ADDA encourages members to get involved and help the community

By Michele Hanisee

One of the great things about being a Deputy District Attorney is the countless opportunities we have to get involved with charitable organizations that provide terrific networking opportunities while enabling us to give back to the community. The ADDA encourages all of our members to participate in charitable organizations. Here are just a few.

Korean Prosecutors Association (KPA)

The Korean Prosecutors Association is a global non-profit organization of public prosecutors of Korean descent. It was formed for networking, information sharing, mentoring, and serving the community by providing information and education on public safety matters.

Its activities include joint happy hours with other bar organizations, and it is MCLE accredited so members give presentations on topics including elder abuse, domestic violence and juvenile delinquency. Members also can participate in an annual conference that is hosted by the Korean government in Korea every third year.

How to Join:

Latino Prosecutors Association (LPA)

The Latino Prosecutors Association sponsors regular social events and activities throughout the year including participation in the annual Mexican American Bar Association softball tournament.  Its charitable arm, the Latino Prosecutors Foundation (LPF) primarily sponsors one and sometimes two scholarships for law students who are interested in becoming prosecutors. The scholarships are awarded annually each June. Membership is open to any prosecutor, including city attorneys and federal prosecutors, regardless of race or ethnicity.

How to join:

Black Prosecutors Los Angeles (BPLA)

The BPLA is a chapter of the National Black Prosecutors Association. Its mission is to ensure that justice is provided through fair and firm prosecution; to honor the history of African-American prosecutors; to help facilitate interdisciplinary communication, innovative training, professional development and camaraderie among African-Americans in law enforcement; to educate the community about the criminal justice system; and to offer scholarships, mentoring and assistance to African-American students.

BPLA offers scholarships to deserving high school seniors who have been accepted to a college or university and have expressed interest in the field of criminal prosecution.

BPLA sponsors numerous social events throughout the year such as the annual bowling tournament and Thursday night football toy drive.  BPLA’s premier event is the annual Alfred Jenkins Scholarship and Awards Dinner which occurs in June.  At the dinner, BPLA honors Champions of Justice in the Los Angeles Community and raises money for college scholarships.

BPLA has a Facebook page.

How to join:

National Asian Pacific Islander Prosecutors Association (NAPIPA)

The National Asian Pacific Islander Prosecutors Association is dedicated to promoting justice and to advancing the interests of prosecutors of Asian and Pacific Islander (API) heritage. The Association organizes the efforts of API prosecutors for the collective benefit of the American criminal justice system and of the legal profession. To that end, it advocates for fairness, equality and justice for crime victims, the criminally accused, people working in the criminal justice system, and the community at large.

Activities include joint happy hours with other bar associations and an annual scholarship dinner for law students.

How to Join:

Hollenbeck Youth Center

The Hollenbeck Youth Center is a non-profit organization that provides inner city kids with a safe haven from gangs and crime.  The center is open after school and all day during the summer.  The center offers after school tutoring and several sports programs including boxing, karate, basketball and weight lifting.

During the holidays, the center sponsors a turkey dinner and toy giveaway.  This year’s toy giveaway, organized by DDAs Steve Lopez and James Evans, will be on December 17th, 2016.  The goal is to collect 5,000 – 10,000 toys to distribute to inner city youth.   There is also an annual Gala every August.

Volunteer opportunities at the center include after school tutoring, coaching athletics, acting as a community advisor and helping to organize the many functions sponsored by the center.

To contribute or join: or Like on Facebook

International Footprint Association – Chapter 58

The International Footprint Association (IFA) is non-profit association that promotes and encourages fellowship, respect, cooperation and helpfulness among all arms of law enforcement and civilians who are sympathetic to law enforcement.  IFA Chapter 58 supports police explorer programs for multiple police agencies by sponsoring them and providing the funds for supplies and uniforms.

IFA 58 holds a dinner meeting on the last Tuesday of the month at Taix restaurant in Echo Park.  The cost for dinner is $45 for members and $55 for non-members.  Each meeting includes a speaker presentation on a law-enforcement related topic.  The big annual event is the June dinner meeting at which the explorer groups are hosted and presented to their sponsors.  Current IFA board members include former DA Steve Cooley, former DA Robert Philobosian, Sheriff Jim McDonnell and Judge Phillip Soto.  Members include DDAs, judges, defense attorneys, police officers, bail bondsmen and others working within the criminal justice system.  The meetings are a great place to get acquainted in an informal setting.

To attend dinner as a guest or to join as a member contact Vanessa Evelia Cuellar by email at

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