Richard (Rick) Teitelman is the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Missouri, appointed by Governor Bob Holden in 2002. He worked at Legal Services of Eastern Missouri for 23 years, including 18 years as executive director and general counsel. He was also President of the Bar Association of Metropolitan St. Louis. In 1998, he was appointed to the Missouri Court of Appeals by Governor Mel Carnahan, serving in that capacity until his appointment to the state Supreme Court. He is both the first Jewish and the first legally blind judge on Missouri's highest court.
Justice Teitelman was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and is the youngest of three children. He earned his undergraduate degree from the University of Pennsylvania in 1969. Moving to Missouri, he earned his law degree from Washington University in St. Louis in 1973.
Ramón Arias is the executive director of Bay Area Legal Aid and a leader in the national civil justice community.
He began his legal aid career in 1978 with California Rural Legal Assistance. During his ten years with CRLA, Arias served as a staff attorney, managing attorney, director of CRLA's Migrant Farm Worker Project, and as a regional counsel. In 1988, Arias became the Executive Director of the San Francisco Neighborhood Legal Assistance Foundation, a position he held for the next 12 years.
In 2000, Arias became the executive director of Bay Area Legal Aid, an organization he helped to create by the merger of four legal aid programs. Bay Area Legal Aid is the San Francisco Bay Area's largest law firm for the poor and is nationally recognized for its innovation, effectiveness and quality.