Emerging Issues Webinar: Prop 65

FACULTY

Sarah Esmaili
Counsel
Arnold & Porter LLP

Sarah Esmaili focuses on litigation defending clients in California Proposition 65, consumer protection, and class action cases. She has represented companies in failure to warn claims involving a wide range of consumer product and service industries. She often handles cases involving newly emerging chemical exposure claims where she works with experts in the fields of toxicology and epidemiology. She has experience in joint representation of companies in cases that concern issues of industry-wide significance and has represented industry groups as plaintiffs in litigation that challenges regulations. She has expertise in developing creative settlement solutions that are tailored to business objectives. Ms. Esmaili's practice also includes counseling companies with respect to a variety of regulatory product safety laws.

Ms. Esmaili has experience in all phases of litigation. She participated in the San Francisco District Attorney's volunteer program where she successfully prosecuted several jury trials.

Ms. Esmaili has handled significant pro bono matters. Her experience includes developing and preparing a petition for habeas corpus in a death penalty case where she managed a team of attorneys. She has also successfully handled political asylum cases. She's the recipient of the Keta Taylor Colby Pro Bono Award.

Ms. Esmaili is fluent in Spanish.

Dr. F. Jay Murray
President
Murray & Associates

Dr. F. Jay Murray is a toxicologist who heads the environmental health consulting firm of Murray & Associates in San Jose, California.  He has over 30 years of experience in toxicology, risk assessment, environmental health and safety management, regulatory affairs, and risk communication.  A number of industries, trade associations, and government regulatory agencies rely on his technical expertise. 

Dr. Murray is a former member (1987-89) of the California Governor’s Scientific Advisory Panel for the Safe Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement Act of 1986 (Proposition 65).  In addition, he is a former member and chairperson of the Proposition 65 Scientific Advisory Panel’s  Reproductive Toxicity Subcommittee. 

Dr. Murray is a graduate of the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine (Ph.D. in toxicology), Stanford University Graduate School of Business, and Seton Hall University. He is board-certified by the American Board of Toxicology and a member of the Society of Toxicology.  For 25 years, he was an Assistant Clinical Professor at the University of California, San Francisco.  Dr. Murray was formerly employed by The Dow Chemical Company, Syntex Corporation (currently Roche Biosciences) and ENSR Corporation.  He is the author of over 150 scientific publications and presentations.

John Hewitt
Senior Director, State Affairs, Western Region
Grocery Manufacturers Association

John handles all of GMA's policy in Sacramento and the rest of the western states.  Mr. Hewitt comes to GMA from the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) where he was General Counsel.

Prior to this appointment to the CDFA, he worked for the California Farm Bureau Federation since 2001, where he served as associate counsel. Previously, Hewitt served as a land and water resource specialist for the California Regional Water Quality Control Board. He is a member of the Natomas Basin Conservancy and former member of the Federal Grain Inspection Advisory Committee.

Hewitt earned a Juris Doctorate degree from McGeorge School of Law and a Bachelor of Science degree in agricultural business from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo.

Mr. Hewitt comes to GMA from the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) where he was General Counsel.

Prior to this appointment to the CDFA, he worked for the California Farm Bureau Federation since 2001, where he served as associate counsel. Previously, Hewitt served as a land and water resource specialist for the California Regional Water Quality Control Board. He is a member of the Natomas Basin Conservancy and former member of the Federal Grain Inspection Advisory Committee.

Hewitt earned a Juris Doctorate degree from McGeorge School of Law and a Bachelor of Science degree in agricultural business from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo.

- See more at: http://www.gmaonline.org/news-events/newsroom/gma-appoints-john-hewitt-director-state-affairs/#sthash.0jbAw1F9.dpuf

Mr. Hewitt comes to GMA from the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) where he was General Counsel.

Prior to this appointment to the CDFA, he worked for the California Farm Bureau Federation since 2001, where he served as associate counsel. Previously, Hewitt served as a land and water resource specialist for the California Regional Water Quality Control Board. He is a member of the Natomas Basin Conservancy and former member of the Federal Grain Inspection Advisory Committee.

Hewitt earned a Juris Doctorate degree from McGeorge School of Law and a Bachelor of Science degree in agricultural business from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo.

- See more at: http://www.gmaonline.org/news-events/newsroom/gma-appoints-john-hewitt-director-state-affairs/#sthash.0jbAw1F9.dpuf

Mr. Hewitt comes to GMA from the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) where he was General Counsel.

Prior to this appointment to the CDFA, he worked for the California Farm Bureau Federation since 2001, where he served as associate counsel. Previously, Hewitt served as a land and water resource specialist for the California Regional Water Quality Control Board. He is a member of the Natomas Basin Conservancy and former member of the Federal Grain Inspection Advisory Committee.

Hewitt earned a Juris Doctorate degree from McGeorge School of Law and a Bachelor of Science degree in agricultural business from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo.

- See more at: http://www.gmaonline.org/news-events/newsroom/gma-appoints-john-hewitt-director-state-affairs/#sthash.0jbAw1F9.dpuf

Mr. Hewitt comes to GMA from the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) where he was General Counsel.

Prior to this appointment to the CDFA, he worked for the California Farm Bureau Federation since 2001, where he served as associate counsel. Previously, Hewitt served as a land and water resource specialist for the California Regional Water Quality Control Board. He is a member of the Natomas Basin Conservancy and former member of the Federal Grain Inspection Advisory Committee.

Hewitt earned a Juris Doctorate degree from McGeorge School of Law and a Bachelor of Science degree in agricultural business from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo.

- See more at: http://www.gmaonline.org/news-events/newsroom/gma-appoints-john-hewitt-director-state-affairs/#sthash.0jbAw1F9.dpuf

René Viñas, Ph.D.
Toxicologist, Consumer Product Safety
Grocery Manufacturers Association

René performs toxicological safety assessments of food ingredients, packaging materials, contaminants and manufacturing processes as well as keeping abreast of the emerging science related to risk assessment. He Serve as a as a technical resource for ingredient and chemical safety regulatory compliance issues. In particular, he works with advocacy team to translate complicated scientific data into language meaningful to state and federal legislators. René also serves as chief delegate for the International Council of Grocery Manufacturers Associations on various Codex committees (i.e. CCCF & CCFA) where he shares and advocates for the consumer product goods industry on the global scientific arena.

Prior to GMA René was a toxicologist at U.S. FDA’s Center for Devices and Radiological Health (CDRH). As a toxicologist at CDRH he was involved in the development of risk assessment approaches for nanomaterials associated with medical devices, including nanomaterial characterization, nanoparticle exposure assessment, and toxicological characterization of nanoparticles. 

René earned an MS degree in Environmental Toxicology from Texas Tech University followed by a PhD in Pharmacology & Toxicology from The University of Texas – Medical Branch where his research focused on the chemical mixture toxicology of petroleum derived products (i.e. surfactants, resins, and plasticizers) as well as the endocrine disrupting potential of novel chemical replacements for BPA. He is also a very active member of the Society of Toxicology and associated Specialty Sections and Special Interests Groups.