About Mark Thompson

Mark Thompson Articles written 9

Articles written by Mark Thompson

For Abusive Employers, The Dai Has Been Cast

Cornelia Dai, along with her good karma Pasadena law firm, doesn’t just hate injustice; she changes its course

Cornelia Dai is a second-generation Chinese American, so when a case came her way that involved the exploitation of immigrant Chinese workers, she had a personal and immediate reaction. She relished the chance to help a new generation of immigrants fight back. The face of discrimination has changed from the days when Dai’s immigrant grandfather was turned away by a barber who wouldn’t cut the hair of a Chinese man. For some of the most vulnerable newcomers these days, abuse is likely to …

Honor Thy Father, Thy Mother and America’s Environmental Laws

Chen’s parents cringed at her choice to become a lawyer, now they bask in their daughter’s success

Patricia Chen can trace the genesis of her career in law to a business disaster that befell her father when she was just 5 years old. An immigrant from Taiwan trying to make a better life for himself and his family in Hawaii, he had sunk his life savings into a business venture with a friend. The supposed friend ended up swindling her father out of all his money.   “That left an indelible impression on me,” Chen says, recalling who was born in Hawaii, lawyers are regarded as somewhat less …

The American Dream Is Alive and Well in Los Angeles

The lawyer from Cannery Row

A beauty salon in the northern California coastal town of Watsonville might have had a very smart hairstylist on its staff these days if it weren’t for a bitter cannery strike that began in 1985 and dragged on for 18 months.   Maribel Medina, then a high school senior who was leaning toward a career in cosmetology, was pulled into the middle of the labor dispute because her parents worked in the vegetable canneries and processing plants that made Watsonville at that time the “frozen-food …

A Human Rights Stop in Venice Beach

The Burmese generals ask: What’s wrong with a little forced labor?

The villages of the Tenasserim region of Myanmar, as Burma is now known, seem worlds away from Paul Hoffman’s law office on Ocean Front Walk, a stone’s toss from the zany cacophony of the Venice Beach scene. But Hoffman has spent a good deal of his summer immersed in events that unfolded a decade ago in these villages across the ocean.   Hoffman has devoted much of his legal career to cases that have taken him far afield from Los Angeles, where he has practiced since graduating from New …

The Man Who Wrote the Bible

David Nimmer knows copyright law … and Winnie the Pooh

Between making a court appearance in a long-running lawsuit over royalties for Winnie the Pooh and filing a brief in a copyright case in federal court in New York, David Nimmer, of counsel in the Century City office of Irell & Manella, recently found a few minutes to work on the “family business.”   It is a business that has made Nimmer a household name among copyright lawyers and the judges called to rule on these issues. For the definitive word on the state of the law in the field, …

The Man Who Pitched Three Strikes

Republican activist Michael Reynolds was moved to political action after the murder of his sister

Michael Reynolds, a partner with Snell & Wilmer in Irvine specializing in bankruptcies and business reorganizations, carries a photograph in his wallet that is the most important influence on how he spends much of his time when he isn’t practicing law. It is a photograph of his sister Kimber at age 18, shortly before she was shot to death in a robbery committed by two parolees with long criminal records in Fresno on June 29, 1992. Reynolds, who was a first-year law student at UCLA …

The Blog Corporations Click

Sarbanes-Oxley a barrel of monkeys? Well, almost, for Michael O’Sullivan

People do a lot of things to help them make sense of their jobs. Some exercise to clear their minds. Others get lost in music. Lawyer Michael O’Sullivan goes another way: he writes commentaries on his Web log, www.CorpLawBlog.com. O’Sullivan, a partner at Munger, Tolles & Olson, spends his offhours sifting through the Code of Hammurabi and SEC press releases, among other source material, for tidbits that he can craft into witty swipes at his pet peeves in the field of corporate …

Auschwitz Didn’t Issue Death Certificates

Lisa Stern sued Italy’s largest insurance company on behalf of her grandfather-in-law, who died in a Nazi concentration camp — and every Holocaust victim was a winner

The living room in Lisa Stern’s Hancock Park home is filled with reminders of the crime against humanity that has been the major focus of her legal career in recent years. Display cases arrayed around the room are filled with pre-World War II Jewish artifacts from the European countries that were overrun by Hitler’s armies. These treasures — Torah crowns, Hanukkah lamps and other ritual objects that were once cherished by people who died in the Holocaust — are regularly lent out …

LA's First Chicano Mayor?

Los Angeles City Attorney Rocky Delgadillo is a politician in forward motion

If you set out to build an ideal candidate for high office in 21st-century California from scratch, you’d end up with someone a lot like Los Angeles City Attorney Rockard “Rocky” Delgadillo. He is a pro-business, Mexican American Democrat who is friendly and articulate and has tough-guy good looks.A product of public schools in Highland Park, he went on to Harvard and Columbia Law School and then into a job at O’Melveny & Myers — with brief stints as a professional football …

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