Metropolitan News-Enterprise


Thursday, April 4, 2002


Page 1


Board of Governors Race Shaping Up as ‘Outsiders’ Vs. ‘Insiders’


By ROBERT GREENE, Staff Writer


The race for two District Seven Seats on the State Bar Board of Governors appeared yesterday to be shaping up as a contest of “outsiders” versus “insiders,” and self-described board outsider Matthew Cavanugh said he hoped to compile a statewide outsider ticket.

“I’m trying to get a non-bar-junkie ticket together in each district,” Cavanaugh said. “Whether or not I succeed remains to be seen. I think we can do it, and I think all of our candidates have a very good chance.”

The MetNews reported yesterday Deputy District Attorney Steven J. Ipsen is running against Deputy City Attorney Matthew St. George and Century City lawyer David Morris Marcus is running against Century City lawyer and mediator Michelle “Mickey” Katz.

St. George and Katz, both of whom have been endorsed by the influential Breakfast Club, are running as a ticket.

Marcus and Ipsen said yesterday that Cavanaugh has contacted them about touting their “outsider” status and running as a ticket, but neither said they have yet decided to do so.

“I certainly would not rule out running with Mr. Ipsen if we find our ideas are compatible,” Marcus said.

Ipsen said of Marcus, “I’ve never met the guy.” But he also said that he would consider joining forces if their ideas mesh.

The Board of Governors weathered several turbulent years in the 1990s as members sqaubbled over ideology. The sharp rhetoric of board sessions appeared to be calming in recent years, as the State Bar retooled and restaffed in the wake of a dues bill veto that caused the layoff of hundreds of employees and many State Bar programs.

But Cavanaugh last year ran and won on a platform of overthrowing governance by people he described as “bar junkies.” In his District Seven election, he upset Patricia Lobello, former president of the Breakfast Club, an organization of Los Angeles County attorneys who for the last three decades has recruited and promoted candidates to run for the board.

Cavanaugh was joined on the board earlier this year by self-decribed outsider Carl Lindstrom.

Ipsen, who was recently elected president of the Association of Deputy District Attorneys, said yesterday that he never heard of the Breakfast Club before deciding to run for the board and did not participate in the club’s endorsement process.

“I’m going to be considered an outsider and an enemy of someone I’ve never heard of,” Ipsen said.

In his candidate statement, filed with the State Bar, Ipsen said he intended to “fight to reduce our bloated bar dues” and to “stop the Bar’s involvement in political activism and other non-essential functions.”

Marcus, in his statement, mentioned Cavanaugh by name, calling the dissident board member “the first to break the insider stranglehold in the election of State Bar Governors.”

“I am not an insider as is my opponent,” Marcus said. “Neither am I a Bar junkie. My sole purpose [in] seeking this office is to make sure that the Bar understands that its existence is to serve the members.”

Katz, in her statement, said she “had the privilege of participating in the development of the Bar’s new governance structure” and that her familiarity with bar staff would “enable me to achieve the benefits that members want.”

St. George told the MetNews that “it is regretful that Matt [Cavanaugh] is framing the issues in that way, because we’ve had that war, and the result was the bar veto.”

Ballots go out April 30 and are due back by July 1.


Copyright 2002, Metropolitan News Company