Since 1990, John Michael Roake has been a Co-Program Director for the NITA public trial skills and deposition skills programs in San Diego. In October of 2012, he experienced the Building Trial Skills: Pacific Program for the last time in the Program Director role and is passing the torch along. Michael has provided so much support, dedication, and teaching innovation to NITA across the public, public service, custom, and international programs.
Michael was honored as the 2011 winner of the Keeton Award for excellence in teaching and has volunteered for the ABA. Michael brings such diversity with his past experience in his past roles as a Special Assistant United States Attorney, the Chief Prosecutor, and as Regional Defense Counsel with the Marines, a trial judge, an instructor at the Dept. of Justice Attorney General’s Advocacy Institute, and a Level V Chief Capital Attorney with the San Diego County Defenders’ Office.
Michael passion for teaching and his infectious personality are noticed and appreciated at every NITA program he has been a part of for the last 25 years. Please join me in thanking Michael for all his years at NITA.
Michael will be passing the torch to Mary Jo (MJ) Barr for the Trial Skills program and Bibianne (Bibi) Fell for the Deposition Skills Programs. We welcome them to the team of NITA Program Directors.
Mary Jo Barr has been teaching for NITA for 20 years at nearly 80 programs in the public, public service, and custom program areas. Mary Jo began her practice in 1986 in San Diego, California as an associate with a small plaintiff’s and criminal defense firm. In 1989 Mary Jo joined the Office of the Public Defender for San Diego County. She was awarded a Prettyman fellowship at Georgetown School of Law School in 1988. Mary Jo has also served as an adjunct professor at California School of Law and the University of San Diego School of Law in their advocacy programs.
Bibianne Fell has been teaching for NITA since 2008 and will now take on the role of Co-Program Director at the Deposition Skills: Pacific Program starting in January of 2013. Bibianne has been named a Top Young Attorney twice by the San Diego Daily Transcript and a Rising Star by the Philippine American Business and Industrial Development organization. Bibianne first worked at an insurance defense firm, and then from 2005 to 2008 she worked in the business litigation and employment law departments at Baker & McKenzie LLP. Bibianne now practices business litigation and employment law at Fleming & Fell PC.