Metropolitan News-Enterprise


Monday, May 3, 2010


Page 1


ADDA Executive Vice President to Assume Union’s Helm


By a MetNews Staff Writer


The Association of Deputy District Attorneys on Friday said its long-time President Steven J. Ipsen will step down effective tomorrow and current Executive Vice President Hyatt Seligman will assume the post.

Seligman issued a statement to members advising them that Ipsen’s decision should not be mistaken as “a sign of weakness or submission by him or this union to any challenge—past, present or future.”

He thanked Ipsen for his “ten years of devotion” to the group and for serving as “the lightning rod that protected the rest of us.”

District Attorney Steve Cooley publicly acknowledged his personal dislike for Ipsen last week at a hearing before the Los Angeles County Employee Relations Commission, but insisted that his personal animosity should not be mistaken as anti-union sentiment.

The proceedings arose from allegations by the ADDA and Vice President Marc Debbaudt that Cooley and his administration have engaged in a campaign of discrimination and harassment against the union and its supporters. Similar claims were also made in a lawsuit pending before U.S. District Judge Otis D. Wright II of the Central District of California brought by the union and one unnamed deputy district attorney.

Last Wednesday, Wright allowed attorneys for the union to amend its complaint to add a claim that members of the District Attorney’s Office violated the constitutional rights of the group’s approximately 650 members by disclosing their identities to management officials.

Wright also issued an injunction in March ordering Cooley, Chief Deputy District Attorney John Spillane, Bureau Director John Zajec and Assistant District Attorneys Curtis Hazell and Jacquelyn Lacey not to discipline or discriminate against prosecutors for belonging to the union based on his finding that the ADDA had “established a course of explicit retaliation” that was “both striking and rampant.”

Seligman predicted that “more legal victories are to come” in the ERCOM proceedings and called on his colleagues to “do the right thing for all of us” by joining the union.


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