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Chairman’s Message

Posted on Sunday, October 01, 2017 at 12:00AM

FRED ROWBOTHAM
Chairman

On behalf of the Legal Defense Fund Board of Trustees, I hope to see you at this year’s PORAC Conference in my hometown of San Diego.
Through the hard work of your PORAC Legal Defense Fund trustees and staff, this year we passed another significant milestone: There are now more than 120,000 members enrolled in your Trust, nationwide. Police officers, deputy sheriffs and public safety officers across the country realize that we at PORAC offer our members the premier legal defense coverage though our Trust and our remarkable panel of attorneys. The ever-increasing footprint of this Trust provides for greater stability and additional resources for every member.
What I find surprising is that, while public safety officers from around the country seek out the PORAC Legal Defense Fund for its wonderful benefits, we have a handful of PORAC member associations right here in California that elect to not provide these benefits for their members. If your association wants to learn more about the benefits of PORAC LDF, please reach out to any of our trustees and schedule a thorough presentation on all that PORAC and the Legal Defense Fund have to offer.
Before becoming a PORAC LDF trustee — a position I have held for seven years — I spent 12 years as a local association president. In both positions, I have encountered members who have an aversion to police unions being involved in politics. They understandably want to go to work, do a great job for the public and then go home without speaking at a press conference or mixing it up with a city council member, county supervisor or state assembly member. What I always circled back to, and tried to instill in those members, was that every benefit that we in public safety enjoy today was in one way, shape or form derived from the political process.
PORAC is the top of the food chain for line-level public safety advocacy in the state of California. Whether your priorities are pay and benefits or law and order, PORAC moves the legislation that public safety needs so you can feel confident in going out there and doing your job well.
On a different note, in a few short months we will say goodbye to a longtime PORAC executive and servant to the members, President Mike Durant. Mike has tirelessly worked in Sacramento on behalf of all of us for over 14 years. I have personally seen the sacrifices he has made for public safety, PORAC and individual members. He will never speak to members about the missed children’s baseball games or school parent–teacher conferences that went on back home while he was in Sacramento advocating for the PORAC members, but I have seen it. I have been on recruiting trips with him when his wife would FaceTime him just so he could see the candles being blown out at his daughter’s birthday.
Spending the last seven years working under the guidance of President Durant, such a staunch advocate for the members, has been a tremendously powerful experience — one that could only be learned by watching it in action. There has been no better steward of the organization. Great job, President Durant! PORAC and, most importantly, its members are better off for the time you have spent at the helm.

 

PORAC Legal Defense Administrator Ed Fishman Testimony: Law Enforcement Use of Body Cameras.