Meet the Speakers
Frank R. Acuña is a founding partner of Acuña Regli, LLP, located in Pleasant Hill, California, with a satellite offices in Fairfield, California, and Oakland, California. Mr. Acuña is certified by the State Bar of California as an estate planning, probate, and trust administration specialist. His practice is built around the needs of tax professionals and includes estate planning, probate and trust law, business succession planning, and inheritance litigation.

Vincent has been a nurse for 6 years now, primarily focusing on geriatrics and Memory Care. In Home Health and Hospice, he was able to gain the understanding that the patient needs always goes beyond the physical, and that the emotional and social support can make the difference between positive and negative outcomes. As a memory Care Coordinator, he helped to oversee and structure the caregiver/resident relationship, so that the families could feel comfortable when faced with putting the daily care in the hands of someone else. At Care Indeed, he has been part of the initial intake process, which provided him invaluable experiences in managing clients’ pain points and addressing their needs. Vince has been able to leverage his background to devise specialized training programs for the caregivers, so that individual plans of care can take into consideration the total needs of the client, and that the caregivers are given a resource to gain knowledge and confidence in their roles.

Dr.Mehrdad Ayati, well known nationally and internationally in the field of Geriatric Medicine, is a speaker, author, and educator. He is an adjunct clinical assistant professor at Stanford University School of Medicine and a member of Ethnogeraitric and Quality and Policy Measurement of American Geriatric Society. Dr. Ayati is an advisor for many organizations related to the aging population, including Alzheimer's Association, Nothern California, Nevada chapter and SRI( Stanford Research Institute), and U.S Senate special committee on Aging.

Paul Bartschi is a Senior Financial Advisor and Vice President with the Special Needs Team at Merrill Lynch. Paul works closely with trust attorneys and fiduciaries, helping them better serve their clients by developing customized financial roadmaps that reflect each client’s unique needs and priorities. He is skilled in anticipating critical decision points in a client’s financial life, assembling the information and resources that facilitate informed analysis and cohesive tactics. A clear communicator, Paul enjoys unwinding complexity, assisting clients in developing a more purposeful path forward.

Yevgeny L. Belous is a partner at Rodnunsky & Associates, a Trusts and Estates Firm located in Woodland Hills, California. For 10 years, Mr. Belous has been practicing exclusively in the areas of trusts and estates, conservatorships, guardianships, estate planning and probate litigation. A large portion of Mr. Belous’ practice is devoted to representing professional fiduciaries in court proceedings and private trusts. This includes representing professional fiduciaries under investigation by the Professional Fiduciaries Bureau.

Leslie Blozan, Senior Associate, has been practicing law in business and insurance-related areas since 1979. Her focus is on litigation, primarily on behalf of business clients, insurance companies and their insureds. She also devotes a significant portion of her time to insurance coverage for carrier and business clients who need assistance in obtaining insurance benefits. Recently, she expanded her focus into financial elder abuse, working on behalf of the elders and their families.

Norine Boehmer, CLPF
Norine Boehmer Management Till My Conservatorship Do Us Part
Ms. Boehmer has been in practice over 15 years, serving as the President of the Professional Fiduciaries Association of California (PFAC) from 2011 to 2013. She is also a certified mediator through the Los Angeles County Bar Association. She has been an outstanding advocate and backer of legislation aimed at improving the fiduciary profession and standards in California. Ms. Boehmer, who is also a licensed tax preparer, has owned and operated Norine Boehmer Management, Inc. since 2000.

Choi Chio earned a Bachelor and Master of Science in Occupational Therapy at San Jose State University and a post-professional Doctorate in Occupational Therapy with an aging elective at the Rocky Mountain University of Health Professions. Dr. Chio has over 10 years of experience working as an occupational therapist and fieldwork educator primarily in different geriatric settings including Subacute Skilled Nursing Facilities, Assisted Living Facilities, Independence Living Facilities, adult day care center, outpatient service, and home health care. She is enthusiastic about aging in place and developing different intervention programs for optimal treatment outcomes. Choi is passionate about occupational therapy with practical and functional techniques in assisting clients with physical, neurological, and/or cognitive disabilities, and comorbidities.

Caitlin Cogan is a professional fiduciary. Ms. Cogan owns her own practice in Long Beach and covers all of Los Angeles and Orange County. Ms. Cogan is not afraid of complex matters and works on conservatorships, trusts, probate, guardianships, special needs trusts and more. She has been a licensed fiduciary since 2017 with experience in the field for over 8 years. Ms. Cogan attended Cal State Fullerton and completed the Fiduciary program there.


HON. DAVID J. COWAN is Supervising Judge of the Probate and Mental Health Depts. of the Los Angeles County Superior Court. In that capacity, he oversees sixteen courtrooms and works with the other judges, Court management and justice partners on the operations of the Court for these disciplines. He serves on the Court’s Operations and Executive Committees. Since March 2018, he has been sitting in Dept. 3 of the Mosk Courthouse – focused solely on long or complex Probate trials and settlement conferences. Previously, he spent five years handling a Probate calendar and trial assignment; managing and deciding decedent estates, trusts, guardianships and conservatorship cases.

Judge Cowan is a member of the Probate and Mental Health Advisory Committee to the Judicial Council of the State of California, as well as Vice-Chair of the Probate Law Committee of the California Judges Association.

Judge Cowan was appointed a Judge of the Court by Governor Jerry Brown in June 2014. Previously, Judge Cowan served as a Court Commissioner for almost nine years. For much of that time, Judge Cowan was assigned to the Santa Monica Courthouse where he had a Family Law calendar and handled all Family Law cases filed in the West District of the Court.

Prior to going on the bench, Judge Cowan practiced business and real estate litigation for seventeen years; initially with Rogers & Wells. Later, he started his own office which he had until going on the bench.

Judge Cowan received his J.D. from Univ. of Calif., Hastings College of the Law and B.A. from Columbia University.

Since 2007, Judge Cowan has taught as an Adjunct Professor at Loyola Law School. He currently teaches Trusts & Wills. Judge Cowan is also a frequent speaker to Bar Associations on Probate issues.


Daniel Cutter is a First Vice President and Senior Financial Advisor with the Special Needs Team at Merrill Lynch. Headquartered in San Francisco, Dan works with clients throughout the West, providing tailored advice and guidance to enhance the long-term financial well-being of special-needs, disabled and elderly individuals. He is particularly skilled in working with clients’ external trust and legal advisors to design customized programs squarely focused on the well-being of the client. His areas of focus include Special Needs Trusts, government benefits, trust administration, the Uniform Prudent Investor Act, and California Probate Code.

Dan began his wealth management career in 1999. Prior to joining Merrill Lynch in 2005, he served as a Financial Advisor with Morgan Stanley. He earned his M.B.A. with a concentration in Finance from the University of San Francisco and holds the Chartered Retirement Planning CounselorSM designation awarded by the College for Financial Planning. Dan has served as a consultant for two major legal publications: Special Needs Trusts: Planning, Drafting, and Administration through the California Continuing Education of the Bar, and Administrating the California Special Needs Trust.

Stephen W. Dale received his JD from Armstrong Law School and his LL.M. in Taxation from Golden Gate University in 2001. The Dale Law Firm was established in 1992 in order to provide quality estate planning to clients by working cooperatively with the clients' tax, financial and insurance professionals.

Andrew de Vries has provided expert real estate sales for private and professional fiduciaries in the Bay Area for 17 years. With more than 700 successful fiduciary sales transacted in most major Bay Area counties, Andrew brings deep experience-based knowledge to his client's needs. His services include initial case evaluation, property preparation, and development and execution of sophisticated sales strategies to limit a fiduciary's liability while satisfying all parties involved (including difficult family members). Andrew holds a Real Estate Broker's License (#01368031), a Professional Fiduciary's License (#544) and earned an MBA with honors from the University of San Francisco.

Liza de Vries
De Vries Law, P.C. When Your Job Is Being The Ethical Adult In The Room

Liza de Vries is the founder of De Vries Law, P.C. After vigorously prosecuting civil rights cases and building her own elder abuse practice over sixteen years at the Scott Law Firm, Liza launched her own practice in 2020. Committed to preserving civil rights of those whose voices cannot be heard, Liza represents children who have suffered from wrongdoing by those erroneously entrusted to keep them safe and adults whose rights have been trampled. She also represents elders, adults with disabilities, consumers, and those who have suffered from a prism of scenarios constituting abuse of power, government misconduct, employment discrimination, harassment or retaliation.

In addition, Liza represents professional fiduciaries who protect those who cannot protect themselves from abuse or neglect. She also staunchly defends fiduciaries falsely accused of wrongdoing for nefarious purposes. Common opposing parties are so-called friends, colleagues, associates, care providers, disgruntled family members, strangers, state actors, and all who take advantage of a victim's frailties, diminished capacities, and inability to withstand undue influence, fraud or duress.

Her clients recover their losses through civil litigation, conservatorships, and estate or trust litigation.


Merrianne E. Dean, Esq. has more than two decades of courtroom experience litigating probate and trust disputes, financial elder abuse matters, conservatorships and business disputes. Her work also includes representing executors and trustees in the administration of trust, probate estates, and conservatorships.

Ms. Dean was admitted to the State Bar of California in 1994 and has practiced in the area of Trust & Estates since 1997. Ms. Dean is a California State Bar Certified Specialist in Estate Planning, Trust, and Probate Law.

Ms. Dean has been a member of the San Diego Probate Bench Bar Committee since 2004 and has served as a court-appointed attorney in conservatorship matters for more than 15 years. She has also served as a pro tem judge in the Probate Branch of the San Diego Superior Court for more than six years.

During her career as an attorney Ms. Dean has achieved a peer review rating from Martindale-Hubbell of AV Preeminent, with a score of 5.0 of 5.0, signifying that her peers and the judiciary rank her at the highest level of professional excellence.


Robert A. Earnest is a California licensed professional fiduciary and the principal of Earnest Trust Management. Robert earned his Certificate of Fiduciary Management from CSUF and is a graduate of UCLA and Harvard Law School. Before establishing Earnest Trust Management, he practiced law for 30 years for both international law firms, including Paul Hastings in Los Angeles, and multinational companies, such as ARCO and Nissan. He started his career as a professional fiduciary in 2016.

Robert’s professional activities include serving on the Legislative Committee of PFAC and organizing the Fiduciary Forums for the San Gabriel Valley Chapter of PFAC. He also serves on the boards of the Fiduciary Round Table of San Gabriel Valley, the Estate Planning Counsel of San Gabriel Valley and the Pasadena chapter of Rotary International. He enjoys lecturing on the profession to anyone who will listen, including local chapters of CalCPA and the Financial Planning Association.


Loren "Elle" A. Emmanuel is the founder and Executive Director of The ACE Fiduciary Group, A Non-Profit Corporation. She brings more than 30 years of experience in financial management for small businesses and family wealth transitions. She has a depth of experience in managing asset transfers; real property; financial accounting to beneficiaries; and handling numerous probate, conservatorship and trust administration cases both as a highly qualified paralegal and as a licensed fiduciary. She is a Certified Professional California Licensed Fiduciary and a member of The Professional Fiduciaries Association of California, an affiliated member of the Contra Costa County Bar Association and a member of the National Guardian Association.

Loren’s experience and education exceeds the standards to qualify under the California Business & Professions code requirements as a professional fiduciary. She received her Master's in Business Administration from the University of Southern California and her Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of California at Berkeley.


Karman Guadagni is the Managing Attorney at Stebner and Associates, a law firm specializing in elder abuse and neglect cases. Her practice primarily focuses on institutional elder abuse litigation, with an emphasis on litigating cases involving pressure ulcers, falls, sexual abuse and other serious injury and death cases against residential care facilities for the elderly and nursing homes throughout California. Karman is committed to advocating on behalf of the elderly, dependent adults and their families to compensate them for wrongs they have suffered and to fighting for reform within the long term care industry. She has achieved successful results for plaintiffs in trial, mediation and arbitration throughout California. Ms. Guadagni has been selected as a Rising Star among California's Super Lawyers in 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2017, has served as a guest professor at Stanford Law in 2015, 2016 and 2017, and is a frequent speaker and author on topics related to elder abuse and neglect. She is on the board of the San Francisco Trial Lawyers Association and is the president of Friends of ECDC, a nonprofit benefitting Emeryville Child Development Center.Karman Guadagni is the Managing Attorney at Stebner and Associates, a law firm specializing in elder abuse and neglect cases. Her practice primarily focuses on institutional elder abuse litigation, with an emphasis on litigating cases involving pressure ulcers, falls, sexual abuse and other serious injury and death cases against residential care facilities for the elderly and nursing homes throughout California. Karman is committed to advocating on behalf of the elderly, dependent adults and their families to compensate them for wrongs they have suffered and to fighting for reform within the long term care industry. She has achieved successful results for plaintiffs in trial, mediation and arbitration throughout California. Ms. Guadagni has been selected as a Rising Star among California's Super Lawyers in 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2017, has served as a guest professor at Stanford Law in 2015, 2016 and 2017, and is a frequent speaker and author on topics related to elder abuse and neglect. She is on the board of the San Francisco Trial Lawyers Association and is the president of Friends of ECDC, a nonprofit benefitting Emeryville Child Development Center.

Martin Harris has spent two decades preparing court and non-court accountings for professional and non-professional fiduciaries and their attorneys throughout the Bay Area and beyond. He is highly regarded by Bay Area fiduciaries, probate attorneys and court staff. Martin is a popular speaker on fiduciary accountings, and regularly speaks to and advises legal, tax, accounting and other professionals regarding court accountings.


Wendy Hatch is the current owner of Hatch and Associates, a private professional fiduciary firm that has been in business since 1984.

  • Has her degree in Business Administration;
  • Passed the first National Register Guardian test given in 1996;
  • Also one of the first 60 that passed the first State of California & National wide examination to become a California Certified Fiduciary and National Registered Guardian in 2000;
  • Has been registered with the State’s Attorney General Office as a professional Conservator and Trustee and --Registered with the County of Los Angeles and Orange; and
  • Licensed number 16 in Professional Fiduciary Bureau and a " National Certified Guardian"

She has held many offices with the Professional Fiduciary Association of California (PFAC) past President of the Southern Region -Regional Director of the Southern Region (twice) where she still is an active as a founding charter member.

She is a member of the Estate Planning and Trust Council of Long Beach, Special Member to Women Lawyers of Long Beach, was a special consultant to the LA County FAST team

She was an Instructor for the Adult Extended Education Fiduciary Certificate Program through Cal State University, Fullerton (Subjects: Standard and Practices for Fiduciaries and Record Keeping and Accounting for Positions of Trust). She designed the on-line course for the Record Keeping and Accounting Program for Cal State.

She has been qualified as an expert witness in Fiduciary Abuse Cases.

As of January 1st 2019 Governor Brown appointed her to the California Professional Fiduciaries Advisory Committee.

Ricsie M. Hernandez is a San Diego attorney employed by the law firm of Brierton, Jones & Jones, LLP. Ms. Hernandez focuses her practice on probate, conservatorship, guardianship, and trust administration matters. Ms. Hernandez has presented to the State Bar of California and the Professional Fiduciary Association of California on topics including withdrawing life sustaining treatment, fiduciary powers, and sales of real property. Ms. Hernandez is also an active member of the Probate Attorneys of San Diego and the San Diego County Bar Association’s Estate Planning, Trust & Probate Law Section. Prior to being admitted to the State Bar, Ms. Hernandez worked as a Court Operations Clerk for the Superior Court of California County of San Diego, served as a judicial extern to the Honorable William R. Nevitt, Jr., retired, at the Superior Court of California County of San Diego, and volunteered at the Legal Aid Society Conservatorship Clinic.


Steven Hoch has over 40 years of experience with both federal and state environmental laws and regulations in the context of permitting, regulatory proceedings, litigation, enforcement actions, water supply, public policy formation, and advice. His work includes contamination of land and ground and surface water. Steven has critical experience in the areas of environmental law and the federal and state Safe Drinking Water Acts, Title 23, water supply, and the mechanics of water distribution. His experience also extends to groundwater modeling and water quality testing. He also has significant experience in hazardous substances and waste handling practices, remediation, soil erosion, and claims of toxic exposures.

Steven has in-depth experience working with numerous public water systems throughout the state. He has also established a sterling reputation for his work with the Regional Water Quality Control Boards, the Department of Toxic Substance Control, and the United States Environmental Protection Agency both in the administrative and litigation. His clients range from the country's largest municipal water agency to individuals selling or buying contaminated sites.

Paul Hynes is a Certified Financial Planner (CFP®) professional and financial advisor with more than 35 years of experience. Paul is the President and CEO of HearthStone | Private Wealth Management, a fee-only investment management and financial planning firm with offices in Irvine, Temecula, and San Diego. HearthStone provides professional investment management for professional fiduciaries and families. A native Bostonian and graduate of the University of Virginia, Paul spent the first 22 years of his career with a large Wall Street investment firm. He’s led HearthStone since founding the firm in 2006.

Ms. Jensen is a graduate of the University of California at Berkeley and earned her law degree from the University of California at Davis School of Law. She recently earned an LLM in Transnational Commercial Practice, Lazerski University, Poland. Ms. Jensen has an active practice in Los Angeles where she represents private professional fiduciaries and lay people in the Probate Courts. The focus of her practice is elder law and real property. She currently is serving as president elect of the Los Angeles County Bar Association. Ms. Jensen has taught widely including at Indiana University School of Business, and seminars at the School of Law, Debrechen, Hungary, and at the European School of Law and Economics, Pristina Kosovo. Ms. Jensen participates in several volunteer activities including the Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) international moot court arbitration competition. She is a certified mediator and participates as a settlement officer in volunteer mediation and arbitration programs through LACBA. She has authored many articles including the recent "Scalia’s Lasting Legacy: Debating the Constitution


Natalie Keam is a manager of audit, review, and fiduciary accounting engagements at Onisko & Scholz. She has over eight years of experience in accounting and auditing, in a range of industries including, non-profit, post-secondary education, title insurance, employee benefit plans, construction, manufacturing and distribution. Her current concentration is in consultations in accounting processes, forensic and fiduciary accountings for escrow, trusts, and court.

Ms. Keam began her public accounting career at Grant Thornton and later moved into a regional, and local firm to service mid-size clients. She then spent a couple years in the private sector, performing internal audits at one of the largest title insurance companies, before returning to public accounting, at Onisko & Scholz.

Ms. Keam received her Bachelor of Arts in Accounting & Finance from the University of Hawaii at Manoa.

In addition to be a certified public accountant, Ms. Keam is a certified fraud examiner.


Ann Koerner is President of National Care Advisors – a firm dedicated to providing consulting services for attorneys, financial planners, fiduciaries and trustees. National Care Advisors provides care and quality of life planning services for those families faced with physical disability, mental illness, developmental disability, or eldercare issues. Services include planning and case management applicable to Special Needs Trusts and government benefits preservation. National Care Advisors also specializes in post-litigation resolution consulting services specific to lien negotiation, Medicare Set Aside projections and administration.

Prior to the inception of National Care Advisors in 2008, Ann’s nursing practice has been dedicated to developing effective disability management solutions for injured and ill workers. As a result of her work with many national corporations, Ann possesses extensive business knowledge of case management, utilization review, third party payers, workers’ compensation, private insurance companies and government resources.


Patrick A. Kohlmann is the managing partner at Temmerman, Cilley, & Kohlmann. He specializes in the areas of estate and business planning, trust and decedent's estate administration, probate, conservatorships, and related trust and estate litigation.

Patrick advises individuals and families in all aspects of wealth transfer planning, including tax-advantaged transfers of assets, multigenerational planning, the taxation of trusts and estates, and business succession counseling.

Patrick is passionate about the law. He was Chair of the Executive Committee of the Trusts and Estates Section of the State Bar of California (TEXCOM) from 2015-2016, and served on the Executive Committee from 2008-2019. He is a member of the Judicial Council’s Probate and Mental Health Advisory Committee, a Fellow of the American College of Trust and Estates Counsel, and has consistently been named a Northern California “Super Lawyer.” Patrick is a CPA, and practiced public accounting before becoming an attorney. He is recognized by his peers as a Best Attorney in America (Best Lawyers®).

Ted Ong and Jeremy Lau, CFA®, CFP® are SEC-Register Investment Advisors (RIAs) with Prudent Investors Network. They specialize in fiduciary planning and investment management for institutional and private fiduciaries. They co-teach the Management of the Investment Portfolio Class in the Trustee Certification Program at California State University at Fullerton (CSUF) and co-authored the white paper, Prudent investing Under the Probate Code, What Judges, Estate Planning Attorneys, Fiduciaries and Trustees should Know. In addition to fiduciary planning and investment management services, Mr. Lau also serves as an expert witness on prudent investing under the California probate codes.


Gregory J. Lederman is a Certified Specialist in Estate, Trust and Probate by the California Board of Legal Specialization. He has been in practice for 18 years. His practice is limited exclusively to estate, trust, and probate matters with an emphasis in special needs planning, specifically assisting personal injury attorneys in settling their cases by creating special needs trusts, statutory minor’s trusts, conservatorships, and guardianships.

Additionally, Mr. Lederman has extensive experience in litigating all estate, trust and probate disputes including, trust contests, will contests, conservatorship disputes, fiduciary removal, fiduciary defense and surcharge proceedings.

Roger L. Lund is a judge for the Superior Court of Ventura County in California. He was appointed by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger (R) in December 2009. Lund was elected to a full term in 2010 and ran again unopposed in 2016, winning re-election automatically


Scott MacDonald is the founder and leader of the Special Needs Team at Merrill Lynch, a group of financial advisors and client associates dedicated to enhancing the long-term well-being of special-needs, disabled and elderly individuals by offering financial advice and guidance. Scott joined Merrill Lynch in 1987 and has spent his entire career addressing the unique needs of society’s most vulnerable members.

Passionate about his work, Scott provides wealth planning and investment management for Special Needs Trusts and other court-supervised trusts, as well as probate investing for Conservatorships and Guardianships. He offers extensive knowledge of various state Probate Code restrictions on investments, as well as the terms of the Uniform Prudent Investor Act. Scott facilitates close collaboration with attorneys, caregivers, trustees, fiduciaries, benefits counselors, and other professionals. A regular lecturer and media contributor, he is the author of numerous articles and publications related to special-needs and elder financial strategy.


Russ Marshall is the owner of Marshall Fiduciary Services. He is a registered professional conservator and trustee and a California Certified Fiduciary. He was elected President of PFAC in 2002-2003.

Prior to entering private practice, Russ was the Manager of Estate Administration for the Santa Clara County Public Guardian. He served as President in 1993-1994 of the California State Association of Public Administrators/Guardians/ Conservators.

Russ is certified by the National Guardianship Association as an Approved Educator. He is a Certified by the Center for Guardianship Certification as a National Master Guardian.


JEFF MARVAN is the founder of MarvanLaw, A.P.C. A 1999 graduate of the U.C. Davis, King Hall School of Law, Jeff started his career as a criminal public defender for Yolo County. Jeff established MarvanLaw, A.P.C. in 2006. The firm focuses on probate litigation, trust litigation, estate planning, guardianships, and conservatorships in Los Angeles. The firm represents professional fiduciaries.

From 2012 to 2014, Jeff served as an associate professor at Glendale University College of Law, teaching trusts and estates. Jeff is a member of the Beverly Hills Bar Association, the Los Angeles County Bar Association, the Probate Volunteer Panel, and the Los Angeles County Probate Settlement Officer Program. He is a on the LACBA Trust and Estate’s Executive Committee and is currently responsible for assisting in the education of Court Appointed Counsel. Jeff was awarded the SuperLawyer designation for 2020.


Megan A. Moghtaderi is an associate attorney at TLD Law. Her practice includes trust litigation, estate planning, probate, business formation and business disputes.

Ms. Moghtaderi graduated Summa Cum Laude from Biola University and the Torrey Honors Institute in 2013. She was recognized as the top percent of her graduating class. As an undergraduate, she was a member of the honors societies of Phi Alpha Theta and Pi Sigma Alpha Theta.

Growing up, Ms. Moghtaderi first peaked an interest in law when her family dealt with a hotly, contested probate issue. After receiving her undergraduate degree, she went onto Chapman University Fowler School of Law, earning her J.D. in 2016. During law school, she worked as a Judicial Law Extern for the Honorable Kim. R. Hubbard in Probate at the Orange County Superior Court.

Today, Ms. Moghtaderi actively assists clients in drafting simple and complex estate plans and has developed case strategy for complex Trust and Estate litigation matters involving over $100 million in assets. Devoted to resolving situations amicably, Ms. Moghtaderi was instrumental in helping the Orange County Judiciary develop a mediation program for all Trust, Estate, Probate, Conservatorship, and Guardianship matters.

Ted Ong and Jeremy Lau, CFA®, CFP® are SEC-Register Investment Advisors (RIAs) with Prudent Investors Network. They specialize in fiduciary planning and investment management for institutional and private fiduciaries. They co-teach the Management of the Investment Portfolio Class in the Trustee Certification Program at California State University at Fullerton (CSUF) and co-authored the white paper, Prudent investing Under the Probate Code, What Judges, Estate Planning Attorneys, Fiduciaries and Trustees should Know. In addition to fiduciary planning and investment management services, Mr. Lau also serves as an expert witness on prudent investing under the California probate codes.


Matt is a senior associate in the trust and estate litigation team. Matt focuses his practice on trust, estate, and inheritance disputes. He has prosecuted and defended a wide range of matters in probate court, including trust contests, elder abuse actions, accountings, contested conservatorships and claims involving breach of fiduciary duty. His clients include high net worth individuals and families, corporate trustees, and private professional fiduciaries. Matt has successfully handled several trials and arbitrations of trust and estate disputes. He also handles appeals and was one of the attorneys of record in Funsten v. Wells Fargo Bank, N.A. (2016) 2 Cal.App.5th 959.

Matt is a certified specialist in estate planning, trust, and probate law by the State Bar of California Board of Legal Specialization. A leader in the legal community, Matt speaks and writes on trust and estate litigation topics and serves on the California Lawyers Association Trusts and Estates Section Subcommittee on Membership, Marketing, and Social Media and as Vice Chair of the San Diego County Bar Association, Estate Planning, Trust and Probate Law Section’s Executive Committee. He was ranked on Legal Week’s Private Client "Ones to Watch" list in 2017, 2018 and 2019, and has been named a Super Lawyers Rising Star every year since 2013.


Nathan is an active member of the Contra Costa County Bar Association, East Bay Trusts & Estates Lawyers, and the Robert G. McGrath American Inns of Court. Nathan was selected as a Rising Star in Trust and Estate litigation in 2018 and 2019 by Super Lawyers, an exclusive award given only to the top 2% of attorneys in Northern California.

As a graduate of University of California, Berkeley, Nathan received his bachelor’s degree in Political Science. He went on to earn his J.D. from Golden Gate University School of Law. After law school Nathan earned an LLM in Estate Planning, Trust and Probate law at Golden Gate University School of Law. During law school Nathan worked for the Contra Costa County Probate Court, developing an in depth knowledge of the probate court system and Judges. Prior to opening the Law Offices of Nathan D. Pastor, Nathan gained extensive experience as a top litigator in one of Contra Costa’s largest Trust and Estate law firms.

Nathan is a member of the Contra Costa County Criminal Conflict Program and is routinely appointed by the court as counsel for proposed conservatees. Nathan handles matters both big and small. For example, Nathan is handling an appeal stemming from a trust contest that’s currently pending before the California Supreme Court (See Barefoot v. Jennings; California Supreme Court Case No. S251574)."

Tracy S. Regli is a founding partner of Acuña . Regli, LLP. Tracy focuses her practice on probate and trust administration, fiduciary representation, conservatorship and special needs planning. She has assisted many banks, fiduciaries, and family members with administering large and small estates throughout California.Tracy is an active member of the Alameda and Contra Costa Bar associations, the Professional Fiduciary Association of California (PFAC), and the Southern Alameda Estate Planning Council. She is a sought-after speaker and has spoken at PFAC and Estate Planning Council meetings and conventions. Her pro bono activities include participating in the Lawyers in the Library program and assisting low income seniors through workshops sponsored by the Contra Costa County Bar Association.

Hon. Judge Glen M. Reiser (Ret.)
JAMS Till My Conservatorship Do Us Part

Hon. Glen M. Reiser (Ret.) has vast experience adjudicating and resolving thousands of complex commercial, real property/environmental, trust and family law disputes as a respected trial judge and litigator. Judge Reiser spent more than 20 years on the Ventura County Superior Court, serving as both supervising probate judge and California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) judge for more than a decade. Prior to his appointment to the bench, he litigated hundreds of civil cases to successful conclusion in trial and appellate courts throughout California.

Judge Reiser regularly teaches California judges trust, probate, and conservatorships through the Judicial Council of California’s Center for Judicial Education and Research (CJER).

Judge Reiser is known for using his thoroughness, intellect, attention to detail and breadth of knowledge to develop creative solutions to disputes of all types.

Victor Segovia
Segovia, A Law Office Defending Yourself: Professional Fiduciary Jiu Jitsu

Victor Segovia has 26 years professional legal experience in litigation and trials in California State courts and Federal courts. He has prosecuted criminal cases in both Los Angeles and San Francisco as a deputy District Attorney with many jury trials to verdict. Mr. Segovia has extensive experience in banking legal matters with FDIC where he earned the FDIC Mission Achievement Award; and with Wells Fargo Bank as Senior Corporate Counsel. Victor Segovia currently practices in Contra Costa County and handles cases through trial representing individuals charged with crimes.

Mr. Segovia earned his bachelor’s degree in Economics from the University of California, Berkeley. After working for a few years as a Senior Corporate Analyst with Wells Fargo Bank, he returned to school and earned his J.D. from UC, Hastings School of Law.

Victor Segovia is a member of the Contra Costa County Criminal Conflict Program. He is routinely appointed by the court as counsel. His unique combination of experience in banking where he focused on uncovering Financial Crimes, Money Laundering and Fraud, and his deep experience with jury trials in large city District Attorney offices provides advice backed by experience in cases all the way to the US Supreme Court.


Brenda Shorkend is a Certified Aging Life Care™ Manager/Geriatric Care Manager, with over 25 years of experience working with older people and people with disabilities and their families. She has a background in Rehabilitation Psychology and is a member of the Aging Life Care Association.

She has worked in a wide variety of hospital and community settings, including Huntington Hospital's Senior Care Network in Pasadena. Brenda has broad knowledge of local resources and services.

Brenda is a strong advocate for her clients. She works with her clients to tailor unique solutions for each individual that maximizes their independence and autonomy while ensuring their safety and well-being.

She is on the board of the San Gabriel Valley Financial Planning Association and the advisory boards of the West San Gabriel Valley Elder Abuse Task Force and of Community Healthcare Ethics.

Kai Stinchcombe is CEO and co-founder of True Link Financial. He is a three-time Chief Technology Officer or Head of Data Science and has served in appointed positions on the Obama administration task force on technology and aging and in the California working group on Blockchain Technology.


Herb Thomas, is the founder of Kairos Fiduciary Services, serving as a trustee for Special Needs Trusts and Settlement Trusts is more than a job or career. It is a calling that holds a personal significance, since he has a child diagnosed with special needs. Herb understands what parents and people who are injured need to consider as they move forward in their lives.

Herb has years of expertise in Special Needs Trust and Settlement Trust administration in the state of California and nationwide as well as a depth of experience in Conservatorships, Public Benefits Advocacy, and Probate Estate Administration. He is a California Licensed Professional Fiduciary (CLPF), with license number #86—meaning he was one of the first 100 people in California to earn the authority to serve as a professional fiduciary.

Judge Mary Thornton House retired from the Los Angeles Superior Court in September 2018 after serving for 22 years. She is a private neutral for Alternative Resolution Centers (ARC). Prior to her retirement, she presided over trusts, wills, estate, conservatorship and guardianship matters in Pasadena and the Stanley Mosk Courthouse. The bulk of her years on the Superior Court was in probate or general civil litigation individual calendar courts


Kevin Urbatsch is a principal of the special needs and settlement planning law firm, The Urbatsch Law Firm P.C. located in Pleasant Hill, California. Kevin also serves as National Director of the Academy of Special Needs Planners (ASNP), a national organization of special needs and settlement planning professionals. Kevin is a Certified Specialist in Estate Planning, Trust, and Probate Law by the California State Bar Board of Legal Specialization. Kevin is also a fellow of the American College of Trust and Estate Counsel (ACTEC).

Kevin Urbatsch is the host of the Special Needs Planning Symposium, a three-day special needs planning training for professionals interested in mastering this area of practice. The program provides continuing legal education and certified specialist credit. The website is located at Kevin Urbatsch has served as expert witness on several cases concerning the settlement needs of persons with disabilities and minors. He testified in a trial in Alameda County and one held in England based on California law.

Nancy Valentine
Licensed Real Estate Broker Insurance Coverage - Dropping the Ball

Listing & Selling since 1991, Nancy currently practices in southern California. She holds a Broker's license in California and previously held a Broker's license in New York.

Her sales experience includes all areas of residential, income and residential investment properties. Due to her experience and expertise in the handling of complicated real estate transactions, she is the Director of Trust & Probate properties and was for five years chosen as the Official Real Estate Sponsor of the Pasadena Bar Association. She works with Professional Fiduciaries as well as Successor Trustees and Seniors. She is an Affiliate member of PFAC. She has been a member and on the board of the Fiduciary Round Table of the San Gabriel Valley. Her practice also includes selling properties as part of a divorce. Many trust sales are complicated by current or past divorces and warring step-families.

Nancy had another career before entering real estate: she was a professional opera singer, living in Europe for 11 ½ years. She is fluent in German. Her years of living abroad have given her a deep understanding of buyers and sellers with varying cultures and traditions. This experience is a valuable tool in understanding client needs and translates into a superb skill in negotiating on behalf of her clients.

She has family living in Singapore and Bermuda. She has 6 very young grandchildren. She is a supporter of classical music and is a Donor to the LA Phil.

Peter J Wall is the Director of Fiduciary Services for True Link Financial. With over 18 years of trust administration experience, Peter focuses his efforts in the Elder Law arena and is known for his Special Needs Trust administration and planning capabilities throughout the country. Before joining True Link Financial, he developed and help lead BOK Financial’s dedicated SNT division. Mr. Wall is the former President for the Centennial Estate Planning Council, former President of the Denver Trust Officers Association, President of the Board of Directors of VSA Colorado Access Gallery, and serves on the Board of Directors for Easter Seals. He is a frequent presenter on the topics of Special Needs Trusts, estate planning, taxation, and trust administration for numerous professional and community groups and was a presenter and faculty member at the CBA 2012, 2014 and 2015 Elder Law Retreat, the 2013 National Down Syndrome Congress, 2015 46th Annual Autism Society National Conference, the 2019 National NAELA conference, and the 2016, 2018 and 2019 Stetson National Special Needs Trust Conference. Mr. Wall is also a published author, most notably in the Elder Law in Colorado Red Book, Fourth Edition. Peter is a nationally recognized touring saxophonist and lives in Denver, CO with his wife and two children.


Lauriann Wright is an experienced probate litigator and estate planner. For over 25 years, she has been practicing all phases of probate law and litigation, including conservatorships, guardianships, trusts, and probate estates, throughout Los Angeles, Orange and Riverside Counties. The focus of her practice is the representation of professional fiduciaries, with particular success in helping fiduciaries maintain neutrality in the midst of litigation among family members. She also represents select private clients in trust and estate litigation matters, like will and trust contests.

For 2019, she has been named as one of the Top 50 Women Super Lawyers in Southern California. For the 8 consecutive years of 2012 through 2019, she was named as a Southern California Super Lawyer in Trust and Estate Litigation. For 2016 through 2019, she is also listed as one of “The Best Lawyers in America” in Litigation/ Probate by Best Lawyer and her law firm has been named a Best Law Firm by U.S. News & World Report as well. And she has been named as a member of the National Advocates: Top 100 of Wills, Trust and Estates Lawyers. She is a regular speaker on probate law topics.

Deena Zacharin has been an associate attorney with Stebner and Associates since 2015, focusing on elder neglect and financial abuse cases. Prior to joining the firm, Deena practiced in the areas of trusts and estates and conservatorship, representing professional and non-professional conservators; she continues to serve as a court-appointed attorney in probate conservatorships in San Francisco County. Deena is an affiliate member of PFAC.