Board of Trustees

President: Whitney Hawke
Phone: (360) 696-0166

Whitney is a partner at Wheeler Boyd and practices family law here in Clark County. She was born and raised in Portland, OR, but has lived in Vancouver since 2014. She earned her law degree from Lewis & Clark in 2012 and attended undergraduate at Occidental College in Los Angeles, CA. Whitney is licensed to practice in Washington and Oregon. Prior to working in family law, Whitney practiced criminal defense for six (6) years where she handled high-profile murder, domestic violence, and “third strike” trials. In 2020, Whitney was awarded the CCBA’s “Trial Lawyer of the Year” award. Whitney serves on the CCBA’s Hearsay Committee and is also an active member of Washington Women Lawyers (St. Helens/Clark County Chapter), and The George and Donald Simpson Inns of Court. Outside of work, you will find Whitney crabbing for dungies at the Oregon Coast, watching Blazers/Timbers/Mariners/Ducks/Cougs/Seahawks games with her husband, or traveling with her super fun group of friends.


Vice President: Deb Wechselblatt (they/them)
Phone: (564) 487-8529

Deb Wechselblatt is a Deputy Prosecuting Attorney at the Clark County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office in Vancouver, Washington. Prior to law school, Deb was a community planner at the City of Lake Oswego and an environmental advocate working for non-profits in Portland, OR. Deb was a 2019 Washington Leadership Institute Fellow and is committed to promoting diversity in the legal profession and access to justice through their volunteer activities. Deb serves on the boards of the QLaw Association of Washington, the Washington State Bar Foundation, and the YWCA of Clark County. Outside the practice of law, Deb enjoys hiking, cycling, gardening, birding, and chasing their kids around.


Secretary: Le Ann Larson
Phone: (564) 397-2265

Le Ann Larson has worked as a Deputy Prosecuting Attorney for 25 years.  She has worked in the child support division for nearly 20 years and her practice is devoted to securing financial support for children.  She volunteers her time to serve on boards and committees that advocate for the rights of those living with developmental disabilities.  Autism awareness is a passion for her. Le Ann is the former VLP President and Liaison to the CCBA.  She graduated from Washington State University (Go Cougs!) and Willamette University College of Law.  Le Ann and her husband, Rob, have two sons.


Treasurer: Ben Melnick
Phone: (360) 695-4244

Ben Melnick joined Schauermann Thayer Jacobs Staples & Edwards in 2018, and he became a partner in 2020.  He graduated from Washington State University with a Bachelor's degree in 2010, and went on to earn his Juris Doctorate from Gonzaga University School of Law.  In 2016, he was named as the Clark County Bar Association's Rising Star.  His practice focuses on personal injury, auto, motorcycle, and biking accidents, premises liability, products liability, wrongful death, and insurance disputes.  Outside work, Ben likes spending time with his family, running, playing soccer, hiking, and skiing.


Trustee: Owen Sutanto
Phone: (360) 436-6403

Owen is an attorney at Vancouver Defenders and practices criminal defense and minor guardianship representation in Clark County. Owen is licensed in California where he practiced personal injury in Los Angeles before moving to the Pacific Northwest and has been licensed and practicing in Washington since 2020. He is also currently the Vice President of the CCBA Young Lawyers Section. In 2021, he was the treasurer of the Young Lawyers Section and an at large member of the WSBA Animal Section. In his spare time, Owen enjoys rescuing chickens and spoiling them rotten.

Immediate Past President:Christina Phelan
Phone: (360) 750-8750

Christina Phelan was born and raised in Vancouver, WA.  She received her Bachelor's degree from Santa Clara University and graduated Magna Cum Laude in 2007. In 2012, Christina graduated from Boston University School of Law Cum Laude. Christina is licensed to practice law in Washington and focuses on Criminal Defense and Juvenile Law. Christina's legal skills have been recognized over the years, as she was awarded the CCBA's Rising Star Award in 2015 and WACDL's Anthony Savage Award in 2020. She has long been an active member of the CCBA Social and Hearsay Committees and previously served in numerous positions on the Young Lawyers Section board.


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