The ACBA Board of Directors lead the ACBA in policy development and program review; promote active participation in the ACBA; act as ACBA spokespersons with the courts, the public, and the community on issues of mutual concern; and are responsible for encouraging, guiding, and directing other volunteer leaders.

PRESIDENT
Cheryl Poncini

Alameda County District Attorney’s Office
1225 Fallon Street, Suite 900
Oakland, CA 94612

Cheryl Poncini is a Deputy District Attorney in the Alameda County District Attorney’s Office, where she has worked for over 40 years in a variety of assignments in both the juvenile and adult divisions. Those assignments have included case review and charging, calendar departments, the law and motion unit, sexually violent predator unit and felony jury trials. 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 her Master of Public Administration degree from CSU East Bay in March 2013. She is also a member of the ACBA Legal Access Alameda (formerly VLSC) Board of Directors and a member of the Fellowship Grants Board of Founder Region Soroptimists, a community-based non-profit which works to improve the lives of women and girls locally and internationally through education and economic empowerment.
PRESIDENT-ELECT
Pelayo A. Llamas, Jr.

Oakland City Attorney’s Office
One Frank H. Ogawa Plaza, 6th Floor
Oakland, CA 94612

Pelayo Llamas is a Deputy City Attorney in the Oakland City Attorney’s Office, where he has served in many litigation and advice roles since 1999. Pelayo was the 2015-2016 president of the Earl Warren American Inn of Court, and is a former board member of the Filipino Bar Association of Northern California. He is a Member-At-Large for statewide Bench Bar Coalition Executive Committee for Northern/Central region. Pelayo is also a temporary judge for the Alameda County Superior Court.

VICE-PRESIDENT
Lauren Powe

California Department of Justice
1515 Clay St., Suite 2000
Oakland CA 94612


Lauren Powe is a Deputy Attorney General with Department of Justice in the Employment and Administrative Mandate Section. She served as the 2014 ACBA Barristers Executive Committee Chair. Lauren was the 2015 recipient of the ACBA Distinguished Service Award for New Lawyer. Lauren is the 2018, outgoing Chair of the California Young Lawyers Association Board and Secretary of the Earl Warren American Inns of Court Board.

Megan Burns
Bonjour, Thorman & Burns
24301Southland Drive, Suite 312
Hayward, CA 94545
(510) 785-8400


Megan Burns is a partner with the law firm of Bonjour, Thorman, Burns, Dahm where she specializes in high stakes litigation in the areas of criminal defense and plaintiffs personal injury. Megan spent many years advocating for indigent defendants at the San Francisco County and Solano County Public Defender’s Offices prior to joining the firm. She is a member of the Earl Warren American Inn of Court and previously served on the board of directors for California Attorneys for Criminal Justice (CACJ) and Women Defenders.

Alice Cheng
Wapnick Family Law
101 Ygnacio Valley Road, Suite 201
Walnut Creek, CA 94596
(925) 932-2225

Alice Cheng is a family law attorney with Wapnick Family Law in Walnut Creek. She has served on the ACBA Barristers Section Executive Committee from 2014 to present, and was their Chair from 2017-2018. Alice was the 2018 recipient of the ACBA Distinguished Service Award for New Lawyer. She is also a member of the Earl Warren American Inn of Court, the Asian American Bar Association, and Women Lawyers of Alameda County. Alice speaks Cantonese and basic conversational Mandarin.
Joy Ricardo
Judicial Council of California

Joy Ricardo is a Supervising attorney at the Judicial Council of California. She is a cofounder, and was the managing attorney, at East Bay Children’s Law Office, a nonprofit child advocacy organization that provides legal representation to children and youth involved in foster care, delinquency and probate proceedings in Alameda County. Joy  is a member of the Alameda County Judicial Evaluation and Appointment Committee and is also a longstanding member of the Charles Houston Bar Association.

Jo-Anna Nieves
Nieves Law Firm


Jo-Anna Nieves formed the Nieves Law Firm, APC in order to help those accused of crimes to navigate the complex and challenging legal process of the criminal justice system. A former member of the ACBA Barristers Section Executive Committee and current Vice-Chair of the ACBA Judicial Appointments Evaluation Committee, she also volunteers as a mock trial coach for El Centro Legal de la Raza’s Youth Law Academy and is a member of the Earl Warren Inns of Court.

Autumn Paine
Law Office of Autumn Paine


Autumn Paine works with people charged with all kinds of crimes and juveniles in delinquency proceedings, as well as with people seeking post-conviction relief. Autumn has worked with in the Kern and Lassen County Public Defender’s offices and in private practice as a member of the ACBA’s Court Appointed Attorney Program (CAAP) panel.  Committed to supporting the legal community, she currently sits on the Board of the California Attorneys for Criminal Justice (CACJ), is a past board member of the Women Lawyers of Alameda County, has served as a CAAP Advisory Committee member, and is a long-time member of the California Public Defender’s Association.

Pamela Ross, Jr.
All for the Children Legal Clinic, Inc.
3137 Castro Valley Blvd. #210
Castro Valley, CA 94546

Pamela J. Ross, Jr., is the founder and CEO of the All for the Family Legal Clinic, Inc., a public benefit corporation dedicated to providing low cost legal assistance to the San Francisco Bay Area. She primarily handles family law cases, but also works in the areas of estate planning and landlord-tenant law. Pamela has served on the ACBA Family Law Section’s Executive Committee since 2012, and as its Chair since 2014. Pamela was the 2015 recipient of the Volunteer Legal Services Corporation’s award for Volunteer of the Year.

Peter Shelton

Peter Shelton Law


Peter Shelton is the owner of Peter Shelton Law, an estate planning and inheritance litigation firm in Berkeley. Peter is certified by the California State Bar as a Specialist in Estate Planning, Trust & Probate Law, and is a Past-President of East Bay Trusts and Estates Lawyers (EBTEL). He has been named a Super Lawyer every year since 2015.

Vincent Tong
Tong Law
409 13th Street, Floor 9
Oakland, CA 94612
(510) 371-7835


Vincent Tong is the owner of TONG LAW, an employment and business law practice in Oakland. He is an active member of the ACBA and its Barristers and Labor and  Employment Sections, and served as the Chair for the Barristers section in 2015. Vincent currently serves as a member of the California Employment Lawyers Association’s Executive Board. He is a member of the Earl Warren American Inn of Court, Asian American Bar Association, Filipino Bar Association of Northern California, and California Lawyers for the Arts. Vincent has been selected for inclusion in the Northern California Super Lawyers Rising Stars List since 2015, and was the 2016 recipient of the ACBA Distinguished Service Award for New Lawyer.

Ex-Oficio
Michael Johnson – Past President

AT&T Services, Inc.
Legal Department
525 Market Street, Room 2800
San Francisco, CA 94105
(415) 778-1485

Michael Johnson is Assistant Vice President- Senior Counsel, specializing in healthcare and governmental contracting issues. A former business and civil litigator, he was the 2016 President of the ACBA VLSC Board of Directors.

Ex-Officio
Sophia Ahmad

Sophia Ahmad Law, A.P.C.


Sophia Ahmad focuses in tax, corporate, and immigration law. She was a Student Attorney and Clinic Chief at the SMU Federal Taxpayers Clinic and with the Small Business/Self-Employed Division of the IRS. She worked for her family’s CPA firm before opening her own practice.  She is currently the Chair of the ACBA Barristers Section.