A La Jolla Institution Since 1984

Message from 2021 La Jolla Bar Association President, James E. Heffner

Dear La Jolla Bar Association Members:

I am pleased to welcome you to the La Jolla Bar Association and am honored to serve as the President for 2021. With pandemic restrictions in place, we continue to host our monthly MCLE luncheons virtually as well as virtual social gatherings from time to time while we look forward to easing restrictions and returning to in-person events.

Since 1984, the La Jolla Bar Association has served lawyers who reside or work in La Jolla, deepening their ties to the community while developing professionally. The La Jolla Bar Association takes great pride in providing informative and knowledgeable speakers for its monthly lunches, which now continue virtually for the time being. Members can satisfy all of their MCLE general and specialty requirements through attendance at the monthly meetings.

I would like to thank Ariel J. Sabban, our outgoing President, for the exceptional work he did navigating a difficult 2020, and continues to do, on our Board of Directors. Thank you to the 2020 Board and Officers, and a thank you to our current Board members and Committee members for making my job so much more enjoyable.

This organization could not function as well as it does without our membership, which has some of the leading attorneys in their respective fields who are willing to donate their knowledge and experience to other members. The willingness to volunteer and serve on a committee or on the Board helps to ensure a diverse and progressive perspective which we all benefit from. We are once again grateful to Blanchard, Krasner & French for continuing to support us and graciously allowing us to utilize their conference room for our Board meetings when we return to in-person meetings. I am looking forward to a great year, meeting all of you, and seeing you at our two annual and other social events.


New officers for 2021:

James Heffner, President
Gary Laturno, Vice President
Robert D. Moldenhauer, Secretary
Donald R. Lincoln, Treasurer
Ariel J. Sabban (immediate past President)


Shirleymae Davis, Director
George E. Fleming, Director
Thomas L. Gotfredson, Director
Ann Kinsey Schu, Director
Paul H. Neuharth, Jr., Director
Edward P. Schlesier, Director
Svetlana (Lana) Volkova, Director
Aaron J. Schu, Director


We have a great group of members who have accomplished truly amazing educational, legal, and personal achievements. Although our membership is at a high, we still need to encourage new members to join. Invite your friends to one of our MCLE luncheons, which they can now attend virtually! Our membership form can be accessed on our website. Please feel free to direct any prospective members to our website for more information about the La Jolla Bar Association. The general requirements for membership are that the member live or work in La Jolla, or have a significant personal or professional interest in La Jolla. La Jolla is not just the village (despite what some locals would say!), but La Jolla also consists of the outlying areas, such as the UTC and UCSD areas.


Our website focuses on our members, their member pages, and our MCLE and social events. Each member receives a member page on our website and members can include on that member page a more detailed, personal description of the member’s practice. Please check the personal information on your member page and use the membership application to submit any corrections or updates. We would also like to include your personal photo. A special shout-out to our wonderful webmaster Mary Bean, of Mary Bean Graphic Design.

MCLE Luncheons

Our MCLE luncheons are continuing virtually during the pandemic restrictions, making it easier attend. We are grateful for the continued support of all our members of our monthly MCLE luncheons and our two main social events — our Summer Beach Party and our Holiday Party. We have had excellent attendance at our luncheons and we will continue to present MCLE presentations of the highest quality.

By attending our monthly MCLE programs (ten MCLE programs per year), our members easily meet the State Bar’s 25-hour MCLE requirement every three years. As a priority, we also schedule programs to satisfy the State Bar’s three required MCLE programs: (1) ethics (four hours each reporting period), (2) Competence Issues, formerly known as Prevention, Detection and Treatment of Substance Abuse or Mental Illness (one hour), and (3) Recognition and Elimination of Bias in the Legal Profession and Society (one hour).

When pandemic restrictions ease and it is safe to do so, our MCLE luncheons will return to in-person presentations over lunch in La Jolla. For a yearly membership fee of only $50, this is quite a bargain. We encourage any ideas from our members for future speakers. Please give me any suggestions and I will pass them on to our Speakers Committee.

Social Events

Our Summer Beach Party is held at the La Jolla Beach & Tennis Club in August. We start the party in the late afternoon to enable us to enjoy the beautiful sunset at La Jolla Shores. It has always provided a delightful afternoon and evening for our members to connect with each other and their significant others. We remain hopeful that it will be possible to host this event when pandemic restrictions ease in 2021.

In December, our La Jolla Bar Association Holiday Party brings members together in a festive setting to share the joys of the holiday season. We enjoy a delicious catered meal, wonderful holiday beverages and typically songs around a piano. This is an event where we express great camaraderie and friendship with our colleagues, spouses, and guests. We also collected toys for the Marine Corps’ Toys for Tots Program.

I wish you and your families all a wonderful year, both personally and professionally, in 2021.

James E. Heffner