[caption id="attachment_13088" align="alignright" width="216" caption="David Berry"][/caption]

SONOMA COUNTY -- The county's longest-standing professional association of lawyers now has a committee focused on real property law.

Abbey, Weitzenberg, Warren & Emery attorney David Berry spearheaded the development of the new Sonoma County Bar Association section, which was officially launched earlier this summer.

"I had just finished a presentation to the bar related to mediation and decided I wanted to lead something on real property law when I found out they didn't have a section focused in that area," he said.

"I thought they were nuts and I went to the president of the bar, and he suggested I start one."

Mr. Berry pitched the idea to the bar's board of directors in April, and the group hosted its first meeting about two months later. The inaugural gathering attended by about 25 local experts and bar association Executive Director Peter Steiner resulted in the nomination of Mr. Berry to chair of the group for the first term ending January 2011.

The bar currently has 10 sections focused on alternative dispute resolution; barristers club; bench bar; business law; criminal law; family law; intellectual property, technology, labor and employment law; public law; trusts and estates; and now real property.

The groups of mostly attorney members meet regularly to confer on topics related to that area of law and on occasion organize educational events on specific facets or hot topics.

Real property law topics include trends, recent court cases, land use issues, agricultural law, residential and commercial development, green, construction defect, boundary and easement issues, leases and sales, environmental law, water issues, real estate finance, bank work outs, foreclosure and others.

The real property law section will meet the third Thursday of every month at the bar association office at 37 Old Courthouse Sq., Ste. 100.

Spaulding McCullough Tansil Associate Karin Beam and Smith Dollar Associate Allison Tussey agreed to act as program coordinators for the section.