CaliforniaALL, a Section 501(c)(3) charitable entity, came about as a result of a San Francisco restaurant meeting between Ruthe Ashley (a Diversity Officer at CalPERS and Vice President of the State Bar of California) and Peter Arth, Jr., Chief of Staff to CPUC President Michael Peevey. Also present at that meeting was Professor Sarah E. Redfield.
Ms. Tani Gorre Cantil-Sakauye, Chief Justice of the California Supreme Court. Previously, The Leslie Brodie Report filed a complaint against Justice Marvin Baxter for making unprofessional and racially derogatory comments about Cantil-Sakauye. See http://tinyurl.com/kronborgcastle
CaliforniaALL’s alleged purpose was to award grants to entities that would increase minority participation in the "pipelines" that feed into industries such as finance, technology, and law.
Donations to CaliforniaALL came primarily from utility companies (including AT&T, Sempra Energy, and PG&E). In its brief existence from 2008 to 2010, CaliforniaALL collected close to $2 million, including an unusually large sub rosa contribution of $769,247 from the State Bar of California Foundation in 2008.
CaliforniaALL was abruptly dissolved in July 2010.
Sources with knowledge of the investigation, speaking on condition of anonymity, maintain a letter has been delivered to the Chief Justice of the California Supreme Court -- Madam Tani Gorre Cantil-Sakauye.
As a public service to the community, a copy of the letter is enclosed below:
LETTER TO CSC CHIEF JUSTICE TANI GORRE CANTIL-SUKAUYE
March 28, 2011
VIA U.S. MAIL AND FAX
Chief Justice Tani Cantil
Supreme Court of California
350 McAllister St
San Francisco, CA 94102
Re: Ruthe Catolico Ashley; CaliforniaALL; California Bar Foundation; State Bar of California; Ronald Stovitz; Beth Jay; Patrice McElroy; Matter of Ronald Gottschalk (S185781).
Dear Chief Justice:
I am writing to inform you that in 2008, Ruthe Ashley, along with Holly Fujie, State Bar employee Patricia Lee, and Executive Director of the State Bar of California Foundation Ms. Leslie Hatamiya, entered into a conspiracy to misappropriate close to $780,000 from the Foundation to be used for matters inconsistent with the designated purpose while defrauding (actively or by omission) members of the State Bar, donors to the California Bar Foundation, and members of the public.
The sub Rosa transfer of funds was to CaliforniaALL, a Section 501(c)(3) charitable entity established in 2008, which would award grants to entities that would increase minority participation in the "pipelines" that feed into industries such as finance, technology, and law.
In 2008, Ms. Ashley , while employed as a Diversity Officer at CalPERS and serving as the Vice-President of the State Bar of California, was the driving force behind the creation of "Ca AAL" , a name later changed to CaliforniaALL. Professor Sarah E. Redfield, a visiting professor at McGeorge School of Law, was also involved in the entity’s formation.
Other than in Foundation tax records and a 2 by 2 inch blurb in its 2008 annual report, the sub rosa contribution was never mentioned again – not by the State Bar of California, not in the Cal Bar Journal, not in the Foundation’s "newsroom," and not by anyone or any publication of CaliforniaALL.
In its brief existence from January 2008 to July 2010, CaliforniaALL collected close to $2 million from various utility companies (AT&T, PG&E, Verizon, Sempra). In addition, CaliforniaALL obtained the aforementioned sub rosa contribution of $769,247 from the State Bar of California Foundation (dba California Bar Foundation.)
Circumstances surrounding CaliforniaALL are imbued with fraud, deceit, secrecy, and prima facie evidence of criminal conduct by many of the actors involved.
CaliforniaALL’s flagship project was the alleged creation of the Saturday Academy of Law ("SAL") at U.C. Irvine ("UCI"), which it heavily publicized and which both CaliforniaALL and Professor Redfield took credit for "launching." Close examination, however provides that the SALUCI was in existence for many years prior to the establishment of CaliforniaALL.
As the California Supreme Court is charged with overseeing the State Bar of California, it is imperative that you be made aware of these facts and issues. Presently, there are more questions than answers as to the fate of the close to $2 million dollars CaliforniaALL collected.
STATE BAR COURT JUDGE RONALD STOVITZ:
This will also serve to inform you that, despite the fact that the appointment of Ronald Stovitz expired, he nevertheless continued to act as a judge, and indeed sat as part of a panel which adjudicated numerous cases.
After his retirement, the California Supreme Court on March 18, 2008 issued a direct directive appointing Mr. Stovitz as a judge pro tem whose term was set to expire "until such time as the Supreme Court appoints an individual to fill the Review Judge position to be vacated by Judge Madge S. Watai ."
On November 1, 2008 Catherine D. Purcell took the oath of office, ipso facto terminating the pro-tem appointment of Mr. Stovitz. Nevertheless , after that date, he continued to sit in judgment. It is my position that those decisions are void , including that relating to Mr. Richard Fine.
STATE BAR COURT PATRICE MCELROY
Presently before the court is a motion for continuance regarding Ronald Gottschalk (S185781) . You should be fully aware that the proceedings against Mr. Gottschalk were imbued with irregularities and, most importantly, misconduct by Judge Patrice McElroy.
Stanley Arouty, Mr. Gottschalks's attorney, submitted declarations under oath alleging that Judge McElroy destroyed part of the official record of the proceedings involving his client.
This, unfortunately , is not the first time such an accusation was leveled against Judge McElroy, who has been sued in federal court by another 30 year veteran member of the State Bar (Mr. Khanna) for similar acts of egregious misconduct involving the destruction of official records.
In addition, Judge McElroy failed to disclose an overseas trip she received from Mr. Peter Keane while a case in which Mr. Keane was involved as a witness and counsel of record was before her. Judge McElroy only disclosed to the parties that she had previously worked with Mr. Keane at the Public Defenders’ office.
As such, I am extremely concerned about Ronald Gottschalk and his potential mistreatment by the California Supreme Court. These concerns are heightened because the case against Mr. Gottschalk involves circumstances arising out of a conflict he had with Mr. Thomas Girardi, who apparently befriended former Chief Justice George, and otherwise took steps to place proxies in almost every department of the State Bar of California. That includes befriending former crack addict Mike Nisperos while Mr. Nisperos served as Chief Trial Counsel.
Recently, documents associated with what has become known as the "Addington Report" became available to the public. These documents the deposition of Mr. Nisperos, who testified under oath that, despite being a "wild cock head," he was not in breach of any of INS rules and regulation pertaining to his employment. Similarly, despite being convicted for attempting to board an airplane at the Burbank airport while carrying a dangerous weapon, Mr. Nisperos claimed that he is not a criminal. Mr. Nisperos's attitude is most concerning, and I intend to fully pursue these matters against him (in addition to the matters in which he was arrested for opening fire, while delusional, at an imaginary figure) with the State Bar of California and via verified accusations to the California Supreme Court
A few weeks ago, a request was served on Ms. Beth Judith Jay to disclose all ex parte communications she had with the State Bar of California. To date, no response has been received.
FINANCIAL MATTERS RELATING TO THE STATE BAR OF CALIFORNIA:
This is to also intended to inform you of serious concerns I have about the State Bar of California’s failure to be fully transparent when it comes to disclosing the amount of voluntary contributions made by members, as well as how the money, including amounts, is distributed. Please note that this does not refer to distributions made by the Foundation but, rather, by the State Bar itself.
END OF REPORT