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JANUARY 2014 - Federal Court Power Lunch
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The Bankruptcy Court Hosts Another Successful Federal Court Power Lunch

by Razmig Izakelian
Law Clerk to the Hon. Sandra R. Klein

On December 13, 2013, the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Central District of California hosted a Federal Court Power Lunch for approximately fifty students from Whitney High School.  A Power Lunch is a program for high school students who come to a courthouse to meet judges and lawyers and to learn about the law and the legal profession.  WLALA Board members Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Holly Fujie, U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Sandra Klein, Rozella Oliver, Cathy Ostiller, Arin Scapa, and Sarah Schuh Quist, and WLALA members Ninth Circuit Judge Jacqueline Nguyen and Chief Magistrate Judge Suzanne Segal participated in the event.  United States Attorney Andre Birotte, Jr., and Assistant Ninth Circuit Executive David Madden, were also enthusiastic participants in the Lunch. 

Judge Klein introduced each of the Judges and spoke briefly about her background and the importance of mentoring in her career.  Judge Nguyen kicked off the event and discussed her background, dreaming big, and never letting obstacles get in her way.  Judge Segal explained what Magistrate Judges do and what lead her to a career in the law.  Magistrate Judge Alka Sagar, who was the guest speaker, provided information about her family, her background and the definitive moments in her career including her recent appointment to the bench.  Each of the Judges mentioned they might not have gotten into their first choice schools or they were not always offered jobs for which they applied.  All of the speakers emphasized the importance of perseverance and never giving up your dreams.    

Judge Klein then introduced each Judge and provided some fun facts about the Judges.  Guess which Magistrate Judge played drums in a high school band?  (Please see below for the answer to this question). 

During the Power Lunch, which was generously sponsored by the South Asian Bar Association of Southern California (SABA) , the Judges, lawyers and students sat at tables named for the nine sitting U.S. Supreme Court Justices as well as some noteworthy former Supreme Court Justices.  The lunchtime discussion included general legal topics and helped prepare the students for a game of "Legal Jeopardy” that was enjoyed by all.  The Legal Jeopardy game, which is played like a traditional Jeopardy game, has categories including "Judges and Lawyers”, "Trials”, "Bill of Rights”, "Think Like a Lawyer”, and "Who’s Who in the Courtroom”.  The students had a great time answering the questions and learning about the law and the legal profession.

Stay tuned for the next Federal Court Power Lunch, which will be held on May 20, 2014 in conjunction with the Central District’s 2014 Law Day celebration.  If you are interested in participating in the next Federal Court Power Lunch, please contact the WLALA office at  

SPOILER ALERT:  Judge Sagar played the drums in a high school band!