Whether in a martial arts battle or a courtroom dogfight, every fighter needs a “corner” – let OCTLA be yours
The Orange County Trial Lawyer Association (OCTLA) is coming off another great year. We have a record number of members, our programs are growing in popularity, and we have surpassed $1M in charitable contributions. Congratulations to our 2019 Past President Jim Pantone on all his success as leader of our wonderful organization.
OCTLA’s New Year has officially taken off with the Installation of Officers and Directors held on January 18, 2020, at the Balboa Bay Club in Newport Beach. In addition to the swearing in of our incoming board members and officers, the organization honored various award recipients including Hon. Nathan Scott as OCTLA’s Judge of the Year.
I am excited to have been sworn in to my final leadership position with OCTLA. In my Presidential acceptance speech, I discussed that I have been involved in competitive martial arts for many years. In fact, I have fought in multiple California state-sanctioned Muay Thai fights. While the act of fighting in competition might be seen as an individual sport, every fighter has a “corner.” The people in the corner are the ones that rejuvenate you between rounds. The corner tells you what you are doing right, and what you are doing wrong. At the end of the fight, your corner is the first to celebrate your win, or console you on your loss. They are your support system.
In my opinion, trial lawyers are the true fighters of the legal community. We are the ones that invest our resources, and our time, in a fight to get our clients fair compensation. I cannot imagine that fight without a corner, and my corner is OCTLA. We are such a tremendous group of support. It is why our mantra is, “Take No Challenge Alone.” OCTLA has a great sense of community which offers mentorship, education, and comradery. Those are some of the many reasons I am honored and humbled to have been sworn in as President of this great organization in its 57th year.
The increasing membership of the OCTLA has made our organization even more prominent. Our mission is ever present. We continue to offer incredible MCLE opportunities for our members. Our first monthly networking and MCLE program; What’s New in Tort & Trial - 2019 in Review was presented January 23rd with a brilliant and dedicated panel of trial attorneys; Jeremy Robinson (Casey Gerry Schenk, LLP), Valerie McGinty (Law Office of Valerie T. McGinty), Michael Penn (Aitken Aitken & Cohn), and Susan Swan (Swan Employment Law). Historically, this program is our first program of the New Year to keep our members apprised of the ever-changing fields in which we practice.
We now move towards our February 27th program entitled “Bias Inside and Outside the Courtroom and the Benefits and Challenges Faced by Female Advocates.” This specialty MCLE program features some of Orange County’s most prominent trial attorneys including Ashleigh Aitken (Aitken Aitken & Cohn), Michelle West (Robinson Calcagnie, Inc.), and Claire Lucich (Bentley & More). The program also features Hon. Deborah Servino, and is moderated by OCTLA Past President Geraldine Ly (Law Offices of Geraldine Ly). We hope to see many of you at this event. It will be an incredible opportunity for new perspectives on the practice of law while earning specialty CLE credit.
Moving into our March program, we have an incredible plaintiff’s only program entitled “E-Discovery for Trial Lawyers: Law, Practice and Guerilla Tactics.” This 1.5-hour program is reserved for plaintiff’s practitioners only so that attendees can have open dialogue on this constantly evolving area. It will be a wonderful program, and you will not want to miss it.
We hope to see many of you as the year moves forward.
Jonathan Dwork is a trial attorney at the Law Offices of Jonathan Dwork, APLC, where he handles personal injury and property damage claims. He is the current president of the Orange County Trial Lawyers Association (OCTLA) and was named Top Young Trial Attorney in 2011. He is also a member of ABOTA.
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