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WLALA's 2013 Doctor/Lawyer Dinner

"Doctors and Lawyers Talk About Domestic Violence: What You Need To Know" on May 9, 2013

 by Linda O. Hatcher

Co-Chair of the Doctor/Lawyer Dinner Committee


A principal purpose of the WLALA Doctor/Lawyer Dinner is to encourage professional women to support each other.  The event gives us an opportunity to bring together women lawyers and doctors to network and encourage such mutual support, and to explore mutual issues of professional concern.  This year's program will feature the topic:  "Doctors and Lawyers Talk About Domestic Violence: What You Need To Know."

It is estimated that 1 in 4 women will experience domestic violence during their lifetime.  That is a sobering statistic.  Doctors and lawyers are uniquely situated to identify and address domestic violence.  However, many of us are not necessarily trained to recognize when domestic violence may be an issue for our client or patient, or our daughters, other family members, friends, colleagues, neighbors.  Then, once we recognize it or become aware of it, what should (or in some cases, must) we do?

At this year's Doctor/Lawyer Dinner on May 9, 2013, we will explore this compelling topic.  We will discuss generally why the topic of domestic violence is significant to all of us, how to recognize it, how to address it, what to do and what not to do.  Some of the issues we will touch on are:  How does domestic violence impact the health and well-being of women and children, in particular?  How can doctors and lawyers more effectively interview patients/clients to detect domestic violence?  What are the reporting requirements for professionals?  How can you help someone experiencing domestic violence?  What shouldn't you do?

Our esteemed panel of speakers will include two women lawyers and two women doctors, each of whom has significant experience working in the area of domestic violence.  They are: Brandy Davis, Esq., who is a Managing Attorney at the Los Angeles Center for Law and Justice (LACLJ), and who has over 12 years of experience representing survivors of domestic violence, including representing youth in dependency court and advocating for improved teen dating violence laws.  Carol Grabowski, M.D., MBA, a board certified obstetrician/gynecologist affiliated with The MemorialCare Center for Women at Miller Children's Hospital, and who has for 16 years served on the Board of the WomenShelter of Long Beach, which provides emergency and counseling services for battered women, children and men.  Kate Marr, Esq., who is a Senior Attorney with the Legal Aid Foundation of Los Angeles (LAFLA) and Coordinator of the Greater Long Beach Community Medical-Legal Partnership, and who has over 12 years experience providing legal services to victims and survivors of domestic violence.  Elisa A. Nicholas, M.D., MSPH, a pediatrician and the CEO of The Children's Clinic, Serving Children and Their Families, a system of nonprofit health centers, and who is partnering with LAFLA in the Greater Long Beach Community Medical-Legal Partnership.

Please join us for an evening of relevant dialogue, networking, MCLE credit and more.  Also note that this event is not just for women doctors and lawyers.  We always enjoy a very diverse crowd at this event (e.g., women and men, law students, medical students, those associated with the legal profession, those associated with the healthcare industry, those interested in the topic generally).  All are welcome, and we encourage anyone who is interested to attend. 

The Doctor/Lawyer Dinner will be held on Thursday, May 9, 2013, from 6:00 to 9:00 p.m., at the Olympic Collection, 11301 Olympic Boulevard, Los Angeles, California 90064.  To register for or sponsor this event, please contact the WLALA office at or call (213) 892-8982.  See also the event flyer included in this newsletter.

Linda O. Hatcher is the WLALA Board of Governors’ Doctor/Lawyer Dinner co-chair and a senior attorney at Theodora Oringher PC.