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Attorney Pairs His Legal Career With Other Tasteful Pursuits

San Diego attorneys are really interesting people with varied interests and pursuits, but Harold Small, you might say, takes the cake. He has been elected bailli délégué — or just president to us commoners — of the Bailliage des Etats-Unis of the Confrérie de la Chaîne des Rôtisseurs, the world’s oldest and largest international food and wine society. He was installed in office a few weeks ago in New Orleans at the organization’s annual Grand Chapitre in ceremonies held at the National World War II Museum. That sounds like a meeting to me, but I can’t be sure.

Small previously was a chambellan — regional vice president — and an echanson provincial for the Far West, as well as bailli — or president — of the San Diego Bailliage for about eight years. He also served in the offices of vice-chancelier-argentier, vice conseiler gastronomique, vice echanson and vice charge de pressé. In recognition of his outstanding service and dedication to the Chaîne, this is better than a simple AV rating.

Small is a practicing attorney and also is a licensed certified public accountant. He has served on a number of committees of the San Diego County Bar Association and The State Bar of California, having chaired the local Bar Association’s taxation section and insurance committee. He’s civic minded, too. He was a member of the Citizens Advisory Council of Tierrasanta to the San Diego Unified School District, a member of the advisory council and president’s circle of the Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute. He was also the founding president — subsequently named president emeritus — and served on the board of directors of The Children’s Museum of San Diego. He was a director of the United Jewish Federation, and was a director and treasurer of the La Jolla Playhouse.

The board of trustees of California Western School of Law recently elected two new members who bring significant experience to the law school’s governing body: Gayle Blatt and Rahil Swigart, both alumni. Blatt is a partner at Casey Gerry Schenk Francavilla Blatt & Penfield LLP, where she heads the firm’s pharmaceutical and class action practices. Blatt has played a prominent role in national pharmaceutical and medical device cases over the past decades. Blatt also is recognized by her peers for her work with serious personal injury cases. Swigart is a lawyer at Higgs Fletcher & Mack, where he represents and advises businesses in disputes, including those concerning covenants not to compete, breach of contract, partnership disputes and unfair business practices. In addition to litigation disputes, Swigart assists businesses in transactional matters, such selling and buying real estate, forming business entities, drafting and reviewing business contracts, and reviewing mortgage and deeds of trust documents for commercial and residential real estate. Swigart works with renewable energy companies with a variety of legal issues.

“We are pleased to welcome Gayle and Rahil to our board,” said Jeffrey Lewin, president of the board of trustees and a shareholder at Sullivan Hill Lewin Rez & Engel. “Their experience as California Western students and alumni, as well as their significant legal and community experience, will bring great value to our work.”

Jim Fessenden is helping his national firm, Fisher & Phillips LLP, form a new government solutions practice group to help employers who are faced with a fluid and evolving legislative and regulatory regime at the federal, state and local levels of government. The local partner is one of 26 lawyers across the firm who will focuses on labor and employment legislation and regulations in areas such as workplace discrimination, employee privacy, wage and hour, employee compensation, trade secrets, employment contracts and terms, unionization and organization efforts, health care, immigration, workplace accommodations, employee leave, workers’ compensation, workplace safety, affirmative action and employee benefits. Some of you might get cynical at the use of “government” and “solutions” in the same sentence, but with these services, the lawyers in the group hope to work with clients to cooperatively protect and promote their interests, at all levels of government, in the area of labor and employment legislation and regulations. That’s worthy.

Brown Law Group has hired Luis Lorenzana to join the firm. “Luis’ experience in litigating before state and federal courts as well as class actions provides us with an excellent and proven resource to better serve our wide range of clients,” said Janice Brown, founder and CEO.

Partners Stacy Fode and Suzanne Roten agree, so you know this is going to be a great fit. In 2011, Lorenzana was appointed to the Association of Business Trial Lawyers’ leadership development committee for the organization’s San Diego Chapter.

Randy Frisch is vice chancellor of business and administration at National University and former publisher of the San Diego Business Journal. He is licensed to practice law in California, Nevada and Idaho.

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