News & Publications Press Releases November 21, 2016

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Orange County Bar Association To Honor Dean J. Zipser With Franklin G. West Award


NEWPORT BEACH, Calif., Nov. 21, 2016— The Orange County Bar Association will present attorney Dean J. Zipser with the Franklin G. West Award at its 2017 Judges’ Night & Annual Meeting on Thursday, Jan. 26, 2017, at the Hyatt Regency Huntington Beach Resort & Spa in Huntington Beach, Calif.

First established in 1971 in honor of the late Judge Franklin G. West, the Franklin G. West Award represents the highest honor awarded by the OCBA.

Widely regarded as a leader in the Orange County legal community, Mr. Zipser is a founding partner of Umberg/Zipser LLP, headquartered in Irvine, Calif. He has been practicing law for more than 36 years, and continues to serve the Orange County bench and bar as well as the greater legal community through his work, mentoring, and community service.

“The Orange County legal community is fortunate to have attorneys of Dean’s caliber,” said OCBA President Todd Friedland. “His selfless efforts have made a positive impact on countless OCBA members.”

In 2005, Mr. Zipser served as President of the OCBA, for which he founded and currently co-chairs the association’s Mentoring Committee. In years past, he served as a President of the OCBA Charitable Fund, and Chair of the OCBA Masters Division that includes members who have practiced law for 25 years or longer. Additionally, he is a founding member and Secretary of the Federal Bar Association, Orange County, and was a former President of the Orange County Chapter of the Association of Business Trial Lawyers. Both at and beyond the OCBA, his service to the legal community has and continues to be a humbling example of service and leadership.

“Dean has always been a quiet leader, one who so clearly puts the interests of the legal community before his own,” shares U.S. District Judge Josephine L. Staton about her experience working with Mr. Zipser. “He is both reflective and inclusive in his decision making process. Because he puts others before himself, the members of the organizations he leads know they are in capable hands.”

He is currently one of two vice chairs for the California State Bar’s Second Commission on the Revision of the Rules of Professional Conduct, and previously served as a member of the Pro Bono Panel for the Central District of California as well as a lawyer representative for the Ninth Circuit Judicial Conference.

Just as dedicated to the underserved and underrepresented communities in Orange County, Mr. Zipser is Vice President of the Constitutional Rights Foundation of Orange County, and works extensively with Orange County Bar Foundation and Public Law Center. In 2003, he received the Jurisprudence Award from the Anti-Defamation League, which annually recognizes an individual who exemplifies the highest ideals of the legal profession and demonstrates committed service to the community.

Earlier this year, Mr. Zipser was named “Lawyer of the Year” for Orange County Intellectual Property Litigation by Best Lawyers, which recognized him as “Lawyer of the Year” in the category of Orange County Bet-the-Company Litigation in 2014. Moreover, he has been recognized as one of the “Best Lawyers in America” by Best Lawyers for the areas of Bet-the-Company Litigation, Commercial Litigation, Intellectual Property Litigation, Banking and Finance Litigation, and Real Estate Litigation since 2008, and as a “Super Lawyer” for the Southern California region since 2005.

Prior to establishing Umberg/Zipser LLP, Mr. Zipser was managing partner at Morrison & Foerster LLP until joining Manatt, Phelps & Phillips LLP, where he was a partner since May 2008.

Mr. Zipser holds a B.A., summa cum laude, from the University of California, Los Angeles. He earned his J.D. from Stanford University Law School in 1980, and served as a member of the Stanford Law Review.

About the Orange County Bar Association
Established in 1901, the Orange County Bar Association is one of the largest voluntary bars in California. The mission of the Orange County Bar Association is to enhance the system of justice, to support the lawyers who serve it, and to assist the community served by it.

About the Franklin G. West Award
Established in 1971 in memory of the late Judge Franklin G. West, a highly respected jurist who served on the bench from January 1939 to March 1965, the West Award is bestowed upon an outstanding attorney or judge who has made significant contributions to advance and elevate justice and law. Judge West’s 26 years and two months on the bench constituted the longest term ever served by a judge in California.