Hispanic Bar Association

OCHBA Statement Updated April 2024

The Hispanic Bar Association of Orange County was founded in 1970 by an astonishingly small group of Orange County lawyers of Hispanic heritage. The late Honorable James O. Perez was a founding member as well as the first Latino judge appointed to the bench in Orange County. To proudly honor his legacy, the HBA created the James O. Perez Judge of the Year Award given out at the Annual Judges’ Barbeque.

The HBA is committed to promoting education, unity, and excellence in the Latinx community. Our Membership and Sponsors provide the support and financial resources to continue our Mission. The HBA just held its 46th Annual Gala Scholarship Fundraiser, Awards, & Installation Dinner, our organization’s biggest fundraising event! With the support of our sponsors and Membership, the HBA was able to award five deserving law students, Brandon Martinez (Harvard), Astrid Cardona (Western State College of Law), Christian Valenzuela-Cabral (UCI), Joshuel Calderon (UCLA), and Claudia Diaz Martinez (UCI), with the HBA’s Wally Davis Scholarships, at $5,000 each, to help fund their law studies. Andrea Cervantes (UCI) received the HBA’s $5,000 Bar Stipend to help supplement Bar Exam preparation costs. These amazing law students all had incredible stories of hard work and perseverance, many with immigrant parents who struggled, and many being first-generation college students.

The HBA was privileged to honor Father Gregory Boyle, Founder and Director of Homeboy Industries with the Hon. Francisco Briseño Lifetime Achievement Award for his extraordinary lifetime of helping young adults and teenagers escape gang life. Judicial Appointments Secretary Luis Céspedes was honored with the Guardián de Justicia Award for his commitment to insuring diversity on the bench in California and for his commitment to the Unity Bar. The HBA proudly honored Deputy Public Defender Amber Poston with Attorney of Year for her incredible work representing marginalized clients in minority communities and for her commitment to the Unity Bar. Our Corporate Citizen was awarded to Target Corporation for their dedication to serving and strengthening the community making a positive impact on people’s lives.

The success of this organization, its programs and events, and its commitment to providing much needed scholarships to law students, is only possible through the support of our Membership and Sponsors who are devoted to our Mission. We are committed to the Latinx community in areas of social justice, community outreach, student mentoring, and diversity in the legal community and on the bench. Join us this year as we work together to continue to this Mission.

We encourage you to join us at our many events throughout the year to network and to support these great causes. Please join us at our Angel game in July, our Cinco de Mayo Mixer in May, the Annual Judges’ BBQ in September, and many other events! The HBA is also proud to team with our Latinx partners throughout California in planning the State of the Latinx Community Inaugural Summit in September on the UCLA campus. For membership and event information, contact info@ochba.org or go to ochba.org.

Recent News & Event Photos

For more information about upcoming events, visit www.ochba.org.