San Francisco City Attorney’s Office group wins County Counsels’ Association award

Ten attorneys in City Attorney’s Office were recognized for their ‘extraordinary service’ through their work on the sanctuary cities lawsuit against President Trump

SAN FRANCISCO (May 3, 2018) — Ten attorneys from the San Francisco City Attorney’s Office recently received the County Counsels’ Association of California’s Recognition Award for their work on the lawsuit against President Donald Trump’s unconstitutional executive order that sought to deny federal funds to sanctuary cities, counties and states.

Deputy City Attorneys Mollie Lee, Sara Eisenberg, Tara Steeley, Matthew Lee, Neha Gupta and Aileen McGrath; Chief Attorney of the Complex and Affirmative Litigation Team Yvonne Meré; Chief of Appellate Litigation Christine Van Aken; Chief Deputy City Attorney Ronald Flynn; and Chief Assistant City Attorney Jesse Smith received the award.

The award honors those assistant or deputy county counsels who have made a significant contribution to the County Counsels’ Association of California or have performed other extraordinary service benefiting counties statewide. San Francisco is both a city and a county, and deputy city attorneys here have responsibilities that include the roles of deputy county counsels in other jurisdictions. The Santa Clara County Counsel team working on the sanctuary city lawsuit also was selected for the award.  
 
“I am grateful that the County Counsels’ Association recognized the fantastic work that attorneys in our office have done and continue to do on this case,” City Attorney Dennis Herrera said. “Their hard work has protected billions of taxpayer dollars that San Francisco and other local governments throughout the country use to provide food, healthcare and housing for seniors, people with disabilities and low-income families. I couldn’t be prouder of these attorneys and the work they have done to uphold the ideals of our city’s namesake. I am honored to work with them and with every one of our employees, who contribute every day to bettering the lives of San Franciscans.”
 
San Francisco on Jan. 31, 2017 became the first entity to sue President Trump over his executive order to strip federal funding from “sanctuary jurisdictions.” Santa Clara County and other local governments soon followed. A federal judge on Nov. 20, 2017 issued a nationwide permanent injunction that found President Trump’s executive order unconstitutional and prohibited the federal government from enforcing it. The federal government appealed his ruling. The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeal heard oral arguments on April 11, 2018. A decision there is pending.
 
The case is: City and County of San Francisco v. Donald J. Trump, et al., U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California Case No. 3:17-cv-00485, filed Jan. 31, 2017. Additional documentation is available on the City Attorney’s website at: sfcityattorney.org.

From left to right (front row): Chief of Appellate Litigation Christine Van Aken; Deputy City Attorneys Tara Steeley, Sara Eisenberg and Mollie Lee; and Chief Attorney of the Complex and Affirmative Litigation Team Yvonne Meré.
From left to right (back row): Deputy City Attorney Neha Gupta; Chief Assistant City Attorney Jesse Smith; Chief Deputy City Attorney Ronald Flynn; and Deputy City Attorneys Aileen McGrath and Matthew Lee.

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