Steven French, an associate at the Glendale office of Lewis Roca Rothgerber Christie, has taken the reins as president of the Glendale Bar Association.
French, who works in the firm’s intellectual property practice, joined Lewis Roca in 2019 after finishing at Pepperdine Caruso School of Law. He joined the bar association in 2021, served as treasurer last year, and will be its board president through January, succeeding Dorine Martirosian, an assistant city attorney for Glendale.
“It was a bit comical. I’m probably the youngest person in the association by at least 10 years,” said French, who is 29. “I think it is a bit uncommon for someone at my age and practice level to become so integrated with an organization. I’m still quite young in my career, so it was very humbling. It’s a great honor and pleasure to be president of the association. I think it’s a great association.”
Formed in 1974, the Glendale Bar Association brings in attorneys and firms not just from the Jewel City, but also from Burbank, Pasadena and surrounding areas. It offers continuing legal education programming and a variety of social and networking events for its members, usually on a monthly basis.
“As lawyers, that in-person social setting has always been critical for building a practice, so we try to encourage that and practice it as much as possible,” French said.
French, who assumed the role of president in February, will oversee board meetings for the organization, which has around 100 active members. One goal he’d like to accomplish, he said, is to bring back the referral network program, in which nonmembers are invited to events to discuss certain legal issues they or their businesses are facing and are paired up with an appropriate member attorney to potentially work it out. That program was paused after its administrator departed, French said.
As treasurer last year, French said he helped the organization overcome tax-related issues that had accumulated. He joined the organization at the recommendation of a former Lewis Roca colleague who had been involved in its leadership.
“I’ve always believed that what you pick up to do, you should have heart, and that’s what I’ve done from the start,” French said. “I was originally on the board of directors in 2021 and I quickly learned the operations of the association. I thought critically about each decision we made and problems we faced.”
To hear it from him, French is likely to stick around for the association, thanks to the environment that Lewis Roca provides.
“I think that this is a fantastic law firm for associates,” he said. “It provides an excellent work-life balance, a type you don’t often see in other mid- to large-size law firms. My intent is very much to become a partner here and stay in the Glendale area.”