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Executive Committee

 

WLALA Board of Governors

WLALA Executive Committee

WLALA Past Presidents

WLALA Student Liaisons

WLALA Foundation Board of Governors

 

Amy T. Brantly

President

Amy T. Brantly is a founding partner of Kesselman Brantly Stockinger LLP, a boutique litigation firm specializing in business litigation, antitrust and unfair competition.  Ms. Brantly has significant experience in a range of complex litigation cases, including antitrust, fraud, trade secrets, breach of fiduciary duty, and class actions. Before co-founding Kesselman Brantly Stockinger, Ms. Brantly was an attorney at Susman Godfrey LLP, where she worked on some of the biggest antitrust cases in the country as well as numerous class actions. Her antitrust experience includes litigating group boycott cases, exclusionary contracting practices, price fixing, and bid-rigging involving numerous markets, including, semiconductor packaging, medical devices, insurance and college athletics. Ms. Brantly also served as counsel for the economic loss class in In re Toyota Motor Corp. Unintended Acceleration Marketing, Sales Practices, and Products Liability Litigation based on claims including false advertising and unfair competition. Ms. Brantly has argued cases in both state and federal courts and has handled numerous arbitrations. In addition to being acknowledged several times as a “Rising Star” in litigation and a “Top Women Attorney in Southern California,” Ms. Brantly was also named a Super Lawyer in 2015 and 2016.  Ms. Brantly is an active member of the Los Angeles legal community. Ms. Brantly graduated from Fordham University School of Law, where she served as a member of the Fordham Moot Court Board and the Fordham Environmental Law Journal.

 

Heather E. Stern 

President-Elect

Heather E. Stern is Partner with Parker Ibrahim & Berg LLC, where she practices commercial litigation focused on real estate related litigation and lender liability defense.  She has substantial experience litigating matters pertaining to construction loans, letters of credit, guaranties, reverse mortgages, and the underwriting, origination, servicing and sale of residential mortgages.  Heather also assists real property owners and others in the real estate industry with their real property disputes.  Her practice includes handling purchase and sale contract and disclosure related litigation; adjoining property owner litigation such as boundary and easement disputes; commercial landlord-tenant matters; partition actions; eminent domain; and partnership/joint venture disputes among real estate investors.  Heather has also served as an expert witness on the standard of care in handling a real estate litigation matter and had authored numerous articles in her field.  This is her eighth year as a member of the Board of Governors for WLALA.  Heather grew up in Grand Haven, Michigan and received her B.A., cum laude, from Columbia University in New York City.  She earned her J.D. from UCLA School of Law, graduating Order of the Coif, and was an Editor on the UCLA Law Review.. She is married to her college sweetheart, Gabriel, a philosophy professor and is also the proud mother of identical twin daughters.

 

Jennifer Leland

First Vice-President

Jennifer Leland is Of Counsel at Robins Kaplan LLP in Century City. Ms. Leland represents clients in a variety of industries in all phases of litigation in federal and state courts, including pre-trial proceedings, mediations, trials, and appeals. Ms. Leland focuses on entertainment and media-related litigation, representing individuals and companies in matters involving contract disputes, copyright and trademark infringement, profit participation rights, and royalty disputes. Ms. Leland also has significant experience representing clients in a broad range of business and commercial litigation matters, including breach of contract, unfair competition, false advertising, breach of fiduciary duty, real estate, and bankruptcy-related litigation. Ms. Leland is a cum laude graduate of the University of California, Hastings College of the Law.  She received her B.A. from the University of California, at San Diego.  While in law school, Ms. Leland was an Executive Articles Editor for the Hastings International and Comparative Law Review.  Her postgraduate internships include working for the National Organization of Women (NOW) in New York and a year-long clerkship for Nevada Supreme Court Justice Charles E. Springer.  Ms. Leland is an active member of the Los Angeles community and has been on the WLALA Board of Governors since 2007. 


Michelle Brauer Abidoye

Second Vice-President/Treasurer

Michelle B. Abidoye is a partner with FordHarrison, LLP representing management on all aspects of labor and employment law.  She represents clients in a variety of industries, but has particular expertise in the aviation industry.  Michelle works with employers to resolve complex employment disputes and reduce litigation risk.  She is passionate about learning her clients' businesses from the ground up and prides herself in being a trusted advisor who provides smart business solutions as efficiently as possible.  Her employment litigation experience includes defending against class action and individual claims for wage and hour violations, wrongful termination, retaliation, harassment, and discrimination.  Her labor experience includes representing clients in grievance resolution and arbitrations.  In 2017, Michelle was named as a Woman Worth Watching by the Diversity Journal.  She was also selected as a “Super Lawyer” for labor and employment law.  Michelle has served on the WLALA Board of Governors since 2014.


Jessica Kronstadt

Secretary

Jessica Kronstadt is a deputy district attorney for the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s office.  Ms. Kronstadt currently works in the Victim Impact Program, where she prosecutes a variety of crimes including domestic violence, sexual assault, criminal threats, stalking and animal cruelty.  Ms. Kronstadt has been acknowledged by Los Angeles Magazine as a “Rising Star” in public interest.  Ms. Kronstadt received her B.A. from Yale University, where she was a member of the Varsity Women’s Volleyball Team.  Ms. Kronstadt received her J.D. from Washington University in St. Louis School of Law.  After graduating from law school, Ms. Kronstadt worked as a litigation associate at Latham & Watkins and as a staff attorney at Bet Tzedek Legal Services.  She has served on the WLALA Board of Governors since 2012.  She also serves on the Executive Committee of the Criminal Justice Section for the Los Angeles County Bar Association, and as a board member of the California Young Lawyers Association.  Ms. Kronstadt is a past Co-Chair of the Young Lawyers Division of the Los Angeles Chapter of the Association of Business Trial Lawyers.  She has run in and successfully completed four marathons.  She is married to Will Turner and has two daughters.

 

Mary McKelvey

Communications Officer

Mary McKelvey is a principal of Polsinelli, one of the country’s largest law firms with over 800 attorneys in 20 offices.  She is a highly respected trial attorney who is influential in every aspect of her career, i.e. in litigating difficult cases for national and global clients, in handling high stakes pro bono cases, in successfully assuming leadership positions at the state and local bar levels, in supporting the next generation of women lawyers, in mentoring at-risk non-lawyer women, and in proactively volunteering in the community. In addition to trying cases, Mary has extensive experience in all stages of litigation including trial preparation, taking and defending percipient and expert witness depositions, developing innovative case handling strategy during discovery, and drafting complex pleadings and arguing dispositive motions in both state and federal court.  Mary masterfully presents complex facts, concepts, medical vocabulary, historical data, scientific data, and other complicated issues in ways that jurors can understand and use to arrive at a fair and just decision. 

Admirable and unusual, Mary has a deep passion for pro bono work and serves as the Pro Bono Coordinator for Polsinelli’s Los Angeles office. In her own words, “Doing pro bono work has allowed me glimpses into realities I would not otherwise have encountered.  It has allowed me a multi-dimensional perspective on important issues such as immigration policies and the effectiveness of our criminal justice system.  It has allowed me to assist others that I would never even have had the privilege of encountering but for my handling of their matter on a pro bono basis.  It has made me a better lawyer and a more informed and compassionate human being.”

Mary’s influence as a successful woman lawyer also extends beyond the legal community to at-risk women who are experiencing tremendous challenge.  As a mentor, Mary provides hope, inspiration and guidance to women who are determined to overcome the odds and live meaningful lives despite the obstacles they are encountering.

 

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