Cal. Litig. 2020, Volume 33, Number 1

FROM THE SECTION CHAIR What We’ve Done and What’s to Come

By W. George Wailes

George Wailes is a business trial attorney in San Mateo assisting clients in resolving their disputes through dispute resolution or trial.

Your Litigation Section has been busy this fiscal year. We have created new opportunities for your participation with new events, programs, and webinars. Last December, our Military and Veterans Affairs Committee held its first ever Military and Veterans Summit, and it was inspirational. The all-star speakers included Supreme Court Justice Ming Chin, California Senator Thomas Umberg, Justice Eileen Moore, Professors Betsy Gwin (Harvard), Robert Muth (USD), Michael Wishnie (Yale), and Adam Zimmerman (Loyola), and representatives from Swords to Plowshares, National Veterans Legal Services Program, the California Attorney General’s Office, and other organizations that serve veterans. The speakers provided a somber overview of the challenges facing veterans and the need for more attorneys to get involved. Our veterans struggle to obtain benefits and rights, and there are not enough attorneys volunteering to assist. If you want to get involved, contact the committee by sending an email to You won’t regret it.

We just hosted our first One and Done program in San Diego for members to obtain the special MCLE credits that can be difficult to attain. Not only was it available in person but we also live-streamed it over the web. Look for more of our programs to be available live online. The speakers packed practical, useful information into the programs. Justice McConnell encouraged us to join in educating the public about the judiciary to aid in defending against the ever-increasing attacks on judges. Ethics guru Wendy Patrick entertained us while imparting her wisdom on recent developments and hot topics in ethics and inebriation, intervention, and insight. Mediator Ana Sambold and ethics gurus David Majchrzak and Neil Wertlieb spoke about ethical decisionmaking in mediation and what we needed to know about the new rules. Terrance Evans, Nichelle Holmes, and Jeff Kosbie presented an eye-opening expose of implicit and express bias and discrimination. Each presented personal experiences from their lives and careers that stunned many of us. Attendees learned how much farther we need to go in the profession and California to achieve parity.

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