Santa Clara Law bid farewell to three longtime faculty members this past summer with gratitude for their combined 60 years of service to the Law School.

Margarita AlvarezMargarita Alvarez joined the Katharine and George Alexander Community Law Center ’s clinical faculty in 2005. In her 13 years of service, she worked closely with students to equip them with the skills they needed to obtain positive results for clients. Alvarez worked on many cases, including a recent victory for a client that resulted in a $75K attorney ’s fee award for the Law Center. “She brought wisdom, calm, and balance to the office, ” said Deborah Moss-West, executive director at the Katharine & George Alexander Community Law Center. “Perhaps most importantly, she has a genuine interest in student success, both personally and professionally, that translates into an exceptional clinical and law school experience. We are thrilled that she returned to the Law Center as a volunteer this fall.”

Prior to joining Santa Clara Law, Alvarez had her own firm for nearly 14 years, representing injured workers, and she also served as deputy counsel for Santa Clara County.


Yvonne EkernYvonne Ekern joined Santa Clara Law in 2003 as an associate clinical professor and a full-time member of the Legal Analysis, Research, and Writing faculty, and she has more than 25 years of experience teaching, including 15 years at Santa Clara Law. In his remarks at her retirement gathering, Michael W. Flynn, associate dean for academic affairs, said: “You have made our lives here better, and leave a legacy of great teaching and mentoring behind you.” For seven years she was the chairperson of the West Valley College Paralegal Program (ABA approved).

Prior to attending law school, she taught high school English and math in California and Missouri. She graduated from the University of Idaho School of Law in 1985. While working in criminal and family law offices, she taught part-time in several Silicon Valley paralegal programs. Among the classes she has taught are Legal Research and Writing, Advanced Legal Research and Writing, Appellate Advocacy, Advanced Legal Research and Writing Using LEXIS, and Legal Analysis. She is the coauthor of Legal Research, Analysis and Writing and Constitutional Law: Principles and Practice.


Jiri TomanJiri Toman is considered to be the founder of international humanitarian law and one of the world ’s leading experts on Cultural Property Law. He taught at Santa Clara Law for 20 years, helping to build many international relationships that support students and faculty members. A member of several international associations and on the editorial boards of several journals, Toman has published numerous studies, books, and articles in the fields of international law, human rights, humanitarian law, economic law, disaster relief law, and criminal law.

Prior to joining Santa Clara Law, he taught at the School of Economics and School of Law at Charles University in Prague, the University of Geneva, and was a visiting professor at Santa Clara University, George Washington University, and Université de Franche-Compté in Besançon. He has lectured at the Universities of Birmingham, Cambridge, London, Oxford, Pisa, Uppsala, Virginia, Waseda, and Yale; organized regional seminars on international law and criminal law in Africa and Latin America; and was consultant to several international and regional organizations, including UNESCO, UNDRO, UNCTAD, and the United Nations Center for Human Rights, Council of Europe.