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President's Message

Welcome to 2016-2017!   This year the Desert Bar Association celebrates 65 years of service to the legal community – an incredible milestone. Thank you to our founders and all of the Past Presidents and Trustees who have gone before us.

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Upcoming Events

Enrobement Ceremony & Reception for the Hon. Kira L. Klatchko    March 24, 2017, 4:00pm, at the Larson Justice Center, 46-200 Oasis Street, Indio.

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Basic Fee Arbitrator Training    April 19, 2017, 1pm-4pm @ Riverside County Law Library - Indio Branch, 82-995 Highway 111, Ste 102, Indio. 2.75 hrs of MCLE Credit (incl. 1 hr Ethics) are available.

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More events coming soon!    Be sure to check back with us.

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Save the Date

April 27, 2017   DBA Cocktail Mixer at The Vue Grille & Bar, Indian Wells Golf Resort.

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May 19, 2017   DBA Luncheon: Substance Abuse & Mental Health MCLE presentation by the Hon. Sherrill Ellsworth. Classic Club, Palm Desert.

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June 24, 2017   40th Annual Bird Awards and Distinguished Judges Night at Sun City Palm Desert. Invitations to follow this Spring!

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More events to come!   Be sure to check back with us.

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Past Events

Chief Justice of California Luncheon - April 2012    Photos from the Luncheon for the Chief Justice of California, April 19, 2012

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OneJustice Bus Project - April 2012    Photos from the OneJustice Bus Project - April 2-3, 2012

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Bird Awards 2011 - Beach Blanket Indio    Photos from Beach Blanket Indio, June 3, 2011.

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2011 Court of Appeal Visit    Photos from April 2011 Court of Appeal Visit

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April 2011 Cocktail Mixer    Photos from Cocktail Mixer at Cork Tree on April 20, 2011

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59th Annual Installation of Officers & Trustees    Photos from the 59th Annual Installation of Officers & Trustees on October 23, 2010

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Bird Awards 2010 - Alice in Lawyerland!    Photos from Alice in Lawyerland, June 26, 2010.

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Senior Law Day 2010    Photos from Senior Law Day 2010

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Items of Interest


The Indio Branch of the Riverside County Law Library in conjunction with the Desert Bar Association, hosts Lawyers in the Library, the second Thursday of each month where volunteer attorneys will be available for free 20 minute consultations with people who have legal issues to discuss. This program is not a substitute for legal representation.


Advance reservations must be made by calling (760) 848-7151.


Dates & Times:

Thursday April 13, 2017 ~ 3:00 -5:00 p.m.

Thursday May 11, 2017 ~ 3:00 -5:00 p.m.

Thursday June 8, 2017 ~ 3:00 -5:00 p.m.

Thursday July 13, 2017 ~ 3:00 -5:00 p.m.

Thursday Aug 10, 2017 ~ 3:00 -5:00 p.m.

Thursday Sept 14, 2017 ~ 3:00 -5:00 p.m.


Remember to bring all related documents and forms. Come prepared with all questions written down as time is limited.


Lawyers may not have experience in all areas of law.


Areas of law that are usually covered include:

• Family Law

• Civil

• Landlord Tenant Disputes

• Probate


Riverside County Law Library does not provide legal advice. RCLL provides legal resources and assistance with legal research as an educational service. The Law Library is pleased to offer our patrons the opportunity to obtain assistance from third party legal service providers at this or other events within the library. However, the Library does not control and is not responsible for the content or scope of any assistance given by those providers.


For more information or to register, contact us at:

Riverside County Law Library

(760) 848-7151

82-995 Highway 111, Suite102

Indio, CA 92201


Click here to download the flyer for this program.


If you are an attorney interested in volunteering to be a part of this important program, please contact the Riverside County Law Library via the above contact info.


The Other Bar is a group of lawyers, judges, law students and other legal professionals who are in recovery or who seek to get into recovery from issues with alcohol and drugs. There is a meeting in Rancho Mirage at the Betty Ford Center every Monday evening at 7:00 p.m. Contact Charley R. at 760-698-8033, for details.


The February 2017 edition of the Desert Bar Association Family Law Section Newsletter is now available for download. To download it, please click here. (Warning: the newsletter is approximately 2MB in size and could take some time to download on a slow connection.)


The votes have been tallied, and we are now happy to announce your incoming Officers and Board of Trustees of the Desert Bar Association for 2016-2017:

President - Karen J. Sloat
Vice President - Kimberly T. Lee
Secretary - Robert J. Gilliland, Jr.
Treasurer - Christoffer J. Thomsen

Natalie S. Keller

Aaron F. Garcia

David B. Greenberg

Mark J. McGowan

Anthony Valente

Rachael E. Alcorn

Breeanna S. Fujio


It is with great sadness that we must announce the passing of John Michael Evans, the eldest son of the Hon. John G. Evans. John Michael suffered a heart attack last Wednesday morning. He was surrounded by his family, when he peacefully passed away Saturday afternoon. His life will be celebrated during a private family gathering. Memorial services will be held at Christ’s Church in Urbanna, Virginia at a later date. In lieu of flowers, the family suggests donations be in his memory to Prader-Willi California Foundation, 514 N. Prospect Ave., Suite 110, Lower Level, Redondo Beach, CA 90277 or The family thanks you all for your thoughts and prayers.


It is with deep sorrow that the Officers and Trustees of the Desert Bar Association inform you of the passing of long time DBA member and past President, Jeffery S. R. Patterson, Esq., who passed away March 25, 2016. He was 70 years old.


The Desert Bar Association knew Jeff as a treasured bird award writer and story teller, who created the Bird Awards and Distinguished Judges Night. It was as a member of the Desert Bar Association that Jeff began a long and illustrious career as the writer, director, producer, lighting coordinator, program designer, and videographer for the annual Bird Awards show. Most recently, he starred in the 2013 production of The LawFather as the head of the Desert Bar famiglia, Don Pattersoni.


After law school, Jeff embarked upon his law career at Erwin and Anderholt Law Offices in Indio, and later in Palm Desert. He began to volunteer for Desert service organizations, and was a long-time member of the Coachella Valley Lions Club, Family Services of the Desert, and the Palms to Pines Rotary Club. The Desert Bar Association also sponsored his 16-year stint as the pitcher for the much celebrated slow-pitch softball team, The Bad News Barristers. In 1986, he started his own successful law practice, and recently "retired" to spend more time on his movie hobby, football pool, and with friends and family.


Jeff is survived by his wife of 46 years, Jeanette, his brother Kevin Patterson (Susie), his daughter Deirdre Krieger (Rick), his son Caleb Patterson (Daniella), his niece Annie Patterson, and his grandchildren Cameron, Samantha, Liam, and Liliana.


Jeff loved the work done by Family Services of the Desert and its community food pantry, Food Now. He was on their board for 43 years, most recently as the Board President. In lieu of flowers, donations can be sent to: Family Services of the Desert, 4080 Palm Dr., Ste E, Desert Hot Springs, CA 92240;


It is with great sadness to let you know that Florence Ross has passed away.


Florence was a legal secretary in our community for well over 50 years, starting with the Hon. Warren Slaughter, then continuing with Slaughter, Schlesinger and Schlecht, and concluding with Schlecht, Shevlin & Shoenberger.


She was a member of DPLPA since it was first chartered in 1961, serving as its President 1975-1976 and was so well-loved by members and DPLPA Presidents, that she served as Parliamentarian from 1987-2012. Florence continued to serve as DPLPA’s Hospitality Chair and always hosted their annual Christmas Party.


It is with sadness that we inform you of the passing of Michele Sindoni last week. Michele was the loving wife of Steve Sindoni of 34 years, and mother of two fine sons, Michael and Andrew. A memorial service will be held at St. John's Lutheran Church, 42695 Washington Street, Palm Desert, CA 92211, on April 9, 2016 at 11:00 a.m. A reception will follow at the family residence. If you wish to contact Steve, you may reach him on his cellular phone (760) 408-3481.


We are saddened to announce the death of paralegal-legal secretary Jane L. Crase, Sunday, Jan. 10, 2015, at Desert Regional Medical Center in Palm Springs. Jane died from injuries sustained during an accident while riding one of her horses at her high desert home Sunday afternoon. She was a passionate horsewoman and died doing something she loved.


She joined the office of Simon Housman in 1994. For over 21 years, she was a loyal and honest employee, a teammate and Simon's best friend.


Jane was devout in her faith. In 2011 she found her calling as a member of the clergy. She was ordained first as a Deacon and six months later as a Priest by the Episcopal Church in the Diocese in Los Angeles. She served as Vicar of Saint Joseph of Arimathea Episcopal Church, which was her home congregation, in Yucca Valley.


She is preceded in death by her husband, Gary Crase.


Services are scheduled for 2:00 P.M., Saturday February 20, 2016, St. Joseph of Arimathea Episcopal Church, 56312 Onaga Trail (at Church Street), Yucca Valley, CA 92284. The interment and a reception will follow.


In lieu of flowers please donate toher favorite horse rescue charity: THE GOLDEN CARROT, 44700 Terwilliger Rd, Anza, CA 92539.


It is with deep sorrow that we inform you of the passing of David J. Erwin, who passed away on Saturday, November 7, 2015, at the age of 81, with his wife, Travis, and their two children, Scott and Stephanie, by his side.


Dave was a partner at Best Best & Krieger, LLP, having joined the firm in 1986, and served as the City Attorney for Palm Desert since that city's incorporation in 1973. A graduate of the University of Oklahoma School of Law, Dave provided legal services to numerous cities, including Indio, Indian Wells, Rancho Mirage, Desert Hot Springs, Cathedral City, and Needles. Dave will be remembered as one of the "greats" among the city attorney community in California, acting as a role model and mentor to a whole generation of attorneys.


Although his health had been failing him for some time, he wanted to work until he was no longer able, and got his wish to work right up until the end.


Dave was very involved in the community, serving on numerous boards, including the Boys & Girls Club of Coachella Valley and what used to be the Bob Hope Chrysler Classic. He also served as a volunteer on the Board of the Desert Classic Charities, utilizing his skills in the area of estate planning by donating his time giving advice to Eisenhower's foundation department particularly in the area of planned giving.


There will be a memorial service at St. Margaret's Episcopal Church, at 47535 Highway 74, Palm Desert, CA 92260, on Friday, November 20, 2015, at 10:00 a.m. The service will be open to the public.


Condolences may be sent to:

The David J. Erwin Family

Travis Erwin

45525 Navajo Road

Indian Wells, CA 92210


It is with deep sorrow that we inform you of the passing of Judge Arthur S. Block (Ret.) of the Riverside Superior Court on October 11, 2015. Funeral services will be held at 10:30 a.m. on Friday, October 16, 2015, at Temple Isaiah, located at 332 West Alejo Road, Palm Springs, CA 92262. In lieu of flowers, his family has requested that donations be made to Meals on Wheels, through the Mizell Senior Center.


The family of William Nolan Cosgrove would like to express its deep appreciation to the Board of Trustees and all of the members of the Desert Bar Association who offered their condolences, prayers and offers of personal and professional assistance following Bill's untimely death. We were overwhelmed by the attendance at Bill's funeral and the numerous flowers, gifts and telephone calls, emails, sympathy cards and donations to charities in Bill's name.


With deep appreciation,

The Family of Bill Cosgrove

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