Legal Aid of Marin Winter Clinic

Legal Aid of Marin Winter Clinic in San Geronimo Valley
LAM hosts a free clinic in the San Geronimo Valley every year.

Legal Aid of Marin Winter Clinic in San Geronimo Valley

Free Legal Assistance

When: Thursday, February 27, 2014
Time: 1:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Where: San Geronimo Valley Community Center, 6350 Sir Francis Drake Blvd. San Geronimo, CA 94963

Legal Questions? We can help!
Legal Aid of Marin and the Rural Justice Collaborative, a project of OneJustice, are partnering to provide a FREE legal clinic in Marin County. This is the second clinic in San Geronimo Valley, the other clinic takes place during the summer. During the clinic, volunteer attorneys will meet with participants and provide legal advice and information on issues including housing, employment, consumer debt, or any other civil legal matters.

Please call for more information and to make an appointment: (415) 492-0230 x0
Please bring all important documents to the clinic.

Organized by the Rural Justice Collaborative, a project of OneJustice in partnership with other non-profits and law firms.

Two Day Holiday Clinic, December 26-27

Dozens of volunteer law students and attorneys will be on hand to offer information and advice to help families know their rights.
Dozens of volunteer law students and attorneys will be on hand to offer information and advice to help families know their rights.

This special two-day event of free legal information and advice will be held from 10am to 4pm by appointment on Thursday December 26 and Friday December 27. There is an expected capacity to serve 140 families with civil legal issues.

Christmas Day “Dine for Charities” at Bogie’s Cafe, and LAM Holiday Clinic

Bogie's Cafe co-owners Michael and Leslie Freed select Legal Aid of Marin as beneficiary of their annual breakfast. Join us there!
LAM Executive Director Paul Cohen and Bogie's Cafe co-owner Michael Freed look forward to a delicious breakfast at this year's Christmas Day "Dine for Charities" event.

In celebration of its 10th Annual Christmas Day Dine for Charities event, Bogie’s Cafe in San Rafael has selected Legal Aid of Marin as this year’s donation recipient and nonprofit partner.

Bogie’s Cafe co-owners Michael and Leslie Freed have been offering a Charity Christmas Day breakfast to customers in exchange for much needed donations that directly support Marin charities. The breakfast will be offered at Bogie’s (48 N. San Pedro Road in San Rafael) from 9:30am-1pm on Christmas Day. LAM is proud to be a part of this special event and appreciates the support.

Following the Christmas Day Dine for Charities breakfast, LAM will continue the giving spirit with the 6th Annual Holiday Legal Clinic. This special two-day event of free legal information and advice will be held from 10am to 4pm by appointment on Thursday December 26 and Friday December 27. There is an expected capacity to serve 140 families with civil legal issues.

Dozens of volunteer law students and attorneys will be on hand to offer information and advice to help families start 2014 by knowing their rights. Bogie’s Cafe will also be catering this special Holiday Legal Clinic.

Levelling the playing field

LAM's new Family Law Team, led by Araceli Ontiveros-Venegas and Laurie Joyce, brings justice to a custody case.
Araceli Ontiveros-Venegas and Laurie Joyce

Among the hundreds of cases that pass through the offices of Legal Aid of Marin each year, often the most complex deal in the emotional area of family law. Divorce, custody battles, restraining orders—these issues can absolutely overwhelm a client with a feeling of helplessness and despair. To better serve the community, LAM recently formed a new Family Law Team led by staff attorneys Laurie Joyce and Araceli Ontiveros-Venegas. The two attorneys recently collaborated on a case that proved to be a victory for their client and for our community.

THE CASE: A San Rafael father was suddenly served with a divorce petition by his wife of many years, who without warning, took the couple’s two children and left the county. Unable to read or write and unsure of his rights, the apprehensive father—who was determined to keep his children in his life—came to the LAM offices looking for help.

THE STAFF: Ontiveros-Venegas and Joyce reviewed the father’s documents and informed him that the wife intended to win full legal and physical custody of the couple’s children. The father explained that he was very much involved in his children’s lives but did not know how to articulate this in a legal setting. The two LAM attorneys helped him prepare a declaration and response. They gathered letters of support from the children’s elementary school teachers effusively stating that the father was very much involved in school and community activities. The Family Law Team helped prepare the father for mediation and informed him of all of his legal options and basic rights.

THE OUTCOME: The father was thrilled to learn that LAM was able to help him obtain joint custody of his children and felt empowered that he was able to tell his side of the story effectively to the mediator and family court judge. Thanks to the dedicated Family Law Team of Ontiveros-Venegas and Joyce, the entire legal process with regard to custody took less than one month.

ABOVE AND BEYOND: “I was moved by how genuinely humble and happy he was that LAM was able to make a difference for him and his family,” said Ontiveros-Venegas, who grew up in Marin and is thrilled to give back to her community. Joyce, also a Marin resident, feels the same way. “The truth is that if there wasn’t a Legal Aid of Marin, our clients wouldn’t have anywhere else to go.”

Tip Your Hat For Justice

Join us to celebrate "Tip Your Hat for Justice" with a continental breakfast and special hat raffle. Wear your favorite hat!
Guest emcee Willie C. Gordon

This will be a special fundraiser breakfast for Legal Aid of Marin, featuring guest emcee Willie C. Gordon, Marin’s venerable novelist, lawyer and avid hat collector.

Attendees are encouraged to wear and showcase their hats!

All proceeds from the event will benefit individuals and families served by Legal Aid of Marin.

Tickets: $65
Thursday, December 5, 2013
8:30am – 10am
Panama Hotel & Restaurant
4 Bayview Street, San Rafael
Note: Only street parking is available.

Post-Labor Day Clinic

A Saturday afternoon clinic at LAM's offices, covering any area of law.

at Legal Aid of Marin
30 N. San Pedro Road, Suite 220
San Rafael, CA 94903

Thank You.

LAM wishes to thank all who helped make our 55th Anniversary Gala, “All Stars of Marin,” a big success.

Your generosity ensures that LAM will continue to provide quality legal services
in Marin County.

Please save the date for our next event,
Tip Your Hat For Justice
Thursday, December 5, 2013
8:30 a.m.—10:00 a.m.
at the Panama Hotel, San Rafael

All Stars of Marin – Our 2013 Gala

Join us at our Annual Gala celebrating 55 years of service to Marin County!

Legal Aid of Marin is celebrating teamwork and excellence this year. Sponsors, volunteers, collaborators and a great staff are the starting point for Legal Aid of Marin’s vision of a level playing and a passion to help others. Anyone who supports our work is an All Star of Marin!
Friday, May 31 2013 6:00-10:30pm
Mill Valley Community Center, 180 Camino Alto, Mill Valley, California
Buy Your Tickets Now

Our Sponsors





Bank of Marin
Cynthia Abesa & Sean Hogle
Shartsis Fries


Chavez & Gertler
Renee & Roy Chernus
David Sutton
Mediation & Arbitration
Charles Dresow
Duane Morris
Emison Hullverson
Freitas McCarthy
MacMahon & Keating
The Resolution Experts
Philip Levin & Associates
Alexandra Mussallem
Sonoma Bank
Charles & Maryanna Stockholm
Walker Hamilton & Koenig
Warren Law Firm
Warren & Christie Webster


Robert Erickson
Mechanics Bank
Peter & Ellen
Presidio Bank




Meet the Marin Justice League 2013 Honorees


Fenwick & West LLP

Senior F&W Associate Saundra Riley (pictured at left) and our phenomenal Equal Justice Works Fellow Joanna Shalleck-Klein successfully co-counseled a worker’s rights case. Fenwick & West has partnered with LAM for many years through Pro bono work, law clinics and a Summer Justice Bus in West Marin. LAM is grateful for the support of F&W.

Chris Locke

Environmental Attorney and Senior Partner with Farella Braun + Martel
LAM Board Member; Part-time Race Car Driver

When it comes to helping the community, Chris Locke does not know how to say no. Over the past 25 years, he has shown this time and again through his remarkable wisdom as both a volunteer attorney and as a LAM Board Member (and past Board President). LAM would not be what it is today without Chris Locke.

Rocio “Cio” Hernandez, MFT

Licensed Mental Health Practioner

With her infectious personanlity and committment to social justice, Cio Hernandez has become one of LAM’s strongest allies. Whether through her work in the Bi-National Health Week, client referrals or contributions to Medical Legal Partnership programs, Cio improves Marin every step of the way.

Vinh Luu

Project Director for Asian Advocacy Project

Time and again, LAM has been the beneficiary of Vinh Luu‘s groundbreaking work in leveling the playing field for Marin’s Asian Community. His efforts in ensuring that the County provide information in multiple languages directly led to improved legal services for the Asian community. Vinh is a leader and a true visionary.


Major League Supper Plates by Stacy Scott Catering


Jump Shot Cocktails at the Home Bench Bar


High Card Walk-off to win Sports Prizes


Victory Dancing in the End Zone with the Soul Satellites Band Featuring Bonnie Hayes


Score Wine + Sports Memorablia at the Silent Auction


Dress as your favorite athlete. Business or cocktail attire acceptable.

Party for a Cause!

For more information, please contact Jan Baldwin at

or call (415) 492-0230 x309
Become a Sponsor  Volunteer for the Gala

Sandra Esquivias embraces role as Canal ambassador

The LAM legal assistant grew up in the Canal neighborhood, and relishes her role helping her community.
LAM's Supervising Legal Assistant Sandra Esquivias reflects on her role as a neighborhood liaison

To residents of the Canal neighborhood of San Rafael, Sandra Esquivias is the face of Legal Aid of Marin.

“When I began representing LAM in the Canal, I gave it 200 percent and made it my priority to ensure that we served this community,” said Esquivias, who grew up in the Canal neighborhood, and knows from personal experience what it’s like to feel overwhelmed and intimidated by the legal world.

Esquivias’ career with LAM began in 1999, when she came to the office as a client seeking legal advice.

“I was a single mom in desperate need of help,” she recalls. “LAM took the time to listen to my story and help me find a solution.”

In a synchronistic twist of fate, LAM hired Esquivias as its office receptionist that very same day. After receiving legal help, Esquivias was encouraged to apply for the job. She immediately put together a resume, was interviewed, and after only two hours of training never looked back.

These days, Esquivias works as the supervising legal assistant. She holds weekly office hours in the Canal where she sees hundreds of clients each year, helping with issues that range from unlawful detainers, family law, translations of documents, wage and hour claims and much more.

Her appointments are often booked six weeks in advance. Clients in the Canal often say they are happy to wait, because they know Esquivias and LAM will help them.

“When I came to LAM, my life was falling apart,” she said. “LAM took the time to make a difference in my life. I feel that it is now my turn to give back to the community.”

Legal Aid of Marin welcomes Luis Navas to Board of Directors

Luis Navas, a noted Compliance and Audit Manager with Bank of Marin, is the newest member of the Legal Aid of Marin Board of Directors.

Luis Navas officially joined the LAM Board on October 10, 2012. Laws, regulations and bank procedures are his business. Luis makes recommendations to the Bank of Marin Board of Directors as well as its management team in regard to risk areas, preventive actions and opportunities for improvement.

“Luis’ experience and personality, and positive energy make him a perfect fit for Legal Aid of Marin, and we are excited to welcome him into the organization,” said LAM Executive Director, Paul Cohen.

Navas’ daughter, a high school student, sparked Navas’ interest in LAM in after having such a positive experience volunteering with the nonprofit this past summer.

LAM also wishes to thank Bank of Marin Director of Community Relations Joan Capurro (who is also a member of LAM’s new Advisory Board) for referring Navas to the Legal Aid of Marin family.