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San Francisco Direct: 415.291.7453 General: 415.291.7400 Fax: 415.291.7474
University of California, Hastings College of the Law, J.D., cum laude, 1996.Order of the Coif.International and Comparative Law Review.
Yale University, B.A., Distinction in History, cum laude, 1991.Selected as Urban Fellow by the City of New York.
Ashley Dunning is a litigator and fiduciary advisor, with substantial expertise representing trustees, public and private entities, and nonprofit organizations in resolving complex disputes and advising on issues involving fiduciary obligations, governance, and California’s public retirement, conflict of interest, open meetings, and public records laws. She appears regularly before boards of trustees and in court proceedings throughout California on these issues. Ms. Dunning also regularly provides training on these topics to clients and at conferences throughout the country. In addition, she has taught “Ethics for Public Officials” for several years at the Principles of Pension Management for Trustees conference held annually at Stanford Law School.
Ms. Dunning is presently serving as fiduciary and/or litigation counsel for numerous public retirement systems in California. She serves as general and litigation counsel to the Marin County Employees’ Retirement Association. Ms. Dunning’s retirement system related cases that have resulted in published decisions include Lexin v. Superior Court (2010) 47 Cal. 4th 1050, Shelden v. Marin County Employees’ Retirement Assoc. (2010) 189 Cal. App. 4th 458, and In re Retirement Cases (2003) 110 Cal. App. 4th 426.
Ms. Dunning is Chair of the Fiduciary and Governance Section of the National Association of Public Pension Attorneys (NAPPA) and presents regularly to the General Assembly or Section Sessions of NAPPA on various issues of public pension law. She has also presented at the General Assembly of the California Association of Public Retirement Systems (CalAPRS), and regularly presents at the CalAPRS Trustees and Attorneys Roundtables on these issues. Ms. Dunning is on the Program Committee of the State Association of County Retirement Systems (SACRS), and also presents regularly at SACRS conferences on issues regarding public pension law.
Co-Author, “Conflict of Interest Rules For Public Retirement System Trustees And Staff,” SACRS Magazine, Winter 2010.
Admitted to practice in California.
Chair, National Association of Public Pension Attorneys’ Fiduciary and Governance Section.
Member, State Association of California Retirement Systems Program Committee.
Board of Directors, non-profit Habitot Children’s Museum, Berkeley, California.
Speaker, The State Association of County Retirement Systems Fall Conference, November 15, 2013.
Speaker, "Who's the Client?: The Relationship between Chief Counsel, The Retirement System and the Retirement Board", CalAPRS Attorney Roundtable, San Jose, September 13, 2013.
Speaker, "Fiduciary Focus: What is Ahead in the Area of Fiduciary Responsibility and Business Integrity," Wilmington Trust Partners for Success 2013, April, 2013.
Speaker, "Ethics for Public Officials," CalAPRS Principles of Public Pension Management for Trustees, held at Stanford Law School, March 2008-2013.
Speaker, "Implementing AB 340 and AB 197: What's Working, What Needs More Work," and "Pension Litigation Explosion: Track the Latest Decisions in California and Nationally," Public Pension Fiduciary Forum, March 2013.
Speaker, "AB 340 - What Sacramento Did TO/FOR You: A technical overview of the major changes imposed on 1937' Act Systems with the passage of AB 340," SACRS Fall Conference, November , 2012.
Speaker, "Ethics Issues: Role of In-House Counsel in Administrative Adjudications; and Use of Social Media," National Association of Public Pension Attorneys Legal Education Conference General Assembly, June 2012.
Speaker, "The Impact of Changing Actuarial Assumptions," National Association of Public Pension Attorneys Legal Education Conference, June 2012.
Speaker, "Are Public Pensions Being Sent to Davey Jones' Locker?", CalAPRS General Assembly, March 2011.
Panelist, "A Practical Look at How Public Pension Plans Govern Themselves", NAPPA Winter Seminar, February 2011.
Speaker, "The U.S. Supreme Court Weighs in on Theft of Honest Government Services Law: What Can Public Retirement System Counsel Learn?" and "Navigating the Open Meeting and Public Records Laws that Govern Public Retirement Systems," NAPPA Legal Education Conference, June 2010.
Speaker, "Ventura County Deputy Sheriffs' Ass'n v. Board of Retirement and its Aftermath," and "California Supreme Court Weighs In on State Conflict of Interest Rules for Public Officials: Lexin v. Superior Court," California Retired County Employees' Association Spring Conference, April 2010.
Speaker, "Vested Pension Rights Under California Law: Litigation (and Anticipated Litigation/Legislation) Pushes the Limits," and "California Supreme Court and United States Supreme Court Weigh in on Conflict of Interest Rules for State and Federal Public Officials," Public Pension Fiduciary Fund Symposium, March 2010.
Speaker, "Signs of Stability in 2010? The Shifting Sands of Pay-to-Play, Placement Agent, Campaign Contribution and Conflict of Interest Rules," SACRS Fall Conference, November 12, 2009.
Presenter, "Fiduciary Analysis of DROP Program Interest Rate Determination," SDCERS Meeting, October 2009.
Speaker, "Fiduciary Fundamentals for Public Pension Trustees," SACRS Education Conference, March 2009.
Presenter, "Fiduciary Fundamentals for Public Retirement System Trustees," LACERA Offsite Meeting, January 2008 and 2009.
Presenter, "The California Public Records Act and SB 1145," State Compensation Insurance Fund, June 2008.
Speaker, "Guidance to Public Fund Trustees, Staff and Advisors from the 2006 Report of the Committee on Fund Governance of the Stanford Institutional Investors' Forum," State Association of County Retirement Systems, November 15, 2007.
Speaker, "The California Supreme Court Requires Disclosure of Public Employee Salary Information and Changes the Legal Landscape Governing Public Retirement Systems' Application of the California Public Records Act," CalAPRS Attorney Roundtable, September 14, 2007.
Speaker, "Fiduciary and Other Legal and Practical Challenges of Sudan Divestment by Public Pension Fund Trustees," CalAPRS Attorney Roundtable, June 2007.
Speaker, "Due Process and Other Fiduciary Obligations: What's Required When Considering Disability Retirement Applications?" Marin County Employees' Retirement Association Board Offsite Meeting, March 2007.
Speaker, "Fiduciary Duties of Retirement Board Trustees Under the California Constitution: Where's Your Discretion?" Los Angeles County Employees Retirement Association Offsite Meeting, January 2007.
Presenter, "Ten Things Fiduciaries Can Do to Manage Risk," Mechanics Bank, August 2006.
Speaker, "Board Governance, Conflicts of Interest and Delegation of Duty: Has San Diego Changed the Rules of the Game?" National Association of Public Pension Attorneys Legal Education Conference, June 2006.
Speaker, "Fiduciary Liability Coverage: How Protected Are You?" State Association of County Retirement Systems, November 2005.
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