Board Meeting 4/21/15


DDA Michael Fern, currently assigned to the Auto Insurance Fraud Division [AIFD] was appointed to both the Legislative Committee and the Website Enhancement Committee and that appointment was ratified by the Board. Welcome and thanks, Michael, for joining and participating in an effort to improve the lives of your colleagues.

Michael will be examining our website and making recommendations for improvement and will be working with EKA [Englander, Knabe and Allen] on that project. He will also be assisting Vice President Michele Hanisee, of Major Crimes, and John Colello, Assistant Head Deputy of Hardcore, on the ADDA’s effort to secure legislation addressing the security screening issue.


We heard extensively from two members of our new Communications Consultant Team, Eric Rose and Paul Haney of EKA [Englander, Knabe and Allen]. They are helping us build our brand, our clout and our prestige. We’ve received quite positive feedback on the Monday Memo news update and the Blogs which they prepare. There is more to come. We also had a good meeting with Supervisor Knabe and his staff thanks in part to EKA and Executive Vice President John Harrold, currently on leave pursuant to orders of the National Guard and handling criminal filings on behalf of the military as an Acting Attorney General.


If you are not aware, the Monday Memo’s circulation is much greater than our DDA membership. It goes out to the media and our law enforcement colleagues.  Our DA, Jackie Lacey, told me at Carolyn McNary’s Retirement Dinner, that she read, enjoyed and valued it. If you know anyone who would like to receive our Monday Memo, including DDAs who may not be receiving it, send us their name and email address and we will add them to our subscription database. They don’t have to be an ADDA member to receive it. Email me at


We will be including a photo and the statement in support of our DDA of the Month recipients in futureMonday Memos.


By the way, McNary’s dinner was wonderful. Her last assignment was Deputy in Charge of VIP in San Fernando where she served for many years. Her Master of Ceremonies, Nathan Bartos, a VIP Deputy in San Fernando, played an amazing video of people praising McNary. Nate’s humor was superb. I was struck by how many present expressed what those who knew Carolyn already felt, that she truly made a difference to the victims she worked for and for this Office. Her daughter and her husband gave quite moving speeches. It was a great night!


As for our Blogs, they have garnered some interest and the ADDA is always looking for a prosecutorial point-of-view, so if you have any ideas or even bullet points that are worth sharing, please contact us. You can email me at and I will forward them to EKA.


We are considering issuing a Blog on incidents of violence in and around the workplace involving DDAs and others who work in the Criminal Justice system. At this time we are requesting your help in sending us any anecdotes or events or your thoughts on this matter. I will keep these matters confidential if requested. We intend that eventually our website will support anonymity and open discussions of this and other issues. Email me at

As the ERCOM certified representatives of Deputy District Attorneys Grades I-IV in Los Angeles County, ADDA is committed to the safety of our members at home and at work. Thanks to your Vice-President Michele Hanisee’s efforts, we have begun to provide a service that safeguards your privacy and anonymity on the internet.  We are exploring all ways to increase and improve your security and we are open to ideas and participation by our members in this effort.

Legislation takes time, and our Vice-President Michele Hanisee is fully committed, as are DDAs Michael Fern and John Colello, and our Lobbyist, Tim Yaryan, in the ADDA’s effort to secure new laws permitting us to bypass security screening.


We continued to discuss preparations for Negotiations. We’ve hired an additional consultant and our salary survey is nearly completed. Proposals are due in May with negotiations scheduled to begin in June for an MOU that expires in September. No County department has yet settled though several departments are currently engaged in formal negotiations.


At the next Board Meeting we will devote significant time to establishing our DFR [Duty of Fair Representation] which is our legal representation plan and policy. This will assist us in determining under what circumstances the ADDA will and will not represent DDAs and the extent of that representation.


If you have a grievance, you may contact any Officer or Board member. See our website, for contact information.  Or contact our General Counsel, Richard Shinee, of the Law Offices of Green & Shinee, directly at (818) 986-2440.


We briefly discussed the need to evolve our endorsement protocols. Essentially, we need to determine when we will or will not support a DDA who chooses to run for office including the criteria that will assist us in making that decision; and whether we will or will not or who we will support when two or more DDAs run against each other. To this end we will consult with EKA for any guidance they can provide us. Additionally, in the future, we intend to communicate to our membership those DDAs seeking our endorsement and to solicit your feedback.


The Chairman of our Membership Outreach Committee, Director Craig Gold assigned to the Asset Forfeiture, informed the Board that our full membership now exceeds over 50% of the office. Full membership is approximately $10 more per month and entitles one to voting privileges and the ability to run for a position on the Board.

Full membership also includes an internet privacy service which many companies charge over $100 to provide. So membership is well worth the additional expense. The fees we collect from full membership fund our PAC and political outreach efforts to strengthen your voice in our County. Please consider filling out a membership application and contributing this nominal $10.00 amount. Your membership demonstrates support for the ADDA when we address the County concerning your desire for better wages and improvements in working conditions. Please support yourself by supporting the ADDA. The membership application can be downloaded at


Recently the Blog located at posted an entry entitled “Life After AFSCME – ADDA excels free from AFSCME.”  I wasn’t consulted on that article but I think it thoroughly captured the truth. As your current President I can confidently proclaim that we do indeed have a life after AFSCME and it is much better than having our funds drained by an organization that did little to nothing for us. I believe we have absolutely demonstrated so that we can and will function perfectly without them. Initially, I alone fielded the daily business of being a bargaining unit. That experience fully corroborated my suspicions that AFSCME was doing nothing for us on a daily or even weekly basis. They certainly weren’t working for us full time despite the $350,000.00 a year we paid them in dues. The only rough patch, if you want to call it that, involved getting access to our website. We now have full access to our website and that site will soon be fully updated and modernized.

Now, with our office set up, and with the wisdom of our General Counsel Richard Shinee, our Executive Director John Rees, our Executive Assistant Juliana Konze, our Lobbyist Tim Yaryan, our Communications Consultants EKA, our CPA, our soon to be hired accountant, our negotiation consultants, the drafter of our Compensation Survey (Barbara Maynard Consulting Services), our volunteer Officers and Directors, we are fully engaged in making the ADDA the best possible voice for the DDAs of this County. We are well on our way to elevating our political clout and radiating our public prestige. I am very confident that negotiations will demonstrate that we can do as well if not better than what was possible, if anything, by remaining with AFSCME! Please join as a full dues paying member to lend your voice to our efforts.

The next Board Meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, 5/19/15.

Marc Debbaudt
ADDA President

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