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IS ROGAN’S UNLIKELY ROAD PREPPING HIM FOR OFFICE RUN? Former California Congressman James Rogan was recently stumping through San Francisco to promote his autobiography, “Rough Edges: My Unlikely Road from Welfare to Washington.” Focused on his early life, the book doesn’t mention his two-year stint as head of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, nor does it say much about his role as one of the House managers of President Clinton’s impeachment hearings. “The book starts with me sitting on the Senate floor on the opening day of the impeachment trial,” Rogan said in an interview. It goes into flashback to show how “the illegitimate son of a convicted felon and cocktail waitress mother” got into politics. Rogan said he was expelled from high school and “hung around with a bunch of thugs smoking dope.” The book — with a film noir image of Rogan on the cover — recounts his experiences as a bartender on Hollywood’s Sunset Strip and a bouncer at a porn theater. Rogan got the idea to write the book from former Republican Congressman Newt Gingrich. Gingrich hooked Rogan up with his agent, who eventually got Rogan a contract with HarperCollins Publishers. Rogan’s two-week promotional tour has put him back in the media spotlight. He appeared on Fox Television’s “Fox and Friends” and “Hannity & Colmes” and about two dozen radio stations around the country, including San Francisco’s KNBR and KSFO. He also had a press aide on hand, Wayne Paugh, his former chief of staff at the PTO and fellow partner at Washington, D.C.’s Venable. The Wall Street Journal published a laudatory review of “Rough Edges,” noting that it is “hard not to see the book as a salvo in Mr. Rogan’s next bid for elective office.” Rogan said he doesn’t have any plans right now to jump into the political arena. “But I wouldn’t foreclose the possibility of some day down the road” running for office, he said. “It would have to be the right time.” For now, he’s focused on opening a West Coast office for Venable. He moved from D.C. to Orange County this month to set up shop. He said Venable is in merger discussions with a firm in Irvine, which he declined to identify. — Brenda Sandburg BITTERSWEET ANNIVERSARY Attendance was high, but there was an unmistakable tinge of anxiety at the Legal Community Against Violence’s 11th anniversary dinner, which was held at San Francisco’s Fairmont Hotel on June 30. Nearly 800 people showed up — a record for the event, which is on track to raise $260,000 for the nonprofit’s advocacy activities. Last year, the dinner raised about $200,000. The group, which was founded after the 1993 shooting rampage at law offices at 101 California St., works to curb gun violence by reforming policy at the state and local levels. But though people seemed to enjoy the food and awards ceremony, the illness of former LCAV development director Patty Howett overshadowed the annual awards presentation. “If in some ways LCAV is like a person � Patty Howett is the heart and soul,” said group co-founder John Heisse II, who presented an award that was accepted by Howett’s husband because she was too ill to attend. Involved with the group since its inception, Howett has filled roles from office manager to fund-raiser, even cajoling “philathrophobes like me,” said Heisse, a partner at Thelen Reid & Priest. Howett’s illness wasn’t the only reason to worry. Unless Congress takes action, the federal assault weapons ban, which LCAV helped pass in 1994, is scheduled to expire Sept.13. Executive Director Sue Ann Levin Schiff urged members to put pressure on elected officials to renew the ban. Along those lines, Levin Schiff also kicked off the group’s first nationwide membership campaign. — Jeff Chorney A PLACE FOR THEIR NICKELS Latham & Watkins’ summer associates are learning about more than how to draft and file memos. The 13-member San Francisco contingent is becoming skilled at painting ceramic piggy banks, belting out karaoke songs and swinging their hips to salsa music — all in the name of group bonding. After all, the acquaintance you boogie with today may help you through a multimillion-dollar deal tomorrow. “We believe the work at Latham speaks for itself,” said Tracy Edmonson, head of global recruiting for the firm. “The important part is for them to gel as a class.” Edmonson said she is still close with Latham lawyers she met as a summer associate 15 years ago. “It sounds corny, but it’s true,” she said. Like other firms, Latham has changed its summer activities somewhat since the free-lunch days of the tech boom. The firm no longer favors lavish dinners at partners’ homes, though Edmonson says this has little to do with economics. “Those kinds of parties can be intimidating,” she said. “And they don’t give you as much of an opportunity to mingle as an event like break-dancing.” Summer associate Margaret Osborn, who is approaching her third year at Boalt Hall School of Law, said she preferred the quirkier events to being wined and dined. She particularly enjoyed disco bowling at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts and karaoke in Japantown, where attorneys and other summer associates performed studied impressions of Michael Jackson. “If any of the summers don’t get an offer here, they’re going to go for pro bowling or �American Idol,’” she quipped. — Adrienne Sanders

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