This Past Thursday, the Pasadena Bar Association hosted an evening event on behalf of Commissioner Nori Anne Walla, who presided in Department "K" (Family Court) of the Pasadena Courthouse since 2001. In attendance at the event were approximately 75 people, including numerous Pasadena family law attorneys, court clerks, and judges. The event was held at a new restaurant in Pasadena called "Pandora," which is owned by the same people who own the Rocco room and Santorini's restaurant.
Commissioner Walla was recognized by numerous guest speakers who spoke of her dedication and commitment to working in Family Court for nearly a decade. The event's Emcee was Linda Dugan, who is the new Family Law Section Chairperson, of the Pasadena Bar Association. Ms. Dugan took on the role of chairperson in January, when Donald Schweitzer stepped down in order to begin his new role as Program Chair and Vice President of the association.
The event started with Ms. Dugan reading a touching message from Commissioner Louise Halevey, who formerly sat in Department "L" of the Pasadena Courthouse, and presided over Family Law cases for approximately fifteen years. Commissioner Halevey's message conveyed the good working and personal relationship she had with Commissioner Walla, and reminisced about how they helped each other out while sitting in adjoining Family Law Departments.
Commissioner Mary Lou Katz, who sits in Department "L" (also a Family Law Court) of the Pasadena Courthouse, was the next guest speaker, who entertained the audience with her memory of working in the court where Commissioner Walla will be assigned. Commissioner Katz also confided that she relied heavily on the advice of Commissioner Walla when she took the bench in Department L, and was relatively unfamiliar with Family Law cases.
The next speaker was Judge Marjorie Steinberg, who is the presiding judge of all Family Law Courts in Los Angeles County. Judge Steinberg's remarks surrounded the fact that she found Commissioner Walla to be highly dependable and would be missed.
The presiding judge of the Pasadena Courthouse - Judge Mary House spoke next at which time she awarded Commissioner Walla with a 25 year service award. Judge House commented on the fact that Commissioner Walla was being transferred to the Glendale Courthouse, and was using her courtroom in Department "A," of the Pasadena Courthouse to finish up her Family Law trials. It was obvious from Commissioner House's remarks that she enjoyed working with Commissioner Walla during the past decade in Pasadena.
Robert Holmes, a prominent Family Law Attorney who frequently handles Family Law cases in the Pasadena, Glendale, and Burbank courthouses gave a very entertaining speech the centered on his working relationship with Commissioner Walla. Those in attendance were laughing and clapping as Robert Holmes recounted his experiences and memories of Commissioner Walla's tenure as a Family Law Commissioner.Finally, Pasadena Bar Association's Vice President Donald Schweitzer and President Steve Yee presented with a plaque to Commissioner Walla on behalf of the association, in recognition of her dedication and honorable service working within Family Court. In awarding Commissioner Walla with the plaque, Don Schweitzer commented on the fact that she was always respectful to the Family Law attorneys that appeared in her courtroom. Don Schweitzer also recognized Commissioner Walla for providing opportunities to local Family Law Attorneys, such as assigning them as Minor's Counsel and Discovery Referees.