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LOS ANGELES —� Public Counsel, the nation’s largest pro bono public interest law firm, has announced that H�rnan D. Vera will be its new president and chief executive. Vera has been the directing attorney of Public Counsel’s Consumer Law Project since 2002. As directing attorney, he supervised hundreds of individual lawsuits involving consumer fraud and debtor assistance. Vera replaces Dan Grunfeld, who left Los Angeles-based Public Counsel last fall after a decade to become deputy chief of staff for policy for Los Angeles Mayer Antonio Villaraigosa. At Public Counsel, Vera is currently overseeing dozens of cases involving alleged fraud by home loan brokers and lenders embroiled in the subprime mortgage crisis. In the past, he worked with the American Civil Liberties Union, and the Los Angeles City Attorney’s Office, in litigation involving “hospital dumping,” in which hospitals are alleged to be dumping indigent patients on the streets. Before joining Public Counsel, Vera worked for O’Melveny & Myers and the Mexican American Legal and Educational Defense Fund (MALDEF).

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