Board of Directors
Richard E. Drooyan, Chair
Partner, Munger Tolles & Olsen LLP
Prior to joining Munger Tolles & Olsen as a litigation partner, Mr. Drooyan was the Chief Assistant United States Attorney in the Central District of California, responsible for oversight and management of over 200 government lawyers and support staff in the Criminal, Civil and Tax Divisions. Mr. Drooyan has served as President of the Los Angeles Chapter of the Federal Bar Association, General Counsel of the Rampart Independent Review Panel, and Deputy Counsel of the Christopher Commission. A former member of the Boards of Ronald McDonald House Charities, the Inner City Law Center and the Lawyer's Counsel of CRF, Mr. Drooyan is currently on the Board of the Western Center on Law and Poverty and previously served on the Board of Trustees of Camp Ronald McDonald for Good Times.
Barbara Jackson Avery
Vice President for Student Affairs/Dean of Students, Occidental College
With over 20 years' experience in higher education, prior to her current role at Occidental College, Ms. Avery has served as Vice President for Student Affairs at Holy Names University, Dean of Students at Loyola Marymount University, Dean of Campus Life at Pomona College, and Assistant Dean at Thurgood Marshall College, University of California, San Diego. Ms. Avery is professionally active in the National Association of Student Personnel Administrators, and has presented at regional and national conferences on topics related to the unique work of student affairs in small liberal arts colleges, supervising the millennial worker, challenges facing women vice presidents in higher education, and creating a culture of care to support student success. Ms. Avery's expansive work in the community work has focused on supporting women's empowerment and foster youth.
Professor of Law, University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law
With a distinguished career in both academia and public administration, Professor Caplan served as the seventh dean of McGeorge Law School for nearly a decade. As of 2001, he returned to his academic roots to teach contracts and criminal law to students at McGeorge. Professor Caplan has been published in the Harvard Law Review, Yale Law Journal, Michigan Law Review, among others, as well as opinion-editorials for the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Los Angeles Times, and Washington Post. In addition to his academic career, which included teaching law at both George Washington University and the University of Arizona, he served as an Assistant U.S. Attorney in the District of Columbia, General Counsel for the Metropolitan Police of the District of Columbia, Director of the National Institute of Justice of the U.S. Department of Justice, Acting President of the Legal Services Corporation, and Deputy Director of the Federal Trade Commission’s Consumer Protection Bureau. Professor Caplan received his B.A., M.A. in Political Science, and J.D. from Northwestern University.
Former Attorney and Founding Partner of Allerdice and Denman
After more than 38 years of practicing law, first in the field of antitrust and trade regulation on behalf of worldwide clients (such as Mobil Oil and American Home Products), at the Wall Street law firm of Donovan Leisure Newton and Irvine, later as an entertainment lawyer on behalf of motion picture and television financiers such as Paramount Pictures Corporation as a staff attorney, as a Vice President for Theatrical Affairs at United Artists and finally as a founding partner of the law firm of Allderdice and Denman, Ms. Denman retired as a practicing lawyer. She now devotes her time and energy to various charitable activities for which she has a passion. She is a member of the Board of the International Fund for Animal Welfare and a member of the Partnership Council of the Humane Society of the United States. Ms. Denman has a strong and long time interest in assuring that abused and neglected children have effective legal representation and is honored to be a member of the Board for the Children’s Law Center. She received her B.A. from Vassar College in 1969 and graduated with honors from the George Washington University Law School in 1973.
Paul L. Freese, Jr.
Director of Litigation & Advocacy, Public Counsel
As Director of Litigation and Advocacy for Public Counsel, the public interest law office of the Los Angeles County and Beverly Hills Bar Associations and the largest provider of pro bono legal services in the United States, Mr. Freese supervises more than 30 attorneys and their staff. He previously served as Directing Attorney of the Homelessness Prevention Law Project and currently serves as Interim CEO of Public Counsel. Prior to joining Public Counsel, Mr. Freese was a litigation associate with the law firm of Perkins Coie. Mr. Freese serves on many committees, task forces and working groups focused upon the needs of the poor and marginalized. These include the ABA Commission on Homelessness & Poverty, the Board of Directors for the Legal Aid Association of California, the L.A. County Transition Age Youth subcommittee for the Mental Health Services Act, the Leadership Committee of the Emancipation Planning Partnership for L.A. County, the Juvenile Court Task Force of the Los Angeles County Bar Association (LACBA), Imagine L.A. and the Executive Committee of the LACBA Individual Rights Section. Mr. Freese was awarded the Antonia Hernandez Public Interest Award from UCLA School of Law and was commended by the County Commission for Children & Family Services for his contributions to efforts to assist the health and welfare of L.A.'s disadvantaged youth. He was also recognized with the Community Corazones Unidos Award for outstanding community service and received a commendation from the Commission for Public Social Services for policy work benefiting homeless individuals.
Executive Director, Children's Law Center of California
Ms. Heimov, a Certified Child Welfare Law Specialist, has been with Children's Law Center of California since 1992. She served as a staff attorney and later moved to a supervising attorney position, providing oversight and training to 30 plus case carrying attorneys while continuing to handle complex and high profile cases as needed. Immediately prior to assuming her present duties, Ms. Heimov, as Policy Director, was responsible for handling CLC's legislative and policy agenda, including drafting legislation and working closely with elected officials, their staff, and other advocates to support important legislative reforms. In addition to serving as CLC Policy Director, she was Project Director of the Home At Last Initiative funded by The Pew Charitable Trusts. Ms. Heimov chaired a countywide Task Force on Pregnant and Parenting Teens and is a founding member of the Task Force to End Homophobia in Foster Care. She serves on the Board of Directors of the National Association of Counsel for Children and on the National Advisory Board of the Children's Law Office Project. Ms. Heimov is a trials skills instructor for the National Institute of Trial Advocacy and regularly presents to the bench, attorneys, social workers, caregivers and law students on a multitude of topics related to the representation of abused and neglected children.
Rex S. Heinke
Partner, Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP
Mr. Heinke is head of the national appellate practice and Los Angeles litigation practice of Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP. He is a member of the California State Bar Board of Governors and Bet Tzedek's Board of Directors. Mr. Heinke has previously served as President of the Los Angeles County Bar Association, Chancery Club, the L.A. Copyright Society, Public Counsel, and the Los Angeles County Bar Foundation. He has also been a member of the California Judicial Council, the Board of Legal Aid Foundation of Los Angeles, the California State Bar's Advisory Committee on the Commission on Judicial Nominees Evaluation, and the California Supreme Court's Task Force on Multi-Jurisdictional Practice. Mr. Heinke is a fellow of the American and California Academies of Appellate Lawyers, and has received several awards, including a First Amendment Lifetime Achievement Award. He has been listed in The Best Lawyers in America since 1991 and Southern California Super Lawyers since its inception. Mr. Heinke has been named by Best Lawyers as the Los Angeles Appellate Lawyer of the Year for 2010, was recognized by the Los Angeles Business Journal as one of the Top 100 Los Angeles Lawyers for 2009, and received a ‘California Lawyer of the Year’ (CLAY) award from The California Lawyer in 2010.
Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher, Ret.
Tom Holliday recently retired as a Partner in the law firm of Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher, where he served as co-chair of the firm's Business Crimes and Investigations Practice Group, and was a co-Partner in Charge of the firm's Los Angeles office. Mr. Holliday is a Fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers and in 1997 received the Criminal Defense Lawyer of the Year Award from Century City Bar Association. He is listed among the Best Lawyers in America, as well as named among Lawdragon's 500 leading trial lawyers. Tom is strongly committed to giving back to the community. He is currently Chairman of the Board of Trustees of Clarkson University and is a member of the Board of Directors and Executive Committee of US Veterans' Initiative, an organization which provides housing and education for 3000 veterans a day. He also serves on the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) Memorial Foundation. Tom is a past Chair of the Board of Trustees of the Southwest Museum and also a past Chair of the Federal Bar Association.
Nancy Platt Jacoby
Nancy Jacoby Productions
Ms. Jacoby, an Emmy winning producer, served as MSNBC's Primetime Senior Executive Producer of all Special Reports and Documentaries and also oversaw Headliners and Legends with Matt Lauer, Home Page and many other programs. Ms. Jacoby has over 25 years of journalism experience in print and broadcast news and is considered a versatile leader in the media. She has won acclaim for her writing, directing, reporting, and producing, and has taught Journalism and Reporting at the Annenberg School at USC. In addition to news experience, Ms. Jacoby has been involved with a wide variety of entertainment ventures including feature films, movies of the week, entertainment, and reality-based programming. Ms. Jacoby also is active in various Los Angeles community activities, serving on the Bogart Labs Auxiliary Board at Children's Hospital of Los Angeles, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art Docent Council, the MOCA Projects Council, and as a Board Member of the University of Judaism Fine Arts Council.
Barbara Yanow Johnson
Johnson Law/Workplace Consulting
Barbara Johnson is a full time neutral, conducting workplace Investigations. She also serves as an Administrator of the Project Labor Agreement between organized labor and LAX covering over a billion dollars of new construction. Ms. Johnson also serves as a Hearing Officer for the County of Los Angeles Civil Service Commission, and serves on the Los Angeles Police Department Board of Rights. She has served as President of the Legal Aid Foundation of Los Angeles, Chair of the National Senior Citizens Law Center, and immediate past Chair of the State Bar IOLTA Program. Ms. Johnson served for eight years as Chief Assistant Attorney General at the California Department of Justice, and prior to that was for six years Special Assistant to the LA County District Attorney.
Los Angeles County Probation Commission
Ms. Kaplan was one of the three founding law directors of Dependency Court Legal Services, now known as Children's Law Center of California. She left CLC in 1998 to accept an appointment as a juvenile court referee and now serves as a commissioner on the Los Angles County Probation Commission, appointed by Los Angeles County Supervisor Yaroslavsky. Ms. Kaplan has long been an advocate for children's rights, starting with her career with the Los Angeles Public Defender's Office as a rookie attorney assigned to the juvenile division. Ms. Kaplan is the 2003 recipient of the Public Counsel Community Leadership Award for her work on behalf of Los Angeles County's at-risk children.
Neal Kaufman, MD, MPH
Commissioner, First 5 LA
Neal Kaufman, MD, MPH, is Co-Founder of the UCLA Center for Healthier Children, Families and Communities, Professor of Pediatrics and Public Health at the University of California, Los Angeles, and Commissioner on the First 5 LA Commission. Dr. Kaufman, an experienced clinician and educator, has also been a leader in local, state and national efforts to improve the health of vulnerable populations. He is an expert in a range of areas including developing methods of educating patients and healthcare providers and delivering healthcare in a variety of settings. His 27 year career in academic Pediatrics included being the medical director of programs serving vulnerable children and their families, providing school-linked health and developmental services, developing a variety of programs for underserved children, and creating county-wide systems of healthcare for children in foster care. In 2004, Dr. Kaufman founded DPS Health to enhance the capacity of healthcare providers to improve the health of their patients through research-proven, online self-management support interventions.
Edward P. Lazarus
Chief of Staff, Federal Communications Commission
After receiving his JD from Yale University, Mr. Lazarus served as a law clerk to the Honorable William A. Norris on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit and thereafter to Associate Justice Harry A. Blackmun on the U.S. Supreme Court. As a practitioner, Mr. Lazarus founded Akin Gump's national appellate practice and was a member of the firm's management committee. Most recently, Mr. Lazarus was appointed as Chief of Staff for the Federal Communications Commission. Mr. Lazarus's writing has appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Los Angeles Times, The New Republic, and The Atlantic Monthly, among other venues. He is also the author of two highly acclaimed books: Black Hills/White Justice: The Sioux Nation vs. the United States, 1775 to the Present and Closed Chambers: The Rise, Fall and Future of the Supreme Court. Mr. Lazarus also serves on several boards of directors, including Public Counsel.
Joseph D. Mandel
Vice Chancellor – Legal Affairs Emeritus, University of California Los Angeles
As Vice Chancellor from 1991 until his retirement in 2007, Mr. Mandel was responsible for managing the legal affairs of the UCLA campus. Mr. Mandel was also an attorney in the law firm of Tuttle & Taylor and the Vice President, General Counsel, and Secretary of Natomas Company. Mr. Mandel has been active on a wide range of associations, committees, and boards of directors, including serving as President of the Los Angeles County Bar Association, President of the Legal Aid Foundation of Los Angeles, and as President of the Yale Law School Association. Mr. Mandel has been honored for his long standing commitment to public service, and has received the Anti-Defamation League's Stanley Mosk Liberty Through Justice Award, the Los Angeles County Bar Association's Shattuck-Price Award, Lambda Legal Defense and Education Fund's West Coast Liberty Award, Public Counsel's Community Service Award, as well as the Legal Aid Foundation of Los Angeles's Maynard Toll Award for his contribution to providing legal services for low income persons. Mr. Mandel also recently completed four years of service as President of the Western Justice Center Foundation, an organization that provides, among other things, violence prevention and conflict resolution education to school children grades 4 through 12.
Children's Action Network
Jennifer Perry has been Executive Director of the Children's Action Network since its inception. The organization is now involved in a campaign devoted to raising awareness about the 119,000 children in this country waiting for adoptive homes, and has been honored by the Congressional Coalition on Adoption. Ms. Perry currently serves on the Board of Directors of the North American Council on Adoptable Children and is the mother of two adopted children.
Latham & Watkins LLP (Retired)
After practicing law as an associate and a partner in the Los Angeles office of Latham & Watkins since 1974, Mr. Pfister retired from Latham in January 2006. Mr. Pfister specialized in employment litigation on behalf of management and represented employers in a broad range of state and federal court lawsuits, including the defense and resolution of major class action discrimination and wage and hour cases throughout the country. Mr. Pfister is a Fellow of the American College of Labor and Employment Lawyers, is named in The Best Lawyers in America, and has been cited by Chambers and Partners' as a leading California employment attorney. He has been a frequent lecturer at national seminars on employment law issues. Mr. Pfister has also been active in community service. He also serves on the Boards of Trustees of the Harvard-Westlake School, the Norton Simon Museum, and The Rape Foundation. He previously served on the Boards of the Constitutional Rights Foundation and the Legal Aid Foundation of Los Angeles.
Phillips Jessner LLP
Patricia Phillips is a fellow of the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers and is certified by the State Bar of California as a Family Law Specialist, handling issues relating to the dissolution of marriage, including child custody and support issues. Ms Phillips frequently serves as a mediator and arbitrator for business, employment, and family matters. She is a member of various boards, including the Board of Maternal and Child Health Access and Loyola Law School Board of Visitors. She is a frequent lecturer and writer on family law issues, methods of dispute resolution, and professionalism. Ms. Phillips was the first woman to be elected President of the Los Angeles County Bar Association and received its highest award, the Shattuck-Price Award. She has received numerous awards, including the ACLU Pro Bono Advocacy Award and most recently was honored for her community service by Maternal and Child Health Access and the Levitt & Quinn Family Law Center.
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