Wednesday, April 16, 2008
Commissioner, Three Others to Be Honored by Southwestern Law School
By STEVEN M. ELLIS, Staff Writer
Southwestern Law School will honor a Los Angeles Superior Court Commissioner and three others for their service to the school, the community and the legal profession tomorrow night at its 21st Annual Awards Recognition Reception and Auction, the school said yesterday in a release.
Commissioner Scott M. Gordon, a 1985 Southwestern graduate, will be honored as “Outstanding Judicial Officer,” while 1975 graduates Gregory and Leah Bergman will both be named “Alumni of the Year,” and Southwestern Professor Robert Lind honored as “Outstanding Friend.”
Sponsored by the Southwestern Alumni Association, the event is designed to help recognize the contributions of individuals with ties to the school and to raise money to benefit the association’s scholarship fund. A spokesperson for the school said that the names of nominees are solicited from alumni, from which the association’s board then selects honorees.
The spokesperson said that Gordon had been singled out due to his “significant contributions” to the school and the legal profession, which the spokesperson said had earned Gordon “community and peer recognition.”
A commissioner since 2002, Gordon is currently assigned to the Family Law Department. Prior to taking the bench, he served for 16 years with the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office where he was a founding member of the Stalking and Threat Assessment Team and responsible for policy and legislative issues relating to child abuse, domestic violence and sex crimes.
He attended college at California State University, Dominguez Hills, graduating in 1980, and then spent the early years of his career as a police officer and detective for the Santa Monica Police Department while attending law school.
In 1997, Gordon was one of three U.S. prosecutors selected to serve as “legal specialists” for the United Nations International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia in The Hague, Netherlands.
He returned to Southwestern as a member of its adjunct faculty in 1990, and the school in 2003 awarded him its Adjunct Professor Excellence in Teaching Award.
He is also a recipient of the Los Angeles Commission on Assaults Against Women “Humanitarian of the Year” award, and the Los Angeles County Bar Association’s “Prosecutor of the Year” award, among other commendations.
Gordon told the MetNews that he was notified of the honor last month, and that he was “very humbled and honored” to receive the award.
“This institution means a lot to me,” he said, noting the time he had spent at the school both as a student and a member of its faculty.
The Southwestern spokesperson said that the alumni association had selected husband and wife Gregory M. Bergman and Leah S. Bergman for recognition as outstanding alumni due to their “outstanding service to the community, higher education, and the legal profession.”
Gregory Bergman is a founding partner and managing shareholder of law firm Bergman & Dacey, Inc. in Los Angeles, which specializes in complex civil and class action matters, and also serves as a judge pro tem and arbitrator for the Los Angeles Superior Court.
A prolific writer and lecturer, he has been recognized as a “Super Lawyer” by Los Angeles Magazine for the past three years, was named “One of the 2007 Top Ten Environmental Lawyers” in the country by United States Lawyer; and is a current co-chair of the U.S.-Mexico Bar Association Environmental Law Committee.
Leah Bergman is currently of counsel at Bergman & Dacey, and served as a deputy district attorney for 28 years until retiring in 2005.
A former teacher with the Los Angeles Unified School District with a masters degree in guidance and counseling, she is an alumna of UCLA’s elite Symphonic Wind Ensemble; a co-founder and president of the Board of Directors of the West Los Angeles Symphony, as well as a performing member; and a 10-year member of the Board of Directors of the Los Angeles Opera.
Both of the Bergmans attended college at UCLA, and Southwestern, in a statement announcing the awards, said that the pair plays a prominent role in fundraising at both schools, noting that they have established a scholarship fund at Southwestern in the memory of their fathers.
The school also said in a statement that it was honoring Lind for being “an inspiring teacher whose students continue to consult him as a trusted advisor long after they have ascended to the General Counsel’s office of a major studio or music company executive.”
An authority on entertainment and media law who initiated the creation of Southwestern’s curriculum on the subjects, Lind began his career as a consultant to the American Law Institute-American Bar Association, and the American Association of Museums in Washington, D.C.
He received his undergraduate degree from the University of Minnesota, and his J.D. and Master of Laws degrees from The National Law Center of George Washington University.
Lind joined Southwestern’s faculty in 1981, and was subsequently honored as its Irving D. and Florence Rosenberg Professor of Law in 2001 and its Paul E. Treusch Professor of Law in 2005. He also received the school’s Upper Division Professor Excellence in Teaching Award in 2006.
Tomorrow night’s event will take place at the Jonathan Club, 545 South Figueroa St. in Los Angeles, and will begin at 6:30 p.m. The cost to attend is $50 for alumni and friends, and reservations, which are required, can be made by calling the school’s Development Office, the school said.
Copyright 2008, Metropolitan News Company