The San Diego County Bar Association is proud to announce the recipients of its 2019 SDCBA Service Awards.  The annual awards recognize distinguished individuals and organizations for their commitment to serving the San Diego community. Winners will be recognized at the SDCBA's Annual Awards Luncheon & Celebration of Community Service on May 1.
The 2019 SDCBA Service Award recipients are:
Outstanding Attorney
Peter Quon
District Attorney's
Awarded to an exemplary attorney who provides outstanding community service above and beyond just service to the legal profession.

Peter Quon’s long, distinguished career began in 1977 with the formation of the Pan Asian Lawyers of San Diego, where he served multiple terms as president and vice-president.  Mr. Quon joined the California Office of the Attorney General in 1980 and, in 1994, earned the Attorney General’s Prosecutor of the Year award.  Mr. Quon has remained an active member and contributor to many diversity bars in San Diego, having collected various awards from over 10 different organizations.


Outstanding Jurist
Hon. Dana Sabraw
U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California
Presented to an exemplary jurist who provides outstanding community service above and beyond service to the legal profession.

The Honorable Dana Sabraw was appointed to the bench by Governor Pete Wilson in 1995 to the North County Municipal Court, later advancing to a seat on the San Diego County Superior Court. In 2003, former President George W. Bush nominated Judge Sabraw to the Federal District Court for the Southern District of California where he received a unanimous approval by the Senate.  Judge Sabraw presided over the nationally publicized 2018 case regarding the separation of migrant families at the border. This decision marked the beginning of a series of events that led to the reunification of 2000 other families.

Service to Diversity
Alara Chilton
Law Office of
Alara T. Chilton
Recognizes outstanding service by a member of the legal profession, in promoting and encouraging diversity within the legal profession.

As a past president and longtime member of San Diego La Raza Lawyers Association, Alara Chilton has worked hard to advance the causes of the Latino community and the protection of its civil rights.  For the past 7 years, Ms. Chilton has organized and implemented Project L.E.A.D., which educates children on important topics such as peer pressure and bullying.  Ms. Chilton has been instrumental in organizing other community events, such as a public debate forum amongst District Attorney candidates and informational programs for young attorneys and members of the community.


Service to the Legal Community
Mark Cumba
Office of the Attorney General -
San Diego
Recognizes outstanding long term or significant contributions to furthering the goals of the legal profession and promoting ethics, integrity, and professionalism in the practice of law.

Mark Cumba was appointed as a member of the California Commission of Judicial Nominees Evaluation from 2014 to 2017, where he assisted the Governor in the judicial selection process, he also served on the Illinois State Bar Association Judicial Evaluation Committee from 2000-2001. Mr. Cumba lends his time and expertise to a number of professional affiliations and participates on executive boards and sections of various law related organizations. He has held numerous presentations, publications, and received awards that exemplify his contributions to the legal community.

Community Service
Kimberly  Swierenga
Swierenga Law & Mediation
Recognizes outstanding service to the needs of the community (e.g. charitable, cultural, humanitarian or educational), other than directly through the SDCBA. 

Kim Swierenga is an active member in both the legal and non-legal community, volunteering regularly ElderHelp of San Diego and at the Food Bank and Gary & Mary West Center assisting the elderly.  She currently serves as a director of Consumer Attorneys of San Diego, chairs the Elder Law and mentor committees, volunteers at mock trial and Inns of Court, and with the Probate mediation program teaching mediation to students at Thomas Jefferson School of Law and California Western School of law.

Service by a Public Attorney
Charles Bell
Office of the San Diego City Attorney
Presented to an individual who demonstrates a combination of excellence in the practice of law with service to the community, the profession, the Association or legal education.

Charles Bell quickly became a fixture in the San Diego legal community through his work with numerous legal associations and local non-profits.  In 2017 the California Western School of Law awarded Mr. Bell with its Outstanding Community Service Award.  Mr. Bell is a past president of the Earl B. Gilliam Bar Foundation, a member of California Western School of Law’s Alumni Board, a member of the Dean’s Council of Visitors, and a former co-chair of the Crawford High School Law Academy mentor program.

Service by a New Lawyer
Spencer Scott  
Office of the Public Defender
Recognizes outstanding service by a new lawyer in his or her first six full years of practice who has demonstrated a significant commitment to serving the legal community via legal education, mentoring or community service efforts.

Spencer Scott is currently the Vice President of the California Western School of Law Alumni Association, as well as past chair of the Student Engagement Committee and past co-chair of the Supporting the Law School Committee.  Mr. Scott is also Chair of the SDCBA Bar History Committee and Vice Chair of the SDCBA Military Law section.  He is involved in numerous veterans organizations including Team Rubicon, and was heavily involved in the creation of the California Western School of Law Annual Day of Service at Ronald McDonald House.    

Distinguished Organization
Consumer Advocates for
RCFE Reform (CARR)
Outstanding contribution by a group not composed primarily of lawyers or judges whose contributions over a period of time have had a significant favorable impact on some facet of the legal system or legal community or civics education.

CARR is an advocacy organization committed to improving resident care in assisted living facilities by educating consumers and increasing industry transparency and accountability. One of the most significant contributions CARR has made to the legal community is its sponsorship of AB 1523, which mandates liability insurance for residential care facilities for the elderly (RCFE), making these facilities accountable for negligent care.