Fall Anniversary Party 2003

Consumer Action (CA) held its anniversary fundraising party and Consumer Excellence Awards ceremony on June 19 in San Francisco. The event raised $34,000 in contributions from corporations, individuals and community organizations.
Published: Thursday, June 19, 2003


Each year, CA honors organizations and individuals who have advanced consumer rights in significant ways. This year's recipients of the Consumer Excellence Awards are:

  • The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) for its vigilance in defending privacy, civil liberties and right to free speech. The ACLU is a guardian of liberty — it works daily in courts, legislatures and communities to defend and preserve the individual rights and liberties guaranteed by the Constitution and laws of the United States.

    Linda Sherry, CA editorial director, presented the award to Dorothy Erlich, executive director of the ACLU/Northern California.

    Sherry noted that the ACLU's efforts are especially important in the U.S. after Sept. 11, 2001. "The ACLU has maintained, since its founding, the position that civil liberties must be respected, even in times of national emergency," noted Sherry.
  • New Economics for Women (NEW) of Los Angeles, for its emphasis on the importance of financial literacy. NEW works with single parents and their families to help them attain economic self-sufficiency. The organization is also a developer of affordable housing for women and children in need.

    CA Community Consumer Advocate Guadalupe Aguilar presented the award to Bea Stotzer, NEW Board President.

    Aguilar noted that NEW's approach encompasses client-driven housing design as well as a creative infrastructure with on-site customized family, educational and job training services.

    "This helps working poor families break the cycle of poverty and improve their standard of living within three to five years so they can move from subsidized housing to home ownership," said Aguilar.
  • The Sturdevant Law Firm & Trial Lawyers for Public Justice (TLPJ), for their successful challenge of AT&T's mandatory arbitration clause in the Ting vs. AT&T case.

    The Sturdevant Law Firm, based in San Francisco, specializes in class litigation on behalf of plaintiffs involving unlawful, unfair and fraudulent business practices and consumer protection.

    TLPJ, based in Washington, DC, is a public interest law firm dedicated to using trial lawyers' skills and resources to advance the public good. Founded in 1982 at Ralph Nader's urging, TLPJ uses a national network of outstanding trial lawyers to pursue precedent-setting and socially significant litigation.

McEldowney, who presented the award to James Sturdevant and Kate Gordon of TLPJ, noted: "Because of the untiring efforts of The Sturdevant Law Firm and TLPJ, consumers won a precedent-setting ruling that AT&T's high-handed attempt to force customers to settle disputes through binding arbitration was illegal, unconscionable and unenforceable."

CA invites you to mark your calendar for next year's party, which will be held on Wednesday, June 9, 2004 at the Marine's Memorial Club, 609 Sutter St., San Francisco.

Inquiries about this event can be addressed to Linda Sherry by phone at (415) 777-9635 or by e-mail.





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