Alameda County
Bar Association

Introducing the 2015 ACBA Board of Directors 

The Alameda County Bar Association is proud to introduce you to its leadership for 2015, a diverse and talented group who give generously of their time and talent to the ACBA and the community.

ACBA Board of Directors
ACBA Board of Directors taking the oath of office. From (L-R) Paul Wellenkamp, Cheryl Poncini, Pelayo Llamas, Colin Bowen, Michael Johnson, Eric Handler, Stephanie Sato, and Toni Mims-Cochran (not pictured: Micha Star Liberty)


Toni Mims-CochranToni Mims-Cochran, President
Toni Mims-Cochran, of The Law Office of Toni Mims-Cochran, practices business litigation, family law, landlord/tenant litigation, and juvenile dependency trials and appeals in Oakland. Toni is the co-chair of the East Bay Diversity Bar Coalition, the Secretary and District 3 Governor of California Women Lawyers,  a member of the Charles Houston Bar Association, and a former President of Women Lawyers of Alameda County.

Stephanie SatoStephanie Sato, President-Elect
Stephanie Sato recently opened her own firm in Oakland, the Law Offices of Stephanie K. Sato, specializing in family law.  She was formerly an associate at the Law Offices of Peter G. Loewenstein.  In 2013 and 2014, Stephanie was selected for inclusion in the Northern California Super Lawyers Rising Stars List.  In 2009, she received the ACBA Distinguished Service Award for a Young Lawyer and in 2011-2012 she served as Chair of the ACBA Barristers Section Executive Committee.

Eric HandlerEric Handler, Vice-President
Eric Handler is a partner at Donahue Fitzgerald LLP in Oakland, specializing in IP law, commercial litigation, and bankruptcy. He is the 2015 Secretary-Treasurer of, and an active volunteer with, the ACBA Volunteer Legal Services Corporation.


Bowen_Colin 2Colin Bowen is a criminal defense attorney and a  CAAP panel member. He also serves as Board Counsel for the Oakland Citizens’ Police Review Board.  Colin devotes significant time to youth “pipeline” efforts, and has developed a number of programs and workshops concerning youth and their interactions with law enforcement and the justice system.  A graduate of Boalt Hall School of Law, Colin is active in the ACBA, having served on the Judicial Appointments Evaluation Committee and the Long Range Strategic Planning Committee.

Johnson, MichaelMichael Johnson is In-House Counsel with AT&T in San Francisco, specializing in healthcare and governmental contracting issues. A former business and civil litigator, he is also the 2015 President of the ACBA Volunteer Legal Services Corporation Board of Directors.

Micha Star LibertyMicha Star Liberty is a civil rights attorney specializing in litigation, serious injury, sexual abuse and employment matters. A graduate of UC Hastings, she has served on numerous bar association boards including the State Bar of California Board of Governors and the Contra Costa Trial Lawyers Association.

Pelayo LlamasPelayo Llamas is a Deputy City Attorney in the Oakland City Attorney’s Office, where he has served in many litigation and advice roles over the years.  A 1992 graduate of Santa Clara University School of Law, he began his practice with Burnham|Brown in Oakland, and joined the City Attorney’s office in 1999.  Pelayo also serves on the board of the Filipino Bar Association of Northern California, and is the president-elect of the Earl Warren American Inn of Court.

Cheryl Poncini Member Pic 2Cheryl Poncini is a Deputy District Attorney in the Alameda County District Attorney’s Office, where she is currently assigned to the Elder and Dependent Adult Protection Unit. Cheryl is a graduate of Santa Clara University School of Law, and received a Master of Public Administration from CSU East Bay in March 2013 .

Wellenkamp_PaulPaul Wellenkamp is a private criminal defense attorney. He has served on the CAAP Advisory Committee for five years and is now its Vice Chair. He is also an organizing member of the South Alameda County Criminal Defense Bar.