San Diego Business Journal

Robert Brewer is running for district attorney against the current officeholder Bonnie Dumanis. The Jones Day partner told a crowd at Cheryl Kendrick’s beautiful home in Point Loma, that he wants to improve the morale of the DA’s office and regain the respect local law enforcement organizations once had for the office. He said law enforcement and citizens alike were confused and confounded when Dumanis won re-election four years ago and then filed to run for the office of the mayor of San Diego 70 days later. Malin Burnham spoke on Brewer’s behalf. A few years ago, Brewer was awarded the Daniel T. Broderick III Award, in recognition of his “civility, professionalism and integrity” as a member of the San Diego County Bar Association. This could be an interesting and meaningful race for the legal community.

Procopio, Cory, Hargreaves & Savitch LLP has hired Mindy M. Morton, who will help the firm expand its expertise in the field of intellectual property litigation. Morton, who has handled a variety of cases in state and federal courts, including trade secret, patent, trademark, copyright, computer fraud, and non-compete agreement litigation, joins the firm as Senior Counsel on the intellectual property litigation team. She is admitted to practice before the United States District Court, Northern, Central, Eastern, and Southern Districts of California and Southern and Eastern Districts of New York, and the United States Court of Appeal, Ninth and Federal Circuits. “Mindy adds a terrific layer of high-level experience and strategic excellence to our dynamic IP litigation practice,” said the firm’s Managing Partner Tom Turner. Prior to joining Procopio, Morton was a partner at Bergeson LLP. She has also practiced at Squire Sanders & Dempsey, Fenwick & West, and Cahill Gordon & Reindel.

Speaking of changes to San Diego’s intellectual property community, Roger Denning has been elected to Fish & Richardson’s national Management Committee. Denning will continue to try cases, as well as serve as managing principal of the firm’s Southern California office, based in San Diego. He has tried patent cases throughout the country involving a wide variety of technologies, including medical devices, pharmaceuticals, computer software and hardware, semiconductors, network interface and golf ball design. Denning also received the Wiley W. Manuel Award for Pro Bono Legal Services from The State Bar of California. Denning, his wife, Michele, and their three children reside in Carmel Valley. Fish also had four principals from the firm’s San Diego office recently recognized as “IP Stars,” including Juanita Brooks, Christopher Marchese, Lisa Martens, and John Phillips.

The San Diego Superior Court has two new judges. Last month, Gov. Jerry Brown announced the appointment of Patricia Guerrero and Michael J. Popkins, both Democrats, to the local bench.

Guerrero, 41, has been a partner at Latham and Watkins LLP since 2007, where she was an associate from 1997 to 2001 and 2003 to 2006. She worked as an assistant U.S. Attorney at the Southern District of California, U.S. Attorney’s Office between stints at Latham. She fills the vacancy created by the appointment of Judge Gonzalo P. Curiel to the Federal Court. Popkins, 62, of San Diego, has served as a deputy public defender at the San Diego County Public Defender’s Office since 1985. He has been an adjunct professor at the California Western School of Law since 2009 and was a deputy public defender at the Los Angeles County Public Defender’s Office from 1978 to 1985. The pay is $178,789.

Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton hired Shelton Austin recently. Austin joins the firm as an associate on the Electronics and Software Team in the Intellectual Property Department. Prior to joining the firm, Austin worked as an associate at Knobbe Martens Olson & Bear. He focuses his practice on intellectual property, patent preparation and prosecuting in various fields including wireless communications, computer, software, electronics, and medical devices. Prior to attending law school, Austin worked as a patent examiner with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.

Angela Jae has joined Casey Gerry Schenk Francavilla Blatt & Penfield LLP as its newest associate attorney. Jae will specialize in personal injury and product liability litigation. Jae was previously with Tosdal, Smith, Steiner & Wax.

Zack Kirscher has joined Gerson Law Firm APC to focus on the representation of the San Diego firm’s growing client base of financial institutions as well as real estate developers and investors. Prior to joining Gerson, Kirscher worked as in-house counsel for a San Diego private equity fund, specializing in the purchase and management of commercial loans. Kirscher also clerked at Field and Goldberg LLC in Chicago where he handled exclusively real estate transactional and litigation matters for regional lenders, and asset disposition for regional and national lenders.

The San Diego County Bar Foundation would like lawyers to donate one hour — or at least the equivalent of that in cash — to the organization. The campaign is “Give an Hour,” James Gilpin, president of the board of directors said. The campaign kicks off in the beginning of June and runs through the month, and donating is as easy as going to www.sdcba.org. “San Diego attorneys are known for their generosity in donating pro bono hours to help the disadvantaged,” said Gilpin. The foundation is the charitable arm of the San Diego County legal community and has donated more than $2 million to more than 40 legal aid and public interest organizations to provide access to justice for people impacted by poverty, abuse and discrimination.

Randy C. Frisch is the former president and publisher of the San Diego Business Journal. He is licensed to practice law in California, Nevada and Idaho. He can be reached at rfrisch@sdbj.com.