Inspired to study law by his father who had worked with Senator Robert Kennedy and President John F. Kennedy, Mr. Cheasty went to work right after law school for the State of California, protecting the rights of farm workers. He worked on both the administrative trial level and on cases before the Court of Appeals.
After leaving state service, Mr. Cheasty headed the Legal Department of the Carpenters Trust Funds of Northern California, one of the largest construction union funds in the United States. He represented the working carpenters and their pension and health insurance funds in state and federal courts, before the state legislature in Sacramento and before Congress. Before he left he achieved the highest recovery of benefits in a single case in the history of the Carpenters Funds. In 1984, he left to go into private practice.
Robert C. Cheasty currently serves as President and founding member of the Citizens for East Shore Parks, founded in 1985 to spearhead the drive for a state park along the east shore of San Francisco Bay. Their 25 year effort yielded the Eastshore State Park in December 2002. Work is ongoing to complete the Park and to open the East Bay shoreline to public access and to protect sensitive shoreline habitat.
For approximately the past ten years he has served as President of the Bay Dredging Action Coalition, an organization dedicated to ecologically sound and efficient dredging solutions in San Francisco Bay. Their successful efforts have helped to ensure the continued vitality of shipping in the region, while using the clean dredge material for wetland restoration projects around the Bay.
Mr. Cheasty’s past public positions include:
- Mayor of Albany
- Chair, Albany Redevelopment Board
- Chair, Albany Pension Board
- President, Solano Avenue Association
- Co-Chair, Albany Earthquake Preparedness Program (EQPP)
- League of California Cities, representing the East Bay on the Water Policy Subcommittee, helping to produce for the first time ever a statewide consensus on water policy in 1987-88.
- USF School of Law, JD 1978
- Class Graduation Speaker; Law Review; Moot Court Honors
- City University of New York, BA 1971 (major honors)
Robert Cheasty’s Teaching Positions:
- UC Berkeley (guest lecturer, graduate and undergraduate levels)
- UC Hastings Law School (Judge: Trial Advocacy Program; Moot Court Program)
- USF School of Law (Judge: Trial Program; Moot Court Program);
- Kings College (guest lecturer, London, U. K.);
- State of California (trial techniques);
- California Certified Acupuncture Association: (Requirements of the Acupuncturist Treater in Personal Injury Cases; Health Care in the Health Maintenance Environment);
- United Practitioners of Chinese Medicine: (Lecture: Medical Malpractice);
- American Institute of Chinese Medicine, Third World Conference of Traditional Medicine: (Lecture: The Emergence of Provider Networks);
- Fifth International Congress of Chinese Medicine: (Lecture: Current Trends).
Law review articles:
- U.C. Davis Law Review – on bargaining rights of workers in cases of agricultural mechanization;
- U.S.F. Law Review – on Constitutional rights and standards of proof in cases of custodial confessions
- Numerous pieces for local newspapers;
- Briefs and writings for clients and public interest groups;
- Wrote the position paper for the State of California on the issue of farm labor and mechanization