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Trial skills team in the moot court room

The California Western Law Firm Challenge is a community-based alumni engagement campaign that helps renew the bond between the law school and its alumni, and promotes California Western within the legal community.

Any law firm or legal agency employing two or more California Western alumni is eligible to participate and all are challenged with the goal of achieving 100 percent participation. Those who succeed in meeting this ambitious goal receive special recognition from the law school.

We are looking forward to our fourth annual Law Firm Challenge in fall 2018, in conjunction with Giving Tuesday. For more information, please contact Veronica Schindler, Associate Director of Development, at (619) 515-1548 or

2017 Results

Thanks to the generosity of our participants and the support of their firms and agencies, this year's challenge was a great success. A total of 13 firms and agencies participated (with 10 achieving 100 percent participation) and raised more than $10,000 in support of the law school’s Annual Fund.

To each and every one of our participating alumni in this year's challenge, thank you, and congratulations on your outstanding achievements!

2017 Champions

Heavyweight Division (21 or more alumni employed)

Office of the San Diego County District Attorney

Office of the San Diego County District Attorney

Team Members:
Agustin Peña (Co-captain)
Clayton Carr (Co-captain)

Hung Bach
Franciesca Balerio
Vanessa Christine Gerard Benner
Huy M L Betz
Minaz Bhayani
Matthew Carberry
Jessica Coto
Jorge DelPortillo
Bree Garcia
Vanessa Gerard
Derek Snow Grilz
Kristi Hein (Gill)
Patricia Lee Herian
Bryn Kirvin
Christopher Michael Lawson
Melissa Mack
Jerrilyn Malana
Christopher Mancilla
Tamara Martin
Joe McLaughlin
Marcy McLaughlin
Nereida Melgarejo
Mary Naoom
Renee Palermo
Dana Elizabeth Palmer
Valerie Ryan
Kimberly Scott
Sara Staninger
Leonard Nguyen Trinh
Carlos Varela
Anna Winn

Middleweight Division (11 to 20 alumni employed)

100 Percent Alumni Participation

Higgs, Fletcher & Mack

Team Members:
Rahil Swigart (Captain)
Rebecca E. Briskin
Roger W. Clayton
Gerissa S. Conforti
Joseph A. Gonnella
Michael J. Hoisington
Scott J. Ingold
Rachel R. James
Joseph J. Kagan
Regina Knoll
Kathryn A. Martin
Amanda McCarty
Susan A. Mercure
Rachel E. Moffitt
John W. Nielsen
Stephen T. Pelletier
Charles F. Reidelbach
Timothy D. Waters
Justine Wong

Procopio, Cory, Hargreaves & Savitch

Team Members:
Zagros Bassirian (Captain)
Brook Barnes
Kevin M. Davis
Jessica Duran
Rachael Harrington
Lionel P. Hernholm Jr.
Robin Madaffer
Justine Nielsen
Pattric J. Rawlins
Ashley D. Stecher
Matthew Strauss
Merrick Wadsworth
Lianlian Wu

Bantamweight Division (2 to 10 alumni employed)

100 Percent Alumni Participation

Atkinson, Andelson, Loya, Ruud & Romo 

Team Members:
Eileen Nucho (Captain)
Dan J. Bulfer
Martin Hom
Ashley Turner

Benner & Boon LLP 

Team Members:
Craig Benner (Co-captain)
Brett Boon (Co-captain)

Casey Gerry Schenk Francavilla Blatt & Penfield LLP

Hyde & Swigart Team Members:
Gayle Blatt (Captain)
Wendy Behan
Angela Jae Chun
Jillian L. Ferrario Hayes
Adam B. Levine
Thomas Penfield
Meagan Verschueren

Haeggquist & Eck, LLP

Procopio Team Members:
Alreen Haeggquist (Captain)
Jenna Rangel
Aaron M. Olsen

Hickman & Robinson, LLP

RJS Law Firm Team Members:
Robert Robinson (Captain)
Kyle E. Yaege

RJS Law Firm

RJS Law Firm Team Members:
Marisol Swadener (Co-captain)
Chandara Diep (Co-captain)

Robinson Calcagnie Robinson Shapiro Davis, Inc.

Team Members:
Wesley Polischuk (Captain)
Amanda Robinson

Sullivan Hill Lewin Rez & Engel

Sullivan Hill Lewin Rez & Engel Team Members:
Jeffrey Lewin (Captain)
Gary Rudolph

We also received generous alumni participation from the following:

San Diego County Office of the Public Defender
Captain: Paige Stevens