Our Attorneys

Andrew Anschultz

Office Location: 150 S. Los Robles Ave, Suite 600 Pasadena CA 91101 Work Phone: (626) 792-7700
Biography

Mr. Anschultz is a graduate of Whittier Law School, cum laude, and was a member of the Whittier Law Review. Mr. Anschultz has a Bachelors of Arts in Economics from California State University, Long Beach. He has six years of civil litigation experience in the areas of legal and professional malpractice as well as personal injury defense. Mr. Anschultz has several years of experience in Workers’ Compensation defense, as well as over 20 years of experience as a manager in different fields.

Arya Bani

Office Location: 5743 Corsa Ave, Suite 107 Westlake Village CA 91362 Work Phone: (818) 597-8000
Biography

Mr. Bani was admitted to the State Bar in 1994. Mr. Bani is admitted to practice in all California State Courts and Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. Mr. Bani received his Bachelor of Arts degree in political science from California State University, Northridge in 1990. He studied law at Cleveland Marshall College of Law, where he received an American Jurisprudence Award in Remedies. Mr. Bani has extensive trial experience in civil cases, including jury trials. He is a member of court appointed mediator and arbitrator for the Los Angeles Superior Courts. Having previously practiced with Veatch, Carlson, Grogan & Nelson for many years, Mr. Bani has extensive experience in matters involving liability, automobile personal injury, uninsured motorist, common carriers, construction defect, premises liability and workers’ compensation.

Judy Segerstrom Barrett

Office Location: 2301 Dupont Drive, Suite 400 Irvine CA 92612 Work Phone: (949) 222-9988
Biography

Ms. Barrett received her Juris Doctor from California Southern Law School in 1988 and was admitted to the State Bar of California the same year. In 1996, she was admitted to the State Bar of Arizona, and is also admitted to the United States District Court. She maintains membership in the Orange County Bar Association and OC Workers Compensation Section, Orange County Women Lawyers Association, State Bar of California, State Bar of Arizona, National Institute of Trial Advocacy (NITA), William P Gray Legion Lex Inns of Court, and is currently Vice-President of the Orange County Association of Legal Administrators.

Previous legal experience includes nearly 11 years of civil medical malpractice defense in Riverside County. Ms. Barrett has been practicing Workers Compensation for the past 10 yeas including representation of unions under the ADL programs. She has sat as Judge Pro Tem at the Anaheim WCAB. She is currently associated with the Irvine Branch of Wai & Connor, LLP. She is also a Workers’ Compensation Certified Specialist.

Tiara L. Burnette

Office Location: 2566 Overland Ave, Suite 570 Los Angeles CA 90064 Work Phone: (310) 838-6800
Biography

Ms. Burnette graduated magna cum laude from Minnesota State University Moorhead, where she was awarded the Honors Apprentice Academic Scholarship. While attending law school at Hamline University School of Law, she was granted the Presidential Academic Scholarship, was on the Dean’s List, and participated in National Moot Court. Ms. Burnette served as a judicial extern for the United States District Courts for the Central District of California and the District of Minnesota before working in the private sector. She currently represents third-party administrators, insurance companies, self-insured entities, and employers in all aspects of workers’ compensation defense before the Workers’ Compensation Appeals Board.

William G. Carter

Office Location: 150 S. Los Robles Ave, Suite 600 Pasadena CA 91101 Work Phone: (626) 792-7700
Biography

Mr. Carter is a graduate of California State University, Long Beach, with a Bachelor of Arts degree in English and a Minor in Marketing. He obtained his Juris Doctor from Western State University, College of Law. He was admitted to the California Bar in 1998 specializing in workers compensation defense. He worked in the insurance industry for more than 10 years as a claim representative, supervisor and hearing representative.

Kenneth J. Cho

Office Location: 150 S. Los Robles Ave, Suite 600 Pasadena CA 91101 Work Phone: (626) 792-7700
Biography

Mr. Cho is a graduate of the University of California Riverside, with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science. He attended Glendale University College of Law where he obtained his Juris Doctor degree. He earned his degree by attending the evening program which allowed him to work full time gaining experience in California Workers’ Compensation and Sports Injuries. During that time, he received awards for his academic excellence in Wills and Evidence. Mr. Cho is admitted to practice in all California State Courts, as well as Federal Courts.

Gregory L. Connor

Office Location: 2566 Overland Ave, Suite 570 Los Angeles CA 90064 Work Phone: (310) 838-6800
Biography

Mr. Connor is a graduate of California State University, Northridge, cum laude, with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Finance and a Masters in Business Administration. He graduated from Whittier Law School where he was awarded the American Jurisprudence Award in Insurance Law, Legal Research and Writing and Legal Skills. Mr. Connor is admitted to practice in all California State Courts, Federal Court and the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. Mr. Connor is a member of the Workers’ Compensation Section of the State Bar, the American Bar Association, and Los Angeles County Bar Association.

Steven W. Cox

Office Location: 1855 Gateway Blvd, Suite 650 Concord CA 94520 Work Phone: (925) 609-2800
Biography

Steven W. Cox is a summa cum laude graduate of Mount Saint Mary’s College in Maryland, where he obtained a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science.  He earned his Juris Doctor as a cum laude graduate of Southwestern University School of Law, where he was conferred the American Jurisprudence Award for Corporations Law.  Mr. Cox has extensive civil and workers’ compensation experience at all levels across Southern and Northern California, including applicant work.  He has successfully argued cases before the California Courts of Appeal.  He is the Managing Partner of our Northern California office located in Concord and is a CBLS Certified Legal Specialist in Workers’ Compensation.

Laura Dupuis

Office Location: 2566 Overland Ave, Suite 570 Los Angeles CA 90064 Work Phone: (310) 838-6800
Biography

Ms. Dupuis is a graduate of the University of California, Los Angeles, with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science. She obtained her Juris doctor degree from Pepperdine University, School of Law. In addition to her membership in the California State Bar, she is a member of the Los Angeles County Bar Association. Ms. Dupuis has worked in the Workers’ industry for several years which includes experience as a claims adjuster, and as a Fraud Investigator in the Special Investigations Unit.

Rommel C. Embisan

Office Location: 2566 Overland Ave, Suite 570 Los Angeles CA 90064 Work Phone: (310) 838-6800
Biography

Mr. Embisan is a graduate of California State University, Long Beach with a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism/Public Relations. He obtained his Juris Doctor from University of West Los Angeles School of Law and was admitted to practice in 2000. Mr. Embisan is a Workers Compensation Certified Specialist with over seven years of workers compensation defense experience. Mr. Embisan is a veteran of the Unites State Marine Corps.

Kelly Gott Jorgensen

Office Location: 2301 Dupont Drive, Suite 400 Irvine CA 92612 Work Phone: (949) 222-9988
Biography

Ms. Jorgensen is a graduate of University of California, Irvine with a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology and a minor in Biology. She is a graduate of Whittier Law School, magna cum laude. Ms. Jorgensen began her career in Worker’s Compensation in 2007 as a Claims Examiner for one of the largest TPAs in the industry, handling complicated claims for both insured and self-insured employers. Ms. Jorgensen is currently associated with the Irvine office of Wai & Connor, LLP.

James M. Griffin

Office Location: 5743 Corsa Ave, Suite 107 Westlake Village CA 91362 Work Phone: (818) 597-8000
Biography

James M. Griffin attended the University of Ca. Santa Barbara graduating in 1974.  He obtained his Juris Doctor from University of San Fernando Valley, College of Law in 1978.  Mr. Griffin was a staff attorney with SCIF from 1979 to 1981.  He joined Peters&Juhl in 1981 and in 1988 formed Griffin&Griffin where he was an equity partner until his retirement in 2012.  Mr. Griffin specializes in defense of insurance carriers regarding workers compensation, 132a, Serious and Willful and other employment matters.  Mr. Griffin has served as a Judge Pro-Tem and has been a guest lecturer for insurance companies.  Mr. Griffin is a Certified Mediator and works with Ventura County Superior Court Mediation Program and VCDS.  He is a member of the Ventura County Bar Association.  Mr. Griffin works out of our Westlake Village Office.

Houman Hamidzadeh

Office Location: 2301 Dupont Drive, Suite 400 Irvine CA 92612 Work Phone: (949) 222-9988
Biography

Mr. Hamidzadeh has been the Managing Partner of the Irvine branch of the firm since 2003. He earned his bachelor’s degree in Political Science from California State University, Northridge and Juris Doctor degree from the Colleges of Law in Ventura, California, where he received the Outstanding Performance Award for his work as lead counsel in Civil Trial Advocacy, Criminal Trial Advocacy, and Legal Research & Writing. Mr. Hamidzadeh’s experience in the workers’ compensation industry began in 1991, initially as a hearing representative and subsequently as an attorney. In partnership with many Fortune 500 companies, insurance carriers, third-party administrators (TPAs), and investigative companies, he has successfully litigated numerous cases including the notable Beverly Hilton Hotel v. WCAB and Samson Boganim (2009) before the Second District Court of Appeal. Through his compelling med-legal cross-examination techniques and pragmatic cost-risk case analyses, Mr. Hamidzadeh’s enterprising approach to case management has led to his current specialization in catastrophic and high exposure cases.

Mondae K. Hefter

Office Location: 1855 Gateway Blvd, Suite 650 Concord CA 94520 Work Phone: (925) 609-2800
Biography

Ms. Hefter is a graduate of Saint Mary’s College of California with a degree in Business Administration and Economics. She obtained her Juris Doctor Degree from Santa Clara University School of Law. Ms. Hefter has been practicing in the area of workers’ compensation for over six years, with experience representing both applicants and defendants.

Julie A. Hirsch

Office Location: 2566 Overland Ave, Suite 570 Los Angeles CA 90064 Work Phone: (310) 838-6800
Biography

Ms. Hirsch graduated from Michigan State University with a Bachelor of Arts and Specialization in Economics and Business. She obtained her Juris Doctor from Thomas Jefferson School of Law. During law school, she was a Executive Board Member of the Alternative Dispute Resolution Team and received a Witkin and CALI Award for highest grade in Negotiation Theory & Skills. Prior to joining Wai & Connor, Ms. Hirsch represented the interests of self-insured employers, including a Fortune 500 company and the County of Los Angeles. Ms. Hirsch has also represented multiple insurance carriers and third-party administrators.

Randal W. Hursh

Office Location: 2566 Overland Ave, Suite 570 Los Angeles CA 90064 Work Phone: (310) 838-6800
Biography

Mr. Hursh is a graduate of Central Michigan University. He holds a Juris doctor degree from Whittier Law School. He was admitted to the California Bar in 1981 and has been specializing in workers’ compensation litigation for the past 17 years. He also has experience handling subrogation and related issues.

Raffi Jaltorossian

Office Location: 150 S. Los Robles Ave, Suite 600 Pasadena CA 91101 Work Phone: (626) 792-7700
Biography

Mr. Jaltorossian is a graduate of the University of California, Los Angeles, summa cum laude and phi beta kappa, earning Bachelor of Arts degrees in Philosophy and Political Science. Mr. Jaltorossian earned his Juris Doctor degree from the University of California, Los Angeles School of Law. He has been practicing exclusively in the area of workers’ compensation defense since 2003. Prior to joining the firm, Mr. Jaltorossian was a partner in a workers’ compensation defense firm and worked as a corporate and tax lawyer for an international law firm. He is admitted to practice in all California State Courts. Mr. Jaltorossian is also a Workers’ Compensation Certified Specialist.

Anna K. Liu

Office Location: 2566 Overland Ave, Suite 570 Los Angeles CA 90064 Work Phone: (310) 838-6800
Biography

Ms. Liu is a graduate of University of California, Irvine, with a Bachelor of Arts in criminology, law & society, and also in psychology. She earned her Juris Doctor from Stetson University College of Law at which time she was Judge Atkinson Scholarship Recipient, graduating cum laude. Ms. Liu was also the recipient of the Best Brief Award in the Willem C. Vis International Commercial Arbitration Competition, received Book Awards in Sales, Leases & Licenses, Chinese Legal System Seminar, and International Sales & Arbitration. She also interned for the Honorable Elizabeth Kovachevich of the U.S. District Court in Tampa, Florida. She was a member of Phi Delta Phi International Honors Fraternity. Ms. Liu has been practicing Workers’ Compensation law since 2010 with past experience representing applicants, insurance carriers and self-insured employers. She is fluent in Cantonese and Taishan, and is conversational in Spanish.

Christina Mandell

Office Location: 2566 Overland Ave, Suite 570 Los Angeles CA 90064 Work Phone: (310) 838-6800
Biography

Ms. Mandell graduated from Denison University, magna cum laude, with a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and History.  She obtained her Juris Doctor from DePaul University College of Law.  Ms. Mandell has extensive experience in workers’ compensation defense law, having represented various employers, insurance carriers, and self-insured companies.

Brandon Nadel

Office Location: 2566 Overland Ave, Suite 570 Los Angeles CA 90064 Work Phone: (310) 838-6800
Biography

Mr. Nadel earned his Bachelor of Arts in Sociology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He received his Juris Doctor degree from the University of San Francisco School of Law, at which time he worked at both the Los Angeles and San Francisco District Attorney’s offices. Mr. Nadel’s prior experience includes family law and personal injury law. He has been practicing workers’ compensation law since 2013 with a broad background that includes the representation of applicants, insurance carriers, and self-insured employers.

Jaela S. Nuovo

Office Location: 2566 Overland Ave, Suite 570 Los Angeles CA 90064 Work Phone: (310) 838-6800
Biography

Ms. Nuovo is a graduate of California State University, Sacramento, with a Bachelor of Arts in Government. She earned her Juris Doctor from Golden Gate University, School of Law, at which time she also worked with the San Francisco District Attorney’s Office prosecuting Elder Abuse cases. Ms. Nuovo has been practicing Workers’ Compensation for ten years in both Northern and Southern California. Her past experience includes representing applicants, employers, insurance carriers and the self-insured. She also assisted the Monterey County District Attorney’s Office in investigations of Workers’ Compensation fraud. Ms. Nuovo is a member of the Los Angeles County Bar Association.

Christopher A. Osterholt

Office Location: 1855 Gateway Blvd, Suite 650 Concord CA 94520 Work Phone: (925) 609-2800
Biography

Mr. Osterholt is a graduate of University of California, Santa Barbara, with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science. He obtained his Juris Doctor degree from Santa Clara University School of Law. He is admitted to practice law in all California State Courts, Federal Court and the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. Mr. Osterholt has been involved in the workers’ compensation industry since 1991, initially working for an applicant’s attorney. He has over 11 years of experience as a defense attorney, practicing before the WCAB in Northern and Southern California. He is also a Workers’ Compensation Certified Specialist.

David M. Owh

Office Location: 2301 Dupont Drive, Suite 400 Irvine CA 92612 Work Phone: (949) 222-9988
Biography

Mr. Owh is a graduate from the University of California, Irvine, where he obtained his Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science.  He earned his Juris Doctor degree from Whittier Law School, Costa Mesa with a Certificate in Comparative and International Law.  Mr. Owh has over 5 years’ experience in workers’ compensation having served as a paralegal for Wai & Connor.  Mr. Owh has been admitted to practice in all California State Courts.

So Young Owh

Office Location: 2301 Dupont Drive, Suite 400 Irvine CA 92612 Work Phone: (949) 222-9988
Biography

Ms. Owh is a graduate of Scripps College. She obtained her Juris doctor degree from Northwestern School of Law of Lewis and Clark College. Ms. Owh briefly worked for an applicant’s firm before joining the Orange staff counsel office for Liberty Mutual Insurance Company. She is admitted to practice in all California State Courts.

Stephanie C. Parazo

Office Location: 5030 Camino De La Siesta, Suite 400 San Diego CA 92108 United States Work Phone: (619) 296-6800
Biography

Ms. Parazo is a graduate of the University of California, San Diego with a Bachelors of Science degree in Biochemistry.  She obtained her Juris Doctor degree from the University of San Diego, School of Law where she competed internationally on the Vis Moot team in international commercial arbitration.  She is a member of the San Diego County Bar Association and is admitted to practice in all California State Courts.

Robert M. Puljiz

WAI & CONNOR LLP Office Location: 1855 Gateway Blvd, Suite 650 Concord CA 94520 Work Phone: (925) 609-2800
Biography

Robert Puljiz is a graduate of California State University at Northridge.  While at Cal State Northridge, he was awarded several medals for persuasive speaking in State and National Debate Tournaments.  He received his law degree from Loyola Law School in Los Angeles, where he was a Research Assistant for his Contracts professor.  Mr. Puljiz has worked in the Worker’s Compensation industry for 15 years in both Southern and Northern California.  He has extensive trial and case handling experience involving all aspects of Workers Compensation Law.

Mark A. Rataj

Office Location: 150 S. Los Robles Ave, Suite 600 Pasadena CA 91101 Work Phone: (626) 792-7700
Biography

Mr. Rataj is a graduate of California State Polytechnic University, Pomona, with a Bachelor of Arts in Industrial and Organizational Psychology with a minor in Business. He is a graduate of Whittier Law School, magna cum laude. While at Whittier he was awarded the American Jurisprudence Award in Evidence, Legal Skill, and Professional Responsibility Practicum Skills. Mr. Rataj is admitted to practice law in all California State Courts, Federal Court and the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. Mr. Rataj has worked in the Worker’s Compensation industry as a Claims Adjuster, Hearing Representative, and as an Applicant’s Attorney providing a balanced perspective. Mr. Rataj is a Legal Specialist in Workers’ Compensation Law and the Managing Partner at the Pasadena branch of Wai & Connor, LLP.

Daniel K. Robbins

Office Location: 5030 Camino De La Siesta, Suite 400 San Diego CA 92108 United States Work Phone: (619) 296-6800
Biography

Mr. Robbins is a graduate of the University of California, Santa Barbara, with a Bachelors Degree in Political Science. He holds a Juris Doctor from Loyola Law School, and is also a veteran of the United States Army. Mr. Robbins has extensive civil and workers’ compensation experience. Prior to joining our firm, Mr. Robbins practiced workers’ compensation defense at Grancell, Lebovitz, Stander, Barnes and Reubens in Los Angeles.

Sean Sabrkhani

Office Location: 2301 Dupont Drive, Suite 400 Irvine CA 92612 Work Phone: (949) 222-9988
Biography

Mr. Sabrkhani graduated from the University of California, Irvine with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Criminology, Law and Society. He earned a Juris Doctor from the the University of West Los Angeles School of Law, where he was awarded the Witkin Award for Civil Procedure and Community Property. He is admitted to practice in all California State courts and is a member of the Workers’ Compensation Section of the Orange County Bar Association.

Arash Saremi

Office Location: 2566 Overland Ave, Suite 570 Los Angeles CA 90064 Work Phone: (310) 838-6800
Biography

Mr. Saremi was admitted to the State Bar in 2006. Mr. Saremi is admitted to practice in all California State Courts and Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. Mr. Saremi received his Bachelor of Arts degree in political science from California State University, Long Beach in 2000. He studied law at Western State College of Law, in Fullerton, California. Mr. Saremi has extensive trial experience in workers’ compensation cases and has received numerous take nothings. Mr. Saremi is a member of the Iranian American Bar Association and is bilingual in English and Farsi.

Jill Shibata

Office Location: 2566 Overland Ave, Suite 570 Los Angeles CA 90064 Work Phone: (310) 838-6800
Biography

Ms. Shibata graduated cum laude from the University of West Los Angeles School of Law, where she was on the dean’s list and earned Witkin Awards for excellence in Community Property, Real Property, and Family Law. She has extensive workers’ compensation experience, having worked for applicants’ attorneys since 1998 as a paralegal, associate, then partner at her prior firm. Ms. Shibata’s interests include playing softball, running half marathons, and deep sea fishing. She is fluent in American Sign Language.

Jessica R. Springer

Office Location: 2301 Dupont Drive, Suite 400 Irvine CA 92612 Work Phone: (949) 222-9988
Biography

Ms. Springer is a graduate of California State University, Fullerton, cum laude, with Bachelor’s of Arts degrees in psychology and criminal justice. She obtained her Juris Doctor degree from University of San Diego, School of Law. During law school, she worked at the San Diego District Attorney’s Office and later she started her own family law practice in Orange County. She is a member of the Worker’s Compensation Section of the State Bar and the Orange County Bar Association. She is bilingual in English and Farsi and is very active in her community serving as a member of Orange County Bar’s Community Outreach Committee.

Gil Tabachnik

Office Location: 2566 Overland Ave, Suite 570 Los Angeles CA 90064 Work Phone: (310) 838-6800
Biography

Mr. Tabachnik is a graduate of University of California, Los Angeles, with a Bachelor of Arts degree in History. He obtained his Juris Doctor degree from Cornell Law School. While at Cornell Mr. Tabachnik was managing editor of the Cornell International Law Journal. Mr. Tabachnik is admitted to practice law in all California State Courts. His prior experience includes civil litigation and appellate work.

Kerry R. Tepper

Office Location: 5743 Corsa Ave, Suite 107 Westlake Village CA 91362 Work Phone: (818) 597-8000
Biography

Mr. Tepper obtained his Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science with a Public Administration emphasis from the University of California, Santa Barbara. He graduated from Thomas Jefferson School of Law, where he was awarded the American Jurisprudence Award in Trusts Law. Mr. Tepper has concentrated his practice almost exclusively in workers’ compensation since 2001, but has decades of extensive trial and arbitration experience in workers’ compensation, employment, and personal injury law.

Amber Tesler

WAI & CONNOR LLP Office Location: 1855 Gateway Blvd, Suite 650 Concord CA 94520 United States Work Phone: (925) 609-2800
Biography

Ms. Tesler is a graduate of University of California, Santa Barbara, with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Law and Society. Additionally she earned a Masters degree in Dispute Resolution for Pepperdine School of Law’s Straus Institute. Ms. Tesler obtained her Juris Doctor degree from Golden Gate School of Law where she received specializations in Litigation, Criminal Law, and Public Interest Law. While attending Golden Gate she was a member of the competition mock trial and moot courts teams and received a CALI award for academic excellence in Advanced Criminal Procedure. Ms Tesler is a member of the Workers Compensation Section of the State Bar and the Ventura County Bar Association.

Alexander Tsimanis

Office Location: 2566 Overland Ave, Suite 570 Los Angeles CA 90064 Work Phone: (310) 838-6800
Biography

Mr. Tsimanis is a graduate of California State University, Northridge, with a degree in Political Science. He earned his Juris Doctor from University of the Pacific, Mc George School of Law. He has practiced exclusively workers’ compensation law since being admitted to the bar in 2003. Mr. Tsimanis has extensive experience litigating issues involving the California Insurance Guarantee Association (CIGA) as well as entertainment industry cases. He is admitted to practice in all California State Courts.

Bonnie Wai

Office Location: 2566 Overland Ave, Suite 570 Los Angeles CA 90064 Work Phone: (310) 838-6800
Biography

Ms. Wai is a graduate of University of California, Los Angeles, cum laude, with Bachelor of Arts degrees in Economics and Mathematics. She obtained her Juris Doctor degree from University of California, Los Angeles School of Law. Ms. Wai has served on the California State Bar Workers’ Compensation Section Executive Committee, 1995-1997, and also served as the Co-Chair of the Education Section. Ms. Wai has extensive experience in the field of workers’ compensation with experience representing also applicants. She is a member of the Workers’ Compensation Section of the State Bar and the Los Angeles County Bar Association.

Scott A. Woolley

Office Location: 2301 Dupont Drive, Suite 400 Irvine CA 92612 Work Phone: (949) 222-9988
Biography

Mr. Woolley attended the University of Southern California, with a Bachelors Degree in Political Science, where he graduated cum laude. He holds a Juris Doctor from Chapman School of Law, where he obtained multiple American Jurisprudence Awards for outstanding coursework. Mr. Woolley has extensive workers’ compensation experience representing employers, insurance companies, and third party administrators.  Prior to joining our firm, Mr. Woolley was the managing attorney of an in house counsel for a Berkshire Hathaway Third Party Administrator.