San Francisco School of the Arts, a public high school in San Francisco, won the San Francisco City Mock Trial Championship after three preliminary rounds of competition and a very close, hard-fought final round against Balboa High School. The students have been preparing for the competition since October of 2010. Coblentz attorneys Clifford Yin and Eleanor Hicks, along with staff member Raz Yekrang and a number of dedicated attorney-coaches from other firms, have provided hours of coaching and guidance. Yin has been coaching high school students in the mock trial program for over sixteen years. The team will now move on to the State Championship which takes place at the end of March, in Riverside. Many students said that competing as a member of the team was one of the best experiences of their lives.
As part of this diversity pipeline program sponsored by the Bar Association of San Francisco and the Constitutional Rights Foundation, students serve as attorneys and witnesses in a simulated criminal trial. Students prepare opening and closing statements, conduct direct and cross-examinations, and make and respond to objections. This year's trial included a pre-trial motion to exclude one of the criminal charges on the basis that the applicable statute violated the First Amendment of the United States Constitution.
Clifford Yin specializes in complex commercial litigation, with an emphasis on real estate litigation. Eleanor Hicks practices general corporate and securities law.