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An Interview With 49th District Assemblymember Ed Chau

Assemblymember Chau worked as a system programmer, computer engineer and lawyer before joining the State Assembly. – Courtesy photo

By Galen Patterson

Recently, Arcadia Weekly talked with Assemblyman Ed Chau about his time in office as the 49th District Assemblymember.

Currently, Ed Chau is pitted against Arcadian Burton Brink in the 2018 election cycle.

Arcadia Weekly (AW): Mr. Chau, you have a background in law, could you elaborate more on that?

Ed Chau (EC): Sure, I practiced law for about 15, 16 years or thereabouts. I did a combination of both litigation and transactional work, covering pretty much the gamut, covering anything from civil cases to immigration, incorporation, business litigation in general .

AW: You did a lot of different things, what was your favorite area to work in?

EC: When I first started out, I didn’t have much of a choice. Whatever came through my door, I had to try to help out, but in general I just enjoyed the service. I was able to serve clients regardless of the area. I also helped many startup companies, when people wanted to start doing business in the Los Angeles area. Regardless, I just enjoyed helping people within the legal confines of the system.

AW: Do you have any cases that you think helped define your career as a lawyer?

EC: Since I did quite a bit, I think they were all pretty fulfilling in general … I helped a family in a car accident case, for example, in which four or five members of the family were killed in a car accident. That case lasted a long time and I was able to help that family work through the legal system and was able to help them obtain some monetary compensation. That case was quite significant … It was a Toyota van that rolled over and four lives were lost, and I was helping the family to recover some monetary damage out of that incident.

AW: How did your career in law prepare you for the office you now hold?

EC: One of the main reasons I went to law school was to prepare myself for a career in public service. The education prepared me and equipped me to do the kind of work that I’m doing right now, because it helped me to explore some of the areas I’m currently working in. For example: the law background really helped me with the legislative process, and gave me a lot of information to figure out what the law is all about … When I first came into the legislature, a lot of the lingo I had already acquired as part of my law practice. Also, the skill set I picked up as an engineer for IBM, that also helped me to launch my specialty into privacy and technology. I worked for IBM for about eight years as an engineer and then for two years, I worked for Unisys corporation as a systems programmer, so I was able to combine my law background, my technology background, and my education into doing things here in the legislature.

August 21, 2018

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Galen Patterson


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