Metropolitan News-Enterprise


Thursday, January 24, 2013


Page 11



Bingham Partners Achieve Victory Against Russian Government


Seth Gerber and Marshall Grossman have led a team of Bingham lawyers to a significant victory in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia on behalf of their client Chabad, the firm said last week in a news release.

Chief Judge Royce Lamberth ordered the Russian government to pay $50,000 for each day it refuses to comply with a court order calling for the return of Jewish religious texts to Chabad, a Chasidic movement founded in Russia in the late 18th Century.

The Chabad Lubavitch movement has been pursuing the texts—which were seized as “war booty” by the Soviet red Army from the Nazis during the waning days of World War II—for years, the firm said.

The U.S. Department of Justice objected to the ruling, arguing that the court didn’t have the authority to enter sanctions and warning that the decision could threaten U.S. foreign policy interests.

“This ruling sends a strong message to nations that steal religious and cultural properties in war: that they can’t get away with that,” Gerber said in his firm’s release. “There are consequences for violating international law.”

The case is Agudas Chasidei Chabad v. Russian Federation, United States District Court for the District of Columbia, civil case no. 05-1548.

Linda Bernhardt, a former Los Angeles deputy mayor, has joined the Los Angeles office of DLA Piper as senior advisor to the firm’s California real estate, land use, development and governmental affairs practices, the firm said in a release.

Bernhardt joins DLA Piper from Greenberg Traurig LLP, where she served as co-chair of the firm’s California land development practice group and chair of the Southern California government affairs practice. Bernhardt was previously with Loeb and Loeb LLP, where she served as chair of the land development and regulatory affairs practice.

Before beginning private practice, Bernhardt served as deputy mayor of Los Angeles and a city of San Diego councilmember.

Bernhardt’s practice focuses on all aspects of development of real estate, energy and infrastructure projects, including entitlements, lobbying and compliance matters.

“Linda is a highly recognized real estate authority in the complex area of land use and entitlements,” said Jay Epstien, chair of DLA Piper’s United States real estate practice and co-chair of its global real estate practice in the release.

Michael Meyer, co-managing partner of the firm’s Los Angeles office is also quoted:

“Linda has an extraordinarily deep pool of contacts and client relationships in government and in the land use and development arena,” said “Her addition expands our real estate practice in the region, where we see a number of growth opportunities moving forward.”

Susan J. Booth of Holland & Knight was named the “Up-and-Coming Real Estate Lawyer of the Year” at the 2013 Chambers USA “Women in Law” Awards ceremony, held Jan. 15 in New York City, the firm said in a release.

Booth, based in Holland & Knight’s Los Angeles office, is the leader of the firm’s west coast real estate group and a member of the firm’s directors committee.

Booth received her undergraduate degree from Stanford and her law degree from UCLA. According to the release, she was chosen in 2012, as one of Commercial Real Estate Women’s “Women at the Top” and given a commendation by the city of Los Angeles for her impact on commercial real estate.

“I am proud to be among such an excellent group of female in-house and private practice lawyers who are dedicated to the advancement of women in the law,” Booth is quoted in the release. “My approach to women’s issues in the legal profession is to speak by doing — to change things from the inside. I believe in getting involved in organizations and educating in a way that will help a greater percentage of women become leaders in the legal profession, the real estate industry and the community.”

Women Lawyers Association of Los Angeles announces three February events:

•“Navigating Political Waters: Part IV of the ‘Conversation’ on Women’s Initiatives,” with White & Case partner Brenda Dieck. This free event takes place on Feb. 12 at Jones Day, 555 S. Flower Street, Fiftieth Floor, Los Angeles, CA 90071.

•Mock Interviews at Loyola Law School on Feb. 20, moderated by Jennifer Ishiguro, managing counsel of Toyota Financial Services. Panelists Julie Gerchik of Latham and Watkins, Kelly Kriebs of Sidley Austin, and Deputy City Attorney Shaun Dabby Jacobs will provide interview advice followed by the opportunity to participate in mock interviews with attorneys in the Los Angeles area.

The event is free and includes light refreshments. Panel discussion will be from 6:00 to 6:30 p.m., with mock interviews and networking from 6:30 to 8:00 p.m. It will take place at the Rains Southeast Reading Room at the Loyola Library, 919 Albany Street, Los Angeles, CA 90015.

•“Reproductive Rights 40 Years After Roe v. Wade: A Look at the Law, Medicine, and Pro-Choice Policy Considerations of In-Vitro Fertilization, Egg Donation, Surrogacy and other Technological Advances Helping Women Achieve Their Family Goals,” on Feb. 25 from 6:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. at Planned Parenthood, 400 W. 30th St., Los Angeles, CA 90007.

The cost is $30 for WLALA members, $40 for non-members, and free for students. Appetizers and desserts are included and an RSVP is required. Speakers are Dr. Nurit Winkler of the Center for Fertility and Gynecology in Tarzana, attorney Rose Keston Pondel of the Family Formation Law Center, and Serena Josel, director of public affairs at Planned Parenthood Los Angeles and deputy director of the Planned Parenthood Advocacy Project Los Angeles.

For more information or to reserve a space, contact (213) 892-8982 or


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