I was born and raised in Honolulu, Hawaii. I attended Punahou School and was a classmate of our former President Barack Obama. After graduation and prior to college, I worked in fine dining restaurants and nightclubs as a busboy, waiter, bartender, and periodic DJ. I moved to the Bay Area in my early twenties and worked in San Francisco restaurants, nightclubs and at the Pacific Stock Exchange as a Market Quote Operator on the Options Floor for the SEC. I obtained my Real Estate license and managed Home Owner Associations throughout the peninsula and opened a Real Estate Appraisal Company. After a severe motorcycle injury, I re-entered college and graduated from UC Berkeley with high honors and distinction. I received a full scholarship to law school at the University of Arizona and graduated in 1998. During law school, I chartered teen courts for a local middle school, won the prestigious Jenckes Competition, and worked for the Pima County Public Defenders Office, Alameda County District Attorneys Summer Intern Program, and tried criminal cases. My fondest memories of law school were meeting and talking with The Honorable Chief Justice William Rehnquist of the United States Supreme Court and The Honorable Lance Ito who presided over the O.J. Simpson criminal trial. During that time, I also interned at Lafayette, Kumagai, and Clarke, a minority owned civil law firm, and clerked for The Honorable Sandra Margulies (former Deputy District Attorney) and The Honorable Michael Ballachey (former Public Defender).
Upon my graduation, I accepted an offer to work at the Alameda County District Attorneys Office and handled all levels and types of criminal cases from investigations, charging, pretrial negotiations, pretrials motions, preliminary hearings, court trials, jury trials, sentencing, probations, revocations, and post probation motions of misdemeanors, felonies, infractions, and diversion. I have been a special guest speaker and authority on Criminal Restitution, and criminal issues that relate to Workers Compensation, Medical, and Employment fraud. In 2022, I spoke at the California District Attorneys Association, Alameda County Bar, and Contra Costa Conflict Panel as an expert on Restitution. I retired from the District Attorneys Office after 22 years.
As a juvenile, I was incarcerated twice for non-violent crimes, and for fully expressing my rebellious teen angst. Previously, I had been an extraordinary student and eventually found my way back. Some believe it ironic that I worked for the District Attorneys Office, thereafter, and not the Public Defenders. Nonetheless, I believe that my unique history provided a well-rounded perspective on our criminal justice system which I applied daily as a Deputy District Attorney. Now, it fuels a passionate dedication to help those in need and zealous advocacy for those who have been criminally charged. Throughout my life and experiences with law enforcement, the Courts, the attorneys, the agencies, and all other related parties, I understand and value the need for great legal representation and providing it.