OCWLA started in 1975 with five members. It was originally called the Women and Individual Rights section of the Orange County Bar Association. In 1979, OCWLA became an affiliate organization of the Orange County Bar Association.
OCWLA is dedicated to advancing women in the legal profession. We support the continued growth and development of OCWLA and its members by providing an exceptional professional network, raising awareness of discrimination and bias, and supporting worthy charitable organizations.
We hold our regular lunch meetings at Grand Catered Events in Orange on the first Tuesday of every month. Our meetings offer quality Continuing Legal Education (CLE) programs at very reasonable prices. We also hold several evening programs throughout the year, including our popular Mardi Gras cocktail mixer in February. For the first time this year, we held a Women Judges Reception in April to honor our many female federal and state judges. We hope to make this a recurring annual event.
Our board has been hard at work planning an exciting 2014. Our 2014 Judge of the Year is Hon. Glenda Sanders, Presiding Judge of the Orange County Superior Court. We are pleased to announce that Joan Mayer, Deputy General Counsel of Lennar Homes, is our Attorney of the Year. These awards will be presented at our Annual Gala Dinner this fall. The Gala is our primary fundraising event. At the dinner, we will also be honoring Steve Young, of the Law Offices of Steven R. Young, with a President’s Award, in recognition of his many years of support of OCWLA.
OCWLA uses money raised through its fundraising efforts to award $1,000 bar stipends and diversity bar stipends twice annually to law school graduates who are studying for the California Bar Examination. We also provide financial support to organizations such as the Public Law Center and California Women Lawyers, of which OCWLA is an affiliate.
At all of our events, OCWLA collects donations of sample-sized toiletries (shampoo, toothpaste, etc.) that we donate to the Orange County Collaborative Courts. The toiletries are distributed to people in the Homeless Outreach Court and Drug Court programs. We also collect dry pasta donations, which we give to Catarina’s Club. Bruno Serato, the owner of the Anaheim White House, uses these donations to make pasta dinners every night for children living in the motels of Anaheim.
For more information about OCWLA, please contact us at www.ocwla.org, 949.440.6700, ext. 259.