Director’s Quarterly Update

Spring has sprung and the new RCLL website is now live! If you haven’t already, check it out and explore its new features including easy to navigate way-finders and customized menu bars for self-represented litigants, legal professionals, and students of all ages in our community needing access to legal information. Our goal is to make RCLL collection, programs, and services accessible to you from wherever you are. The coronavirus pandemic has challenged us to rethink the way we provide services and quickly pivot to providing online access to legal research collection, classes, and library news and events. We will continue to provide you with these online services and find fiscally sustainable ways to enhance and expand access to legal information for all in Riverside County.

As you begin to explore the new RCLL website, you will find that this month, we have implemented the following:

  • “Express” MCLE Check-out system – a contactless procedure for checking-out MCLE CDs and MP3 files.
  • “Book to Action” program – with an LSTA grant, we have, as of this writing, given out 60 copies, of “Just Mercy” by Bryan Stevenson, out of the 130 people who have signed up to participate in our community read. To sign up for a copy of Just Mercy, click here. You can also sign up to participate in the following programs:
    • A 10-Day education challenge – with our list of recommended books, articles, podcasts, and documentary films that address racial inequities and criminal justice, you can tag #RCBookToAction as you complete your education challenge throughout the month of April and be entered to win prizes. Winners will be announced on May 8.
    • A “Just Mercy” book discussion, will be held via Zoom on Monday, April 26, 1:00 p.m. – 2:00 p.m. RCLL librarians will facilitate the discussion of the topics covered in the book including criminal justice and prison reform. Information materials on criminal justice in Riverside County will be provided. To register, click here.
    • A “Lawyers in the Library” will be held on Tuesday, April 27, 3:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m. at the Indio Branch. Community members can sign up for a 20-minute free consultation with a criminal defense attorney. The meeting with the attorney will be conducted via Zoom in the law library in Indio. Call (760) 848-7151 to pre-register.
    • A “Post-Conviction Relief Program” virtual presentation by the Riverside County Public Defender’s Office will be held on Thursday, April 29, 12:00 p.m. – 1:00 p.m. Topics to be covered include a brief explanation about the various types of relief available, including early termination of probation, reduction to a misdemeanor, expungement, and Certificates of Rehabilitation. To register, click here.
    • An HBO’s documentary film screening of “True Justice: Bryan Stevenson’s Fight for Equality” will be held on Friday, April 30, 4:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m. This documentary, made possible by the Kunhardt Film Foundation, offers an intimate portrait of Bryan Stevenson. It chronicles his struggle to create greater fairness in the system and to show how racial injustice emerged, evolved, and continues to threaten the country. It challenges viewers to join him in creating a new and brighter future. To register, click here.
    • A National Law Day program “An Afternoon with Obie Anthony” will be held on Saturday, May 1, 1:00 p.m. – 2:00 p.m. Founder and Executive Director of Exonerated Nation, Obie Anthony will share his life experiences as an exoneree. Sentenced to life without parole for a murder he did not commit at the age of 19, Obie Anthony has committed his life to transforming the experiences of exonerees after release, and building a community that can provide safety, stability, and healing to wrongfully convicted Californians. To register, click here.
    • A Teen Tik Tok challenge will run April 1- May 7. Teens can tag #RCLawDay on their Tik Tok videos about how they advance/support the rule of law. Prizes will be awarded on May 8. You can follow us on TikTok here

As we begin to plan for reopening, hopefully by mid-summer, we are establishing necessary policies and procedures to ensure library staff and patrons continue to follow State and County Health COVID-19 prevention protocols. A limited in-person service hours and use of the law library will be implemented along with restricted access to print collection, conference rooms and the mezzanine, limited use of public computers to allow for 6-feet distance between patrons, contactless MCLE check-outs, online reference service, and virtual classes and programs.

We are delighted and proud to welcome our two new law library trustees: Hon. Harold W. Hopp and Hon. Kira L. Klatchko.

Judge Hopp, appointed to the Riverside Superior Court in 2005, served as the court’s Presiding Judge for two years and served on its Executive Committee, Legislative Outreach Committee, and Budget Advisory Committee. He also chairs the court’s Project Advisory Group for the construction of a new family and juvenile courthouse in Indio. He has served on many Judicial Council advisory groups, including its Trial Court Presiding Judges Advisory Committee, Civil and Small Claims Advisory Committee, Civil Jury Instructions Advisory Committee, and the Bench Bar Coalition, which he co-chaired for two years.

Judge Klatchko was appointed to the Riverside Superior Court in 2016. Prior to joining the Bench, Judge Klatchko served as RCBA President (2015-2016) and chaired its Appellate Law Section. She was a volunteer mediator at the Fourth Appellate District, Division Two and conducted private mediations through the Riverside County Superior Court’s Civil Mediation Panel. She served on the State Bar’s Standing Committee on Appellate Courts for six years and chaired it in 2013-2014. She also served on the ABA Council of Appellate Lawyers Board of Directors and Pro Bono Committee. She has served on the Board of Directors of Angel View, a non-profit serving children and adults with disabilities since 2007 and the Desert Foundation of Academics and the Opera Arts Board of Directors, in addition to coaching high school mock trials. She was a 2010 Athena Award recipient for her valuable community service to the City of Palm Springs.

Lastly, but certainly not the least, we acknowledge and deeply appreciate board member Robert N. Dunn for his 38 years of unconditional commitment, dedication, and service on the Law Library Board of Trustees. Robert Dunn is stepping down from his position as Vice-President but will serve for one more year as ex officio member.


Victoria

By Victoria

April 13, 2021

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