Chain | Cohn | Stiles joins MADD to honor local officers, prosecutors fighting to end DUI crimes

June 15, 2017 | 8:27 am


Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD), Kern County recognized and honored local law enforcement officers and prosecutors on Wednesday, June 14, for their valiant efforts in helping stop DUI crimes.

Bakersfield-based personal injury and workers’ compensation law firm Chain | Cohn | Stiles was proud to be a sponsor, supporter and organizer of the event.

In all, more than 70 officers from throughout Kern County agencies were awarded at the 2017 Kern County MADD Law Enforcement and Prosecutor Recognition ceremony, held at Hodel’s Country Dining in Bakersfield. Prosecutors from the Kern County District Attorney’s Office were also honored, with the highest awards going to the top prosecutor, top probation officer, and the top law enforcement officer.

“These local heroes are potentially helping save lives by removing DUI offenders from our streets,” said Carla Pearson, victim services specialist for MADD Kern County. “They deserve recognition for making our communities throughout Kern County safer.”

To view the names of all of the officers awarded, click here. Among the top award winners were:

  • Probation Department Award, Deputy Luis Gomez: While Deputy Probation Officer Luis Gomez does not conduct traffic stops to arrest DUI offenders, he does work hard at keeping the community safe by supervising felony probationers to ensure they are not consuming alcohol. He also works tirelessly to ensure these offenders remain in compliance with the orders of the court. Through funding provided by the Office of Transportation and Safety, Officer Gomez supervises 75 high-risk, felony and repeat DUI offenders. In 2016 alone, Officer Gomez conducted 947 home calls and 855 office conferences with these dangerous offenders. In 2016, he conducted 522 urinalysis tests by ETG device and 1,125 Breathalyzer tests. Officer Gomez has been swift in his responses to those who violate Court orders by arresting them or placing them on monitoring programs in an effort to reduce their alcohol consumption. Officer Gomez’ diligence in supervising these high-risk worst of the worst DUI offenders is commendable and has gone a long way to help keep our streets safer for the citizens of Kern County.
  • Top Prosecutor 187 Award, Kern County Supervising Deputy District Attorney Michael Yraceburn: Michael Yraceburn prosecuted the nation’s first successful murder conviction for driving while impaired by marijuana. That March 2014 crash, in which the suspect was driving close to 80 miles per hour before losing control, killed David Aggio on impact. The suspect was sentenced to 20 years to life.
  • Top Law Enforcement, Bakersfield Police Officer Louis James: Officer James was reassigned to the Bakersfield Police Department’s Traffic Section in July 2015. Since then, he has primarily worked the graveyard shift. As a result, he has been one of the most, if not the most, productive traffic officer in regards to DUI enforcement. Though he was assigned to the traffic section for only a year and a half, he maintained his aggressive DUI enforcement to make the citizens of Bakersfield safer. In 2015, He received an award from MADD California for his efforts, and in 2016 he arrested 247 DUI drivers. This was the most of all traffic units within the department and one of the highest in California.

Prosecutor’s Awards were also handed out by the Kern County District Attorney’s Office, and were awarded to Kim Richardson, Garrett Rice and Brad Taconi.

The awards ceremony returned to Bakersfield for 2017 after the loss of federal grant funding and budget cuts prevented the 2016 awards luncheon from being hosted in Kern County. This year, several community sponsors, working with MADD Kern County’s Advisory Board, stepped up to make sure officers from all Kern County agencies were being honored for their work in fighting against DUI crimes.

The MADD Kern County Advisory Board includes Chain | Cohn | Stiles attorney Neil Gehlawat and marketing director Jorge Barrientos.

Sponsors for the awards luncheon included anonymous donors, Chevron, Kern Federal Credit Union, Bakersfield Police Officers Association, Greenlawn Mortuary, Raymond’s Trophy, Clifford & Bradford Insurance Agency, Sally Herald CPA, and Chain | Cohn | Stiles.

Since 2009, our community has seen at least 4,000 DUI arrests made each year, with 4,056 DUI arrests in 2016, according to the Kern County District Attorney’s Office. That’s more than 11 DUI arrests per day. Sadly, many impaired drivers weren’t stopped in time, and instead caused major damage to innocent lives.

The awards luncheon is one of two MADD Kern County signature events aimed to bring awareness of the DUI epidemic in our community, and fight toward ending DUI crimes here. Bakersfield’s 2017 Walk Like MADD & MADD Dash — presented by Chain | Cohn | Stiles — will be held on Saturday, Sept. 23, at Park at River Walk.

You, too, can be involved in the fight to end drunk and drugged driving locally. You can help by signing up as a walker, runner (5K or 10K), team captain, or volunteer. Parents: The event also features a kid’s “fun run,” where each child of walk and race participants gets a free superhero cape. You can even get involved if you aren’t able to attend by signing up as a “virtual walker,” or by asking a donation toward a participant or team who has been affected.

For more information on that event, go to walklikemadd.org/bakersfield.

— Alyssa Wood of Chain | Cohn | Stiles contributed to this report. 

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MEDIA COVERAGE

Chain | Cohn Stiles supports Kern County’s first dance and disability program

April 19, 2017 | 10:56 am


Kern Dance Alliance has teamed up with the League of Dreams to bring the first dance and disability program to Kern County, called “danceABILITY,” and Chain | Cohn | Stiles is proud to help make the program possible.

The dance program is led by AXIS Dance Company, one of the world’s most acclaimed and innovative ensembles of performers with and without disabilities. Its aim is to inspire diverse populations to dance. League of Dreams is a nonprofit adaptive sports program for athletes ages 5-22 with physical and developmental disabilities.

The danceABILITY program will take place over five weeks beginning in October. Participants, ages 5 to 22, will learn inclusive, creative dance that is accessible to movers with and without physical disabilities, and will culminate with a performance at the historic Bakersfield Fox Theater.

It’s sponsored by Chevron, Garces Memorial High School, and Chain | Cohn | Stiles.

“Dance is another form of expression, and every person, regardless of their abilities, should have the opportunity to express themselves through this avenue,” said Chain | Cohn | Stiles personal injury attorney Felicia Schoepfer-Altmiller, who is also a member on the League of Dreams Board of Directors. “Plus it’s fun!”

Registration for the program opens Aug. 1, and takes place from Oct. 7 to Nov. 4 at Garces Memorial High School.

AXIS Dance Company exists “to change the face of dance and disability through artistry, engagement and advocacy,” according to the company. Based in Oakland since 1987, AXIS is the nation’s most acclaimed ensembles of performers with and without disabilities, and has toured to over 100 cities in the United States, Europe and Russia. You may have seen the company on FOX TV’s “So You Think You Can Dance.”

“Through education and outreach programs thousands of children and adults of all ages and abilities are inspired to dance each year,” the company states.

AXIS Dance Company will be hosting a teacher training in physically integrated dance for those interested in providing dance classes for the disabled community, while learning from the world’s leading dance and disability experts. The “AXIS Dance Company Teacher Training in Physically Integrated Dance Course” on May 6 includes learning and experiencing participatory exercises and activities for use in classrooms as well as discussion about disability, language, and the development of AXIS’ inclusive community education program.

The cost for educators is $100 for Kern Dance Alliance members or $125 for non-Kern Dance Alliance members. For more information, go to kerndance.org.

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If you or someone you know is injured at the fault of someone else, call the Bakersfield-based personal injury and workers’ compensation law firm Chain | Cohn | Stiles at (661) 323-4000, or visit the website chainlaw.com. To learn more about lawyer Felicia Schoepfer-Altmiller, visit her biography page here.

Chain | Cohn | Stiles gives back in October for scholarships, local nonprofits, cancer fight, more

October 19, 2016 | 8:49 am


So far this month, Chain | Cohn | Stiles has taken part in and supported several local programs that raise awareness of issues in our community, and raise funds to help our neighbors in need.

They include:

  • Tips for CHiPs: California Highway Patrol hosted its seventh “Tips for CHiPs” luncheon fundraiser on Wednesday, Oct. 5, at Outback Steakhouse in Bakersfield, with Chain | Cohn | Stiles is serving as a gold sponsor. The fundraiser benefits the California Association of Highway Patrolmen Widows and Orphans Trust Fund, which helps families whose loved ones are killed in or off the line of duty. The fund is organized by the California Association of Highway Patrolmen, a nonprofit that represents about 11,000 active and retired CHP officers, and is dedicated to assisting families of CHP officers. The event raised more than $31,000 this year.
  • Kern County Cancer RunUnfortunately, the Chain | Cohn | Stiles extended family knows too well the effects of cancer in our community. But we were proud to join CBCC Foundation for Community Wellness at the Kern County Cancer Run on Saturday, Oct. 8, at Yokuts Park, aimed to raise funds and awareness, and to encourage our community to support local cancer patients.

And the month of giving back isn’t over for Chain | Cohn | Stiles. Here are a few more upcoming events and programs that you can join in supporting, too, and hopefully will make a big difference in our own community:

  • CSU Bakersfield Alumni Association’s Party in the Park: Funds raised for this annual party — held Friday, Oct. 21, at the CSUB Alumni Park — go toward alumni scholarships, membership outreach, and mentoring opportunities for current CSUB students. Three Chain | Cohn | Stiles associates are alumni of CSUB: Chad Boyles, Beatriz Trejo, and Felicia Schoepfer-Altmiller. Boyles is a member of the CSUB Alumni Association Board of Directors. For more information on the event, click here.
  • Olivia’s Heart Project Heart of Gold Gala: The vision of Olivia’s Heart Project is to increase awareness and prevent Sudden Cardiac Arrest in children and young adults through community heart screenings, education and increased accessibility to life-saving automated external defibrillators (AEDs). The gala, which Chain | Cohn | Stiles, is sponsoring, will be held Saturday, Oct. 22, at Four Points Sheraton.
  • American Cancer Society’s Valley of Hope: Chain | Cohn | Stiles is serving as a “Supporting Sponsor” for this event that is aimed to finish the fight against cancer. Proceeds help local cancer patients stay well and get well, and find cures. The event is on Saturday, Oct. 22, at a private residence. For more information, click here.
  • American Heart Association Heart & Stroke Walk: The Heart Walk is the American Heart Association’s premiere event for raising funds to save lives from this country’s No. 1 and No. 5 killers — heart disease and stroke. The Oct. 22 event is designed to promote physical activity and heart-healthy living.
  • Steve Alvidrez Scholarship Poker Tournament: The annual poker tournament raises money for scholarships for students majoring in criminology or going into law enforcement in honor of former Kern High School District Chief of Police Steven V. Alvidrez, who was killed after being hit while on his motorcycle by a drunk driver.
  • Barbell for Boobs: Inspired by athletes everywhere, the nonprofit is dedicated to the early detection of breast cancer, with an emphasis on women and men under the age of 40. Locally, athletes will come together in an exercise event on Oct. 29, at KC Crossfit.

Outside of the work we do for injured victims, through community involvement, our law firm also supports a number of local organizations. See a full list of recent contributions and community involvement here.

Kern County’s Latin culture on display at Chain | Cohn | Stiles-sponsored Latination art exhibit

August 24, 2016 | 6:00 am


Kern County is largely populated by people of Hispanic or Latin backgrounds. In fact, just last year the U.S. Census Bureau confirmed that more than half — 52.2 percent — of Kern County’s population was Hispanic. It’s no wonder our community is host to a wide array of Latin focused cultural events and activities.

And that includes at Metro Galleries, an art gallery in downtown Bakersfield that each year hosts a celebration of Latin culture through an art exhibit and competition. It’s called “Latination,” and this year will be the eighth consecutive year that the art gallery hosts annual event — from 5 to 10 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 2. It’s free to attend.

Chain | Cohn | Stiles is proud to be a sponsor of this year’s Latination 8.

 

Celebration of Culture

Don Martin, owner of Metro Galleries, started Latination eight years ago as way to honor the Latino culture and community contributions, he said. Growing up in Lamont, southwest of Bakersfield, and graduating from Arvin High School, Martin said he was able to appreciate the agriculture-based community.

“I saw and experienced Latinos at work, at play and the wonderful aspects the culture has towards family,” Martin said.

And Latination has become Metro Galleries’ largest openings. Each year, more than 4,000 people of all backgrounds attend the art exhibit.

“Each year it gets bigger and better.” Martin stated. “I think Latination has become a celebration of a culture that many here, whether Latino or otherwise, enjoy and honor.”

Local art experts and community leaders serve as judges of the art competition. The opening night also features live music and food. This year will feature local band Mento Buru, with food provided by El Pueblo Restaurant.

 

Latination Law Firm

At Chain | Cohn | Stiles, we believe it is important to embrace the Latin community. Many of our clients come from Hispanic and Latin backgrounds, and the law firm’s staff and lawyers reflect that of the Kern County community. In fact, it’s one of the most diverse offices in the area.

Connecting with people of all backgrounds is important in representing injured clients, and Latination 8 provides an opportunity to celebrate Latin culture and connect with audiences.

As for the Latin community, workers’ compensation lawyer Beatriz Trejo is one example of Chain | Cohn | Stiles being dedicated to serving and helping our Spanish-speaking audience. Trejo is bilingual in Spanish and can be heard regularly on La Caliente 96.9, a local Spanish radio station, answering legal questions from the listening audience. She is also involved in Latina Leaders of Kern County, a nonprofit organization determined to keep Latina women involved in our community.

You can listen to her recent radio appearances by clicking here and here.

— By Evelyn Andrade for Chain | Cohn | Stiles

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MEDIA COVERAGE

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If you or someone you know if injured in an accident, call the lawyers at Chain | Cohn | Stiles at (661) 323-4000, or visit the website, chainlaw.com. Spanish-speakers who need help can visit the website, abogadosenbakersfield.com.

*Notice: Making a false or fraudulent worker’s compensation claim is a felony subject to up to five (5) years in a prison or a fine of up to $150,000.00 or double the value of the fraud, whichever is greater, or by both imprisonment and fine.

Chain | Cohn | Stiles presenting sponsor for third ‘Walk Like MADD & MADD Dash 5K’

August 17, 2016 | 9:42 am


Last year, there were 4,223 DUI arrests in Kern County, according to the Kern County District Attorney’s Office. And since 2009, there have been at least 4,000 DUIs every year in the county, with a high of nearly 5,000 in 2011.

Since 2000, the deadliest year for DUI-related crashes countywide was 2006, when 15 people were killed. Last year, 10 were killed.

Unfortunately, the grim totals continue this year. Drinking and driving, and crashes as a result, have become an epidemic in Bakersfield and throughout Kern County.

It’s a problem, unfortunately, that the injury lawyers and staff at the Law Offices of Chain | Cohn | Stiles see all too often. The Bakersfield-based law firm represents many innocent victims of crashes who have seen their lives and their family’s ripped apart because of someone’s decision to drink and drive.

But like thousands throughout Kern County, Chain | Cohn | Stiles has subscribed to the Mothers Against Drunk Driving slogan, “Drunk driving ends here!” We’re fighting back.

Chain | Cohn | Stiles is proud to be the presenting sponsor for the third annual Bakersfield “Walk Like MADD and MADD Dash 5K.” The event — which will be held Saturday, Sept. 24, at Park at River Walk — is aimed to raise awareness of the DUI problem in our local communities, raise funds to stop drunken driving locally, and provide support to local victims and survivors of drunken driving crashes.

 

Stepping Up

In the last two years, local residents have stepped up to take part in the annual Walk Like MADD and MADD Dash 5K, raising more than $100,000 total in the process. Those funds have been used to help victims of DUI crashes in emergencies, guide those victims through the court process, teach local high school students about the dangers of drinking and driving, and much more to raise awareness locally.

Through it all, Chain | Cohn | Stiles has been a key organizer of the annual event. Marketing director Jorge Barrientos is the event planning committee chairman, and was named the 2015 Volunteer of the Year for MADD California. Lawyer Matt Clark also serves as a committee member, bringing in sponsors to support the cause. And Chain | Cohn | Stiles attorney Neil Gehlawat is a member on the MADD Kern County Advisory Board, which guides MADD Kern County on how best to implement programs and services, increase awareness of drunken driving in Kern County and raise money to accomplish its goals.

The Bakersfield California recently highlighted the newly established MADD Kern County Advisory Board. To read that article, click here.

 

‘Spirit of Fight’

For innocent victims of DUI crashes and their families, the MADD event – for at least one day – provides a venue to share stories, let them know they’re not alone, have their voices heard, remember lives lost, heal and hope together.

“Even for that one day we are heard,” said Alicia Smith in Bakersfield Life Magazine, who two years ago was hit by a drunken driver and is still recovering from a broken hip and knee, and emotional scars. “To see the community come together for this cause is wonderful in so many ways.”

The first year, Alicia took part in the event while in a wheelchair; the second year, she walked, although through pain; and this year, she’ll keep on marching, she said.

“Every year, this event is bigger and accomplishes more and more, and that spirit of fight motivates me to press on,” Smith said.

The event also brings together people from throughout the community: surviving victims of DUI crashes, families and friends of deceased victims, local law enforcement agencies and prosecutors, first responders, advocates, and other community members rallying and running for the cause.

 

In This Together

“We’re all in this together,” said Matt Clark, attorney and partner at Chain | Cohn | Stiles. “We’re all tired of seeing our neighbors, friends and family’s lives affected by such a preventable crime.”

Joining Chain | Cohn | Stiles to fight to end drunk driving as a business sponsor are:

  • Wells Fargo
  • State Farm
  • Chevron
  • Kern County Prosecutors Association
  • Kern County Bar Association Foundation
  • FedEx
  • Clinica Sierra Vista
  • Kern Schools Federal Credit Union
  • STEPS: Special Treatment Education & Prevention Services, Inc.

Local media is assisting in raising awareness throughout Kern County. They include:

  • KGET-17, Telemundo and Bakersfield CW
  • Eyewitness News: KBAK-29 and KBFX-58
  • Bakersfield Life Magazine (B Well Magazine)

 

3rd Bakersfield Walk Like MADD & MADD Dash 5K

When: Saturday, Sept. 24 (check in starts at 6:30 a.m.; ceremony at 7:30 a.m.; walk/5K starts at 8 a.m.)

Where: Park at River Walk, 11298 Stockdale Highway

What: Victim 5K walk, chip-timed 5K run with medals awarded, kid’s Superhero-themed fun run, vendors, information booths, games, much more.

Register / Donate / Join the Fight: walklikemadd.org/bakersfield

Connect: Facebook at “Bakersfield Walk Like MADD & MADD Dash 2016

 

— Marisol Earnest, for Chain | Cohn | Stiles, contributed to this article 

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MEDIA COVERAGE

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Chain | Cohn | Stiles sponsors free admission day at Bakersfield Museum of Art on ‘National Day of the Teacher’

April 27, 2016 | 8:09 am


In 1956, the Walter Osborn family founded the Bakersfield Museum of Art. Today, on the 60th anniversary, the museum continues to enhance the quality of life through art appreciation and educational opportunities in the visual arts for Bakersfield and Kern County residents and visitors.

As part of the 60th anniversary of its founding, the museum is hosting exhibitions, education programs and special events celebrating the important milestone, including “Sponsor a Day” for free admission into the museum.

Chain | Cohn | Stiles is proud to sponsor the day of Tuesday, May 3, 2016 — which is the National Day of the Teacher — as a free admission day for all to the Bakersfield Museum of Art.

In its 60-year history, the museum has provided outstanding exhibits and offered unique educational opportunities in the visual arts to Bakersfield and its surrounding communities.

“We’re thrilled to be able to open the doors to the museum for free to everyone for the day, especially to our valued educators in Kern County,” said David K. Cohn, managing partner at Chain | Cohn | Stiles. “We’re dedicating this day at the museum to all teachers on National Day of the Teacher.”

For nearly 50 years, Chain | Cohn | Stiles has worked with local teachers and school employee unions through the Group Law Services program to provide quality legal help for working people in Kern County. Group Law Services members and their immediate family members are entitled to free initial consultations, reduced fees if ever in need of help from our law firm, and other benefits. Free admission day is just one of those benefits.

The nonprofit Bakersfield Museum of Art has been celebrating its 60-year milestone all year. In January, the museum opened its winter exhibition, “Celebrating 60 Years: The Life and Work of Marion Osborn Cunningham.” The exhibit included artwork pieces that have local ties. Cunningham became a successful and innovative artist in San Francisco, noted for her renderings of cable cars.

Another special event at the museum this year is the Driven by Art public art project, which celebrates the bond between the museum and the greater community of Bakersfield.

“This will be the largest and friendliest outdoor public art event Kern County has ever witnessed,” according to the museum.

Dozens of three-dimensional fiberglass 1956 nostalgic pickup trucks will decorated, embellished and festooned by the area’s leading artists, and the trucks will be parked downtown on street corners, sidewalks, parks and alongside roadways to greet everyone who passes by.

The museum on Tuesday, May 3, will be open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., and is located at 1930 R St., between 19th and 20th streets.

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If you or someone you know is ever injured in an accident, contact the attorneys at Chain | Cohn | Stiles at (661) 323-4000, or visit the website chainlaw.com.

CCS sponsors Bakersfield Crush competitive youth baseball team

January 27, 2015 | 9:47 am


For years, Chain | Cohn | Stiles has been a proud supporter and sponsor of youth activities and programs throughout Bakersfield and Kern County — from the Active 20-30 Club’s Children’s Shopping Spree for the underprivileged to Youth Connection, among others.

Chain | Cohn | Stiles is proud to be a sponsor this year for Bakersfield Crush Baseball, a new 10 and under competition club baseball team in Kern County.

Bakersfield Crush is not an instructional or recreation league, and instead, players try out for the competitive team. Though the team is competitive, coaches and staff place a special emphasis on sportsmanship, teamwork and respect both on and off the field, with high expectations in place for players and parents, said Jayson Bryan, coach and organizer of Bakersfield Crush Baseball.

“Coaches, parents and players are expected to conduct themselves in a manner that encourages and supports these values,” said Bryan. “Coaches and team staff will at all times have the safety and general well-being of our players in mind. Our coaches will not intimidate, embarrass, or ridicule players. Baseball is a fun game and the best baseball is played by teams that remember to have fun.”

He added: “Thanks to local supporters like Chain | Cohn | Stiles, Bakersfield Crush can provide local youth a program to compete, and grow as citizens of our community.”

The team is currently active and playing throughout Kern County, including in tournament in Taft this coming weekend. To learn more about that team, visit the Bakersfield Crush Facebook page by clicking here.

Chain | Cohn | Stiles in recent years has supported other local youth baseball programs as well, including Southwest Bakersfield Baseball last year. But the firm has also supported local programs and activities through deep community involvement.

To see other Bakersfield-area programs supported by Chain | Cohn | Stiles, visit the Community page by clicking here. And be sure visit this Blogging For Justice blog in the future to see photos of the team in action.

CCS supports Optimal Hospice annual tournament

August 29, 2014 | 9:53 am


The Bakersfield personal injury law firm Chain | Cohn | Stiles is proud to support Optimal Hospice Foundation’s 23rd annual golf tournament this year, which will be held on Friday, Sept. 12, at Stockdale Country Club.

The tournament raises money for the Optimal Hospice Foundation, a nonprofit that organizes activities aimed to ensure that hospice care and other compassionate programs are available for families facing a life-limiting illness, with particular emphasis on the under-insured or uninsured population.

“Together with Optimal Hospice Foundation, Optimal Hospice Care provides comfort care to patients, as well as respite and emotional support for family members,” according to the foundation.

We strive to take care of every family as though they were our own. Whenever you or a loved one needs home health or hospice care, we hope you will invite us into your home.

The tournament, titled “Golf in the Sun and Under the Stars,” takes place each fall. The event begins with nine holes of golf in the late afternoon, followed by dinner, and then culminating with the final nine holes played in the dark with glow-in-the-dark golf balls. Optimal Hospice officials describe the event as a “very unique and festive atmosphere.”

All proceeds from the tournament will stay in Bakersfield, to benefit local patients and their families. Services include skilled nursing care, certified home health aides, medications, medical equipment and supplies, medical social workers, bereavement support and education programs that promote quality end-of-life care.

As a sponsor, you’ll find Chain | Cohn | Stiles logos throughout the course. You’ll also find Bakersfield personal injury attorney Matt Clark taking part. CCS regularly takes part and supports community services, causes and nonprofits. See our community partners here.

Optimal Health Services provides home health care and hospice care to patients and families in the comfort of their own homes. Optimal’s goal is to help people who have experienced illness or injury to remain in their home environment safely and comfortably. The group has been providing health care in homes for nearly 30 years.

Other fundraising events hosted by the foundation include:

  • The annual Optimal Hospice Foundation and California Trucking Association “Sporting Clays Shoot” in November.
  • Kids Camp, an overnight summer camp program designed for young people ages 8 to 16 who have experienced the loss of an immediate family member. Kids enjoy traditional camping activities, such as swimming and hiking, in an atmosphere where both staff and fellow campers understand their special needs. The experience is available at no cost to families, thanks to generous support from the community.
  • Light up a Life invites the community to sponsor a light on a tree in memory of a loved one or to honor someone living. The celebration includes a personal reflection by a hospice family member, the reading of the memorial names by hospice nurses and volunteers, inspirational music and the lighting of our Tree of Life.

“These annual events make sure compassionate programs are provided to some of the most vulnerable families in our community,” said CCS partner Matt Clark. “We’re proud at Chain | Cohn | Stiles to be able to support such worthy causes organized by Optimal Hospice Foundation.”

If you’d like to help with the annual golf tournament, click here to go to Optimal Hospice’s tournament website for a flier, registration form, or sponsorship packet.

CCS sponsors Nathan’s Army 5K in fight against pediatric brain tumor

June 18, 2014 | 10:16 am


In January, 8-year-old Nathan Street of Bakersfield was diagnosed with a pediatric brain tumor called Diffuse Intrinsic Pontine Glioma — DIPG for short — which is highly aggressive and found in the brain stem, making it very difficult to treat.

The tumor is found in the pons area of the brain stem, which controls many of the body’s vital functions including breathing, blood pressure and heart rate, according to Boston’s Childrens Hospital. Radiation is the primary form of therapy for this newly diagnosed tumor, but it is a temporary fix. Experimental chemotherapy is also used; however, clinical trials have shown that the chemotherapy does not increase survival rates. Additionally, surgery is not an option as it can cause neurological damage and affect the body’s most vital functions.

Ultimately, the prognosis for DIPG is very poor, although a small percentage of patients can survive this disease, according to Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. The median survival is nine to 12 months, even with treatment.

The Bakersfield personal injury law firm of Chain | Cohn | Stiles is proud to support the Street family and the Nathan’s Army 5K as Nathan battles against this disease.

The goal of the event is to raise awareness of the disease and increase research funding. Sponsors and supporters of the 5K also hope to raise funds for Nathan’s medical treatment, along with any other costs that the Street family will inevitably incur as they endure this fight.

The cause of DIPG is not currently understood. There are no known factors or conditions that make your child more or less likely to develop this type of tumor, according to Boston’s Childrens Hospital.

All proceeds and donations to Nathan’s Army 5K will benefit Nathan Street and pediatric DIPG research. Giving to Legacy Behavioral Services, a nonprofit organization, will allow donations and sponsorship to be tax deductible.

All donors and sponsors are recognized on the Nathan’s Army Facebook page and on the race day.

The 5K, 3.1-mile run or walk will go through the historic Rio Bravo Ranch, which is on 9,000 acres of diverse and scenic landscape. The trail route will take you over rustic ranch roads and up through citrus orchards overlooking the majestic Kern River. The course is suitable for all ages and abilities, however, please keep in mind it is a trail run.

It will be a timed event with awards in age categories given at the conclusion of the race.

Registration starts at 6:45 a.m. with the 5K kicking off at 8 a.m. The kid’s fun-run will follow. The ranch is at 15701 Highway 178.

To sign up as a participant in the event, go to the Nathan’s Army Active.com page.

To learn more about DIPG:

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UPDATE:

  • The 5K was a huge success, and about 750 people participated in this event.
  • KERO-23 (ABC) covered the 5K, Watch the news story here.
  • See CCS employees participating in the 5K here.

CCS supports one of Kern’s largest cultural events of the year

May 27, 2014 | 10:15 am


Among the largest cultural events in Kern County — and among the most popular in Bakersfield’s Hispanic and Latino communities — is the annual Menduo Cook-Off, presented each year by the Kern County Hispanic Chamber of Commerce.

This year, Chain | Cohn | Stiles is proud to be a supporter of the 16th annual Menudo Cook-Off, which will be held from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday, June 1, at the Kern County Fairgrounds, 1142 P St.

The event, which draws more than 10,000 people to the fairgrounds, features vendor booths, live entertainment, kids’ activities, and, of course, a food competition that centers around the traditional Hispanic soup.

Menudo is a spicy tripe and hominy soup. Last year, 75 contestants from throughout the state entered the competition and a panel of 15 judges, ranging from Mexican restaurant owners and local chefs to local attorneys and celebrities, evaluated the entries.

Winners of the cook-off win cash prizes, and also bragging rights for having the best menudo in Kern County.

This year, live entertainment will also be a draw. Musical acts who will be featured include Velorio, Mento Buru, Mariachi San Marcos and Hind Site.

Hispanic chamber of commerce President Jay Tamsi told Bakersfield Life Magazine that the event caters to families who want to enjoy good music and food while supporting a good cause — the chamber. The event allows Hispanic chamber of commerce to continue its ongoing mission to promote, enhance and provide business services and cultural resources to our community in Kern County and provide scholarships to students.

At CCS, we believe in supporting our community in and out of the courtroom. The Bakersfield personal injury law firm is a member of the Kern County Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, which was started in 1985 to promote the interests of Hispanic and minority business owners. The chamber now has more than 600 members and represents more than 400,000 people of Hispanic heritage.

Also, CCS marketing director Jorge Barrientos is the vice president of the Hispanic chamber of commerce’s Business Education Foundation, which grants students scholarships and provides resources for businesses in Kern County.

For the cook-off, you’ll see the Chain | Cohn | Stiles logo on event fliers showcased around town and at the event, and the law firm will also be hosting an informational booth on the day of the event.

For more information on the chamber or the menudo cook-off, call the chamber office at 633-5495 or visit www.kchcc.org.