CENTURY CITY BAR ASSOCIATION NAMES 2011 LAWYERS OF THE YEAR AT ITS 43RD ANNUAL INSTALLATION BANQUET AND AWARDS CEREMONY HELD ON MARCH 1, 2011


2011 Century City Bar Association Lawyers of the Year (from left to right): Carla Christofferson, Jimmy Nguyen, Leah Bishop, Thomas Patterson, Carole Handler.Brian Currey, Esq., Counsel to the Mayor, presents each honoree with Certificates of Commendation on behalf of Mayor Antonio R. Villaraigosa. Photo credit: Jonah Light Photography.

Century City, CA – Some of the city's most powerful attorneys were among the 350 guests who filled the Los Angeles Ballroom of the Hyatt Regency Century Plaza on March 1 for the Century City Bar Association's 43rd Annual Installation Banquet and Awards Ceremony, the CCBA's most prestigious, flagship event. This year's honorees were Leah M. Bishop of Loeb & Loeb LLP – Trusts & Estates Lawyer of the Year; Carla Christofferson of O'Melveny & Meyers LLP - Litigator of the Year; Jimmy D. Nguyen of Wildman, Harrold, Allen & Dixon LLP - Intellectual Property Lawyer of the Year; Carole C. Handler of Lathrop & Gage LLP - Entertainment Lawyer of the Year; and Thomas E. Patterson of Klee, Tuchin, Bogdanoff & Stern LLP - Bankruptcy Lawyer of the Year.

The annual gala was sponsored by some of the city's leading firms, including Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schrek; Gursey | Schneider; Irell & Manella; Klee, Tuchin Bogdanoff & Stern; Landau Gottfried & Berger; Lathrop & Gage; Loeb & Loeb; O'Melveny & Myers; Pachulski Stang Ziehl & Jones; Peitzman, Weg & Kempinsky; Russ August & Kabat; Stutman Treister & Glatt; and Wildman, Harrold, Allen & Dixon. Friends and family of the honorees shared in the honorees' achievements, with some traveling from out of state to attend the event.

Los Angeles Superior Court Justice Christine Byrd swears in the new officers (from left to right): Fay Arfa of Law Offices of Fay Arfa – President-Elect; Francie Gorowitz of Rosenfeld, Meyer & Sussman – Vice President; Steven Hoch of Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck – Treasurer; Loren Beck of Russ August & Kabat – Secretary; Louis Dienes of TroyGold - Immediate Past President; and Jane Shay Wald of Irell & Manella – President. Photo credit: Jonah Light Photography.

The event commenced with the installation of the CCBA Board of Governors and officers by Los Angeles Superior Court Justice Christine Byrd. Representing a cross-section of Century City's legal spectrum, the new officers are:  Jane Shay Wald of Irell & Manella – President; Fay Arfa of Law Offices of Fay Arfa – President-Elect; Francie R. Gorowitz of Rosenfeld, Meyer & Sussman – Vice President; Loren Beck of Russ August & Kabat – Secretary; Steven L. Hoch of Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck – Treasurer.

Susan Bursk, President and CEO of the Century City Chamber of Commerce, presents outgoing President Louis Dienes with a Certificate of Recognition for his years of dedicated service to the Century City Bar Association and his outstanding performance as President from 2010-2011. Photo credit: Jonah Light Photography.

Susan Bursk, President and CEO of the Century City Chamber of Commerce, presented outgoing President Louis Dienes with a Certificate of Recognition for his years of dedicated service to the Century City Bar Association and his outstanding performance as President from 2010-2011. Brian Currey, Esq., Counsel to the Mayor, presented each honoree with Certificates of Commendation on behalf of Mayor Antonio R. Villaraigosa.

Photo credit: Jonah Light Photography.

Brook Lee, the last Miss USA to capture the Miss Universe title, introduced her friend James “Jimmy” Nguyen, who has risen as star of legal, entertainment, and law industries since graduating from law school at age 22. Jim Coyne, a partner at the Atalon Group, a national real estate consulting and turnaround firm,  introduced Thomas Patterson, citing his achievements as debtor’s counsel for Lake Las Vegas, a multi-use residential resort, during a difficult time of the real estate market. Former lawyer and entertainment entrepreneur Katherine Goodman introduced fellow co-owner of the LA Sparks WNBA franchise, Carla Christofferson, a community leader who spoke of the satisfaction inherent in vigilantly representing her clients. Katrina Dewey, editor and creator of Lawdragon, introduced Carole Handler, best known for litigating disputes in the character copyright area, including the dispute over rights to “Spider-Man.” Finally, Stu Tobisman of Loeb & Loeb introduced longtime colleague and mentee Leah Bishop, who spoke of the personal fulfillment she receives in handling the challenging and often sensitive issues in her trusts and estates practice.

For a biography of Leah Bishop, click here.

For a biography of Jimmy Nguyen, click here.

For a biography of Carla Christofferson, click here.

For a biography of Carole Handler, click here.

For a biography of Thomas Patterson, click here.