Stephen J. Kaufman is a native of New York City who has lived most of his life in Los Angeles. He graduated from UCLA with a degree in Political Science and next attended the University of California, Hastings College of Law, where he graduated with a J.D. in 1987. Stephen joined the Los Angeles office of Peterson & Ross after graduating and practiced there for five years, specializing in litigation involving unfair business practices and environmental insurance coverage. In 1992, he joined Long & Levit, becoming a partner in the Los Angeles office. While at Long & Levit, he continued to practice in the area of business litigation. At the same time, he developed a political practice and began representing clients in campaign-finance and election law matters. In addition, Stephen chaired Long & Levit's pro bono committee, receiving the California State Bar's Wiley W. Manuel Award for pro bono legal services to the community. He has extensive trial and appellate experience in both the state and federal courts.
Since forming Smith Kaufman in 1996, Stephen has specialized in campaign-finance and election law, managing the firm's Political Practice Group. He is a member of the State Bar of California (Public Law Section), the American Bar Association, the Los Angeles County Bar Association, the California Political Attorneys Association, and the California Political Treasurers' Association. Stephen is active in the community, serving on the Government Relations Committee of the Central City Association, the UCLA Government Relations Alumni Advocacy Committee, and the Board of the Southern California Leadership Network. Stephen is active in Democratic Party politics, serving as a field organizer and fundraiser in national and local campaigns since his days as a student organizer at UCLA.
Stephen was admitted to the bar in 1987, California and the U.S. District Court, Central District of California; 1989 U.S. Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit; 1999, U.S. District Court, Northern District of California. He is a frequent author and speaker on campaign reform and election issues. Recent articles include "Florida Focus," Los Angeles Daily Journal, November 15, 2000, and "Trouble Ahead for Campaign Reform," Los Angeles Business Journal, October 20, 1997.
June Awano Lagmay was appointed by Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and confirmed by the L.A. City Council as City Clerk of the City of Los Angeles in May 2009 and served until August 2013. She is only the second woman and the first Asian and LGBT person to hold this office in L.A. history. She recently retired after 32 years with the City of Los Angeles.
During her tenure, June managed the City Clerk department including its core functions of Elections and Council & Public Services during the City's worst economic crisis in modern history and loss of 40% of department staff. Nevertheless, under her leadership, the City Clerk's Office modernized and systemized its procedures and entered an era of accelerated technology and productivity.
Prior to being City Clerk, June served in the administrations of four consecutive Mayors: as intern under Mayor Bradley in the late 1970's, and later, over a span of 15 years, as Mayor's Legislative Coordinator for Mayor Richard Riordan, Mayor James Hahn, and Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa. She has comprehensive expertise in the City Charter and City and election policies and procedures. In her earlier career, June also served as Assembly aide to then-Assemblywoman Gloria Molina 56th Assembly District, and Council aide to then-Councilwoman Peggy Stevenson 13th Council District.
June was tapped to be Co-Chair of the 2012 Mayor's Asian Pacific-Islander Heritage Month, and was a member of the Asian Democratic Caucus, Asian Pacific Women's Network, and Board member of Search to Involve Pilipino Americans (SIPA) and the Hollywood-Sunset Community Clinic. She served twice as President of the City's L.A. City Employees Asian American Association in 1985 and 1987. In the late 1970's June was a founding member of Asian Pacific Lesbians and Gays, the first Asian Pacific organization of its kind in Los Angeles. She continued her advocacy for human rights by helping to organize an LGBT organization for Los Angeles City Employees at L.A. City Hall during the more recent Prop 8 marriage equality era.
Most recently, in 2013 June was appointed by Mayor Eric Garcetti as a Commissioner on the City's Municipal Elections Reform Commission where she served as Vice Chair through June 2014. In 2014 she was honored as a Woman of the Year by the organization API (Asian Pacific Islander) Equality, and by the L.A. City Council as a City Legend and Leader in the LGBT Community for the City's 2014 LGBT Heritage Month.
June Lagmay was born in Yokohama Japan of a Japanese mother and Filipino-European father, and was raised in Los Angeles' Historic Filipinotown neighborhood. She holds a Bachelors degree in Sociology cum laude from UCLA and two years of graduate work under scholarship in that field. She and her spouse Rita Romero, 45 years together, reside in the San Gabriel Valley.
Gabriel Sandoval is a Partner in the statewide education law practice group of Atkinson, Andelson, Loya, Ruud & Romo, a California-based law firm representing over 450 educational institutions including universities, community colleges, school districts, and charter schools. Gabriel's practice focuses on providing strategic legal counsel on all aspects of education, employment and labor law, and civil rights compliance.
Prior to joining the firm, Gabriel served in President Barack Obama's Administration as Senior Advisor and Director of Policy for the White House Initiative on Educational Excellence for Hispanics. In this capacity, Gabriel advanced Executive Order 13555, which is focused on expanding and improving the educational opportunities and outcomes for Latinos from cradle to career. While in the Obama Administration, Gabriel also served as Senior Counsel in the Office for Civil Rights (OCR) of the U.S. Department of Education-the largest office of the federal government dedicated exclusively to ensuring that students are not discriminated against based on race, color, national origin, sex, or disability. Gabriel, as a key member of OCR's management team, worked with the Assistant Secretary and other senior staff in issuing national policy guidance and managing complex, statewide civil rights investigations and compliance reviews, which resulted in resolution agreements positively affecting students in across the nation, including English language learners.
Over the course of his professional career, Gabriel has held other significant positions in the government, non-profit, and private sectors, including Deputy Legal Counsel to Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, where he provided legal and policy advice to the Mayor and his staff on a range of local, state, federal, and international matters, including litigation involving the City of Los Angeles, civil rights, education, economic development, public safety, immigrant integration, trade missions, and legislation. He has also served as Special Assistant City Attorney for the City of Los Angeles, Special Counsel to the Secretary of Legal Affairs and Special Assistant to the Director of Community and Intergovernmental Relations in the Governor Gray Davis Administration, an employment and labor associate at O'Melveny & Myers LLP, and law clerk to the Honorable Carlos R. Moreno, then U.S. District Judge for the Central District of California. Gabriel has been appointed to several state and local boards, including the California State Bar Commission on Judicial Nominees Evaluation, the Los Angeles County Commission for Public Social Services, El Pueblo de Los Angeles Historical Monument Authority, The Campaign for College Opportunity, and Partnerships to Uplift Communities, a non-profit charter management organization serving students in San Fernando Valley and Northeast Los Angeles. In 2009, he received the Regional President of the Year Award from the Hispanic National Bar Association, the nation's largest organization that represents the interests of the more than 100,000 Hispanic judges, attorneys, law professors, and law students in the United States and its territories. Gabriel is also a 2014 Pahara-Aspen Education Fellow, a member of the Aspen Global Leadership Network, and a 2007 recipient of the American Marshall Memorial Fellowship of the German Marshall Fund of the United States for which he has also been a fellow of its Transatlantic Forum on Migration and Integration since 2008.
A native of Los Angeles, Gabriel was integrally involved in voter protection efforts for the past three presidential elections. He is a graduate of Stanford University and Columbia University School of Law and is admitted to practice law in California.