Lawyer who specializes in suing businesses elected president of California attorney regulatory agency

SF law firm partner will head 228,000-member State Bar which licenses attorneys, disciplines them

A San Francisco lawyer who specializes in business litigation has been elected president of the State Bar of California for 2010-11.

Bill Hebert, 49, of Oakland, a partner in the San Francisco law firm Calvo and Clark, was elected by the bar's Board of Governors in Los Angeles on Saturday after four rounds of voting.

Hebert will be sworn in as the 86th president of the 228,000-member bar at the organization's annual meeting in September in Monterey.

The bar, based in San Francisco, is the regulatory agency for California lawyers, in charge of licensing attorneys and investigating and disciplining those accused of misconduct.

The bar president is elected from among members of the bar's Board of Governors who have served for three years.

Bar spokeswoman Diane Curtis said this year was the first time in nine years that all five third-year lawyer members of the board chose to run for election.

The other candidates were Patti White of San Jose, Rex Heinke and Michael Marcus of Los Angeles, and Paul Kramer of Sacramento. Curtis said White was the other finalist in the fourth round of voting.

Hebert, who was chair of the bar's Discipline Oversight Committee, said he will work to ensure cohesion among the 23-member board.

He told the board after the election that he would be open to studying the configuration of the panel, which currently consists of 16 attorney members, six public members and the president, who can be elected from either group.

Hebert also said he favors requiring malpractice insurance for lawyers under certain conditions, including that it is affordable and doesn't discourage attorneys from doing pro bono work.

Hebert is a graduate of Stanford University and Boalt Hall School of Law at the University of California at Berkeley. He represents clients in business litigation, patent and trademark infringement, false advertising and the state's Unfair Competition Law.

Hebert also serves on the boards of the San Francisco Legal Aid Society and the Public Interest Law Project.

Hebert lives in Oakland with his wife, Lori Schechter, an attorney at Morrison and Foerster, and their two children, Nicole, 11, and Jordan, 9.

Bay City News contributed to this report.

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Like this comment
Posted by Is "Criminal Lawyer" redundant?
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 27, 2010 at 10:18 am

Is this like hiring the fox to guard the chicken coup?

How can the courts be designed so the public has a level playing field?

Like this comment
Posted by bob 123
a resident of another community
on Jul 28, 2010 at 8:27 am

Unlike the headline the fact is this "election" will have nothing to do with regulating any buisness except overseeing attorneys in the state. Frankly being the President of the State Bar is like being President of the local soccer league but I assume less fun. The State Bar is a private organization charged with overseeing attorneys including disclipline, conducting the admission test ( the bar exam) and more importantly sucking about $500 a year out of every lawyer in the state to do it. As per usual with anything having to do with lawyers the organization greatly overcharges for the value of it's services. The problem these folks have is every once in a while they seem to think they actually represent the opinions ( political or otherwise ) of all attorneys in the state. Unfortunately every attorney must belong to this organization in order to practise here --mandatory menbership by law.So he is no great threat - and he no doubt thinks he is providing a public service. Hell it could be John Burris or someone like him--then we would be in trouble!

Like this comment
Posted by Curtis
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 28, 2010 at 12:15 pm

If people actually knew how much of each dollar they spend goes to paying for frivolous litigation and out-of-control jury awards, we would probably have much more success in substantially reducing the numbers of lawyers in this country and the percentage of lawyers in Congress. The U. S. has ten times as many lawyers as engineers. Japan has ten times as many engineers as lawyers - a ratio 1/100th that of the U. S. In China, that ratio is even greater than Japan. This should give some insight as to why both of those countries are kicking out butts in terms of products and manufacturing.

Just what we need in California, a lawyer that specializes in suing (fleecing) businesses heading the Bar. That's just one more reason for companies to move out of California.

Like this comment
Posted by Jerry
a resident of Birdland
on Jul 28, 2010 at 9:35 pm

If people would stop trying to defraud each other no one would hire lawyers and they'd fade away.

Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

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