I am excited and privileged to serve as your incoming Beverly Hills Bar Association (BHBA) Barristers President. The BHBA has been on the forefront of Bar Associations responding to the under-represented members of the community, protecting individual liberties and promoting legal education.
Our Barristers Board has been a flagship, representing the only Barristers in Southern California selected by the American Bar Association in 2015 as the premier Bar Association Barristers out of their 330 affiliates.
I am proud to continue our Board’s well-known community service outreach, not only in Beverly Hills but with recognition throughout the world.
By way of introduction, I began my involvement with the Barristers as a volunteer on our long-standing Vintage Bouquet Committee, helping to raise funds for our Foundation to be able to support the many Barrister activities we endeavor. From there I became interested in our Roxbury Park Legal Clinic, serving members of our community who would otherwise not be able to address their legal needs. As a committee that was primarily formed to serve elderly members of the public, I watched it develop into a clinic covering all areas of legal issues faced in everyday lives. We will continue to expand this service as we add more lawyer volunteers in the areas most requested by the members of the public who turn to us in times of need.
When I became a Board Member, I was involved in the decision making to help support Samoshel, a Homeless Shelter in Santa Monica. Samoshel provides interim housing and a broad range of resources to the shelter residents, such as domestic violence, mental health and clinical treatment. Our Barrister team volunteers monthly to prepare hot, freshly cooked meals for sixty of our community’s homeless.
During my term as Treasurer, becoming liaison to the Foundation and reporting from the Budget and Finance meetings to the Barrister Board allowed me to see how our Barrister volunteers directly aid in promoting funding of our community involvement by presenting MCLE Programs. These MCLEs, with their outstanding speakers, have become more and more creative in addressing timely and relevant topics, which young attorneys need to further their careers.
My term as President-Elect introduced me to Teen Court’s life changing influences to non-violent first offenders by giving second chances to young adults with sentencing designed to offer counseling, structure, and guidance where there was previously none. This diversionary program benefits everyone in society, not only by lessening case-loads and allowing minors to clear their records while still being held accountable, but also by educating students involved about the court system.
Starting originally with Santa Monica High School, this program has expanded with the Barristers now involved at Anahuacalmecac Preparatory School in East Los Angeles/South Pasadena. This is a Native American charter school with the Teen Court overseen by two Native American LASC judges. This year, we will be seeking to add more local high schools to our Teen Court Program.
All of this will only be possible through the continued self-sacrificing efforts of our volunteer Board. It is my intention this year to build on the camaraderie we now enjoy, so that these programs are able to flourish and grow. I will use my term as President to continue to make the Barristers and my Board of Governors promote collegiality, fun, and professionalism. I look forward to taking the helm to lead in the great work of our Board, and to nurture the interests of our fellow Barrister members. Together, as Barristers, we will advance new and innovative projects, with continual growth and success.
Yan Goldshteyn, Principal attorney at Maven Law Firm, with a concentration on immigration and business law practice areas, may be reached at 310 363 0240 or via email at Yan@mavenlawfirm.com.