Happy New Year to all our members!
In December 2018, members of the Leo A. Deegan Inn of Court participated in community outreach efforts as follows:
From mid-November 2018 to the present, members participated as Money Elves for The Elves Program, a program of Riverside County Bar Foundation, Inc., the 501(c)(3) charitable arm of Riverside County Bar Association (RCBA). All Inn members are required to be members of RCBA and MCLE credits at Inn meetings are provided by RCBA. Money Elves provide the funds utilized by The Elves Program to shop for gifts requested by needy families in Riverside County. The Elves Program was able to assist sixty-nine (69) families in Riverside County with the assistance of Leo A. Deegan Inn of Court’s generous members, including, but not limited to Hon. Meredith Jury (Ret.), Diana Renteria, Stefanie Field (Gresham & Savage) Megan Demshki (Aitken Aitken Cohn), and Rabia Chaudhry (Varner & Brandt).
On December 10, 2018, members participated as Shopping Elves and met at the K-Mart, located at 7840 Limonite Avenue, Riverside, California, beginning at 5:00 p.m. Each Shopping Elf was provided a shopping list for a family chosen by former RCBA president and Head Elf, Brian Pearcy and a set amount of funds to fulfill the shopping lists of the family. At least sixty families were assisted and, depending on how quickly each elf shopped, they could shop for multiple families.
Inn President L. Alexandra Fong and Inn members Diana Renteria and Erica Alfaro (with her family) were spotted shopping. Additional members may have also been present but as each elf came at different times, it was difficult to find them all.
On December 12, 2018 and December 13, 2018, members participated as Wrapping Elves and met at RCBA’s building, located at 4129 Main Street, Riverside, California, beginning at 4:00 p.m.
Inn President L. Alexandra Fong and Inn members Aaron Chandler (with his family), Megan Demshki, Rabia Chaudhry, Erica Alfaro, and Goushia Farook were spotted wrapping gifts. Additional members may have also been present, but as each elf came at different times and there were multiple rooms in which gifts were wrapped, it was hard to spot them all.
On December 13, 2018, Varner & Brandt LLP, the law firm where Inn member Rabia Chaudhry is employed as an associate attorney, announced that, in coordination with the Inn of Court, RCBA Foundation and the RCBA Barristers, Varner & Brandt LLP and Stater Bros. Markets teamed up to donate all the Stater Bros. gifts cards that were typically purchased by the RCBA Foundation in previous years to help the families with Christmas dinner! These efforts assisted in the RCBA Foundation sponsoring a record number of families this year than in the past.
The Leo A. Deegan Inn of Court members enjoyed spreading holiday cheer in December 2018.
As you may recall, Emeritus member David G. Moore passed away in August 2018 (see blog post dated August 22, 2018). The Leo A. Deegan Inn of Court donated $500 to the Semper Fi Foundation, in honor of our Emeritus member, as requested by his family.
Team John Mortimer discussed Little Red Riding Hood by Charles Perrault in its presentation Who’s Afraid of the Big Bad Wolf? The team members are Judicial Master Ken Fernandez, Attorney Master Abram Feuerstein, Attorney Master and Emeritus Peter Mort, Barrister Joshlynn Pulliam, Barrister Gabriel White, Barrister K. Fredric Willis, Associate Laurie Burns and Associate Kiki Manti Engel.
Prior to the commencement of their presentation, Attorney Master and Emeritus Peter Mort regaled the audience as Horace Rumpole of Rumpole of the Bailey, John Mortimer’s most famous work.
Hon. Ken Fernandez led the discussion with a summary of the classic fairy tale, which does not have the happy ending that one is used to….in this fairy tale, grandmother and Little Red Riding Hood die in this tale. He summarized the three segments of the presentation, which were performed in teams of two to five.
The first segment was A Glimpse Through The Looking Glass, a juvenile dependency detention hearing which occurred immediately after the events surrounding Red’s death. County of Mortimer’s Child Protective Services sought to detain Red’s sisters, Teenage Red and Preschool Red, from Mother Hood, who allowed her daughter to travel alone through the forest, where she met her untlmely death. Judicial Master Ken Fernandez, Attorney Master L. Alexandra Fong (a guest “team member" for this skit), Barrister Gabriel White, and Associate Kiki Manti Engel portrayed the attorneys and Mother Hood in this vignette.
After this vignette, two commercials were shown with elements of Little Red Riding Hood - the first, a 1980s-era commercial for Sugar Free Dr. Pepper; the second, a 1990s-era commercial for Honey Nut Cheerios.
The second segment was broken into two video clips. The first clip featured Barrister K. Fredric Willis and Associate Kiki Manti Engel, as they showed a client consultation, involving BB Wolf, Inc. dba A Place for Grandma, a nursing home where grandmother was staying. The second clip featured Attorney Master Abram Feuerstein, Barrister K. Fredric Willis and Associate Kiki Manti Engel as they discussed the difficulties they face when dealing with unpopular clients in their practice.
A third commercial was shown, featuring an alarm called “Wolf Alert.” This commercial was voiced by Attorney Master Abram Feuerstein and featured Little Red Riding Hood and Grandma.
The third segment of the presentation discussed aggravating and mitigating factors that went into determining a prison sentence for a crime that had an indeterminate sentence. The audience was to assume that Red and Grandma survived and the Big Bad Wolf had been convicted of physical elder abuse and assault with the intent to commit great bodily injury. Fabulous prizes were handed out to those audience members who were able to correctly identify aggravating and mitigating factors.
After the presentation concluded, votes were cast as to how Team John Mortimer ranked for its presentation on Little Red Riding Hood by Charles Perrault. Results of the votes will be announced at the September 2019 Meeting of the Leo A. Deegan Inn of Court.
On December 5, 2018, the second meeting of the Leo A. Deegan American Inn of Court was held. President L. Alexandra Fong welcomed the members and also introduced the judicial officers who accepted the Inn’s invitation to join us for our Judicial Theme Night, as part of the Inn’s professional outreach efforts. These judicial officers are as follows:
Hon. Carol Codrington, Associate Justice of the California Court of Appeal, Fourth Appellate District, Division Two
Hon. John Vineyard, Assistant Presiding Judge of the Superior Court of the State of California, County of Riverside
Hon. Roger Luebs, Judge of the Superior Court of the State of California, County of Riverside
Hon. Jeffrey Prevost, Judge of the Superior Court of the State of California, County of Riverside
Hon. Chris Harmon, Judge of the Superior Court of the State of California, County of Riverside
Hon. Kira Klatchko, Judge of the Superior Court of the State of California, County of Riverside
Hon. Belinda Handy, Commissioner of the Superior Court of the State of California, County of Riverside
Hon. Mickie Reed, Commissioner of the Superior Court of the State of California, County of Riverside
Ms. Fong also reminded members of the Riverside County Bar Association’s Elves Program, which raises funds for needy families for the holidays. Shopping for presents occurs on Monday, December 10, 2018 at the K-Mart on Limonite Avenue, Riverside, California, starting at 6 p.m. Wrapping presents occurs on Wednesday, December 12, 2018 and Thursday, December 13, 2018 at RCBA, 4129 Main Street, First Floor (Board Room), Riverside, California, starting at 4 p.m. Delivery occurs after December 14, 2018.
Any inquiries regarding the Elves Program should be made to RCBA at email@example.com.
Team Henry Fielding discussed Rapunzel by The Brothers Grimm in their presentation Rapunzel: A Hairy Tale. The team members are Judicial Master Randall Stamen, Attorney Master Stefanie Field, Attorney Master Eric Keen, Barrister Mark Mellor, Barrister Jean-Simon Serrano, Associate Kristine Borgia and Associate Traci Luis.
Hon. Randall Stamen led off the discussion with a presentation about their team namesake and an introduction into the classic fairy tale…it really is as grim as one would expect from The Brothers Grimm. Three vignettes were performed in teams of two to three members. The first vignette found Barrister Jean-Simon Serrano as The Witch from Rapunzel with flowing red hair and the typical witch’s hat, with a conical crown and a wide brim. The Witch consulted with Barrister Mark Mellor about options in connection with various letters received from the county, while this attorney made sexual advances towards The Witch. Members of the audience were involved in the discussion.
The second vignette showcased Attorney Master Stefanie Field and Attorney Master Eric Keen (who will take his oath of office as a judge on October 25, 2018). They were engaged in a pre-trial conference, discussing how to get evidence obtained illegally (a recorded conversation between The Witch and Rapunzel’s birth mother) into the criminal case involving The Witch. Members of the audience were involved in the discussion.
The third vignette involved Barrister Jean-Simon Serrano, Associate Kristine Borgia and Associate Traci Luis. In this vignette, Mr. Serrano was The Prince, being deposed by The Witch’s attorney, Ms. Luis, who was being obstructed with every question posed by The Prince’s attorney, Ms. Borgia. A discussion was held as to what types of sanctions could be imposed upon the parties for their conduct at the deposition. Members of the audience were involved in the discussion.
After the presentation concluded, votes were cast as to how Team Henry Fielding ranked for its presentation on Rapunzel by The Brothers Grimm. Results of the votes will be announced at the September 2019 Meeting of the Leo A. Deegan Inn of Court.
On October 24, 2018, the first dinner meeting and MCLE presentation for the Leo A. Deegan Inn of Court was held. President L. Alexandra Fong welcomed Inn members to the meeting and discussed a few Inn matters as follows:
Congratulations to Irma Asberry for being named as the Justice Champion by the Fair Housing Council of Riverside County, Inc.
Congratulations to Commissioner Kenneth Fernandez and Attorney Eric Keen for being appointed as Judges of the Riverside Superior Court
Reminder to RSVP with your dinner selection and any guest speakers at least one week prior to the team presentation
Reminder that each team should provide the title and type of MCLE to the Inn President and Administrator at least one week prior to that team’s presentation for preparation of MCLE certificates and advertisement for the CLE
Guest speakers are welcome for any team presentation as long as the team covers the $35 per person for dinner
In March 2019, the Deegan Inn will host an Open House, where current members of the Inn may invite attorneys or judicial officers whom they believe would be interested in joining the Inn for the next program year. The cost for dinner is $35 per person
Immediately following these announcements, Team Henry Fielding began its presentation.
The Leo A. Deegan Inn of Court would like to congratulate two of its members for their appointments as judges of the Riverside Superior Court!
Kenneth J. Fernandez, 52, of Anaheim, has been appointed to a judgeship in the Riverside County Superior Court. Fernandez has served as a commissioner at the Riverside County Superior Court since 2004. He served as a deputy district attorney at the Riverside County District Attorney’s Office from 1993 to 2004. Fernandez earned a Juris Doctor degree from the University of California, Davis School of Law and a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of California, Berkeley. He fills the vacancy of a new position created on July 1, 2018. Fernandez is a Democrat.
Eric A. Keen, 47, of Riverside, has been appointed to a judgeship in the Riverside County Superior Court. Keen has served as supervising deputy public defender at the Riverside County Public Defender’s Office since 2008, where he has served in several positions since 1997. He was an associate at Stephen H. Tyler, A Professional Law Corporation from 1995 to 1997. Keen earned a Juris Doctor degree from the Western State University College of Law, a Master of Arts degree from the University of Redlands and a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of California, Riverside. He fills the vacancy created by the retirement of Judge Charles E. Stafford. Keen is a Republican.
Fair Housing Council of Riverside County Inc. honors Riverside Superior Court Judge Irma Poole Asberry
On October 4, 2018, Fair Housing Council of Riverside County Inc. will honor Riverside Superior Court Judge (and Leo A. Deegan Inn of Court Judicial Master) Irma Poole Asberry as the Justice Champion. She, along with 7 other recipients in other categories, will be recognized at the Sixteenth Annual Champions For Justice Awards Banquet, held at the Riverside Convention Center.
Reservations may be made here.
On September 26, 2018, President L. Alexandra Fong welcomed the new members of the Leo A. Deegan Inn of Court (“Deegan Inn”) at the New Member Orientation, held at 5:45 p.m.. The Attorney Masters of the Deegan Inn met and voted to approve the amended bylaws at 6:00 p.m.
The orientation began at approximately 6:20 p.m. where all members of the Deegan Inn were welcomed. Ms. Fong began the orientation by announcing the Board’s decision to honor two past members and founders of the Deegan Inn with Emeritus Status - The Honorable Robert J. Timlin was posthumously awarded this honor. Mrs. Caroline Timlin, Judge Timlin’s widow, was present to accept this honor.
Guest speaker and founding member, Stanley Orrock, was also awarded this honor. Mr. Orrock spoke about the founding of the Deegan Inn, including Judge TImlin’s legacy in its creation and the ideals of the American Inns of Court. After this rousing speech, Ms. Fong discussed the Welcome Packet that each member of the Deegan Inn received, providing them with information about the Deegan Inn and the American Inns of Court.
Ms. Fong announced the winner of the Hon. Douglas E. Weathers Honorary Member Award - Hon. Meredith Jury, U.S. Bankruptcy Judge (Retired). Judge Jury accepted the award and advised the members that she wanted to be active in the Inn.
Ms. Fong announced the best team presentation winner - Team John Morton - for their presentation on Combating Human Trafficking: The Human and Legal Dimensions of the Crisis. Team Morton is comprised of Judicial Master Sherri Pym, Judicial Master Jennifer Gerard, Attorney Master Marlene Allen, Attorney Master Yoginee Braslaw, Attorney Master Abram Feuerstein, Attorney Master Nicholas Firetag, Attorney Master L. Alexandra Fong, Barrister Kelly Moran, Barrister Dani Mouri, and Associate Rebecca McKee.
Ms. Fong announced the theme for the year - fairytales - and the team names - writers who are also attorneys.
The judicial masters of each team gathered to pick their team name, fairytale, and presentation date. They are identified as follows:
Team Henry Fielding, led by the Hon. Randall Stamen, presents on Rapunzel (Brothers Grimm) on October 24, 2018.
Team John Mortimer, led by Hon. Kenneth Fernandez, presents on Little Red Riding Hood (Charles Perrault) on December 5, 2018.
Team Erle Stanley Gardner, led by Hon. Jacqueline Jackson, presents on Cinderella (Brothers Grimm) on January 23, 2019.
Team Washington Irving, led by Hon. Irma Asberry, presents on Jack and the Beanstalk (Joseph Jacobs) on March 27, 2019.
Team Franz Kafka, led by Hon. Bambi Moyer, Hon. H.H. Shashi Kewalramani, and Hon. Meredith Jury, presents on Snow White (Brothers Grimm) on April 24, 2019.
Team Louis Auchincloss, led by Hon. Dorothy McLaughlin and Hon. Jennifer Gerard, presents on their community service project on May 22, 2019.
Deegan Inn members were reminded to meet with their teams at least once a month, before and after their team presents.
The meeting adjourned at approximately 7:15 p.m.
It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of Leo A. Deegan Inn of Court Emeritus member David G. Moore.
His obituary may be read here.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the Semper Fi Fund, Box 555193, Camp Pendleton, CA 92055-5193. (www.semperfifund.org) or a charity of the donor’s choise. A gathering to celebrate David's life will take place on Sunday, September 9 at 5 p.m. at the Riverside Art Museum, 3425 Mission Inn Avenue.
On this date, Team Robert Paine presented on the community service projects that they participated in throughout the Inn year. The title of their MCLE is "Children and the Law."
Team Robert Paine is comprised of Judicial Master Jacqueline Jackson, Attorney Master D.W. Duke, Attorney Master Stefanie Field, Attorney Master Eric Keen, Attorney Master John Michels, Attorney Master Julianna Tillquist, Barrister Melissa Cushman, Barrister Diane Wiesmann, and Associate Joshlynn Pulliam.
Team Robert Paine engaged in a mentorship program at Mira Loma Middle School. The desire for the kids to interact with positive role models was strong and the faculty advisor was torn between having the team work with youth who had a history of trouble and those who were excelling. The team decided to run programs for both groups of students, meeting bi-weekly with each group. For youth in the Personal Social Responsibility program, the team answered questions about their education and backgrounds, educated them on the legal system and what lawyers do, and the consequences of making poor choices. For the other students, the team created a mock trial club that was open to all students and helped them prepare a mock trial presentation based on Goldilocks and the Three Bears. Both groups of students toured the courts and were able to experience an actual trial. They learned about the history of the Historic Courthouse from Judge Vineyard and asked questions of the courtroom personnel about their jobs.
Guest presenters, Jorge Sanchez and Wendy Eccles, teachers at Mira Loma Middle School, discussed the impact of the community service project on their students.
At this final meeting of the 2017-2018 Inn year, the Inn presented awards to members of the legal community for their professional accomplishments and contributions to the legal community. The Elwood Rich Award, which honors an outstanding jurist, was presented to the Hon. L. Jackson “Jack” Lucky IV. Unfortunately, Judge Lucky was ill and not able to accept his award in person.
The Terry A. Bridges Award, which honors an outstanding attorney, was presented to Paul Grech of Grech and Packer. John Michels, former President of the Inn, presented the award to Mr. Grech, who graciously accepted the award. Mr. Grech has been practicing in our community for over 35 years and is currently serving as Chair of the Judicial Evaluation Committee of the Riverside County Bar Association.
The Inn also recognized two outstanding younger attorneys for their professionalism and dedication to the legal community with the Biddle Book Award. The Biddle Book Award was awarded to Aaron Chandler, deputy city attorney for the City of Riverside, and Megan Demshki, an associate at Aitken Aitken Cohn. The Hon. Jacqueline Jackson, President of the Inn, chose the book "In Our Defense" by Ellen Alderman and Caroline Kennedy, as the award. Unfortunately, neither honoree was present to accept their award.
Congratulations to all winners.
An election was held to fill a vacant Board member seat and Abram Feuerstein, Assistant U.S. Trustee (Bankruptcy) for the Central District of California, was selected by the membership. Congratulations Abram!
President-Elect L. Alexandra Fong presented an award to President Jacqueline C. Jackson to thank her for her service to the Inn as president for the 2017-2018 year.
On this date, Team John Morton presented on the community service projects that they participated in throughout the Inn year. The title of their MCLE is "Combating Human Trafficking: The Human and Legal Dimensions of the Crisis."
Team John Morton is comprised of Judicial Master Sherri Pym, Judicial Master Jennifer Gerard, Attorney Master Marlene Allen, Attorney Master Yoginee Braslaw, Attorney Master Abram Feuerstein, Attorney Master Nicholas Firetag, Attorney Master L. Alexandra Fong, Barrister Kelly Moran, Barrister Dani Mouri, and Associate Rebecca McKee.
Team Morton began their presentation with a tribute to their team namesake, a signer of the Declaration of Independence. Attorney Master L. Alexandra Fong produced a slide show of the team namesake and provided his biography, set to the instrumental version of My Country Tis of Thee (America), recorded by the Boston Pops Orchestra, led by conductor Arthur Fiedler, circa 1938.
During the dinner, the team showed a slide show of their community service project - Human Trafficking. Attorney Master L. Alexandra Fong produced the slide show, which showcased Rebirth Homes, the only home in the Inland Empire dedicated to adult survivors of human trafficking. The slide show also included information concerning the schools in Riverside and San Bernardino counties where the team presented on Human Trafficking with Nancy Aguirre, Criminal Intelligence Analyst from the Riverside County Sheriff's Department and Opal Singleton, CEO of Million Kids, an organization devoted to stopping human trafficking. The slide show was set to George Gershwin's "Summertime" as performed by Simon Gale and the Vienna Symphonic Rock Orchestra, circa 2012 and set on a loop to play during dinner.
Four guest speakers assisted with the team's presentation. Ms. Aguirre provided information concerning human trafficking in Riverside County, which included both aspects of human trafficking - labor trafficking and sex trafficking. Ms. Singleton discussed the impacts of social media on human trafficking. Debbie Martis, CEO and founder of Rebirth Homes, and a human trafficking survivor currently living at Rebirth Homes, gave inspirational speeches that had the audience in tears.
On this date, Team Matthew Thornton presents on the First Amendment - Right to Peaceably Assemble
Team Matthew Thornton is comprised of Judicial Master Bambi Moyer, Judicial Master Randall Stamen, Barrister Elisabeth Lord, Barrister Trent Packer, Associate Megan Demshki, Associate Stefanie Gutierrez, Associate Emily Meeson, Associate Taylor Bristol Warner, and Associate Gabriel White.
Team Thornton presented on historical cases involving this topic. The team began their presentation with a "call for justice for Matt" as Judicial Master Moyer led the presentation. The team was served with a gang injunction by a deputy district attorney and, at the end of their presentation, were arrested for violating the injunction.
Bandanas depicting the American flag were provided to all members of the Inn.
Congratulations to the team!
On February 21, 2018, the Inland Empire Chapters of the American Inns of Court welcomed Los Angeles based attorney, Carl E. Douglas, as the keynote speaker for the joint Inns meeting, hosted by the Leo A. Deegan Inn of Court (Riverside) and held at the California Citrus State Historic Park in Riverside, California.
The Leo A. Deegan would like to thank our sponsors for their generous contributions: Rizio Law Firm (Platinum Sponsor - $1000), Holstrom Block & Parke, APLC (Platinum Sponsor - $1000), A Better Community Counseling (Silver Sponsor - $500), Best Best & Krieger LLP (Silver Sponsor - $500), Aitken Aitken Cohn (Bronze Sponsor - $100), and Thompson & Colegate LLP (Bronze Sponsor - $100).
The program began with an introduction by the Honorable Jacqueline C. Jackson, President of the Leo A. Deegan Inn of Court. L. Alexandra Fong, President-Elect of the Leo A. Deegan Inn of Court, welcomed our honored guests and dignitaries.
Hors d'oeuvres and dinner were catered by Maddilicious Cafe & Catering, the preferred caterer of the venue. A no-host bar was also provided. Hors d'ouevres included mini peppers with sausage and ricotta, crostini with goat cheese and fig jam, mushrooms stuffed with gourmet cheese and spinach, along with assorted fruits & cheese, crackers & crostini, dips, and bread. Dinner options included tri-tip with java bourbon sauce and a lasagna roll for our vegetarian companions. Diners had the option of red wine, white wine, or sparkling cider to accompany their meal.
The presentation began with an introduction by Robyn Lewis, Past President of the Leo A. Deegan Inn of Court. Mr. Douglas presented "7 Tips You Didn't Learn in Law School." The Honorable Carol Codrington, Associate Justice of the Fourth District Court of Appeals, Division Two asked various questions of Mr. Douglas which had been provided by the Inn members.
At the conclusion of the program, Judge Jackson announced how the gift bottles of wine and floral arrangements at each table would be distributed. Congratulations to those who won these items.
The Leo A. Deegan Inn of Court would like to thank our sponsors for their generosity, which helped defray the costs of the joint inn meeting of the Inland Empire Chapters of the American Inns of Court.
The venue costs were defrayed by the platinum sponsorship of the Rizio Law Firm. The wine provided during the dinner program - and the gift bottles - were provided as a result of the platinum sponsorship by Holstrom Block & Parke, APLC. For those non-alcoholic drinkers, Martinelli's Sparkling Cider, as well as the printing costs for the programs and sponsor board, were provided as a result of the silver sponsorship of A Better Community Counseling. Floral arrangements, which were given away to guests, were provided as a result of the silver sponsorship of Best Best & Krieger LLP. The bronze sponsorships by Aitken Aitken Cohn and Thompson & Colegate helped defray additional costs for the event.