Warren H. Saltzman (1925 – 1988)
Richard C. Johnson (1942 – 2014)
Isaiah B. Roter (President)
Mr. Roter is president of the firm and has devoted the past twenty-five years to representing pension, health and welfare and apprenticeship trust clients. Mr. Roter graduated from the University of California at Berkeley in 1973 with a degree in Political Science and from Golden Gate University School of Law in 1978 with a Juris Doctor (J.D.), with honors. While in law school he was a member of the Law Review, Ninth Circuit Survey edition. He worked as a law clerk for the San Francisco Superior Court during 1977 and 1978, and between 1978 and 1985 he worked in San Francisco specializing in civil and criminal litigation.
Mr. Roter joined Saltzman & Johnson Law Corporation in 1985. Mr. Roter became a shareholder and vice-president of Saltzman and Johnson in 1989. He specializes in all areas of the joint union-management employee benefit trusts and the representation of multiemployer trusts and serves as legal counsel to pension, welfare and apprenticeship funds.
Mr. Roter was a speaker at the 1999 Heat and Frost Insulators and Asbestos Workers International Apprenticeship Conference on the topic “Legal Requirements and Insurance for Apprenticeship Trust Funds.” He also presented an “Overview Of Withdrawal Liability” at a 2006 session of the Northern California Painting and Finishing Contractors Association.
Mr. Roter is a member of the State Bar of California and the Labor and Employment Law Section of the State Bar. He is also a member of the San Francisco Bar Association and the International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans. He is admitted to practice before the Ninth Circuit and the United States District Court for the Northern District of California.
Russell L. Richeda (Secretary)
Mr. Richeda graduated from Stanford University with highest honors and from Harvard Law School. From 1975-1977 he served as a law clerk for the United States Tax Court. Between 1978 and 1989, Mr. Richeda specialized in labor law on behalf of private sector unions and public sector employee organizations. He joined Saltzman & Johnson Law Corporation in February 1989 and became a shareholder and secretary of the corporation in April 1992.
Mr. Richeda serves as lead counsel to all of the firm’s public sector retirement system clients as well as representing public sector health and welfare plans and legal defense funds. In a study of the disability retirement process issued in January 2007 by Towers Perrin, a nationwide actuarial and consulting firm, conducted for the Board of Administration of the City of San Jose Police and Fire Department Retirement Plan, Towers Perrin stated:
“The outside attorney for the City’s Retirement Board, Russ Richeda, is knowledgeable, responsive and well-respected throughout the state for his expertise. We came across his name many times during our review of other retirement systems.”
Mr. Richeda is the co-author of the chapter on public retirement systems in the California Public Sector Employment Law, published by the Labor and Employment Law Section of the State Bar (Lexus-Nexus 2011).
Michele R. Stafford (Vice President)
Ms. Stafford graduated from the University of California at Los Angeles in 1990 with a Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) degree and from the University of San Francisco School of Law in 1994 with a Juris Doctor (J.D.). After receiving her law degree, she practiced law for 2 years in San Francisco and Berkeley, primarily in general civil litigation. She then practiced law in San Mateo, focusing on construction and real estate litigation. Ms. Stafford joined Saltzman & Johnson Law Corporation in 2003 and became a shareholder and vice-president of the corporation in 2009. She specializes in the representation of joint union-management employee benefit trust clients in ERISA litigation matters, including collection of delinquent employer contributions and defense of benefit determinations before the United States District Court. She also has represented apprenticeship trusts in claims made before Fair Employment and Housing Agency (FEHA) and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC).
Reported decisions in Ms. Stafford’s cases include:
District Council 16 Northern California Health and Welfare Trust Fund v. Creteguard (Summary Judgment granted for $1,360,943.38), 2011 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 28769, 51 Employee Benefits Casw. (BNA) 1826;
District Council 16 Northern California Health and Welfare Trust Fund v. Pedro Gerardo Rosas Alvarado, 2011 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 39133;
Bay Area Painters and Tapers Pension Trust Fund v. Ibarra Coatings, 2011 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 139407,
Northern California Glaziers, Architectural Metal and Glass Workers v. Kenneth Michael Wolter, 2009 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 46703.
Ms. Stafford was a speaker at the International Foundation of Employee Benefits’ 61st Annual Conference in 2015, regarding the “Trust Fund Administrator’s Role in Collections.”
Ms. Stafford is a member of the State Bar of California. She is also a member of the San Francisco Bar Association and the International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans. She is admitted to practice before the United States District Courts for the Northern District of California, the Eastern District of California and the Central District of California.
Shaamini A. Babu (Vice President)
Ms. Babu graduated from the University of California at Davis in 2000 with a Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) degree in Sociology and Communications and from Pepperdine University School of Law in 2003 with a Juris Doctor (J.D.). Ms. Babu is a shareholder at Saltzman & Johnson Law Corporation where she represents employee benefit plans. Ms. Babu advises trustees of Taft-Hartley plans on compliance (i.e. ERISA, DOL, IRS, ACA, etc.), plan design, and benefit administration. She negotiates with employers, vendors, and pharmacy benefit managers on behalf of trustees for the benefit of 1000s of unionized employees. Her practice also involves overseeing complete and partial withdrawal liability matters on behalf of multi-employer pension plans.
Ms. Babu was a speaker on the JATCs Are ERISA Funds Too panel at the International Foundation for Employees Benefits 61st Annual Conference in 2015. Ms. Babu was a speaker on the Partial Withdrawal: Types of Withdrawals, Calculations, and Administration panel at the International Foundation for Employee Benefits 60th Annual Conference in 2014.
Ms. Babu has been selected as a Super Lawyer by California Super Lawyers. She served as the Co-Chair of the Board of Directors for Asian Pacific Islander Legal Outreach and Co-Chair of NASABA’s South Asian Women Attorneys Network. Ms. Babu was a two-term Co-President of the South Asian Bar Association of Northern California (SABA-NC) from 2011-2013. She was a recipient of the Minority Bar Coalition Unity Award in 2013, SABA-NC’s Community Impact Award in 2011 and NASABA’s Program of the Year Award in 2008.
She previously handled construction defect, real estate and commercial litigation matters at Katzoff & Riggs LLP, and represented plaintiffs exposed to asbestos while she was an associate at Brayton Purcell LLP.
Reported Decisions in Ms. Babu’s cases include:
Pension Trust Fund for Operating Eng’rs v. Dalecon, Inc., 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 32280 (N.D. Cal. Mar. 12, 2014)
Operating Engineers’ Pension Trust Fund, et al., v. Western Power & Equipment, Inc., et al., 2011 US Dist LEXIS 67306 (N.D. Cal 2011)
Operating Engineers’ Pension Trust Fund, et al. v. Clark’s Welding & Machine, et al., 688 F. Supp. 2d 902 (N.D. Cal. 2010)
Ms. Babu is a member of the State Bar of California. She is also a member of the San Francisco Bar Association and the International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans. She is admitted to practice before the United States District Courts for the Northern District of California