The new Board of Trustees of the State Bar of California held its first meeting of the new Board year on October 11, 2015 at the State Bar Annual Meeting, just down the road from the home of Mickey Mouse. Almost immediately, one very first agenda item, the Board ran into a buzzsaw of controversy . Some things don’t change.
The issue is appointments to chair Board Committees, a perogative of the State Bar President. Some Board members accused incoming President David Pasternak of stacking appointments to Board Committees in favor of Board members who voted for his election against competing candidate Heather Rosing, including appointments to the powerful Board Executive Committee. That election was close, so close that outgoing President Craig Holden cast the tiebreaking vote that elected Mr. Pasternak. Six of his eight proposed appointments to the Ex Comm have gone went to lawyers who voted for his election. His propsed appointments of all seven Board subcommittees are to Trustees who voted
Bad feelings still exist. Part of the controversy is the impact of the recently signed fee bill that imposes the requirement of compliance with the Bagley Keene open meeting acts. Public member Dennis Mangers accused Mr. Pasternak of using Bagley Keene to avoid inclusion. He just threatened to resign and the tone of meeting is turning very ugly.
Updates to follow.