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Intellectual Property Prowess Is the Backbone of New Firm

Brenda Wallach has launched her own patent/consulting legal firm. Wallach is a former Sapphire Energy Inc. attorney, from 2009 to 2014. She also spent more than a decade at law firms Cooley LLP and Morrison Foerster LLP. Her company, Wallach IP Management and

Consulting, can help clients search for prior art, prepare patent applications and work with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. She specializes in biotech, pharmaceuticals and medical devices.

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The Hon. Thomas Ashworth III (Ret.), who spent his entire distinguished, 16-year judicial career as a family law jurist in San Diego Superior Court, was honored with the prestigious “Lifetime Achievement Award” by the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers (AAML) Southern California Chapter. Upon his retirement from the bench in 2002, Judge Ashworth joined JAMS, the largest private alternative dispute resolution provider in the world, and quickly became one of the most sought-after private family law judges in Southern California. He will retire from JAMS in 2016. This is the second honor the AAML Chapter has bestowed on Judge Ashworth, who was named “Judicial Person on the Year” by the organization in 2001.

“Judge Ashworth has been a true pillar of the legal community,” said James Hennenhoefer, a past president of AAML Southern California Chapter and principal of the law firm James A. Hennenoffer APC. “His tact, patience, fairness, intelligence and exemplary judicial temperament are always evident, making it a distinct pleasure to try a case before him. His imminent retirement from JAMS will create a huge gap in the San Diego family law community.”

In recognition of his vast contributions to the field of family law, the City of San Diego proclaimed Jan. 31, 2016, “Thomas Ashworth III Day.” Among other honors, Judge Ashworth previously received the Judicial Lifetime Achievement Award from the San Diego County Bar Association’s

Certified Family Law Specialists and was named Family Law Judge of the Year by the California State Bar. The American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers (AAML) is a good group, with lots of attorneys trying to make a positive difference out of what is normally a negative situation.

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Kelly K. McLaughlin has been hired at Dinsmore & Shohl LLP. McLaughlin will work with the Commercial Litigation and Intellectual Property Litigation Groups.

McLaughlin comes to Dinsmore from K&L Gates LLP’s Boston office, where she litigated matters in federal and state courts and the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office. She has experience with patent, trademark, trade secret, employment, and general commercial litigation matters. She has also advised clients regarding corporate and securities regulations matters.

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Three California Western School of Law Moot Court Honors Board (MCHB) competition teams scored well in three recent national tournaments: the Texas Young Lawyers Association (TYLA)Trial Competition, the American Association for Justice (AAJ) Student Trial Advocacy Competition, and the Jessup International Appellate Competition.

In Texas, the Cal Western team, which was compromised of Anthony Vargas and Brent Griffith, took first place in the Texas Young Lawyers Association Trial Competition’s regional round, beating more than a dozen teams from law schools throughout Southern California. Along with their coaches Clayton Carr and Adrian Lobo, the two students then placed second at the national competition.

“This is an unprecedented accomplishment that underscores the dedication of our students and alumni,” says MCHB faculty advisor Mario G. Conte. “This win proves that California Western is a force to be reckoned with on the national level, and we are proud of the promising talent we have as students not only for these national competitions but also for the legal profession as a whole.”

California Western placed first in the regional round of the AAJ competition, and placed fifth nationally. The winning team consists of: Sarah Reeb, Madelynn Woodhall, Tarina Mand, and Monty Randhawa, and is coached by MCHB alumni Lindsey M. Willard, Katie A. Nagler, and Michael D. Brenn.

The Jessup International Appellate team advanced out of the Pacific Regional Competition in Portland, and finished in the top 6 percent in the international competition. There were 550 teams that competed and Cal Western made it to the round of 32 for the first time in school history.

This all-rookie team includes: Kimberly Del Frate, Ciara Ryan, Jessica Gross, Megan Villamin, and Laura Goolsby, and is coached by professors Roberta Thyfault and William Aceves, as well as alumna Katherine A. Clark.

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Erwin J. Shustak, has been honored by Fine Magazine as a top commercial/corporate lawyer in San Diego, according to a reader poll by the publication. He is one of the founding partners of Shustak Reynolds & Partners, and he heads the firm’s Litigation and Arbitration Department. His specialty is in litigation, trials, and appeals of complex business, securities and financial fraud disputes. He has represented public and private companies that include financial institutions, and government agencies, including the FDIC, the

Resolution Trust Corp., manufacturing firms, broker-dealers, hedge funds, and defrauded investors. Shustak has been voted one of San Diego’s “Best of Bar” in 2015 and 2014 and as Top Litigator of 2014 by The American Lawyer and Corporate Counsel magazines.

Randy Frisch is vice chancellor of business administration at National University and a former publisher of the San Diego Business Journal. He is licensed to practice law in California, Nevada and Idaho. He can be reached at rcfrisch@msn.com.

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