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VOLUME 14: KELLY DERMODY Managing Partner of the San Francisco office Lieff Cabraser Heimann & Bernstein, LLP

Kelly Dermody is Managing Partner of the San Francisco office and chair of the employment practice group at Lieff Cabraser Heimann & Bernstein, LLP.   Kelly represents employees and consumers in class, collective, and #metoo actions. Kelly is a leader in non-profit organizations devoted to serving the public interest, improving access to justice, and ensuring that the rights of historically disenfranchised persons are protected. In 2012, Kelly served as President of the Bar Association of San Francisco. She has been inducted as a Fellow in the College of Labor and Employment Lawyers and has served on the governing Council of the ABA Labor and Employment Law Section.   In 2016, Kelly was named a “Giant Slayer” by The Recorder legal press. Kelly has been named as a 2019 recipient of the Margaret Brent Women Lawyers of Achievement Award by the American Bar Association. Kelly is a graduate of Harvard College and Berkeley Law School.  LISTEN HERE:
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Anita Santos is a Judge of the Superior Court, Contra Costa County. She was appointed by Governor Brown in December 2014 and is currently assigned to felony criminal trials.  Prior to her appointment, Judge Santos sat as a Commissioner hearing child support matters with the Department of Child Support Services.    Judge Santos began her career as a police dispatcher with the Concord Police Department and the University of California, Berkeley, Police Department, followed by becoming a police officer with the Concord Police Department for several years.  She left the Concord Police Department to become prosecutor in Contra Costa County for eleven years.  Judge Santos then opened her own practice as a family law practitioner for five years, before she returned to the courts as a Commissioner and then Judge of the Superior Court.   Judge Santos attended Solano Community College, then transferred to the University of California, Berkeley, obtaining her Bachelor of Arts degrees i


Neda A. Mansoorian is a co-founder of and the managing partner at Oleander Law Partners LLP. Located in Los Gatos, California, she provides crisis management services for her individual and corporate clients in Santa Clara County, Silicon Valley and other parts of the San Francisco Bay Area. Admitted to practice before all California state courts, Ms. Mansoorian is also admitted to practice before the U.S. District Courts for the Northern and Eastern Districts of California. Ms. Mansoorian uses her extensive background and experience in litigation, business, mediation, and negotiations to provide advice and counsel to clients who are risking the loss of their reputation and standing when they are facing a crisis in their personal or business lives. The types of matters that she has handled in this regard have involved business disputes, embezzlement, wrongful termination, extortion, high-profile divorces and workplace harassment. She has counted among her clients chief executive off


Judge Douglas was appointed to the Contra Costa Superior Court by Governor Jerry Brown in July 2014 and joined the bench that August after concluding her last murder trial as a San Francisco prosecutor. She had previously served as a deputy district attorney in the Contra Costa County District Attorney's Office from 2000 to 2013. Judge Douglas grew up in Redwood City, went to undergraduate school in Missouri. Judge Douglas landed a job at the Contra Costa District Attorney's Office right out of law school. She built a reputation as a diligent prosecutor, popular among her colleagues, opposing lawyers and judges. Serving as a member of her office's domestic violence unit, Judge Douglas tried her first murder charge when the victim of an assault later died. It was the first of many homicide victories for the young DA. Judge Douglas moved to San Francisco in 2013 because her mom lives there, and her brothers lives in Daly City.  LISTEN HERE:  VOLUME 11 With Hosts: 


Judge Victoria Kolakowski became the first and only openly transgender trial judge in the United States when she was elected to the Alameda County Superior Court in November 2010.   As a judge, she has served in both civil and criminal trial assignments. She recently completed a year as the Supervising Judge of the Collaborative Courts, with subject matter oversight over all of the treatment courts (drug, behavioral health, veterans’, etc.) in Alameda County. Judge Kolakowski is also passionate about ensuring and expanding access to justice, particularly for those with limited resources.  She serves on the Judicial Council of California’s Advisory Committee on Providing Access and Fairness, and is the California Council of Churches' appointee to the California Commission on Access to Justice. She has been a leader in educating the judiciary on transgender issues. She is also a frequent speaker on LGBT issues, internationally, nationally and locally. For example, Ju

SUZETTE Z. TORRES-Vice President/Regional Counsel of North American Title Company, Inc.’s

Suzette Z. Torres is Vice President/Regional Counsel of North American Title Company, Inc.’s (“North American Title”) . She provides legal and escrow advisory support to North American Title’s branches throughout the Western Region which includes California, Nevada, Utah, and Arizona. Her duties include handling compliance and employment issues, providing underwriting guidance, and advising on commercial transactions.   Prior to joining North American, Ms. Torres worked for another national underwriter, first as VP/Trial Counsel, and later transitioned to VP/Underwriting Counsel. When she was in private practice, she rose up to partnership at her firm (Bardellini, Straw, Cavin & Bupp LLP) and became the only minority, female, equity partner. Her practice included resolving title and escrow claims, negotiating business disputes, managing contract negotiations, trials and handling several adversary proceedings in bankruptcy.   Suzette served as the District 4 Governor of the Califor

Judge Diana Becton and now District Attorney Becton (From the Archives)

District Attorney Diana Becton has spent most of her professional career as a judge, lawyer, and manager. On September 17, 2017, she was sworn in as the 25th District Attorney for the Contra Costa County District Attorney’s Office. District Attorney Becton served for 22 years as a judge in Contra Costa County, where she was elected as Presiding Judge. Her top priority is keeping the streets of Contra Costa County safe from dangerous and violent criminals. District Attorney Becton is committed to safeguarding our communities from crimes that threaten our health, well-being, and livelihood, protecting our seniors from financial abuse, and for working on positive outcomes for our youth. District Attorney Becton is the Immediate Past President of the National Association of Women Judges, the nation’s leading voice for women in the judiciary. She currently serves as the Chair of the California State Bar Council on Access and Fairness. A native of California she is a product of Oakla