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5th Annual Advanced Appellate Seminar (CA)
- Course Summary
- CLE Credits
- Terms & Refund Policies
We have gathered an all-star panel again for our 5th Annual Advanced Appellate Seminar.
Program faculty include California Supreme Court Justice Ming Chin (in San Francisco), multiple sitting Appellate Court justices, a superior court judge, former supervising staff attorneys at multiple appellate courts, Certified Legal Specialists in Appellate Law, and other top practitioners who have spoken at our programs on many occasions – and received excellent reviews every time!
The faculty delves into a variety of interesting topics – please click on the “Agenda” tab for a detailed agenda.
This is an intermediate to advanced level appellate course that assumes you already have an understanding of appellate practice. While you will learn a lot if you are new to appeals, some of the information may go over your head and your faculty will not be defining terms or acronyms about which experienced appellate practitioners already know. See below for a beginner level program.
Can’t attend in person? You can now attend live from the comfort of your office. Register for our live streaming webcast. Or, if you wish to get the recording, you can pre-order it now. For more information about our live streaming webcast on February 7th, please see the “Dates/Times/Locations” tab.
This program will be recorded live on January 23, 2020 in San Francisco and February 7, 2020 in Los Angeles. The audio packages, including seminar materials, will be available within two-three weeks after each live program date.
And don’t miss our previous conferences:
Our 1st Annual Advanced Appellate Conference (2016) audio recording can be purchased here.
Our 2nd Annual Advanced Appellate Conference (2017) audio recording can be purchased here.
Our 3rd Annual Advanced Appellate Conference (2018) audio recording can be purchased here.
Our 4th Annual Advanced Appellate Conference (2019) audio recording can be purchased here.
Other programs to consider:
If you or someone in your office would like a more introductory course in appeals and writs, you should check out our fantastic beginner-level program, held every few years in LA and SF: Demystifying Civil Appeals and Writs – audio package.
And don’t miss our 2017 Writs of Administrative of Mandamus Demystified course, as well as our Administrative Hearings course, held in 2018.
Lastly, if you were looking for something in the criminal appeals area, some criminal appeals information was discussed in the 2nd Annual Advanced Appellate Conference link above, and we also have a audio recording package for our Criminal Writs program, held in 2014. That recording and order information is here.
Have you ever thought about improving your public speaking skills? Now is the time! Get Faith Pincus’ newly published book Being Heard: Presentation Skills for Attorneys, from the ABA now (ABA members receive 10%-20% off). It is also available on Amazon in Kindle and paperback versions. You can also order it from us here.
Oral Argument – advice from the bench
Advanced 9th Circuit practice
- Motions practice and emergencies
- Mediation in the Ninth Circuit, it’s worth it!
- If you have a novel state law question, how do you get the Ninth Circuit to certify that question of law to the state’s highest court?
- Briefing your appeal, insider tips on how the court likes things written
- New authority letters (a/k/a 28j letters)
- The en banc process, how to get the attention of enough of the judges
Post-decision in the DCA
- Publication & Depublication
- On remand from SCOCA
- Getting grant-and-hold cases remanded rather than having review dismissed – “Beware the quick release”
Preclusive effect of appellate decisions
- Law of the case
- Claim and issue preclusion
Settled Statements under the new Rules of Court
Looks matter: The graphic presentation of briefs
- How font, formatting, and graphics affect your readers
- Writing for e-readers
- Typography for Lawyers
Review of agency action
- Trial court 1085 writs
- Trial court 1094.5 writs
- Trial court common law writs
- Original jurisdiction in DCA (and SCOCA) on review of actions of administrative agencies
- Stays of agency action pending appellate review
- Interlocutory remands to agencies
Advanced Topics in Appellate Jurisdiction
- Kurwa I & II
- Standing of class action objectors
- Waivers of right to appeal in arbitration and other agreements
- Appeals in Public Records Act cases
- Review generally by writ
- Exceptions for post-judgment decisions (fees, e.g.)
- Non-appealable preliminary decisions (privilege log)
February 7, 2020
Held by Pincus Professional Education
(at Buchalter, in their Seminar Room)
1000 Wilshire Boulevard, 15th Floor
Los Angeles, CA 90017
January 23, 2020
222 Mason Street
San Francisco, CA 94102
Start/Stop times for both locations:
9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. (lunch on your own)
Check in between 8:30 a.m. – 9:00 a.m.
Parking information for San Francisco attendees: Parking at the hotel is $15 for the first hour, and $5 for each additional half-hour (max $50).
There are two other garages nearby: The Downtown Center Garage at 325 Mason St is $8 per hour (max $35). The Ellis-O’Farrell Garage at 123 O’Farrell St is $2.50-$3.50 per hour (max $36).
Parking information for Los Angeles attendees:There is no discounted parking for this program. There are several nearby lots, as well as the law firm’s building lot.
Online Live Attendance (Live Streaming Webcast from your Computer):
Attend a live seminar without leaving your office!
February 7, 2020
(Live from the Los Angeles program only)
9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. (1 hour lunch break)
Login between 8:40 a.m. to 8:50 a.m.
For online live attendance, we will email registrants the meeting link and materials two days prior to the seminar, so you can test the live video, audio and the webcast program and download your materials.
Check the CLE credits section for live credits available for the webcast (Note, you must be logged in/signed in to receive credit and will need to write down codes mentioned throughout the day).
Each registration is for a single viewer. Please choose “group rate” and give us the name and email address for each attendee, if more than one person at your office will be viewing the live webcast.
Each person will be issued a sign-in key unique to that person.
Please contact us for a special group rate if more than four attorneys will be attending the seminar via live streaming webcast.
- Live Video & Audio with on-screen PowerPoint Presentation
- PDF of Course Materials to download
- Ability to ask questions via chat function
- CLE Credit
What You Need
- Internet Connection
- Web Browser
Any questions? Please contact us at (877) 858-3848.
The following testimonials are from our previous Advanced Appellate Conferences:
“I attend lots of CLE courses – significantly more than required. This program was outstanding! Careful selection of topics and presenters. This was my first Pincus course. It will not be my last.” – Steven Finell, Esq.
“Year in, year out this is the best MCLE seminar for experienced appellate lawyers.” – Tom Freeman, Esq.
“This is an excellent program. I would recommend it. I found the panel to be very thoughtful and engaged with the purpose of educating the audience.” – Elizabeth Rhodes, Esq.
“Excellent, informative program. Presentations from judges were especially useful, and Ben Shatz is a very good moderator.” – Ryan Wu, Esq.
“Consistently the best live CLE I attend each year. Not to be missed! This isn’t just a refresher on the basics. This brings clarity to real challenges in appellate practice with the top experts in the field.” – Joshua Furman, Esq.
“Panelists were all terrific – one of the best MCLE classes I have taken!”
“While advanced, this was a great overview of appellate issues.” – Brian Mahler, Esq.
“Still one of the best CLE programs.” – Joshua R. Furman, Esq.
“Excellent seminar. It’s one of the best I have attended.” – Bob Lucas, Esq.
“Second year taking this course. Great information, speakers, and lots of ideas, tips and suggestions. Thanks, I’ll be back next year!” – John Stobart, Esq.
“Much better than the average MCLE courses. It was well thought out and well-presented. I look forward to taking more Pincus courses.” – Earl L. Roberts, Esq.
“It’s great to have presentations targeting experienced appellate lawyers. Tremendously useful.” – Tom Freeman, Esq.
“It was an informative seminar, full of practical information. Excellent program.” – John Yasuda, Esq.
“Thank you. The program, panelists, and participants were excellent.” – Teresa Stinson, Esq.
“What I appreciate the most from these trainings is the multiple perspectives from various justices and practicing attorneys.” – Cynthia Vargas, Esq.
“This is a great advanced seminar. Very high-level, informative presentations.” – Tom Freeman, Esq.
“Having a ‘behind-the-scenes’ perspective on the appellate courts’ workings is very valuable. I handle 2-3 writs/appeals per month and this subject matter is useful. Very engaging speakers. The judicial perspective is highly informative.” – Sean Collins, Esq.
“Broader (and better) scope than expected. Another excellent program.” – Marisa Janine-Page, Esq.
“The topics were interesting and helpful to my practice.” – Jessica Simon, Esq.
“All presenters are great. There were a lot of good nuggets that I will use in my practice.” – Linda Conrad, Esq.
“The program was excellent.” – Tom Freeman, Esq.
“A very good panel of speakers with good diversity in topics.” – Robert Mata, Esq.
“Very useful, informative program. Every speaker was excellent!” – Kevin Meek, Esq.
“Great program.” – Sara Birmingham, Esq.
“Very satisfied with the program.” – Dennis Beaty, Esq.
“Justice Rivera was very good, detailed, and interesting. Harry Chamberlain was a very good speaker. This was a terrific panel!” – Steve Mayer, Esq.
“A fast-moving program – covered a lot of ground.” – Lisa Ungerer, Esq.
“This was an excellent program. Speakers did a great job.” – Christopher Johns
“Very thorough. Well done.” – Eric Troff, Esq.
“The opportunity to speak with justices is very helpful.” – Deborah Bull, Esq.
“All great topics.” – Richard P. Fisher, Esq.
“Excellent speakers…Great handouts.” – Ira Salzman, Esq.
“Wonderful!” – Chris Lim, Esq.
“I’m glad I came and definitely glad I joined the networking lunch.” – Rochelle Wilcox, Esq.
“Learned some valuable things.” Lawrence P. Hellman, Esq.
“Excellent content, expertly presented, excellent program! I’m trying to resume active appellate practice after years of preoccupation with family care issues – this program was a great start!” – Bruce Finch, Esq.
“I liked hearing from the judges – it’s always interesting to hear their points of view.”
“I love Pincus-produced lectures and seminars. Excellent appellate information, very thorough handouts and materials.”
“I am a practicing appellate attorney and I heard good things about this seminar. All the speakers were very knowledgeable and presented well and kept my interest – and the materials in the appendix were very useful.”
“Great use of knowledgeable and credible presenters. Truly an excellent program; well-thought out with valuable information.”
“I chose this program because I’m a previous attendee and have enjoyed it.”
“As usual all of the speakers were excellent in both knowledge and presentation. I was also impressed with your staff. My secretary inadvertently signed me up for a recording rather than attending live. That was quickly and efficiently remedied. The location was great. Their staff was quick and efficient. It was a 0.6 walk from Union Station, which made it easy to get there by Metrolink and avoid traffic.”
“I thoroughly enjoyed the discussion during ethics, regarding plagiarism and ghost writing. I think it was the most interesting conversation all day.”
“Excellent and well put together seminar.”
“Program was excellent – good speakers.”
“Really great presenters.”
“Excellent, informative, enjoyable – all of the speakers did a great job.”
“Another great program – you never disappoint.”
“Very good materials.”
“I attended last year’s appellate conference. It was so helpful and informative that I wanted to attend this year’s conference.” – Linda N. Wisotsky, Esq.
“Subject matter was great.”
“This program was great.”
“Really good, varied program.”
“Excellent program. I’ve just started appellate work and wanted to learn more. This program was quite good. Thank you!”
“As usual, addresses the ‘advanced’ issues facing appellate attorneys. And as always, knowledgeable presenters.”
“Great seminar!! So much great, practical information I can use.”
“I love the format and the pace!”
“This was an excellent program. All speakers did a great job!”
“Very practical and would definitely attend again and recommend to others.”
“Very current and useful information.”
“Organization and administration were excellent and very efficient.”
“Organization and administration of program was excellent – very efficient.”
“Greg Wolff was worth the price of admission on his own.”
“All of the speakers were great.”
“Good, vigorous discussion.”
“Great program and location. The lunch itself was great, as was the opportunity to network.”
Los Angeles Faculty:
Justice Elizabeth Grimes
California Court of Appeal, Second Appellate District, Division Eight
Beth Grimes was confirmed as an Associate Justice of the Second District Court of Appeal, Division Eight, in April 2010. She was appointed to the Los Angeles Superior Court in December 1997. Justice Grimes’ first judicial assignment was to the dependency court, after which she presided over a felony calendar court and independent calendar general jurisdiction courtrooms in the Stanley Mosk Courthouse and the Santa Monica Courthouse. From August 2004 through March 2005, Justice Grimes was assigned as a justice pro tempore to Division Four of the Second District Court of Appeal.
Before her appointment to the bench, Justice Grimes was a partner in the Litigation Department of Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher, engaged in a business litigation practice since joining the firm in 1980.
A Phi Beta Kappa graduate of the University of Texas at Austin, Justice Grimes received her law degree in 1980 from Stanford Law School, where she was an Associate Editor of the Stanford Law Review. She also attended the Universidad de los Andes in Bogota, Colombia, for one semester during her senior year, and she attended Mount Holyoke College her freshman year of college.
Justice Douglas P. Miller
California Court of Appeal, Fourth Appellate District, Division Two
Justice Miller was born in Whittier, California, and grew up in Glendora, California. He attended Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah and graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics in 1975. Justice Miller was awarded his Juris Doctor in 1978 from Pepperdine University School of Law. He practiced law at the Law Offices of Thomas T. Anderson in Indio, California, from 1978 through 1995.
In 1995 Justice Miller was appointed to the Riverside Superior Court by Governor Pete Wilson. His first year he was assigned criminal trials but the remainder of his time with the superior court was spent in primarily civil trials. He served as the Presiding Judge in the Riverside County Superior Court from January1, 2003, through December 31, 2004. In 2006 Justice Miller was voted Trial Judge of the Year by the American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA), Inland County. In June of 2006 Justice Miller was appointed to the Fourth District Court of Appeal, Division Two, by Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger.
Justice Miller has served on many state and local committees including the California Judges Association. He is currently serving on the Judicial Council, as Chair of the Executive and Planning Committee; the Commission on the Future of California’s Court System; Chair of the Commission for Impartial Courts’ Task Force on Judicial Candidate Campaign Conduct; the Commission on Access to Justice; Chair of the of the California Court Case Management System Justice Partner Advisory Committee; and Vice Chair of the Supreme Court Committee on Judicial Ethics Opinions.
Justice Miller is also active in many local programs including the Boys & Girls Club, of which he is currently the President and also on the National Area Council Committee; and he is a founding member of the Warren E. Slaughter American Inn of Court. In his spare time, Justice Miller enjoys fly-fishing, tennis and hiking.
Justice Michael J. Raphael
Fourth District Court of Appeal, Division Two
Justice Raphael is the fourth generation of his family to live in Southern California, though he is the first lawyer or judge. Justice Raphael graduated in 1990 from Rice University and in 1993 from Yale Law School, where he was a senior editor of the Yale Law Journal and an editor of the Yale Journal of Law & Policy.
Justice Raphael began his legal career as a law clerk for the Honorable Nathaniel R. Jones of the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit. Justice Raphael then practiced as a trial and appellate litigator in the Washington D.C. office of a national law firm.
Justice Raphael next worked as an investigative counsel for the Government Reform Committee of the United States House of Representatives, handling the investigation of campaign fundraising that arose from the 1996 Presidential election. During that time, Justice Raphael also taught writing and advocacy courses as an adjunct professor at the George Washington University School of Law.
In 1999, Justice Raphael returned to the Los Angeles area and spent over twelve years as an Assistant United States Attorney in the Central District of California, prosecuting over 60 federal felony cases in trial court. Justice Raphael also was appointed as special counsel in the Northern District of California (San Francisco) and successfully investigated and prosecuted the illegal leak of grand jury testimony provided by Barry Bonds and other athletes in the course of a government investigation of steroids in sports.
As an AUSA, Justice Raphael served as chief of the Criminal Appeals Section from 2007 to 2012 after serving as deputy chief from 2005 to 2007. As chief, Justice Raphael oversaw an annual appellate docket of roughly 300 briefs and 100 oral arguments in the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. Justice Raphael personally argued 41 cases in Ninth Circuit on behalf of the United States, including three en banc cases presented to an 11-judge panel. Justice Raphael co-taught Advanced Appellate Advocacy at the Gould School of Law at the University of California in 2005 and 2006; he also co-taught a seminar in criminal sentencing in 2008. Justice Raphael lectured frequently on appellate brief writing and oral argument while an attorney.
In 2012, Justice Raphael became a Judge on the Los Angeles Superior Court upon his appointment by Governor Jerry Brown. On that court, Justice Raphael initially handled assignments that included small claims, limited civil, unlawful detainer, and criminal misdemeanors. He then served in the downtown civil “law and motion” courts that handled pretrial cases for the entire county in limited civil and personal injury cases. For Justice Raphael’s last three years on the trial bench, he was assigned to a downtown civil independent calendar court, with a docket of a wide variety of civil cases. While on the trial court, Justice Raphael was twice appointed to serve as a pro tem Justice in Division Five of the Second District Court of Appeal.
In 2018, Governor Brown nominated Justice Raphael to serve as an Associate Justice on the Court of Appeal, and he was unanimously confirmed by the Commission on Judicial Appointments, after receiving an “exceptionally well qualified” rating from the Judicial Nominees Evaluation Commission.
While on the trial and appellate bench, Justice Raphael has authored several dozen articles in legal publications, has taught several judicial education courses, and has spoken frequently at legal education events for attorneys.
Hon. Kira L. Klatchko
Superior Court of California, Riverside County
Judge Kira Klatchko was appointed to Riverside County Superior Court in 2016. She currently sits in Palm Springs in an unlimited civil department.
Before joining the bench, Judge Klatchko was a Civil Appellate Law Specialist, certified by the State Bar of California Board of Legal Specialization and handled both state and federal appeals arising from all areas of civil practice for clients as varied as cities, businesses and families. Judge Klatchko was a partner at Lewis Brisbois, and served as was vice chair of the firm’s national Appellate Practice Litigation group. Prior to joining Lewis Brisbois, Judge Klatchko was a partner at Best Best & Krieger where she served as chair of the firm’s appellate group. She served for six years on the State Bar of California’s Standing Committee on Appellate Courts, including a term as its chair.
Judge Klatchko is co-author of the “California” chapter of the “Appellate Practice Compendium” (ABA 2012), an insider’s guide to appellate practice. She is co-contributing editor of “California Civil Appeals and Writs” (Matthew Bender 2014), a comprehensive two-volume practice guide for appellate counsel and general litigators. Judge Klatchko was repeatedly named to the list of Super Lawyers for Southern California in Appellate Law. She is a former president of the Riverside County Bar Association, and previously served five terms as chair of the Riverside County Bar Association Appellate Section. Judge Klatchko was also a member of the California Academy of Appellate Lawyers.
Judge Klatchko has served as an adjunct professor at La Verne College of Law, teaching legal research and writing. She has also lectured on appellate ethics and practice at numerous conferences and seminars, including the California State Bar Annual Convention, the State and Local Legal Center Supreme Court Practice Seminar, and Pincus Professional Education’s Annual Advanced Appellate Conferences in Los Angeles.
In 2014, Judge Klatchko was inducted into the Desert Bar Association Hall of Fame, as Outstanding Young Attorney of the year. In 2010, Judge Klatchko was recognized by the City of Palm Springs and Palm Springs Chamber of Commerce with the Athena International Award for Young Professional Leadership, recognizing her professional success and work in the community.
Judge Klatchko received her bachelor’s degree in political science, with distinction, from the University of California, Berkeley. She earned her master’s degree in business administration from the Executive Management Program at the Peter F. Drucker and Masatoshi Ito School of Management at Claremont Graduate University. She earned her law degree at the University of California, Davis, School of Law, where she served as editor-in-chief of the U.C. Davis Journal of Juvenile Law & Policy.
Efrat M. Cogan, Esq.
Senior Counsel/Certified Legal Specialist in Appellate Law
Ms. Cogan is a California State Bar Certified Appellate Specialist.
Efrat M. Cogan is Senior Counsel in Buchalter’s Litigation and Appellate Practice Groups in Los Angeles. Ms. Cogan is certified as an Appellate Specialist by the California State Bar of Legal Specialization. Her practice areas encompass appellate, real estate and construction, copyright and unfair competition, class actions, professional liability, governmental and constitutional law.
Ms. Cogan has written “Executive Nonacquiescence: Problems of Statutory Interpretation and Separation of Powers,” 60 Southern California Law Review 1143, 1987. She has contributed to the California Municipal Law Handbook, published by the California League of Cities, and has co-authored “The ‘Empire’ Strikes Back: Effective Use of the False Claims Act” (2005).
Ms. Cogan has been selected as one of Southern California’s Super Lawyers nine times (2004-2006 and 2008-2013) and was also selected as a Southern California Super Lawyer, Corporate Counsel Edition from 2009 to 2010. She currently serves on the California State Bar’s Advisory Commission.
Ms. Cogan earned her J.D. at the University of Southern California, where she was a staff member and articles editor for the Law Review and graduated Order of the Coif. She received her B.A. from the University of California, Los Angeles.
Pablo Drobny, Esq.
California Appellate Law Group LLP
Pablo Drobny served as a lead appellate research and writs attorney in Division Seven of the California Court of Appeal’s Second District for more than 36 years. In that position, Pablo analyzed thousands of appeals and writ petitions, in every conceivable area of law and at every stage of civil and criminal litigation, and played a pivotal role in the development of writ practice in the California courts.
Alone responsible for handling all writ petitions assigned to Division Seven, Pablo gained a deep understanding of extraordinary writ relief and innovated creative procedural devices to streamline writ procedures in California appellate courts. One of those devices is now commonly known as the “suggestive Palma” practice, which was approved by the California Supreme Court and is currently utilized statewide as a method of granting expeditious writ relief to litigants. Additionally, Pablo routinely advised justices about complex appellate motions and orders, including motions to dismiss appeals, view sealed transcripts, take judicial notice, augment the appellate record, and file amicus briefs.
During his court career, Pablo was also heavily involved in judicial education. He served on dozens of planning committees for the courts’ annual Judicial Attorney Institutes, chaired the statewide Appellate Judicial Attorneys Education Committee, developed broadcasts for judicial attorneys and non-attorney staff with the Center for Judiciary Education and Research, and regularly gave educational presentations to Supreme Court and Court of Appeal justices and their staff. He developed relationships with appellate justices throughout the state and taught the approaches many still use to decide cases.
Pablo is a frequent lecturer and panelist on the writ process and on other facets of civil and criminal appellate law and procedure. His presentations include programs at annual meetings of the California State Bar, the California Judges Association, the California Public Defenders Association, the Lawyers’ Club of Los Angeles, The Rutter Group, Pincus Professional Education, and other bar associations and Inns of Court statewide. He has been guest lecturer at Loyola Law School and annual lecturer for the law school extern program at the Second District.
Pablo received his J.D. with honors from Harvard Law School, and before commencing his career at the Court of Appeal, practiced with Perkins Coie LLP and as corporate counsel for U.S. companies doing business in developing countries. He earned his B.A. with highest honors from Johns Hopkins University, where he captained the soccer team, was selected as an All-American, and was later admitted to the Johns Hopkins Athletic Hall of Fame. He also received an NCAA postgraduate scholarship, awarded to just 22 scholar-athletes nationwide.
Wendy C. Lascher, Esq.
Partner/Certified Legal Specialist in Appellate Law
Ferguson Case Orr Paterson LLP
Though Wendy Lascher is one of California’s best-known appellate lawyers, her work on behalf of clients often begins well before an appeal. By crafting motions and consulting on trial strategy, Wendy helps clients either avoid appeals in the first place, or to be well-positioned to win cases on appeal.
After nearly four-decades at her appellate-focused boutique, Lascher & Lascher, Wendy brought her practice to Ferguson Case Orr Paterson in 2011. She brought with her a California State Bar-certified appellate specialty in which she has represented clients in front of the United States Supreme Court, many times before the California Supreme Court, multiple U.S. Circuit Courts of Appeal, and in every California Court of Appeal district. She has also handled cases in state and federal trial courts.
Wendy has handled a wide range of appeals involving multinational corporations, municipalities and other government entities, complex family law, Death Row and other criminal cases, employment, real estate development, bankruptcies and other matters.
Previously a president of the American Academy of Appellate Lawyers and of the California Academy of Appellate Lawyers, she regularly features in Los Angeles Magazine’s "Super Lawyers" roundups of top lawyers as well as its listings of the "Top 100 Southern California Super Lawyers" and "Top 50 Women Super Lawyers," and she is Av-Preeminent rated by Martindale-Hubbard. She also regularly lectures at the Ventura and Santa Barbara Colleges of Law and regularly speaks about appellate law and other matters for a variety of legal organizations. Widely published in legal journals, she is also the long-time editor of CITATIONS, the newsletter of the Ventura County Bar Association.
Wendy has been a mentor with the Big Brothers, Big Sisters of Ventura County since 2008. She has also served as a board member at First National Bank of Ventura, Channel Counties Legal Services, the KCLU advisory board, and the Planned Parenthood Ventura Advisory Council. When not working or volunteering, Wendy enjoys gardening, early morning workouts, hiking, and spending time with her family. She is also a student pilot and expects to acquire her private pilot’s license in 2017.
Robin Meadow, Esq.
Partner/Certified Appellate Specialist
Greines, Martin, Stein & Richland LLP
Few appellate specialists have successfully tried a jury case. Robin Meadow tried jury cases for over 20 years at a major commercial firm, while also handling appeals, in many fields of law. Over time, he realized that it’s nearly impossible to excel at both trials and appeals, because the skill sets and practice rhythms differ completely and often clash. Concluding that his greatest strengths lay in appellate work, Robin joined GMSR in 1994, handling his last trial late that year.
Robin’s trial-court experience gives him a unique perspective on appellate work. He understands the demands and pressures trial lawyers face and the many ways that things can go wrong in the trial court. And he is very much at home consulting with trial lawyers during trial, helping them protect their appellate record so they’re well positioned to either preserve a victory or overturn a defeat.
Robin’s practice at GMSR continues the substantive focus he developed in his earlier years—business disputes, real estate, partnerships, and probate and entertainment law. But, like most appellate lawyers, he is a generalist and at GMSR has also handled multiple significant appeals involving healthcare, family law, personal injury and bankruptcy.
He is also an expert in technology for appellate lawyers and courts. A pioneer in the use of electronic records and briefs, Robin co-authored the California Second District Court of Appeal’s first protocol for electronic briefs (since adopted by other California Courts of Appeal), and he filed the first electronic brief ever accepted by a California appellate court.
When he isn’t practicing law, he enjoys spending time with his family, reading about history and playing bass guitar in a rock band.
Daryn Pakcyk, Esq.
Sr. Appellate Court Attorney
CA Court of Appeal, Second District, Division Seven
Daryn Pakcyk is a senior appellate court attorney in Division Seven of the California Court of Appeal. In that position, Daryn analyzes writ petitions for matters relating to criminal, civil, dependency, probate and family law. Daryn also assists with the handling of appeals.
Before starting his career at the Court of Appeal, Daryn worked 18 years in the Los Angeles Superior Court. Daryn spent 10 years working for two independent calendar departments before moving over to complex litigation where he handled motions pertaining to class actions and mass torts. He later became a supervising research attorney. In his role as a supervising research attorney, Daryn was responsible for training new hires and taught classes on motions for summary judgment, anti-SLAPP and demurrers. He also wrote two MCLE articles for the Daily Journal dealing with cy pres and qui tam actions, and published an article dealing with internet contracts for the Albany Law Journal of Science & Technology.
Daryn is a graduate of Southwestern University School of Law, where he was an editor of the Southwestern Journal of Law and Trade.
Kent L. Richland, Esq.
Greines, Martin, Stein & Richland LLP
Kent Richland has been an appellate lawyer since he graduated from UCLA Law School in 1971. In 1983, Kent was one of the founding partners of Greines, Martin, Stein & Richland, LLP.
Kent has been lead appellate counsel in hundreds of appeals. He has argued in state and federal appellate courts across the country, including many high-profile cases in both the California Supreme Court and the United States Supreme Court. He gained national prominence in 2006 for his United States Supreme Court argument in Marshall v. Marshall, in which he successfully represented the late Anna Nicole Smith.
Kent is a frequent lecturer and author on appellate law topics and is co-author, with Presiding Justice J. Anthony Kline of the California Court of Appeal, of West’s California Litigation Forms B Civil Appeals and Writs. He has served as president of the California Academy of Appellate Lawyers and multiple terms as president of the California Supreme Court Historical Society. He was selected as a Fellow of the American Academy of Appellate Lawyers, the American Bar Foundation and the Litigation Counsel of America.
Among the honors he has received are the California Lawyer Magazine’s California Lawyer of the Year award in both 2007 and 2010, Best Lawyers’ Los Angeles Appellate Lawyer of the Year Award in 2015, multiple years’ recognition by the Los Angeles Daily Journal as one of the top 100 lawyers in California, multiple years’ recognition as one of the top 100 Southern California Superlawyers and recognition by Chambers USA as one of five “Band One” appellate lawyers in California.
Benjamin G. Shatz, Esq.
Partner/Certified Legal Specialist in Appellate Law
Manatt, Phelps & Phillips, LLP
Ben Shatz is a certified specialist in appellate law who has briefed hundreds of civil appeals, writs and petitions in state and federal courts covering areas of law including employment, entertainment, copyright, trademark, land use, banking, insurance, product liability, professional liability, wrongful death, punitive damages, class actions, anti-SLAPP and unfair competition. Before private practice he served as law clerk to Robert J. Johnston, United States Magistrate Judge for the District of Nevada, and as extern to Dorothy W. Nelson, United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.
Ben is Editor-in-Chief of California Litigation, the journal of the State Bar’s Litigation Section, chairs the Los Angeles County Bar Association’s State Appellate Judicial Evaluations Committee and serves on the executive committee of LACBA’s Appellate Courts Section. He is a past Chair of the State Bar Committee on Appellate Courts and the LACBA Appellate Courts Committee.
Since 2005, Ben has coordinated lawyer volunteers for the ACE (Appellate Court Experience) program, in which high school students visit the Second District Court of Appeal, for which he was honored as Lawyer of the Year (Private Sector 2008) by the Constitutional Rights Foundation. He has been named a Southern California Super Lawyer in Appellate Practice (2004-2015); listed in Best Lawyers in America for appellate practice (2012-2015); and is AV-Preeminent rated by Martindale-Hubbell.
Ben is a frequent lecturer and publisher of articles on appellate practice, is an editorial consultant for the Matthew Bender Practice Guide on California Civil Appeals & Writs, and blogs at Southern California Appellate News (http://socal-appellate.blogspot.com).
John A. Taylor, Jr., Esq.
Partner/Certified Appellate Specialist
Horvitz & Levy LLP
John Taylor is a partner at Horvitz & Levy, where he has been practicing since 1993. He is a California State Bar Certified Appellate Specialist.
Mr. Taylor has been lead appellate counsel in dozens of appeals in a wide variety of areas (his name currently appears on over 40 published opinions and many more unpublished opinions), including matters involving entertainment law, the right of publicity, the Unfair Competition Law (UCL), breach of contract, insurance coverage, wage and hour law, employment discrimination, personal injury, California’s “lemon law,” arbitration awards, and trusts and estates.
In 2012, Mr. Taylor was lead counsel in Don Johnson Productions, Inc. v. Rysher Entertainment, obtaining a million reduction of a million judgment against his client. Mr. Taylor has also participated in numerous cases before the California Supreme Court, and in 2009 was lead counsel in obtaining a closely watched decision overturning a million judgment against a coffee manufacturer for the unauthorized use of the plaintiff’s photograph on the label of its coffee jar. In addition, he has authored amicus curiae briefs in the California Supreme Court on issues such as evidentiary requirements in product liability and wage and hour litigation; the scope and application of Proposition 64’s amendments to the UCL; public policy issues arising out of subcontractor indemnity provisions in residential construction contracts; the constitutionality of Proposition 5, the Indian gaming initiative; and the validity of the Seaman’s tort.
Mr. Taylor is a member of the California Academy of Appellate Lawyers and the Los Angeles County Bar Appellate Courts Section. In 2007, Mr. Taylor was appointed by Chief Justice Ronald George to serve on the Judicial Council Appellate Advisory Committee of California, as one of the three private civil attorneys on the committee, and in 2010 was reappointed to a second term.
In 2009, Mr. Taylor was named to the Top 100 list of leading lawyers in California by the Los Angeles & San Francisco Daily Journal. He is “AV Preeminent” rated by Martindale Hubbell, has been listed every year since 2006 as a Super Lawyer and as a “Best Lawyer” by The Best Lawyers in America, and was included among the overall Top 100 Southern California lawyers for 2011 by Super Lawyers magazine. In 1994, Mr. Taylor was honored as the “Outstanding Young Lawyer” of the year by the Los Angeles Chapter of the J. Reuben Clark Law Society.
Mr. Taylor received his Bachelor of Arts from Brigham Young University (summa cum laude) and his Juris Doctor from Harvard Law School (magna cum laude). Following law school, he held a judicial clerkship with the Hon. Patrick E. Higginbotham, U.S. Court of Appeals, Fifth Circuit. Before joining the firm, Mr. Taylor was a litigation associate with Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP. He is admitted to practice in the California and Utah state courts, the United States Supreme Court, and the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.
San Francisco Faculty:
Justice Kathleen M. Banke
First District Court of Appeal, Division One
Kathleen M. Banke was appointed as an Associate Justice to the Court of Appeal, First Appellate District, Division One, in June 2009. Prior to being elevated to the appellate bench, Justice Banke sat on the Alameda County Superior Court, to which she was appointed in June 2006. During her last year on the superior court bench, she was one of three judges appointed to the Alameda County Superior Court’s Appellate Division and was an elected member of the Court’s Executive Committee. Justice Banke now serves, by appointment, on the Center for Judicial Education and Research’s Appellate Advisory Committee and is the chair of the Legislative and Privacy subcommittees. She previously served on and was chair of the Appellate Practice Curriculum Committee. She is very active in judicial education and has helped produce numerous educational videos for the appellate bench and often speaks at statewide appellate programs.
Before being appointed to the bench, Justice Banke was a partner at Reed Smith LLP, and before that, at Crosby, Heafey, Roach & May, which merged with Reed Smith. She specialized in appellate practice for more than 20 years, was the practice group leader for the Crosby, Heafey statewide, and then the Reed Smith nationwide, Appellate Practice Group, and represented clients in the United States Supreme Court, the United States Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit and the Ninth Circuit, the California Supreme Court, and all districts of the California Court of Appeal. She was counsel of record or co-counsel on more than 200 appeals and writs, many of which resulted in published opinions. She also regularly consulted with trial lawyers to help shape trial presentations and make the best record possible for an eventual appeal. These consultations included briefing and arguing issues in the trial courts, and preparing and arguing post-trial motions. She also handled complex civil law and motion matters and writ proceedings. She was a certified specialist in appellate law by the California State Bar Board of Legal Specialization, was inducted as a fellow into the American Academy of Appellate Lawyers, and was an active member (and is now an ex officio member) of the California Academy of Appellate Lawyers.
Justice Banke has written numerous articles on civil appellate and writ practice. She is the chief consulting and updating editor and a contributing author of the significantly revised and expanded California Civil Writ Practice (CEB 4th ed. 2008), a contributing author and updating editor of Civil Procedure Before Trial: Statutes of Limitations (TRG 2016), and a contributing author to California Civil Appellate Practice (CEB 3d ed. 1996), Employment Litigation (TRG 2001), and Federal Civil Trials and Evidence (TRG 2000). Justice Banke served as a practitioner-advisor in appellate advocacy at Boalt Hall School of Law for three years, and before that as Adjunct Assistant Professor of Law at Hastings College of the Law for three years teaching civil appellate advocacy. She continues to participate as a moot court judge for local law schools and other moot court competitions.
Justice Ming Chin
California State Supreme Court
On March 1, 1996, Justice Ming W. Chin became an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of California. Governor Pete Wilson appointed him to that position on January 25, 1996. On March 1, he was confirmed by the Commission on Judicial Appointments and sworn in by the Governor. Justice Chin previously served as the Presiding Justice of the First District Court of Appeal, Division Three, in San Francisco beginning January 2, 1995. He was appointed to that position by Governor Pete Wilson on August 17, 1994, and in November 1994 was elected to a 12-year term. Previously he was an associate justice of that court, having been appointed to that position by former Governor George Deukmejian. Prior to that appointment, he served as a judge of the Alameda County Superior Court. Before his appointment to the bench, Justice Chin was a partner in an Oakland law firm, where he specialized in business and commercial litigation.
Justice Chin obtained his Bachelor of Arts degree in political science as well as a Doctorate of Jurisprudence from the University of San Francisco and was admitted to the California State Bar in 1970; he also has been admitted to practice before the federal courts, as well as the United States Tax Court. After he graduated from law school, Justice Chin served two years as a Captain in the United States Army, including a year in Vietnam, where he was awarded the Army Commendation Medal and the Bronze Star. He then served three years as a deputy district attorney for Alameda County, where he tried numerous felony and misdemeanor jury trials and progressed to the position of felony trial deputy.
In 1973, Justice Chin was recruited by the Oakland law firm of Aiken, Kramer & Cummings, Incorporated, to head its trial department. He became a principal of the firm in 1976. His successful trials include two judgments in excess of one million dollars. The first was a .3 million judgment in an unfair competition/ wrongful termination case in the Alameda County Superior Court, and the second was a .2 million award in an arbitration of a construction dispute in Los Angeles.
Justice Chin has served on many committees of the state and local bar associations and was the first Asian-American to serve as President of the Alameda County Bar Association in its more than 100-year history. He was a member of the Judicial Council Appellate Advisory Committee and the Advisory Committee on Racial and Ethnic Bias. He served as a member of the Board of Trustees of the University of San Francisco, where he was a member of the Executive Committee and chaired the Academic Affairs Committee. He was also a member of the USF Law School Board of Counselors and an Adjunct Professor of Law. The USF Alumni Association presented him a distinguished service award in 1985 for his work as a past president of that organization. In 1988, he was selected as the USF Alumnus of the Year; in 1993, he was named USF Law School Alumnus of the Year; and in 1996 USF Law School presented him with the St. Thomas More Award. Justice Chin was selected as the Outstanding Judge of the Year in 1989 by the Southern Alameda County Bar Association. The San Francisco Bay Chapter of the American Jewish Committee named him recipient of the 1997 Learned Hand Award. In 1998 he served as President of the Commonwealth Club of California.
Justice Chin has authored landmark decisions in areas such as DNA, toxic tort insurance coverage, surrogate parents, and hate crimes. He has frequently lectured on DNA, genetics, and the courts, to groups including the American Bar Association’s Judicial Division, the State of California’s Center for Judicial Education and Research (CJER), the National College of Probate Judges, the Wisconsin Supreme Court Judicial Education Committee, and the Chulabhorn International Science Congress, Bangkok, Thailand. He is a frequent lecturer in judicial education and has delivered the Traynor Lecture at the Witkin Judicial College on four occasions, most recently in August 2014. He also spoke on behalf of the California Supreme Court in December 1996 at its memorial session honoring the late Bernard E. Witkin. He is an author of two California Practice Guides: Employment Litigation (The Rutter Group 2016) and Forensic DNA Evidence: Science and the Law (The Rutter Group 2016).
Justice Carin T. Fujisaki
California Appellate Court, First District, Division Three
Justice Fujisaki was appointed to the First Appellate District in October 2018 by Governor Edmund G. Brown, Jr. She serves as an Associate Justice in Division Three.
Before joining the First District, Justice Fujisaki spent 28 years at the California Supreme Court. From 2015 to 2018, she served as Principal Attorney to California Chief Justice Tani G. Cantil-Sakauye. In that capacity, Justice Fujisaki provided advice and counsel to the Chief Justice in her administration of the judicial branch, and advised the court as a whole in the exercise of its rule-making authority, oversight of the State Bar of California, and powers of appointment. Justice Fujisaki served as a judicial staff attorney for Associate Justice Marvin R. Baxter from 1991 to 2014. Before that, she worked for a year as an attorney on the Supreme Court’s Civil Central Staff.
Justice Fujisaki began her career in 1985 as a legal research attorney in the Civil Law & Motion Department of the San Francisco Superior Court. From 1986 to 1990, she worked as a litigation associate with the San Francisco law firm of Howard, Rice, Nemerovski, Canady, Robertson & Falk. There, she handled complex civil litigation matters and litigated several pro bono cases.
Justice Fujisaki currently serves as an advisory member on the Judicial Council of California and a member of the Advisory Panel for the California Civil Liberties Public Education Grant Program. In 2003, Justice Fujisaki was nominated by Governor Gray Davis and confirmed by the State Senate as the first Asian American member of the Board of Directors of UC Hastings College of the Law. During her 12-year term as a Director, her responsibilities included oversight of the finances, educational policies, institutional advancement, and executive leadership of the college. Justice Fujisaki also served on the State Bar Commission on Judicial Nominees Evaluation from 1996 to 1999. She has been active throughout her career in the Asian American Bar Association of the Greater Bay Area and other local bar associations.
Justice Fujisaki received her B.A. in 1981 from UCLA, where she graduated magna cum laude and competed as a coxswain on the UCLA varsity women’s rowing team for four years. She earned her J.D. in 1985 from UC Hastings College of the Law, and served as an associate editor on the Hastings Law Journal.
Justice Fujisaki and her husband have two adult children.
Justice Jon Streeter
CA Court of Appeal, First Appellate District, Division Four
Jon B. Streeter is an Associate Justice of the California Court of Appeal, First District, Division 4. He was appointed to the Court of Appeal in November 2014, and prior to that, was a commercial litigator based in San Francisco. He is a Fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers, a member of the American Law Institute, and a former President of the State Bar of California.
In private practice, Mr. Streeter was a partner at Keker & Van Nest for many years, and before that, with Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe. Mr. Streeter earned an A.B. degree from Stanford University in 1978 and a J.D. from Boalt Hall School of Law at U.C. Berkeley in 1981. He is a former law clerk to Senior Judge Harry T. Edwards of the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit (1982-83).
Harry Chamberlain II, Esq.
Shareholder/Certified Legal Specialist in Appellate Law
Harry Chamberlain is an experienced litigator who has represented Fortune 500 companies, public and private sector clients in complex litigation for 35 years. His trial and arbitration practice focuses on the representation of business, professional and public entity clients with special concentration in post-trial remedies, writs and appeals.
He is certified as an Appellate Specialist by the California State Bar Board of Legal Specialization, having argued hundreds of appeals in state and federal courts around the country, including numerous cases before the California Supreme Court and the highest courts of other jurisdictions.
Before joining Buchalter, Harry’s experience included in-house corporate practice as general counsel, and managing the law department of major market U.S. liability insurers and financial service companies.
Harry serves on the Board of Trustees of the Los Angeles County Bar Association and is past president of the Association of Southern California Defense Counsel and California Defense Counsel, preeminent regional associations of civil defense trial attorneys.
Michael G. Colantuono, Esq.
Partner/Certified Legal Specialist in Appellate Law
Colantuono, Highsmith & Whatley, PC
Michael G. Colantuono is a shareholder in Colantuono, Highsmith & Whatley, a municipal law firm with offices in Pasadena and Grass Valley. Chief Justice Ronald M. George presented him with the 2010 Public Lawyer of the Year award on behalf of the California State Bar Association. The Los Angeles Daily Journal named him one of “California’s Top Municipal Lawyers” every year since its list began in 2011. The Supreme Court appointed him the first Chair of the Board of Trustees of the State Bar of California; he was previously President of the Bar. The State Bar has certified him as an Appellate Specialist and he is a member of the California Academy of Appellate Lawyers, a prestigious association of fewer than 100 of California’s most distinguished appellate advocates.
Michael is one of California’s leading experts on municipal revenues and has appeared in all six Courts of Appeal in California. In addition, he has argued nine public finance cases in the California Supreme Court since 2004 and briefed two others.
Michael is City Attorney of Auburn and Grass Valley and general counsel of a number of LAFCOs and special districts and previously served six other cities and many special districts. He serves as special counsel to counties, cities and special districts around California.
Michael served as President of the City Attorneys Department of the League of California Cities in 2003–2004 and established its first Ethics Committee.
He served on the Commission on Local Governance in the 21st Century, the recommendations of which led to substantial revisions of the Cortese-Knox-Hertzberg Local Government Reorganization Act. Michael is General Counsel of the Calaveras and San Diego LAFCOs and serves as outside counsel to several other LAFCOs.
Michael graduated magna cum laude from Harvard College with a degree in Government and received his law degree from the Boalt Hall School of Law of the University of California at Berkeley.
He frequently posts comments on local government and municipal finance topics to Twitter ( @MColantuono ) and LinkedIn ( Michael Colantuono ).
Polly J. Estes, Esq.
Estes Law Group
With 22 years of experience in state and federal courts, Polly has successfully tried numerous bench and jury trials in such diverse areas as class actions, freedom of speech and freedom of religion, securities fraud, tax regulation, riparian rights, eminent domain, professional liability, and high-dollar insurance bad faith.
Polly spent 15 years of her working for state and federal appellate courts, where she helped judges evaluate the merits of more than 500 civil, criminal, and administrative appeals. Before starting Estes Law Group, Polly served as the Chief Law Clerk to the Honorable Carlos T. Bea on the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit for eight years. While at the Ninth Circuit, Polly participated in all aspects of the appellate process, including drafting bench and en banc memoranda, opinions, dissents, orders, and memorandum dispositions. These cases spanned all areas of federal law, including securities fraud, antitrust, class actions, environmental, social security, and immigration, to name just a few. She also handled several state law areas through diversity jurisdiction, such as insurance law and contracts.
Polly served as a staff attorney in the Motions Unit at the Ninth Circuit for more than three years, a position which allowed her to work with each of the judges on the court. As a motions attorney, Polly orally presented dozens of cases each month to a panel of three judges, explaining the case and the proposed disposition she had drafted. Polly also has state court experience, having served as a briefing attorney to The Honorable Catherine Stone at the Texas Court of Appeals for the Fourth Judicial District, and as an extern to The Honorable Lloyd Doggett at the Texas Supreme Court.
In addition to working for courts, Polly worked for six years for two prominent national law firms—Akin, Gump, Strauss, Hauer & Feld and Sonnenschein, Nath & Rosenthal (now Dentons). While at these firms, Polly handled a number of trials and appeals, most notably high-exposure bad faith insurance trials and appeals for State Farm, USAA, and Allstate. She was often brought in to handle the appeal when another firm lost at trial. Polly won each of these appeals. Polly has extensive experience writing amicus curiae briefs in courts around the country to help shape the law that affected the firm’s clients.
Polly earned a Juris Doctor from the University of Texas at Austin, where she served as an editor on the Texas International Law Journal and a recipient of the Robert S. Strauss Presidential Scholarship. She studied at the Université Libre de Bruxelles and the University of London through Duke’s study abroad program. Polly is admitted to practice in California (2000), Texas (1993), the Northern District of California, the Western District of Texas, the Ninth Circuit, and the Fifth Circuit.
She is a member of the San Francisco, Fifth Circuit, and Ninth Circuit Bar Associations, and the Texas State Bar College.
Polly earned a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Colorado cum laude, with a double major in Marketing and International Business, and a minor in International Economics. She received many honors during her time there, including Phi Beta Kappa and the Golden Key Honor Society.
Susan Horst, Esq.
California Appellate Law Group
Susan Horst is the California Appellate Law Group’s writ specialist. For more than 31 years, Susan served as the writ attorney for Division One of the First District of the California Court of Appeal, in San Francisco. Susan is one of the only practicing attorneys in California to have devoted virtually her entire career to writs in the appellate courts.
As writ attorney in the First District, Susan evaluated thousands of pre- and post- trial writ petitions in all types of civil and criminal matters. In the process, she learned precisely what the justices on the Court of Appeal look for before taking the extraordinary step of granting writ relief — and what an opposing party needs to highlight to have the best shot at getting a petition denied.
Susan’s three decades at the Court of Appeal gave her both extensive writing experience and a wide-ranging knowledge of substantive law. Susan’s casework ran the gamut from business and commercial litigation, to personal injury and employment matters, to real estate, insurance, and products liability cases, to professional negligence, disqualification, and privilege issues. The procedural postures of the writ petitions she handled were equally wide-ranging, and included pleading defects and class certification, sealing of court records, discovery disputes, summary judgment, settlement, and enforcement of judgments.
Since retiring from her writ attorney position, Susan has devoted her professional time to consulting on writ petitions in the appellate courts, as well as trial court work in anticipation of writ relief. Susan also lectures widely on writ practice and procedure. She has presented seminars to the San Francisco City Attorney, District Attorney and Public Defender Offices, the State Bar of California, California Continuing Education of the Bar, The Rutter Group, PINCUS Professional Education, bar associations across California, and the Center for Judicial Education and Research. She is the co-author of Chapters for Continuing Education of the Bar publications, as well as training materials for numerous continuing education lectures.
Susan’s career at the Court of Appeal followed motion and jury trial skills she developed early on as an Assistant District Attorney in San Francisco. She holds her J.D. from the University of Santa Clara School of Law, where she graduated summa cum laude — even though she attended law school part-time at night, while working as a full-time administrator at Stanford University during the day. She also has her B.A. in English from Stanford.
In her spare time, Susan serves on the Executive Committee of the Litigation Section of the State Bar of California. She also volunteers on the Advisory Board of Advokids, a foster children’s advocacy group, and provides pro bono advice and representation through the Advokids Appellate Project.
Anna-Rose Mathieson, Esq.
California Appellate Law Group
Anna-Rose Mathieson co-manages the California Appellate Law Group, a thirteen-attorney appellate boutique based in San Francisco. In 2017 the Daily Journal selected Anna-Rose as one of the Top Women Attorneys in California and also selected her as one of the Top 40 Attorneys Under 40 in California. She served as a law clerk to Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg on the Supreme Court of the United States, and will teach Appellate Writing at Stanford Law School during Winter 2018.
Her broad range of experience helps Anna-Rose handle appeals on virtually any legal issue, including such varied topics as employment law, jurisdiction, antitrust, products liability, and constitutional law. She understands cutting-edge technology issues, having litigated significant copyright and trademark appeals. She has worked on criminal cases in both state and federal courts, and taught criminal law at the University of Michigan Law School. And she knows how to obtain review at the highest level, having authored U.S. Supreme Court merits briefs and petitions for certiorari on a wide range of issues.
Anna-Rose serves as the co-Editor-in-Chief of the ABA’s Appellate Practice Journal, on the Executive Committee of the Bar Association of San Francisco’s Appellate Section, and on the Amicus Committee of California Women Lawyers. She also serves on the Board of Directors of the Family Violence Appellate Project, and previously served as Co-President of FVAP’s New Leadership Council. She appears on radio, television, panels, and podcasts to discuss breaking issues of appellate and constitutional law, and writes articles for The Recorder, Daily Journal, California Litigation Review, and other legal publications.
Steven L Mayer, Esq.
Arnold & Porter
Steven Mayer focuses his practice on constitutional litigation and representing public entities. He is a Certified Specialist in Appellate Law certified by the State Bar of California Board of Legal Specialization.
Mr. Mayer has lectured to the Bar Association of San Francisco on new developments in appellate practice and is a past Chairman of the BASF Appellate Practice Section. He is a past President of the California Academy of Appellate Lawyers in 2014-15 and has been a member of the American Academy of Appellate Lawyers since 2009.
In 1974, Mr. Mayer served as Staff Attorney at the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. In 1975, he became the Assistant Supervising Staff Attorney, a position he held until he joined Howard Rice in November, 1975. He became a partner at Howard Rice in 1980, and practiced at that firm until it combined with Arnold & Porter in 2012. He then practiced as a partner at Arnold & Porter until 2014, when he became a Senior Counsel.
Mr. Mayer is currently listed in The Best Lawyers in America in the field of Appellate Law. He has been recognized as a Northern California Super Lawyer from 2004 through 2017.
Andrea Russi, Esq.
Horvitz & Levy LLP
Andrea Russi is an appellate attorney with experience in both state and federal court. She is Senior Counsel in the San Francisco office of Horvitz & Levy. She previously served for more than four years as a senior appellate court attorney for the California Court of Appeal, First District working for Presiding Justice Ignazio Ruvolo (retired).
Andrea worked for eight years as an Assistant United States Attorney in the Central District of California where she was a member of the criminal appeals section. As an AUSA, Andrea authored more than 40 appellate briefs and argued 20 cases before the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. She also reviewed and edited briefs drafted by other prosecutors and conducted monthly moot courts in preparation for oral arguments before the Ninth Circuit. Andrea was also a trial lawyer handling a range of criminal cases from indictment through trial.
Andrea spent six years at the University of California Berkeley School of Law where she was the Managing Director of two research and policy centers: the Chief Justice Earl Warren Institute for Law & Social Policy and the Berkeley Center for Criminal Justice. She acted as a Lecturer in Residence at Berkeley Law where she taught criminal procedure and as a Lecturer in Law at the University of Southern California Gould School of Law where she taught appellate advocacy.
Andrea was an associate at Latham & Watkins. She clerked on the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals for the Honorable David R. Thompson and on the United States District Court for the Central District of California for the Honorable William D. Keller.
Andrea graduated Phi Beta Kappa from the University of California, Berkeley. She graduated from the University of California, Los Angeles School of Law where she was Editor-in-Chief of the Law Review.
Andrea is co-chair of the Civic and Judicial Appointments Committee for the Queen’s Bench Bar Association with a mission of identifying and encouraging diversity in appointments to public office and the judiciary. Andrea is a also a board member and grade level coordinator for the Teen and Parent Service Organization (TAPS) where she organizes and supervises volunteer service projects by 20 high school students.
Gary A. Watt, Esq.
Gary serves as Chair of the firm’s Appellate Practice. He is a State Bar approved Certified Appellate Specialist, handling writs and appeals in all of the California appellate courts, including the California Supreme Court and the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. His practice also includes dispositive motions such as SLAPP, summary judgment, and post-trial motions. His appellate experience gives him unique insights into complex cases and esoteric disputes. He excels at issue spotting and arrives at thoughtful solutions to business problems. His practice includes risk management such as interpreting contracts, indemnity provisions, and more.
A passionate appellate lawyer and law professor, Gary has been on the faculty at U.C. Hastings College of the Law since 2001 teaching various appellate law courses and coaching intercollegiate moot court competition teams. Consistent with Hanson Bridgett’s commitment to pro bono work, Gary currently serves as Director of U.C. Hastings’ Ninth Circuit clinical program: the Hastings Appellate Project. As Director, he supervises law students in the pro bono legal representation of appellants. He is also a frequent lecturer at MCLE presentations throughout the Bay Area, and has taught hundreds of lawyers over the years on a vast array of appellate and litigation best practices.
Gary is also Chair of the Contra Costa County Bar Association’s appellate practice section. A prolific writer, Gary is a frequent contributor to the Daily Journal, The Recorder, and other legal publications, with over 75 published articles to date.
Greg E. Wolff, Esq.
After 31 years as a judicial attorney at the Court of Appeal and the California Supreme Court for Chief Justice Ronald M. George and as the Head of Chambers for Justice Carlos Moreno, Justice Goodwin Liu, and Justice Leondra Kruger, Greg Wolff now practices at the California Appellate Law Group.
As Supervisor of the Appellate Section of the Criminal Branch of the Los Angeles City Attorney’s Office, and in the Appellate Section of the Civil Branch, Mr. Wolff briefed and argued over 350 appeals and 100 writ proceedings. He also was an Adjunct Professor at UC Hastings College of the Law for 18 years, where he taught Moot Court and Legal Writing & Research.
In 1977, Mr. Wolff received his J.D. from Southwestern University School of Law, where he was an editor of the law review.
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