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HE’S BACK AT ALMA MATER, LESSON PLAN IN HAND Every Thursday during the school year, litigator Christopher Bakes schleps back to his old Tahoe Park neighborhood in California’s capital and teaches at his alma mater, All Hallows School. The Gray Cary Ware & Freidenrich partner moonlights as a volunteer middle school teacher in his hometown of Sacramento one day a week, teaching a self-designed course called “Public Presentation and Moot Court.” He’s trying to expose the youngsters to a broader range of professions than they otherwise might see, and he’s borrowing from the legal system to introduce professionalism. “It’s so highly formalized, it creates the perfect structure to teach etiquette and structure,” Bakes said. The youngsters even dress up for class, with the boys in neckties and the girls in similar business attire. Bakes dreamed up the course four years ago during a 50th anniversary party for the school. “I’m returning to my own neighborhood and sharing with these kids a sophisticated curriculum that may be available in higher-income neighborhoods,” Bakes said. During the first semester, the children learn how to communicate and present a point of view. “They think the only way to make a point is to do it in a loud voice and as quickly as they can,” Bakes said. For his lesson plans, Bakes is using the works of William Shakespeare, great speeches from history and George Washington’s “Rules of Civility.” Journalist William Safire even donated 20 copies of his book “Lend Me Your Ears: Great Speeches in History” after Bakes wrote to him about the course. When his pupils are up to speed on presentation skills, Bakes puts them through the paces of a full-fledged court battle, helping them take depositions, cross-examine witnesses and act as litigators and judges. The course has become so popular that the parochial school system in Sacramento asked Bakes to expand it — so starting in September, he’ll be teaching his course at a second school. “I think it’s the essence of the generational hand-off,” Bakes said, adding, “My parental genes have been under-utilized so I channel them in service this way.” NOVEL GREETING At first glance, the greeting card from Fernandez, Daley & O’Malley appears no different from the countless other holiday cards bearing a cheery platitude and the official imprint of a law firm. The only problem is that there is no such law firm as Fernandez, Daley & O’Malley — at least not in real life. As many a legal thriller buff can attest, the firm exists only in the pages of Sheldon Siegel novels. The San Francisco attorney-cum-author mailed out thousands of the faux firm cards to friends, family and fans during the holidays. “The first round of corporate Christmas cards were starting to come in,” said Siegel, and “there was this moment when I thought it really would be funny to put out a card just like a corporate law firm.” Besides giving recipients a chuckle, the cards also served to promote Siegel’s fourth novel, “Reasonable Doubt,” which is due out this summer. Siegel, a corporate attorney at Sheppard, Mullin, Richter & Hampton, has already finished writing the story and is currently proofreading the manuscript. Other than the fact that it involves protagonist Mike Daley and a murder in San Francisco, Siegel wouldn’t divulge any details of the forthcoming book. While it took Siegel three years to write his first novel, “Special Circumstances,” as he commuted to work on the Larkspur ferry every morning, he wrote his latest book in less than a year. “This is the fist time where the plotline I had originally laid out seemed to find its way on the page,” said Siegel. “Either I’m getting more meticulous in planning or I just got lucky this time.” — Alexei Oreskovic DEPARTURES Intel Corp. is looking to beef up its legal department following the departure of several top-level lawyers. Two vice presidents and a senior attorney left the software giant a few months ago, and two more directors have turned in their resignations. The departures began in August when David Shannon, vice president of legal and government affairs and assistant general counsel, defected to Intel competitor Nvidia Corp., where he serves as vice president and general counsel. The following month Peter Detkin, vice president and assistant general counsel, left to join Intellectual Ventures, a Seattle-based startup co-founded by Nathan Myhrvold and Edward Jung, respectively the former chief technology officer and chief software architect at Microsoft Corp. More recently Intel senior attorney Scot Griffin became director of litigation at San Jose’s Tessera Technologies Inc. Isabella Fu, who took over as legal director after the departure of Detkin, and Thomas Reynolds, director of patents, are on their way out the door. Fu is joining Microsoft. “It’s not unusual for people to consider other opportunities,” said Intel spokesman Chuck Mulloy. “We’re a very large company and sometimes we’re in the midst of high-profile litigation and our lawyers draw attention.” Mulloy said Intel has more than 150 lawyers on staff worldwide, supporting an enterprise of 80,000 employees. Detkin, who was in charge of one-third of the software giant’s legal department, said the lawyers leaving Intel have individual reasons for doing so. “It’s no one thing in particular,” he said. “I think it’s just coincidence” that people are leaving at about the same time. — Brenda Sandburg

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