Although my life in the law has been as a litigator - I started out trying felonies for the Chicago Public Defender's Office 1967 -'69 and switched to civil litigation when I came to California in 1970 - most of my cases are resolved through negotiation. I have participated in hundreds of successful mediations over the years, and for the last 20 years I have acted as a pro tem Judge for the Superior Courts of several counties, handling both trials and settlement conferences. A few years ago, at the request of the local judges, I completed a week-long instuction course for mediators at Pepperdine Law School, and since then have acted as a mediator from time to time. I taught Civil Procedure at Western State University School of Law and have given state-wide seminars for State Bar CLE credit. I have been a presenter at our local Inns of Court, a frequent lecturer at the Orange County Claims Managers Forum, various local colleges, and State Bar Continuing Legal Education seminars.
I am proud of the fact that for at least the last two decades, the judges and lawyers of my legal community have anonymously awarded me a completely unsolicited "AV" rating (the highest available in both ethics and legal competence) in the Martindale-Hubbel National Legal Directory. Every year starting in 2005 through to the present, I have been designated a "Super Lawyer" by Los Angeles Magazine, an unsolicited designation based on peer reviews by the judges and fellow lawyers in my legal community. Our statewide legal newspaper "The Daily Law Journal" designated me to be among "The 100 Most Influential Lawyers in California" in 2005. In 2009, Pope Benedict XVI awarded me the Papal Cross of Honour, the highest award available to a member of the laity.
I am married to my wife of 45 years and we have been blessed with two daughters, the older is a lawyer married to an accountant and has two sons, and the younger is a doctor of psychology who is married to a doctor of psychology and has a son and a daughter.