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News & Notes e-Newsletter

A quarterly publication of the Sacramento Chapter of the FBA
Fall 2017
In this issue: 
President's Message
By: Avalon Johnson Fitzgerald
 
It was a great summer for the Sacramento Chapter.  In July, we hosted our annual Supreme Court Year in Review at the Citizen Hotel in downtown Sacramento.  We are incredibly grateful to Professors Clark Kelso and Leslie Jacobs for the time and effort they put in to making this year’s presentation both informative and entertaining.   Also in July, I was lucky enough to attend the Ninth Circuit Judicial Conference in San Francisco on behalf of the Sacramento Chapter.  In addition to enjoying the excellent programming, I represented our chapter at the FBA Ninth Circuit Leaders Meeting.  This meeting, held every year at the Ninth Circuit Judicial Conference, provides an opportunity for chapter leaders across the Ninth Circuit to share ideas and feedback about their chapters’ successes, areas for growth, and struggles.  Not only was I proud to report on our many successes, I believe our chapter will benefit from many of the ideas that other chapter leaders shared.
 
In August, we received exciting news from the Federal Bar Association national organization: the Sacramento Chapter is being honored with two awards at the FBA’s Annual Meeting and Convention in Atlanta, Georgia.  Out of 107 chapters nationwide, we were one of fourteen honored with the prestigious Chapter Activity Presidential Excellence Award.  This award recognizes the exceptional programming that our organization has put on in the last year, from June 2016 to June 2017.  We also received the Meritorious Newsletter Award, recognizing our News & Notes as an outstanding newsletter.  Twelve chapters nationwide received this award.  Thank you to all of our board members, and particularly Tom Woods (President 2016), Julie Yap (2016 Programs Co-Chair), Steve Duvernay (2016-17 Programs Co-Chair), Chi Soo Kim (2016 Newsletter Editor), and Aly Bivins (2017 Newsletter Editor), for their dedication to our organization. 
 
Our busy summer has come to an end, and we are looking forward to an equally action-packed fall.  First, on October 19, we have a free CLE event, Executive Order 9066: Difficult Choices with Constitutional Dimensions. This year is the 75th anniversary of the issuance of Executive Order 9066.  During World War II, pursuant to this Executive Order signed by President Roosevelt, nearly 117,000 persons of Japanese descent, two thirds of whom were US citizens, were forced to leave their homes and possessions on two weeks' notice and were incarcerated in ten desolate sites in the interior of the United States.  There is no one story of the impact this had on Japanese Americans. There are myriad stories; they are complex and nuanced. Come on October 19th as United States District Judge Kimberly J. Mueller; Dr. Satsuki Ina, professor emeritus, California State University, and producer of two award-winning documentary films about the incarceration; and Barbara Takei, expert and author on Tule Lake, and the CFO of the Tule Lake Committee, talk about the difficult choices Japanese Americans faced in response to their incarceration. Panelists will review constitutional questions raised by the Executive Order and subsequent removal orders, including the Korematsu case, citizenship renunciation considerations, and the Tule Lake protests, among other aspects of this challenging period in our nation’s history.  The event will be followed by a complimentary reception. 

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Supreme Court Year in Review 2017
By:  Steve Duvernay
 
On July 27, 2017, the FBA Sacramento held its annual Supreme Court Year in Review in the Metropolitan Terrace of the Citizen Hotel in downtown Sacramento. Over 100 members of the bench and bar were on hand for a lively discussion, as Professors Leslie Gielow Jacobs and J. Clark Kelso of the University of Pacific McGeorge School of Law provided a candid assessment of the key decisions rendered by the United States Supreme Court during last year’s term, including: Sessions v. Morales Santana (citizenship), Cooper v. Harris (redistricing), Trinity Lutheran Church of Columbia, Inc. v. Comer (free exercise), and Buck v. Davis (death penalty). Professors Jacobs and Kelso then previewed what to expect as the Court heads into its first full term with Justice Gorsuch on the bench.
 

  
Professor Clark Kelso graduated from Columbia Law School and clerked for Justice Anthony Kennedy when he served on the Ninth Circuit United States Court of Appeals.  Professor Kelso teaches courses on remedies and health law at the McGeorge School of Law.
Professor Leslie Jacobs graduated from University of Michigan School of Law and clerked for Supreme Court Justice Lewis F. Powell, Jr.  Professor Jacobs teaches courses on remedies and constitutional law.
Past President Profile: Alex Medina
By: Aly Bivins




 
Alex Medina began his term as President of the Sacramento Chapter of the Federal Bar Association by issuing two executive orders: The first implemented a mandatory taco bar at every FBA board meeting; the second pledged to buy drinks if an FBA board meeting exceeded one hour (under his watch, it never did).  Mr. Medina maintained this theme of efficiency throughout his presidency.  “People who practice in federal court are busy,” he said.  He recognized FBA Sacramento could best serve these busy practitioners by focusing on three things: (1) contact with judges and other federal practitioners, (2) continuing legal education relevant to federal practice, and (3) access to the Eastern District Conference.  Mr. Medina worked to ensure FBA members could capitalize on these benefits.  Indeed, during his presidency, FBA Sacramento sponsored a CLE focusing on bankruptcy practice for non-bankruptcy practitioners and hosted a panel discussion on the details of federal practice involving United States Magistrate Judge Carolyn Delaney, former United States Attorney Chuck Stevens, and DLA Piper partner Todd Noonan. 

Mr. Medina recalls his FBA service not as his one year as president, but as the culmination of six years serving on the FBA Sacramento board.  He joined in 2006 as a member of the Programs Committee under then-president Candice Fields.  Jean Hobler, another former FBA Sacramento president, encouraged Mr. Medina, who was new to Sacramento at the time, to get involved with the FBA.  After graduating from Loyola Law School in Los Angeles, Mr. Medina practiced in downtown L.A. for five years.  Then he moved north to start a career and (and family) in Sacramento, knowing very few people in Sacramento’s legal community.  Through the FBA, Mr. Medina met many lawyers and judges, quickly making Sacramento feel like home. 

During Mr. Medina’s six years of FBA service, Sacramento FBA participated in several judicial investitures, resurrected the annual Supreme Court Year in Review, helped with the opening of the Justice Anthony M. Kennedy Library and Learning Center, and instituted the Night to Honor Service.  Even after his service, Mr. Medina continued to serve California’s Eastern District by being a Ninth Circuit Representative, planning the Eastern District Conference, and joining the committee for the annual Law Day in Yosemite. 

After almost seven years of practicing civil litigation at DLA Piper and former litigation boutique Stevens, O’Connell & Jacobs, Mr. Medina opened a solo practice in January 2013.  One year later, Brandon McKelvey joined Mr. Medina to form Medina McKelvey LLP: an innovative law firm with offices in Roseville, Sacramento, and San Francisco, focusing on serving business clients creatively and efficiently (both in terms of time and cost).  Medina McKelvey focuses on employment litigation, advice and counsel, business litigation, and class action defense.  Last year, Mr. Medina and his partner also formed California Compliance Solutions, LLC, which provides businesses with comprehensive training on employment issues to help prevent employment lawsuits. 

Mr. Medina has received several professional honors from the Sacramento legal community, such as being named to the Northern California Super Lawyers list, the Business Journal’s Best of the Bar, and Sacramento Magazine’s Top Lawyers lists several years running.  Last year he was named one of the Business Journal’s “40 Under 40.”

Outside of practicing law, Mr. Medina enjoys spending time with his wife and four boys, ranging in age from 2 to 10.  Mr. Medina coaches little league and plays competitive tennis.  As a Bay Area native, Mr. Medina cheers for the San Francisco Giants and Cal Berkeley (where he proudly played saxophone in the marching band). 

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Law Student Perspective: Accomplishments of the McGeorge FBA Student Division
By: Alexandra Bohlman
 

Alexandra is in her second year of law school at McGeorge and the current President of the student division.
 
To start the 2016-2017 school year at McGeorge School of Law, the student division hosted a panel featuring practicing attorneys who serve on the Sacramento Chapter’s board. They provided tips on networking, professional pathways, and explained the mission and goals of the FBA. From this panel, new and continuing students unfamiliar with the FBA learned about the FBA and were encouraged to join the club.
 
November featured two events at the Robert T Matsui Federal Court House.  The first event allowed the student division board members to volunteer at United States Magistrate Judge, Deborah Barnes’ Investiture. The volunteers attended the investiture and mixer that followed, which provided an extraordinary opportunity to meet attorneys and judges from all over California. Later in November, FBA student division members attended the Night to Honor Service where they heard from keynote speaker, Judge Nunley.

To start the Spring semester, the FBA partnered with the Intellectual Property Student Association to host a Networking-How-To Mixer. Members of FBA Sacramento came to the McGeorge House to answer questions and provide etiquette tips for attending professional mixers. This event was open to all students on campus which provided an opportunity to encourage students to become members of the FBA before the member-only Election Mixer.
For the Election Mixer,the student division was invited to Judge Callahan of the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit’s chambers.  Many student and attorney members attended, providing a great opportunity to unite the student chapter with its parent chapter.

Later in the Spring semester, FBA Sacramento partnered with the Career Development Office at McGeorge Law to host Clerkship Week.  Clerkship Week featured two events: Nuts and Bolts of Getting a Clerkship and A Day in the Life of a Federal Clerk, hosted by U.S. District Judge Morrison C. England, Jr. (Class of ’83), and his full-time career clerk. It is always exciting for students when Judge England attends campus events because he is a proud McGeorge alumni and happy to give back to students by providing professional and academic advice.
 
The student division partnered again with FBA Sacramento and the Career Development Office to host a Spring On-Campus Interview Mixer which brought in hiring managers from some of Sacramento’s largest law firms. All students on campus were invited for a relaxed networking opportunity to meet the people who would be conducting formal interviews. This event encouraged students to get out from behind their resumes and add a personal touch to “wow” employers.
 
To end the academic year, the student division won the Faith Davies Pacific Tiger Award, which goes to one club from the three University of the Pacific campuses.  This award recognizes a student organization that displays school spirit, encourages student involvement, and develops professional skills. For the upcoming academic year, the student division will host networking events and hopefully partner with the FBA's National Community Outreach Project to participate in a nationwide Civics Day.

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Seersucker Thursday at Vic's Ice Cream
 
When then United States Senate discontinued their summer solstice seersucker tradition in 2012, the Eastern District, under the leadership of Judge William B. Shubb, protested by starting its own seersucker tradition. On Thursday, August 10, 2017, seersucker-clad judges and lawyers descended on Vic's for tasty scoops and good conversation for the fifth annual Sacramento Seersucker Thursday.  Louisiana Senator Bill Cassidy brought National Seersucker Day back to the Senate in 2015.  
 
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Judge Mueller and her law clerks sporting a rainbow of seersucker.
Seersucker-clad Assistant United States Attorneys enjoy ice cream at Vic's.
UPCOMING EVENTS - SAVE THE DATE!

Executive Order 9066: Difficult Choices with Constitutional Dimensions

FREE CLE
Thursday, October 19, 2017 at 5:00 p.m. 
Robert T. Matsui Federal Courthouse, 16th Floor
Reception to follow with complimentary beer, wine, and soft drinks.
RSVP HERE


Eastern District Conference
October 27-29
The Resort at Squaw Creek
Olympic Valley, CA


Night to Honor Service
Wednesday, November 15, 2017
Kennedy Library & Learning Center
Board Members

Avalon Johnson Fitzgerald, President • Megan Sammut, Vice President
Cameron Desmond, Secretary • Julie Yap, Treasurer
Stephen Duvernay, Programs Co-Chair • Michele Beckwith, Programs Co-Chair

Jake Rios, Membership Co-Chair • Jake Weaver, Membership Co-Chair
Aly Bivins, Newsletter Editor

Programs Committee
Tonie Darling • Lori Gualco • Chi Soo Kim   Wim van Rooyen
Shelley Weger  Geoffrey Westerbrook • David Fox  Kristen Koo
Candice Fields  • Landon Bailey  • Tom Woods
Copyright © 2017 Federal Bar Association, Sacramento Chapter, All rights reserved.


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