” by Aleshea Harris at Celebration Arts in April. That was a really powerful, challenging play to direct. It’s very unconventional and includes audience interaction. I also directed (the West Coast premiere of Jennifer Blackmer’s) “Predictor” at Capital Stage in June and July.

Let’s talk about activism. You cofounded Black Women United in 2016, a nonprofi t you describe as “dedicated to the education, empowerment and advancement of Black women.” You also recently founded IAM Studios, a fi lm company devoted to producing content that features actors of color. Tell me about how you see your work in the context of activism. I love using art for activism. Activism and representation have always been really important to me. When I got into fi lmmaking and transitioned to IAM Studios, I still tried to fi nd ways to incorporate it into the work I do. I’m passionate about representation and what that looks like onscreen/onstage and o screen as well. When I made “Whirlpool,” I was intentional about telling a human, relatable story but with Black actors. I scoured Sacramento for local actors and an equally diverse crew. I really try to be intentional when I’m casting. It’s important how you treat people— and that you pay people. “Whirlpool” didn’t have a lot of money but we paid people something.

Hopefully down the road, my producer hat can widen to not just produce my own projects but also fund other works by local artists of color and women of color I don’t have the means to fully fund someone else’s project right now—I can barely fund my own—but I’m always asking, “How can I help you?” I want people to reach out to me with questions. I’m always willing to chat, share resources and help out to build community.

I have to ask about your daughter, having known you before she was born and now having seen her with you during various projects. I can’t believe she’s already 8 years old! How do you see motherhood as an artist? It’s part of what motivates me to go as hard as I do. When I became pregnant with Halima, I had plans to go to LA and be a struggling actor and fi nd my way to Hollywood. Suddenly all of that stopped and I freaked out. I thought, life’s done, that’s it, there’s nothing left for me. In reality, it gave me more encouragement and motivation to stay on the path to make sure I can live a life and for her to be able to see her mother doing her dreams, the things she’s called to do. I bring her with me to rehearsal—people often call her my “codirector” or “assistant director.” She’s totally used to the whole thing. She’s even done some acting onstage and she’ll ask me to do improv scenes with her at home. She defi nitely has the performing bug.

For more information, visit imanimitchell. com.

Bravo 108 SACRAMENTO MAGAZINE August 2023
Capital Stage’s “The Nether”
Big Idea Theatre’s “This Is How iI Happened”

Top Brass—Brass

is back, and Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue is leading the pack. Born and raised in the New Orleans music scene, the acclaimed Grammy-winning jazz multi-instrumentalist Troy “Trombone Shorty” Andrews and his band are sure to bring down the house with their brassy jazz dosed with funk, pop and rock.

Legendary “I’ll Take You There” R&B singer Mavis Staples opens. At Hard Rock Live. hardrockhotel

What’s So

Funny—Fans of the iconic 1990s sitcom

“Seinfeld” and the web series “Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee,” rejoice: The creator, writer and star of these shows is coming to town. At Jerry Seinfeld Live, watch the standout stand-up comedian do what he does best: take observations about the everyday and craft them into laughout-loud comedy. At The Venue at Thunder Valley Casino Resort. thunder

Go Bananas—Celebrate bananas—the world’s most beloved fruit—and the colorful cultures of the countries where they’re grown at the 12th Annual Banana Festival . Enjoy two days of live music and dance performances, a fashion show, kids’ activities, exhibits, multicultural and banana-infused cuisine, fruity drinks and a marketplace of globally sourced goods, at William Land Park. bananafesti

Hero Sandwich—

In a truck stop sandwich shop, the formerly incarcerated staff dares to dream of reclaiming their lives despite difficult pasts and a boss from hell named Clyde. In the Sacramento premiere of “ Clyde’s ,” Capital Stage presents two-time Pulitzer Prize-winner Lynn Nottage’s clever, redemptive new play about finding purpose through the creative process and coming together to build a better sandwich.

Take It Outside—

Gallery at 48 Natoma in Folsom continues its summer show The Granite Group Plein Air Painters , a juried exhibition of more than 60 landscapes—painted on-site, outdoors—in oils, acrylics and pastels. Participating nationally known artists include Suzie Baker, Terry Miura, Aimee Erickson, Philippe Gandiol, Kevin Courter, Scott Hamill, Carolyn Hesse-Low, Jeff Horn, Paul Kratter, Bill Cone and others.

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AUG. 3 AUG. 18 AUG. 19 – 20 AUG. 23 – SEPT. 24 THROUGH AUG. 31 Above right: painting by Jim Marxen; below right: That Batch

Eet-may Ou-yay Ere-thay

Elk Grove’s cool quotient increased exponentially with the recent opening of PIG LATIN , a hot spot where tacos and tequila rule. The sassy drinks include a Prickly Pear Margarita and El Pepe, a fiery cocktail made with fig leaf-infused gin and ancho verde. Alud-say! 9631 E. Stockton Blvd., Elk Grove; (916) 829-5742;

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23 francisco
inside: Star of Davis / Mexican Brews / Sweet Dreams of Ukraine

To Market, to Market

Why people flock to Davis’ famous farmers market

Randii MacNear gets phone calls and emails from people all over the country, asking how to create a Davis Farmers Market in their city or town. Her response is always the same: “Well,” she says, “you need 40 years.”

That’s about how long MacNear has been managing the iconic market, which draws visitors every Saturday to Davis’ Central Park from all parts of the Sacramento region and beyond. Over those years, she has watched the market grow f rom a handful of organic farmers selling produce out of boxes on the sidewalk to the sprawling cultural, agricultural and economic powerhouse that it is today.

MacNear is an unlikely person to be running one of California’s signature farmers markets. She grew up a rich Jewish girl (her words, not mine) in Great Neck, Long Island. After meeting her husband in college, she moved to Davis for his job. She quit working when she became pregnant with her first child.

In 1978, you could count the number of vendors at the market on the fingers of one hand and still have a couple of fingers left over. One of those vendors, farmer Annie Main of Good Humus Produce, knew MacNear and asked if she’d

like to manage the operation during market hours on Saturdays. It was a sixhour-a-week job back then, perfect for a stay-at-home mom, and she said sure.

Over the ensuing years, the job and its responsibilities snowballed as more people became aware of and interested in healthful and organic food. In the late ’70s, California adopted regulations creating the country’s first certified farmers markets, which were exempt from the packing, sizing and labeling requirements that governed grocery stores. That helped save small family farms when they were at risk of disappearing. Without certified farmers markets, says MacNear, “small farms would be gone.”

As the Davis Farmers Market grew in size and popularity, the city paid for construction of a covered pavilion to protect farmers and shoppers from sun and rain. That investment was official recognition, says MacNear, that the farmers market is an important civic institution—“and probably the best thing about Davis.” Last year, the market did $3.3 million in business, with customers coming from Vacaville, Yuba City, Stockton, Lodi, Dixon, even the Bay Area.

MacNear serves as the market’s cheerleader and taskmaster. She exhorts vendors to display their wares in abundance: “Pile it high and kiss it goodbye,” she tells them. She patrols to make sure stall workers are paying attention to shoppers, not their phones. To make it easier for customers to spend money, she brought in ATM machines that spit out

$10 bills (it’s harder to make change for $20s) and strongly encouraged vendors to accept electronic payments as well as cash. Sales quintupled as a result.

MacNear personally curates the 65 or so vendors at the market. Most of the fruits, vegetables, meats, fish, eggs, cheese, honey and jams come from local farms. Nearby restaurants, bakeries and eateries such as The Hotdogger and Fat Face supply prepared foods. “No funnel cakes,” she says. “Everything has to relate to our mission.”

Outsiders often ask MacNear the secret to creating a successful farmers market like Davis’. “You must immerse yourself in the community and what’s important to it,” she says. Redevelopment money is also key: “You need your city to invest in you.”

MacNear is already looking forward to celebrating the market’s 50th anniversary in 2026. She believes the Davis Farmers Market will be around for a long time to come because it supplies more than food to the community of Davis. “The market is a comfort to people,” she says. “They feel safe there. It nurtures them. It makes them feel hopeful. People see our market and think, I want to live here.”


301 C St., Davis;

Open Saturdays 8 a.m.–1 p.m. yearround, Wednesdays 4–8 p.m. mid-May through mid-September, 3–6 p.m. mid-September through mid-May

Taste 112 SACRAMENTO MAGAZINE August 2023
wes davis
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Randii MacNear (right)

Chilling Out With Mexican Beer

Why aren’t more Mexican craft beers sold in California? That question perplexed Daniel Savala, a beer lover who fell hard for artisanal cervezas during his frequent travels to Mexico and Southern California.

In his quest to bring his favorite brews to the Sacramento market, Savala founded Cervezalandia, a marketing partnership with local convenience stores. Cervezalandia operates like a boutique within the stores (including Shift Change in Land Park and B Brothers Mini Mart in North Highlands), using colorful branding and dedicated refrigerator space to draw attention to this unique category of beer.

“Cervezalandia is about celebrating craft cerveza and highlighting the work that cerveceros are doing both in Mexico and here in the United States,” explains Savala, a third-generation Chicano who grew up drinking Modelo and Corona. Cervezalandia’s impressive selection includes those blockbuster brands plus a well-curated array of lesser-known labels like Xteca, Insurgente, Loba and Del Cielo. Cervezalandia’s lineup isn’t strictly about geographic origins; it’s about how a brewer taps into the spirit of Chicano and Mexican culture. Savala points to a collaboration between Mexico City brewery La Chingoneria and Sacramento’s King Cong Brewing Company that resulted in Cocada King, a novel coconut lime Kölsch that he describes as “amazing.”

For how to explore Cervezalandia’s o erings, Savala advises this: “Invite some friends over on a Friday or Saturday night, have fun trying a couple of di erent beers you’ve never tasted before, and enjoy the work of these brewers.” And to pair with the beers? “Tacos, of course! And maybe some chicharrones.”


Shift Change, 4516 Freeport Blvd.

B Brothers Mini Mart, 4847 Amber Lane

Like Baba Used To Make

Hawks Restaurant pastry chef Irina Levtseniuk can’t escape the influence of her Ukrainian grandmother. “There were eight children in my father’s family, so she was constantly cooking,” says Levtseniuk. “She could have been on her feet all day, but you could see in her face that cooking was contentment for her.”

Levtseniuk, who trained at American River College and honed her craft as a specialty baker in Ettore’s production facility, brings that same sense of delight to baking desserts for the upscale Granite Bay restaurant. “It brings me joy to see somebody enjoying something that I’ve put my blood, sweat and tears into,” she says.

Born in Sacramento to Ukrainian immigrants, Levtseniuk was raised in a close-knit Slavic community. She recalls happy memories of her grandmother making syrnyky, small pancakes made from farmer’s cheese, and khrustyky, crispy fried cookies dusted with sugar. “But the dessert I remember the most was her poppy seed roll, or makivnyk, which is made with a brioche-style dough and has a vibrant black-and-white swirl in the middle. She would get upset because I would eat fistfuls of dough when we were cooking.”

Those memories inspired Levtseniuk to add a Ukrainian honey cake, or medovyk, to the dessert menu at Hawks. “The second I put it on the menu, it was my biggest seller.”


The cake—eight thin layers of a honey sponge baked into crisp, waferlike discs and layered with a tangy crème fraîche Chantilly cream—softens overnight in the refrigerator. “If you get the layers just right, it has this beautiful striped pattern and a perfect texture.” Once, customers asked to meet her after devouring the honey cake. “They were Ukrainian and wanted to know who was baking Ukrainian things for the menu. It meant a lot to me.”

The pastry chef says that, no matter where you live, the war in Ukraine has brought into stark relief the significance of sharing simple pleasures together. “The moments shared around the dinner table now are the most important because of the uncertainty of everything going on. Families are clinging to those moments.”


Taste 114 SACRAMENTO MAGAZINE August 2023
Medovyk (Ukrainian honey cake) from Hawks Irina Levtseniuk


As a reader service, Sacramento Magazine offers the following list of noteworthy restaurants in the Sacramento region. This is not intended to be a complete directory, and not all restaurants profiled appear every month. Before heading to a restaurant, call or check its website to make sure it’s open.


BENNETT’S AMERICAN COOKING At this comfortable neighborhood hangout, the food is like homemade, only better: things like braised short rib with mashed potatoes, lasagna Bolognese and chicken enchiladas. There’s something for every taste, from avocado toast, available all day long, to prime rib (weekends only). 2232 Fair Oaks Blvd.; (916) 515-9680; bennettsamer L–D–Br. American. $$$

CAFE BERNARDO AT PAVILIONS The menu offers straightforward fare guaranteed to please just about everyone. Breakfast includes huevos rancheros and eggs Bernardo, while lunch and dinner feature chewycrusted pizzas, burgers, sandwiches and substantial entrees such as pan-seared chicken breast with mashed potatoes. 515 Pavilions Lane; (916) 922-2870; B–L–D. New American. $$

LEATHERBY’S FAMILY CREAMERY Go for the ice cream, all made on the premises and used in shakes, malts and towering sundaes. 2333 Arden Way; (916) 920-8382; L–D. Sandwiches/ice cream. $

LEMON GRASS RESTAURANT This chic eatery serves delicious, upscale Asian fare such as salad rolls, green curry and catfish in a clay pot. Everything tastes fresh, light and clean. 601 Munroe St.; (916) 486-4891; L–D. PanAsian. $$$

THE KITCHEN Part supper club, part theatrical production: This is like no other restaurant in Sacramento, and it’s Michelin starred. You need to make reservations months in advance for the multi-course dinner. The food is complex and mind-blowingly creative. 2225 Hurley Way; (916) 568-7171; the D. American. $$$$

WILDWOOD RESTAURANT & BAR At this restaurant, New American and global cuisine shares the menu with an all-American burger. The spacious patio is a great place to grab a drink and listen to live music. 556 Pavilions Lane; (916) 922-2858; wildwoodpa L–D–Br. American/global fusion. $$$

ZÓCALO This Mexican restaurant is one of the best places to while away an evening with friends over margaritas. The menu has regional Mexican specialties such as tacos de cazuela, a casserole-ish concoction of steak, chorizo and cheese served with house-made tortillas. 466 Howe Ave.; (916) 2520303; L–D–Br. Mexican. $$


RESTAURANT JOSEPHINE The seductive aroma of food roasting over a wood fire is one of the first things you notice at this French dinner house. The menu has a bistro bent, with mainstays such as steak frites, French onion soup, duck liver mousse and escargots and mushrooms “en cocotte.” 1226 Lincoln Way; (530) 820-3523; D. French. $$$


ANDY NGUYEN’S VEGETARIAN RESTAURANT This bastion of Buddhist-inspired vegetarian cuisine serves food that is fresh and flavorful. 2007 Broadway; (916) 736-1157; L–D. Vegetarian/Asian. $

KATHMANDU KITCHEN This family-owned restaurant envelops you in a cocoon of exotic fragrances. Order the lal maas (lamb curry with chili sauce) or chicken saagwala (stir-fried chicken, spinach and curry). 1728 Broadway; (916) 441-2172; kathman L–D. Indian/Nepalese/ vegetarian. $

SELLAND’S MARKET-CAFE Choose from an array of appetizers and hot items along with crowd-pleasing side dishes and pizza. This high-quality takeout food can be a real lifesaver on nights when you’re too busy to cook. 915 Broadway; (916) 732-3390; L–D–Br. Gourmet takeout. $$

TOWER CAFE This place is a hot spot on weekend

mornings. Regulars swear by the New Mexico blueberry cornmeal pancakes and the thick-cut, custardy French toast. Breakfast is all-American, but lunch and dinner have a global flavor. 1518 Broadway; (916) 441-0222; B–L–D. World fusion. $$


D’MILLER’S FAMOUS BBQ Ribs, hot links, tri-tip and more are served with traditional accompaniments such as cornbread, coleslaw and baked beans. The food, simple and hearty, arrives on disposable plates at this casual eatery. 7305 Fair Oaks Blvd.; (916) 974-1881. L–D. Barbecue. $$

MATTEO’S PIZZA & BISTRO The menu is compact, and there’s no skimping on first-rate ingredients. The pizza crust is damned good, attaining that chewy-crispy-airy trifecta. You also can order pasta, steak or a burger. 5132 Arden Way; (916) 779-0727; L–D. Pizza/American. $$

Cafe Bernardo’s BLT


ROAD TRIP BAR & GRILL This family-friendly joint serves up classic roadhouse fare, from salads and burgers to chops. 24989 State Highway 16; (530) 796-3777; B–L–D. American. $–$$


LEATHERBY’S FAMILY CREAMERY For description, see listing under “Arden.” 7910 Antelope Road; (916) 729-4021; L–D. Sandwiches/ i ce cream. $


PANGAEA BIER CAFE While it’s known as a beer cafe and bottle shop, this casual spot also serves up tasty bar food, including a burger that has taken home top honors more than once at Sacramento Burger Battle. 2743 Franklin Blvd.; (916) 454-4942; L–D. American. $$


CAFE BERNARDO For description, see listing under “Arcade.” 234 D St.; (530) 750-5101; cafebernardo. com. B–L–D. New American. $$

KATHMANDU KITCHEN For description, see listing under “Broadway.” 234 G St., Davis; (530) 756-3507; L–D. Indian/Nepalese/vegetarian. $


This hip sushi bar serves its sushi with a side of sass.

The dense menu offers appetizers, rice bowls, bento boxes and sushi rolls. 500 First St.; (530) 756-2111; L–D. Japanese/sushi. $$

PASTE THAI This hidden gem, located in a busy strip mall, offers the cleanest, freshest Thai around. Everything is made in-house, including the pastes that go into the exquisite curries. 417 Mace Blvd.; (530) 564-7051. L–D. Thai. $$

SEASONS This attractive, upscale restaurant showcases seasonal products; the menu changes every three months. Pizzas are great; so are the bountiful salads. But you’ll find the kitchen’s real talent in its creative appetizers and limited entrees. 102 F St.; (530) 750-1801; L–D. New American. $$–$$$


BINCHOYAKI Small plates of grilled meats, fish and vegetables are the stars at this izakaya-style restaurant. But you can also order ramen, tempura and other Japanese favorites. 2226 10th St.; (916) 4699448; L–D. Japanese. $$–$$$

CAFE BERNARDO For description, see listing under “Arden.” 1431 R St.; (916) 930-9191; cafebernardo. com. B–L–D. New American. $$

CAMDEN SPIT & LARDER This swank brasserie in a modern, glass-walled building near the Capitol appeals to lobbyists, lawyers and legislators with its gin-forward cocktails and a menu that’s an interesting mash-up of British chop-house classics, English schoolboy favorites and elevated pub fare. 555 Capitol Mall; (916) 619-8897; camdenspitandlarder. com. L–D. Steakhouse. $$$–$$$$

THE COCONUT ON T With Thai dishes made from fresh ingredients, this little restaurant is a popular spot for creative twists on staples such as pad thai or drunken noodles, as well as curries, rices and rolls. Sweet potato fries and fried calamari are house favorites, too. 1110 T St.; (916) 822-4665; coconut L–D. Thai. $

DAWSON’S STEAKHOUSE Located within the Hyatt Regency, Dawson’s has dark-paneled walls, elegant linen-draped tables and a convivial bar. It’s a great spot for a martini and a New York steak. You can’t help but enjoy the lavish attention showered on you by the professional wait staff, and the food is undeniably sophisticated. 1209 L St.; (916) 321-3600; D. New American. $$$–$$$$

ECHO & RIG Situated in the lobby of The Sawyer hotel, this outpost of a Vegas steakhouse is sleek and unstuffy. Prices are considerably gentler than at most other steakhouses, but the quality of the meat is high. In addition to standard cuts like filet, NY steak and rib-eye, you’ll find butcher cuts such as hanger, bavette, skirt and tri-tip. 500 J St.; (877) 678-6255; B–L–D–Br. Steakhouse. $$$

ELLA This stunning restaurant is an elegant oasis compared to the gritty hustle and bustle outside. From the open kitchen, the staff turns out innovative dishes and old favorites. The emphasis is on seasonal, local and artisanal. 1131 K St.; (916) 4433772; L–D. New American. $$$$

FRANK FAT’S Downtown Sacramento’s oldest restaurant, Fat’s is a favorite of the Capitol crowd. The restaurant is well known for its steaks—especially Frank’s Style New York Steak—and its brandy-fried chicken. This is Chinese cuisine at its most sophisticated. 806 L St.; (916) 442-7092; L–D. Chinese. $$$

GRANGE RESTAURANT & BAR Located in The Citizen Hotel, Grange proves that a hotel restaurant doesn’t have to be pedestrian. The menu changes frequently and spotlights some of the area’s best producers. At dinner, the ambience in the stunning dining room is seductive and low-lit. 926 J St.; (916) 492-4450; B–L–D–Br. Californian/American. $$$$

KODAIKO RAMEN & BAR This below-ground ramen shop takes the Japanese noodle soup to a whole new level. Ingredients are organic, and almost everything is made in-house. For a fun experience, sit at the six-person ramen counter and chat with the chefs. 718 K St.; (916) 426-8863; L–D–Br. Japanese/ramen. $$–$$$

MAGPIE CAFE This restaurant has a casual, unassuming vibe, and its hallmark is clean, simple fare that tastes like the best version of itself. 1601 16th St.; (916) 452-7594; B–L–D. Californian. $$

MAJKA PIZZERIA + BAKERY This little takeout shop offers only one style of veggie pizza per day. But oh what a pizza it is! It features organic, whole-grain sourdough crust and toppings sourced from local farmers markets and small farms. When the weather’s nice, pick up a pizza, a bottle of natural wine and a couple of chocolate chunk miso cookies and head across the street to Fremont Park for an alfresco meal. 1704 15th St.; (916) 572-9316; lovema L–D. Pizza. $$


For description, see listing under “Davis.” 1530 J St.; (916) 447-2112; L–D. Japanese/sushi. $$

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Grilled meats and vegetables from Binchoyaki

THE 7TH STREET STANDARD Located inside the Hyatt Centric, this is an unabashedly big-city restaurant. Chef Ravin Patel’s menu has a modern California sensibility, using fresh ingredients, classic French techniques and a healthy dash of South Indian flavors. 1122 Seventh St.; (916) 371-7100; B–L–D. Modern American. $$$

URBAN ROOTS BREWING & SMOKEHOUSE At this brewery, a massive smoker turns out succulent meats—brisket, ribs, turkey and sausage—in the tradition of the great barbecue houses of Texas, Louisiana and Tennessee. Sides include collard greens, mac and cheese, yams and poblano cheese grits. Sit indoors or out at long picnic tables. 1322 V St.; (916) 706-3741; L–D. Barbecue. $$

WILLOW Located in The Exchange hotel, this elegant restaurant specializes in southern Italian and Mediterranean Sea cuisine, with a focus on pastas (all made in-house). 1006 Fourth St.; (916) 938-8001; B–L–D–Br. Italian. $$$


ALLORA Modern Italian fare with a heavy seafood bent is the focus at this sophisticated eatery. Tasting menus come in three, four and five courses, with caviar service and in-season truffles offered at an additional cost. Extensive vegetarian and vegan options are also available. 5215 Folsom Blvd.; (916) 538-6434; D. Italian. $$$$

CANON With Michelin-starred chef Brad Cecchi at the helm, this breezily chic restaurant offers an ambitious menu of globally inspired sharable plates. Much of the menu is vegetarian, vegan or gluten free, but you can also order from a small selection of hearty meat, poultry and fish dishes. 1719 34th St.; (916) 469-2433; D–Br. Global/New American. $$$–$$$$

THE HOUSE OF AUTHENTIC INGREDIENTS The food here is simply first-rate. Everything from soups and salads to curries and stir-fries is made with care and precision. 4701 H St.; (916) 942-9008; thaiat L–D. Thai. $$–$$$

KAU KAU Hawaiian soul food is on the menu here, with island faves such as loco moco, house-made Spam musubi and lomi-lomi salmon bowl. 855 57th St.; (916) 431-7043; L–D–Br. Hawaiian. $$

KRU Chef/owner Billy Ngo produces high caliber, exciting Japanese fare. The restaurant has a craft cocktail bar, outdoor patios and an omakase bar. (An omakase cocktail pairing is also available.) 3135 Folsom Blvd.; (916) 551-1559; L–D. Japanese. $$$–$$$$

MATTONE RISTORANTE When Sacramento’s famed Biba restaurant closed its doors, a few alums struck out on their own to open this Italian eatery. It’s a worthy successor to Biba, serving freshly made pasta and classic Italian fare such as calamari fritti, veal marsala and chicken cooked under a brick. 5723 Folsom Blvd.; (916) 758-5557;

L–D. Italian $$$–$$$$

THE GREEN ROOM This lounge from the owners of Bacon & Butter caters to the happy hour crowd with a menu of craft cocktails and noshy small plates such as roasted mushroom toast and cauliflower poppers. It’s fun food for a fun time of day. 3839 J St.; (916) 475-1801; D. Gastropub. $$

THE MIMOSA HOUSE This local chain offers a com-

prehensive lineup of breakfast fare: omelets, Benedicts, crepes, waffles, burritos and, of course, mimosas. The rest of the menu is similarly broad, with burgers, salads, grilled sandwiches and Mexican “street food.” 5641 J St.; (916) 400-4084; mimo B–L. American. $$

OBO’ ITALIAN TABLE & BAR This casual Italian eatery is beautifully designed and efficiently run. There are hot dishes and cold salads behind the glass cases. But the stars of the menu are the freshly made pastas and wood-oven pizzas. There’s also a full bar. 3145 Folsom Blvd.; (916) 822-8720; L–D. Italian. $$

ONESPEED Chef Rick Mahan, who built his stellar reputation at The Waterboy in midtown, branched out with a more casual concept at his East Sac eatery. The bistro has a tiled pizza oven that cranks out chewy, flavorful pizzas. 4818 Folsom Blvd.; (916) 706-1748; B–L–D. Pizza. $$

ORIGAMI ASIAN GRILL This fast-casual eatery serves Asian-flavored rice bowls, banh mi, salads and ramen, along with killer fried chicken and assorted smoked-meat specials from a big smoker on the sidewalk. 4801 Folsom Blvd.; (916) 400-3075; ori L–D. Asian fusion. $–$$

SELLAND’S MARKET-CAFE For description, see listing under Broadway. 5340 H St.; (916) 736-3333; L–D–Br. Gourmet takeout. $$


AJI JAPANESE BISTRO This casually elegant restaurant offers an innovative menu of Japanese street food, interesting fusion entrees, traditional dishes

such as teriyaki and tempura and—yes—sushi. There’s a short, approachable wine list, sakes and a full bar serving handcrafted cocktails. 4361 Town Center Blvd.; (916) 941-9181; L–D. Japanese/sushi. $–$$

ALMIGHTY BISTRO This all-gluten-free restaurant has a large menu that includes salads, sandwiches, tapas and small plates, large plates and lots of meatless options. You’ll find bluefin tuna poke, baby kale Caesar salad, avocado toast on an everything bagel, grass-fed burgers, short ribs, falafel, shiitake beans & rice—a tremendous variety for every dietary need. 4355 Town Center Blvd.; (916) 510-1204; almighty L–D–Br. Gluten-free global. $$

MILESTONE This unstuffy eatery serves great takes on comfort-food classics like pot roast and fried chicken. It’s straightforward, without pretense or gimmickry. The setting is like a Napa country porch, and the service is warm and approachable. 4359 Town Center Blvd.; (916) 934-0790; milestoneedh. com. L–D–Br. New American. $$–$$

THE MIMOSA HOUSE For description, see listing under East Sacramento, 2023 Vine St.; (916) 9340965; B–L–D. American. $$

SELLAND’S MARKET-CAFE For description, see listing under “East Sacramento.” 4370 Town Center Blvd.; (916) 932-5025; L–D–Br. Gourmet takeout. $$

SIENNA RESTAURANT The menu includes a playful melange of global cuisine, including fresh seafood, hand-cut steaks, stone-hearth pizzas, inventive appetizers and a stacked French dip sandwich. 1006 White Rock Road; (916) 941-9694; siennarestau L–D–Br. Global. $$–$$$

Dine 118 SACRAMENTO MAGAZINE August 2023
Yatto maki from Aji Japanese Bistro


BOULEVARD BISTRO Chef/owner Bret Bohlmann is a passionate supporter of local farmers and winemakers, and his innovative food sings with freshness and seasonality. 8941 Elk Grove Blvd.; (916) 6852220; D–Br. New American. $$–$$$

JOURNEY TO THE DUMPLING This Elk Grove eatery specializes in Shanghai-style dumplings, along with Chinese dishes such as green onion pancakes, garlic green beans and salt-and-pepper calamari. 7419 Laguna Blvd.; (916) 509-9556; journeytothedump L–D. Chinese. $$

LEATHERBY’S FAMILY CREAMERY For description, see listing under “Arden.” 8238 Laguna Blvd.; (916) 691-3334; L–D. Sandwiches/ice cream. $


For description, see listing under “Davis.” 8525 Bond Road; (916) 714-2112; L–D. Japanese/sushi. $$



For description, see listing under “Davis.” 4323 Hazel Ave.; (916) 961-2112; L–D. Japanese/sushi. $$

SHANGRI-LA A fun restaurant reminiscent of Palm Springs in the ’50s, this establishment boasts an expansive, resort-style patio and a menu teeming with inventive cocktails. Come for Baja fish tacos, ahi poke or a towering burger, and find plenty of other vibrant dishes made from local, seasonal

ingredients. The space was formerly a mortuary, and the owner, Fair Oaks native Sommer Peterson, saw to its transformation, which revealed original concrete floors and brick walls. 7960 Winding Way; (916) 241-9473; D. American. $$


BACCHUS HOUSE WINE BAR & BISTRO With a seasonal menu packed with innovative, globally influenced dishes, this restaurant has plenty to choose from. 1004 E. Bidwell St.; (916) 984-7500; bac L–D–Br. New American. $$–$$$

BACK BISTRO A warm pocket of coziness and urban sophistication, this place offers an appealing menu of casual nibbles and swankier entrees. But it’s the wine program that really knocks this charming little bistro out of the park. 230 Palladio Parkway, Suite 1201; (916) 986-9100; D. New American/Mediterranean. $$–$$$

CHICAGO FIRE Oodles of melted cheese blanket the pizzas that fly out of the kitchen of this busy restaurant. Here, you get to choose between thin-crust, deep-dish and stuffed pizzas. 310 Palladio Parkway; (916) 984-0140; L –D. Pizza. $

FAT’S ASIA BISTRO AND DIM SUM BAR This glamorous restaurant looks like a set from an Indiana Jones movie. The menu focuses on Asian cuisine, from Mongolian beef and Hong Kong chow mein to Thai chicken satay served with a fiery curry-peanut sauce. 2585 Iron Point Road; (916) 983-1133; fatsasiabis L–D. Pan-Asian. $$

LAND OCEAN The menu hits all the steakhouse high notes: hand-cut steaks, lobster, seafood and rotisserie, entree salads and sandwiches. 2720 E. Bidwell St.; (916) 983-7000; L–D–Br. New American/steakhouse. $$$–$$$$

THE MIMOSA HOUSE For description, see listing under “East Sacramento.” 1002 Riley St.; mimosa B–L. American. $$

THE MIMOSA HOUSE For description, see listing under East Sacramento, 2023 Vine St.; (916) 9340965; B–L–D. American. $$

SCOTT’S SEAFOOD ROUNDHOUSE This restaurant offers a solid menu of delicious seafood, from crab cakes and calamari to roasted lobster tail. 824 Sutter St.; (916) 989-6711; scottsseafoodroundhouse. com. L–D. Seafood. $$$–$$$$


CRAWDADS ON THE RIVER This riverfront restaurant draws crowds looking to party on the water during warm-weather months. Boats pull up to the restaurant’s deck, where you can sip a cocktail. The Cajuninspired menu includes fish tacos and several fun entrees. 1375 Garden Highway; (916) 929-2268; sac L–D–Br. Cajun/American. $$

THE VIRGIN STURGEON This quirky floating restaurant is the quintessential Sacramento River dining experience. In summer, a cocktail pontoon is connected to the restaurant, where you can drink and enjoy the breezy proximity to the water below. Best known for its seafood, The Virgin Sturgeon also offers weekend brunch. 1577 Garden Highway; (916) 921-2694; L–D–Br. Seafood/ American. $$


HAWKS Known for its elegant cuisine and beautiful interior, this restaurant features framed photos of farmscapes that remind diners of owners Molly Hawks and Michael Fagnoni’s commitment to locally sourced ingredients. The seasonal menu is full of delicious surprises, such as seared scallop and sea urchin. 5530 Douglas Blvd.; (916) 791-6200; L–D–Br. New American/ French. $$$–$$$$


CACIO This tiny sliver of a restaurant has only a handful of tables. The fare is high-quality Italian comfort food, with an emphasis on pasta. Service is warm and homey, prices are gentle, and reservations (even at lunch) are a must. 7600 Greenhaven Drive; (916) 399-9309; L–D. Italian. $$

SCOTT’S SEAFOOD ON THE RIVER Located in The Westin Sacramento, Scott’s has a patio and a view of the river. For dinner, splurge on a lobster tail or choose a more modestly priced grilled salmon. 4800 Riverside Blvd.; (916) 379-5959; scottsseafoodon B–L–D. Seafood. $$$–$$$$


HIGH STEAKS This Thunder Valley Casino restaurant is a meat lover’s paradise, offering up everything from an 8-ounce prime filet to a 26-ounce bone-in New York steak. Side dishes range from sweet potato casserole to five-cheese macaroni. 1200 Athens Ave.; (916) 408-8327; D. Steakhouse. $$$$

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Shangri-La’s grilled riblets, Brussels sprouts and fried chicken and biscuits

LEATHERBY’S FAMILY CREAMERY For description, see listing under “Arden.” 610 Twelve Bridges Drive; (916) 209-3757; L–D. Sandwiches/ice cream. $

RED LANTERN This attractive restaurant serves Asian fusion, dim sum and noodle dishes such as chow fun and Hong Kong pan-fried noodles. Lunch and dinner specials are good deals at this Thunder Valley eatery. 1200 Athens Ave.; (916) 408-8326; L–D. Asian. $$–$$$


BEAST + BOUNTY The beating heart of this chic restaurant is its open hearth, where meats and vegetables are roasted over a wood fire. The meaty ribeye, served over potatoes roasted in the meat’s fat, is meant to be shared. So is the pizza, thin, flat and seductively charred from the wood-burning pizza oven. 1701 R St.; (916) 244-4016; eatbeastand L–D–Br. American. $$$

CAFE BERNARDO For description, see listing under “Arden.” 2730 Capitol Ave.; (916) 603-2304; cafe B–L–D. New American. $$

CENTRO COCINA MEXICANA Owned by the Paragary group, this is the restaurant that introduced Sacramento to authentic regional Mexican cuisine. Standout main courses include cochinita pibil, vegetables in pipian verde sauce and Oaxacan enchiladas. 2730 J St.; (916) 442-2552; D–Br. Mexican. $$$

LOCALIS Only the second restaurant in Sacramento to receive a coveted Michelin star, this little restaurant is known for its prix-fixe menu of inventive, ingredient-driven dishes. Chef Christopher BarnumDann works with local farms to source most of the menu within 100 miles. 2031 S St.; (916) 737-7699; D. Californian. $$$–$$$$

LOWBRAU BIERHALLE This chic yet casual watering hole serves house-made sausages, duck fat fries and stand-out beers. Long communal tables make for an experience that’s noisy and convivial. 1050 20th St.; (916) 706-2636; L–D–Br. Beer hall. $

MAYDOON This eatery offers wonderfully fresh Persian food, from hummus and dolmeh to shish kebob, koobedeh and fessen joon. The Maydoon bowl is a delicious delight: your choice of lamb, beef, chicken or falafel served with rice, cucumber, tomato and onions with house dressing and green sauce. 1501 16th St.; (916) 382-4309; L–D. Mediterranean. $$–$$$

MULVANEY’S B&L Distinctive and cozy, this topflight restaurant exudes the generous affability of its owner, chef Patrick Mulvaney. It’s housed in a brick firehouse from the late 1800s, and the lush patio is a popular spot in warm months. The menu changes frequently and is focused on locally sourced, seasonal ingredients. 1215 19th St.; (916) 441-6022; L–D. Californian. $$$

PARAGARY’S This legendary restaurant focuses on elegant, Mediterranean-inspired cuisine. During the warm months, the serene patio behind the restaurant is the place to be. 1401 28th St.; (916) 4575737; L–D–Br. New American/Californian. $$–$$$

TANK HOUSE This midtown ’cue joint offers ribs, brisket and sides along with a thoughtful selection of craft beers. 1925 J St.; (916) 431-7199; tank L–D. Barbecue. $

THE WATERBOY This Mediterranean-inspired res -

taurant produces perhaps the finest cooking in the region. Chef/owner Rick Mahan honors local farmers with his commitment to simply prepared, highcaliber food. You can’t go wrong if you order one of the lovely salads, followed by the gnocchi, ravioli or a simple piece of fish. You’ll also find French classics such as veal sweetbreads. 2000 Capitol Ave.; (916) 498-9891; L–D. Mediterranean. $$$$

ZELDA’S ORIGINAL GOURMET PIZZA Zelda’s is legendary for the greatness of its pizza and its attitude. But that’s part of Zelda’s charm, along with the dark, dingy atmosphere. It’s all about the food: old-school, Chicago-style deep-dish pizza that routinely wins “best pizza” in local polls. 1415 21st St.; (916) 447-1400; L–D. Pizza/Italian. $$

ZÓCALO For description, see listing under “Arden.” 1801 Capitol Ave.; (916) 441-0303; zocalosacra L–D–Br. Mexican. $$


HIMALAYA VEGAN ORGANIC RESTAURANT Situated in an out-of-the-way strip mall, this fast-casual eatery offers a side of peace with your vegan meal. The owner, a former Buddhist monk from Tibet, changes the menu twice daily; you get a combination plate with six separate vegetarian dishes, plus a cup of soup. Everything is fresh, simply prepared and clean tasting. 4160 Northgate Blvd.; (916) 622-5728; L–D. Vegan. $$

MEZCAL GRILL This excellent restaurant offers regional cuisine that draws from all 32 Mexican states. In addition to tacos and burritos, you’ll find “platil-

los especiales,” such as mole, and shareable “mocajetes”: volcanic rock bowls filled with protein, rice and beans. 1620 West El Camino Ave.; (916) 6464826; L–D. Mexican. $$–$$$

YUE HUANG The dim sum here made Michelin Guide inspectors sit up and take notice. They gave this Cantonese restaurant a Bib Gourmand award, calling it a “hidden treasure.” The extensive menu includes pork buns, dumplings, shrimp balls and much, much more. 3860 Truxel Road; (916) 621-3737; L–D. Chinese. $$–$$$


THE BUTTERSCOTCH DEN You’re the chef at this dimly lit supper house, where you cook your own steak on a massive gas-fired grill in the middle of the dining room. Prices are gentle and the action wild as you compete with your friends to see who can come up with a perfectly medium rare hunk of meat. 3406 Broadway; D. Steakhouse. $$

FARIA On Wednesday evenings, this wildly popular artisan bakery turns into a dinner destination with a concise menu of hyperlocal, produce-forward dishes. Pizza is a mainstay (toppings change with the season), along with thoughtfully composed salads and small plates. 3417 Broadway; (916) 2048726; D (Wednesdays only). Bakery. $$

FIXINS SOUL KITCHEN This bustling place, partly owned by former mayor Kevin Johnson, serves up friendly Southern hospitality along with delicious Southern fare, including chicken and waffles, gumbo, fried catfish, and shrimp and grits. 3428

Dine 120 SACRAMENTO MAGAZINE August 2023
Beast + Bounty’s charred octopus

Third Ave.; (916); 999-7685. B–L–D–Br. Southern. $$


THE FIREHOUSE Since opening in 1960, this has been Sacramento’s go-to restaurant for romantic atmosphere and historic charm. Located in a 1853 firehouse, it’s white tablecloth all the way, and the outdoor courtyard is one of the prettiest in town. The food is special-occasion worthy, and the wine list represents more than 2,100 labels. 1112 Second St.; (916) 442-4772; L–D. Californian/American. $$$$

PILOTHOUSE Housed in the history-steeped Delta King riverboat, this is one of the most romantic restaurants in the city. On Sundays, it puts on one of the prettiest champagne brunches around. 1000 Front St.; (916) 441-4440; B–L–Br. American. $$–$$$

RIO CITY CAFE Located on the riverbank, the bustling restaurant offers stunning views of Tower Bridge. The menu changes seasonally and offers a wide selection of creative, solid dishes. 1110 Front St.; (916) 442-8226; L–D–Br. New American. $$


CATTLEMENS This classic Western steakhouse serves up big slabs of prime rib, porterhouse, T-bone and cowboy steaks, plus all the trimmings: shrimp cocktail, loaded potato skins, deep-fried onions and more. 12409 Folsom Blvd.; (916) 985-3030; cattle D. Steakhouse. $$$

J.J. PFISTER RESTAURANT & TASTING ROOM In addition to a tasting room where you can sample locally made premium gin, vodka and rum, this family-owned distillery also operates a restaurant serving lunch and dinner. The all–day menu features salads, sandwiches, tacos and boozy desserts. 9819 Business Park Drive; (916) 672-9662; L–D. Casual American. $$


FAT’S ASIA BISTRO AND DIM SUM BAR For description, see listing under “Folsom.” 1500 Eureka Road; (916) 787-3287; L–D. PanAsian. $$

LA PROVENCE RESTAURANT & TERRACE This elegant French restaurant offers some of the region’s loveliest outdoor dining. The seasonal menu features items such as bouillabaisse and soupe au pistou. 110 Diamond Creek Place; (916) 789-2002; laprovence L–D–Br. French. $$$–$$$$


For description, see listing under “Davis.” 1565 Eureka Road; (916) 797-2112; L–D. Japanese/sushi. $$

THE MIMOSA HOUSE For description, see listing under “East Sacramento” 761 Pleasant Grove Blvd.; (916) 784-1313; B–L. American. $$

NIXTACO Singled out by The Michelin Guide for a Bib Gourmand award, this taqueria is known for its authentic nixtamalized blue-corn tortillas (made fresh in-house), high-quality ingredients and inventive taco fillings such as octopus, short rib barbacoa

and sweet potato. 1805 Cirby Way; (916) 771-4165;; L–D. Mexican. $$

PAUL MARTIN’S AMERICAN GRILL The bustling, comfortable restaurant is a local favorite. The kitchen offers a great list of small plates and robust, approachable entrees. 1455 Eureka Road; (916) 783-3600; L–D–Br. New American. $$$

RUEN THAI Simple and serene, Ruen Thai is a family-owned restaurant that offers a surprisingly large selection of fresh-tasting food. 1470 Eureka Road; (916) 774-1499; L–D. Thai. $

ZÓCALO For description, see listing under “Arden.” 1182 Roseville Parkway; (916) 788-0303; zocalosac L–D–Br. Mexican. $$


BACON & BUTTER Lively and delightfully urban, the place is packed with fans of chef Billy Zoellin’s homey flapjacks, biscuits and other breakfasty fare. 5913 Broadway; (916) 346-4445; baconandbuttersac. com. B–L. Breakfast/American. $–$$

MEZCAL GRILL For description, see listing under “Natomas.” 5701 Broadway; (916) 619-8766; mez L–D. Mexican. $$–$$$


DRAKE’S: THE BARN Located in a stunning indooroutdoor structure along the river, Drake’s serves excellent thin-crust pizzas, along with a few salads and appetizers. You can get table service indoors or on the patio. But if you prefer something more casual, grab a folding lawn chair, find a spot at the sprawling outdoor taproom and order a pizza to go. 985 Riverfront St.; (510) 423-0971; drinkdrakes. com. L–D. Pizza. $$

FRANQUETTE This contemporary French café from the owners of Canon is an open-all–day, drop-in-fora-glass-of-wine kind of place. You can order a freshly baked croissant or tartine at breakfast, a salad, quiche or baguette sandwich for lunch, and something a little more filling—say, duck meatballs or a crock of boeuf bourguignon—at dinner. 965 Bridge St.; B–L–D. French. $$–$$$


L’APERO LES TROIS This chic, French-inspired wine tasting bar offers simple little bites, such as gougeres and black olive tapenade, to enjoy with locally made, small-batch aperitifs. 22 Main St.; (530) 402-1172; Wine bar. $$

PUTAH CREEK CAFE Settle into a cozy booth and order from a menu of elevated American fare, from country-fried steak to pan-seared cod. There’s also a massive oven out on the sidewalk pumping out fine pizzas. 1 E Main St.; (530) 795-2682; putahcreek B-L–D. American. $$–$$$


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Biscuits and gravy from J.J. Pfister Restaurant & Tasting Room
rates: $19.95 for one year, U.S. only. All out-of-state subscribers add $3 per year. Single copies: $4.95. Change of address: Please send your new address and your old address mailing label. Allow six to eight weeks’ advance notice. Send all remittances and requests to Sacramento Magazine, 5750 New King Drive, Suite 100, Troy, MI 48098. Customer service inquiries: Call (866) 660-6247. Copyright 2023 by Sacramento Media LLC. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or part without written permission from the publisher is prohibited. Prices quoted in advertisements are subject to change without notice. Sacramento Magazine (ISSN 0747-8712) Volume 49, Number 8, August 2023. Sacramento Magazine (ISSN 0747-8712) is published monthly by Sacramento Media, LLC, 1610 R St., Suite 300, Sacramento, CA 95811. Periodical postage paid at Troy, MI and additional offices. Postmaster: Send change of address to Sacramento Magazine, 5750 New King Dr., Suite 100, Troy, MI 48098


Sporting Shorts

These bicyclists rock the hot-weather fashion of the times—short shorts— in this image taken by McCurry Foto Company in the late 1920s or early 1930s. The Fox Senator Theater on K Street serves as the backdrop for the riders, firefighters and onlookers.

Center for Sacramento
History, Eugene
Collection, 1985/024/5359

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