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Jeff Robinson is a shareholder at the Seattle, Washington firm of Schroeter, Goldmark & Bender. After graduating from Harvard Law School in 1981 and before joining SGB in 1988, he was a King County Public Defender and Assistant Federal Public Defender.
He teaches and speaks nationally about trial advocacy, including as a faculty member of the National Criminal Defense College in Macon, Georgia. He has practiced criminal defense in state and federal courts for 30 years. Mr. Robinson is a past president of the Washington Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers and a Fellow in the American College of Trial Lawyers.
Jo-Ann Wallace is President and CEO of the National Legal Aid & Defender Association (NLADA). She has served at NLADA for over two decades, and was appointed President in 2005. Under her leadership NLADA marked its centennial anniversary with the development of the Blueprint for Justice, a comprehensive strategy with the aim of increasing access to justice for all Americans. She was previously NLADA’s Senior Vice President for Programs, responsible for oversight of both the Civil Legal Aid and Indigent Defense Program agendas. From 1994 – 2000, Ms. Wallace served as Director of the Public Defender Service for the District of Columbia. She is a graduate of New York University School of Law.
Ed Harnden is the managing partner at Barran Liebman where he represents employers in all stages of employment litigation and handles employment dispute resolution. In 2012, Ed was honored with the Multnomah Bar Association Professionalism Award, and in 2011, he was the recipient of both The Henry H. Hewitt Access to Justice Award, presented by The Lawyers’ Campaign for Equal Justice, and the Legal Leader of the Year Award, presented by the Daily Journal of Commerce. In 2010, he was inducted as a Fellow into the American College of Trial Lawyers, the premier professional trial Organization in America. In 2009, he was the recipient of the Judge Learned Hand Lifetime Humanitarian Achievement Award for his civic services throughout the community. He has served as Board President for the Multnomah Foundation as the President of the Oregon State Bar, and continues to actively serve on the boards of several community and Bar organizations. He is a past president of the Professional Liability Fund, and a Life Fellow of the American Bar Foundation. He is involved regionally and nationally in developing advanced leadership and management roles for law firms and lawyers. In addition, Ed was elected by his national colleagues as a national Fellow of The College of Labor and Employment Lawyers for his sustained outstanding performance in the profession. This year, he was also again named in The Best Lawyers In America directory and in the Oregon Super Lawyers magazine in the Top 10 Lawyers in Oregon list. Ed is ranked #1 (with partners Paula Barran and Richard Liebman) for Labor and Employment Law defense in the State of Oregon by Chambers & Partners USA.
James R. Silkenat, a partner in the New York office of the national law firm of Sullivan & Worcester and a member of its Corporate Department, is President of the
American Bar Association.
Silkenat has a long and distinguished record of service at the ABA. Before his election last year as the Association's President-Elect, he was a member of the ABA Commission on Women in the Profession and the ABA Commission on Racial and Ethnic Diversity in the Profession.
A frequent author and lecturer, Silkenat is the editor or co-editor of 14 books and author of more than 100 articles on legal and justice system issues.
Thomas A. Balmer was elected by his colleagues as Oregon’s 43rd Chief Justice and began service on May 1, 2012. He was first appointed to the Supreme Court by Governor John Kitzhaber in 2001; he was elected in 2002 and re-elected in 2008. Chief Justice Balmer practiced with the Portland law firm of Ater Wynne LLP and its predecessor firm, Lindsay, Hart, Neil & Weigler from 1982-93 and 1997-2001, and also served as Managing Partner. He was Deputy Attorney General of Oregon (1993-97) under Attorney General Theodore R. Kulongoski. Earlier in his career, he was an associate with Wald, Harkrader & Ross (Washington, D.C.) (1980-82), a Trial Attorney with the Antitrust Division of the U.S. Department of Justice (1979-80), and an associate with the Boston firm of Choate, Hall & Stewart (1977-79).
As Deputy Attorney General, he advised the Attorney General, the Governor, and other officials on constitutional, election, and administrative law matters, and represented the state in trial and appellate courts, including successfully defending Oregon’s Death with Dignity Law.
Chief Justice Balmer was raised in Portland and attended Portland Public Schools. He is married to Mary Louise McClintock, Director of Early Childhood Programs for the Oregon Community Foundation. They have two adult children.
Ellen Rosenblum was elected Oregon's 16th Attorney General in November, 2012. She is the first woman to serve as Oregon Attorney General. Ellen's priorities as Attorney General include advocating for and protecting Oregon's most vulnerable, including especially our families and children, our seniors, Oregonians whose first language is not English, and students who have incurred significant education-related debt. She is committed to continuing the AG's office long time practice of assisting district attorneys in prosecuting crime and has made internet and other crimes against children her highest priority. Ellen previously served in private practice, as a federal prosecutor, and as a state trial and appellate court judge. She has been active in local and national organizations of lawyers, judges and attorneys general and currently co-chairs the American Bar Association's only committee devoted exclusively to state AG issues.
Marc was raised in Portland, Oregon. He attended Swarthmore College, where he first began working on homeless and low-income housing issues. After graduation he spent several years working in social services in Portland before moving to Chicago to attend graduate school and law school. He graduated from the University of Chicago Law School and then completed a clerkship with Judge Diane Wood, on the Seventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals. He returned to Portland as a Skadden Fellow to be the staff attorney for the homeless law project at the Oregon Law Center. After that he joined the real estate and land use group in the Portland office of Perkins Coie before becoming the Executive Director of JOIN, a Portland-based homeless service agency that uses a street outreach model to assist hundreds of people every year to make the transition from the streets to permanent housing.
Marc serves on the Executive Committee at Portland's Housing Advisory Commission, he co-chairs the State Family Services Review Commission, and he's a member of the local ACLU Lawyers Committee. Marc lives with his wife and ten year old daughter in Portland's Rose City Park neighborhood.
Nalani Fujimori Kaina is the Executive Director of the Legal Aid Society of Hawai`i, Hawai‘i’s oldest and largest statewide non-profit organization providing free legal services to the poor. Ms. Kaina joined Legal Aid in 1999 as a Staff Attorney on the island of Moloka`i, was the Managing Attorney for the Maui County offices and has also held the position of Deputy Director. She is a Commissioner on the Access to Justice Commission, past President and current Director of Hawai‘i Women Lawyers, is a member of the ACLU of Hawai‘i’s Litigation Committee, Secretary of the Rural Community Assistance Corporation and the Chair of the Hawai‘i State Advisory Committee to the U.S. Civil Rights Commission. Ms. Kaina graduated from New York University School of Law and received her B.A. from Macalester College, St. Paul, Minnesota.
Steven R. Powers is Deputy General Counsel in the Office of the Governor. He served as an Assistant Attorney General in the Appellate Division of the Oregon Department of Justice. In that role, he briefed and argued a variety of civil, administrative, and criminal cases before Oregon and federal appellate courts, and was a member of the team of attorneys who defended Oregon’s Death With Dignity Act before the Supreme Court of the United States. Mr. Powers received a Bachelor of Arts degree from Western State College of Colorado and his Juris Doctor degree from Willamette University College of Law. During law school, Mr. Powers was a Public Honors Fellow/Extern at the Oregon Supreme Court and following graduation he served as a Petitions Clerk for the Oregon Supreme Court.
Dr. Beegle’s inspiring story of moving from 28 years of homelessness to achieving a doctorate and her groundbreaking work assisting people to move out of poverty have been featured in newspapers and television around the nation, including CNN and PBS. Dr. Beegle has received numerous awards (i.e. the National Speaker of the Year for the New Mexico Bar Foundation and the Oregon Ethics in Business award), and recently Portland State University’s School of Social Work Building was named in her honor. She serves as president for Communication Across Barriers, a 23-year old company dedicated to improving the lives of people living in poverty.