Voting opens today (9/9/14) for you SDLRLA Board of Directors! All regular members who became members prior to 7/7/14 are voting members. Please check your emails for your electronic ballot.
Thanks to all who came out to MOSAIC last night to meet and talk with the candidates. For those who could not attend, a short candidate statement for each candidate follows:
|PRESIDENT (unopposed)RODRIGO GUEVARA
Dear La Raza Members – It is with great enthusiasm that I am running to serve as President of the San Diego La Raza Lawyers Association Board. The past three years have been incredibly productive for the organization and have been a time where our Association has both promoted and unified the causes of Latino attorneys, judges, and community members.
A few events that contributed to this continued success were the 2013 Mayoral Forum and the 2014 District Attorney Forum. I was proud to have spearheaded both of these events, especially as I became a father two days before the Mayoral Forum! As the Political Affairs Director of the Association, I have been fortunate to participate in other facets of the community including helping organize a welcome reception for NALEO’s Annual Convention in San Diego and working with the SDCBA’s Court Funding Action Committee to lobby local legislators and urge them to restore funding in our court system.
If elected, I will continue to build on the great success of the Association and will continue to push activities that further our Association’s mission and values. I am proud of what our Association has accomplished to date and would take the helm of the Association with great energy and enthusiasm. Thank you!
|VICE PRESIDENT (unopposed)JOANNA SOLOZABAL
My name is Joanna M. Solozabal and I am running for Vice President of SDLRLA. I was Vice President this past year and I’ve had the honor of serving on the SDLRLA Board of Directors for two years. This year I organized our Second Annual Family Picnic. I have brought in sponsors and worked hard to maintain La Raza’s reputation in the community. In my two years as an At Large Director, I have helped the organization gain visibility through the use of social media. My goals for the organization as a whole are to continue to work on increasing membership and our number of sponsors. I look forward to working with other members of the board to ensure and foster SDLRLA’s success. Please vote for me for your SDLRLA Vice President!
|TREASURER (unopposed)JESSE BLANCO
It has been an honor serving as Treasurer for the last two years. I have seen SDLRLA grow and the impact it has in our communities, and wish to keep contributing as Treasurer.
As the founder of my own tax law practice, I am familiar with the demands and responsibilities of maintaining accurate financial statements for businesses. My background is well-suited to meet the qualifications of Treasurer.
I currently work in a low-income community, where over 90% of my clients are Latinos. I constantly see the need for affordable legal services. If re-elected, I am committed to increase sponsorships and fund-raising to support the organization’s mission to improve access to legal services to the Spanish speaking community.
|SECRETARY (unopposed)MARIA NUNEZ
Maria J. Nuñez commenced her involvement with La Raza Lawyers by serving as president of the La Raza Law Students Association while at California Western School of Law and continues her contributions to the legal community with her service on San Diego La Raza Lawyers Association by serving on the Board. Ms. Nuñez has served on the executive Board as secretary for two years and vice president for one year. Ms. Nuñez will complete her third year as an at large director of the Board at the end of this term. Ms. Nuñez received her law degree from California Western School of Law in San Diego, California in 2004. Prior to establishing Nuñez Law Corporation, she litigated with the Gomez Law Group and Jampol, Zimet, Skane, and Wilcox, in San Diego California, serving as plaintiff and defense counsel in handling litigation with various levels of complexities. Her practice currently focuses on helping individuals and small businesses file bankruptcy and litigate disputes and defending and prosecuting actions on behalf of one of the Unites States Trustee panel Chapter 7 Trustees. Ms. Nuñez finds her ability to secure immediate tangible results for people in vulnerable situations, particularly those countless financially distressed families, facing financial devastation, the most gratifying part of her practice. In addition to her service on the Board of San Diego La Raza Lawyers Association, Ms. Nuñez demonstrates her commitment to service by serving on local nonprofit boards, including her past service on the executive Board of MANA de San Diego North County, and counseling non-profits. Ms. Nuñez enjoys mentoring young girls and aspiring attorneys, and speaking to various community organizations. Ms. Nuñez looks forward to continuing to contribute to our community by continuing collaborative efforts with other legal and non-legal organizations and helping to amass resources to continue strengthening the San Diego La Raza Lawyers Association.
|DIRECTORS (YOU MAY SELECT ONLY 5 of the 6 CANDIDATES)BEN AGUILAR
Ben is currently finishing his service as co-chair of the Community Outreach of SDLRLA. During his term as co-chair, Ben helped organize and execute presentations regarding the 2014 District Attorney’s election. These presentations were intended to educate the public about the impact and the importance of making an educated decision when electing a District Attorney.
In addition to his work with SDLRLA, Ben is proud to serve on the San Diego County Bar Association’s New Lawyer Division Board of Directors, Tom Homann LGBT Bar Association Board of Directors, and Thomas Jefferson School of Law Alumni Association Board of Directors.
I am very proud of what SDLRLA has accomplished over the past few years and if elected to the board of directors I pledge to continue creating opportunities (social, educational, and professional) for our constituents. I look forward to continue working with the rest of the board members, and I hope I can count on your support. Thank you.
My name is Eran Bermudez and I am the current Secretary of La Raza Lawyers, and a past President. I also currently serve on the SDLRLA Scholarship Fund as an at-large board member. Please consider voting for me as an at-large member of the San Diego La Raza Lawyers Association Board of Directors. I have been an active, dedicated, and productive member of SDLRLA’s executive board for several years. I am committed to continuing to expand SDLRLA and raising its profile in the legal community. One of the accomplishments that I am most proud of is spearheading the annual Judiciary Reception. Each year, this event grows more popular and important as we seek to diversify all aspects of this profession. I hold this organization very close to my heart and I will continue to be a strong advocate for community outreach and SDLRLA’s mission to diversify both the bench and the bar. I currently serve on the Professional Advancement Committee of SDLRLA and I am also responsible for putting on our annual Membership Kick-Off and Outreach mixer. I will continue to fight for the advancement of equality for all of our legal and non-legal communities. It would be a privilege to continue serving you as a board member, and I hope I can count on your support. Thank you!
La Raza has been an incredible support group for me since my second year of law school. La Raza members were there to help me with my studies, offer me a scholarship, mentor me, give me experience, and help me grow into the first year lawyers that I am today. I do not take all of this for granted and I realize the immense value that it adds to my career and personal life. I am incredibly lucky and proud to be a member of such a great organization and I greatly desire to pay it forward by serving on the Board.
I am fully aware that being a member of the La Raza Board comes with great responsibility and I am more than happy to take that responsibility on. I am committed to this organization and its mission to help Latinos and Latinas succeed in the legal profession as well as the community at large. Further, I have found that other La Raza members are also eager to help the community and because of this I know that we can continue to do great things in San Diego.
I have been a member of SDLRLA since law school. For the past two years, I’ve been fortunate to be involved in a leadership role through my work as co-chair, and then chair, of the SDLRLA Mentoring Committee. As a co-chair/chair, I’ve worked with SDLRLA members to match more experienced attorneys who are willing to mentor newer attorneys and law students, and strive to match individuals who have common interests and practice areas. I’ve assisted in organizing various networking and social mixers for the mentorship program participants to help these individuals foster their relationships and connections with SDLRLA members. In this capacity, I’ve also worked extensively within SDLRLA, coordinating efforts with the Law Student Committee.
This past year, I’ve worked as a liaison and committee co-chair with the SDCBA Career Development Committee, which committee is tasked with developing an innovative and long-lasting mentorship program that will benefit the members of our legal community and hopefully bring SDLRLA in contact with a greater spectrum of individuals in San Diego. This program is set to launch this fall, so keep an eye out for it! I’m very excited to see this program come to fruition. Through this joint program effort, I’ve brought SDLRLA to the table as a partner for a number of SDCBA events, providing our membership with discounted or free entry for their benefit.
I’ve been an active member of the association, making attendance at events and supporting the organization a priority. I would like to continue my involvement with SDLRLA by joining the board to assist in membership development, collaborative work with other professional organizations, and law student outreach. Please vote for me for an At-Large Director Position on the SDLRLA Board.
Luis O. Osuna is a life-long San Diegan with strong ties to Mexico. He is a graduate of U.C. Berkeley and California Western School of Law. At California Western he was a Diversity Scholarship recipient and was awarded the Pro Bono and Public Service Honors Society Award.
Mr. Osuna has been involved with the San Diego community through his past work as co-chair of the SDLRLA’s Community Outreach & Services Committee and as a member of the San Diego Young Democrats. During the past year he served as an at-large board of director and as co-chair of SDLRLA’s Political Affairs Committee. In addition, he had the privilege of being selected as a 2014 San Diego Leadership Alliance fellow.
His strong conviction in public service and unwavering belief that, being involved is vital to the growth of the community and the future success of its members, serve as the impetus for his desire to contribute as much as possible.
This has borne in him a sense of duty to be an engaged member of his community and give back in any way he can. He humbly requests your support as he seeks to remain a SDLRLA director.
My name is Fernando Tafoya. I am an attorney in good standing and am running for the position of Director at Large. As an attorney I have focused on the areas of sexual harassment, personal injury and workers’ compensation. In addition to practicing as an attorney, I have worked as a Consultant to the Marguerite Casey Foundation (MCF) and KidsScoop Media. My work with MCF focused primarily on building a national family led membership organization. This September this organization will be launched and has been organized as a 501c4 with the name “Equal Voice Action.” My work with KidsScoop Media involves promoting at risk youth to develop their confidence and social skills by training youth to interview public figures. Recently, when Lilly Downs performed in San Diego, I assisted KidsScoop Media as Executive Producer with the development of a video.
As a member of the Board of Directors, I will focus on building the organization’s great reputation as the “go to” organization on legal matters and social issues. In addition, I will work to connect the diverse skills of our members with non-profits, community based organizations, trade associations and media outlets. I would appreciate your vote.