Staff Bios

Staff Biographies

Meet Our Hawaii Bankruptcy Attorney and Legal Staff

You may be wondering who will handle your Hawaii bankruptcy, debt settlement, or tax resolution case. Our Honolulu bankruptcy lawyer and his staff decided to tell you a little bit about ourselves so that you know who you are talking to when you contact us.

Blake Goodman, Senior Attorney

Photo of attorney Blake GoodmanI received my law degree from George Washington University in Washington, D.C. in 1989 and have been exclusively practicing bankruptcy related law in Texas, New Mexico, and Hawaii ever since. In the past, I was a Certified Public Accountant, receiving my license from the State of Maryland in 1988. Today I am unlicensed, inactive and am not holding myself out as a CPA.

I specialize in providing solutions to a family’s debt burdens and tax problems. To date, I’ve helped over 8,000 individuals and families alleviate their financial setbacks caused by overwhelming debt problems. Our law firm is one of the largest bankruptcy filers in the entire state of Hawaii. I am a member of the Hawaii State Bar Association, the Federal Bankruptcy Law Section, the Tax Freedom Institute and the National Association of Consumer Bankruptcy Lawyers. In addition to being a member of the American Bankruptcy Institute, my article “The Often Overlooked 10-Year Tax Discharge Rule” was published in the ABI Journal.

I moved to Hawaii in 1999 with Blanca, my wife, who works with me at the office, because we wanted to live in tropical paradise. We now have twin daughters and have found Hawaii to be more than just a pretty place to live.  It is the center of the universe for us.

Elwen Freitas, Attorney

Photo of attorney Julia OatenI graduated from the University of Hawaii at Manoa’s William S. Richardson School of Law in 2012. Prior to that, I earned my Bachelor’s degree in Hawaiian Language and Political Science. I grew up in Waianae and am a graduate of the Kamehameha Schools. Before working for Blake Goodman, I was a staff attorney at the Legal Aid Society of Hawaii representing low-income clients in bankruptcy, eviction, and fair housing proceedings. Although I have only been practicing for a few years, I truly believe that the practice of law is a healing profession. This is especially true for our clients, where the debt may be stressful and burdensome. The bankruptcy provides our clients with the fresh start and creditor protections usually relieving them of the stress and burdens associated with debt.

Outside of the office, I enjoy spending time with my family – my wife, son and two daughters. I try to get my family outdoors when possible and I also enjoy good food, especially with family and friends.

Martin Berger, Attorney

Martin Berger received his Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics and his Masters of Business Administration from Tulane University (New Orleans) where he graduated with Honors. Martin graduated Cum Laude from Tulane University Law School. He was the first person certified as a specialist in consumer bankruptcy by the Hawaii Supreme Court and was a Business Law Professor at University of Hawaii (Hilo). Marty has lived in Hawaii for over 17 years and has been helping clients with bankruptcy matters since 1993.

Blanca Goodman, Debt Negotiation Specialist

Photo of Blanca GoodmanI’m Blake’s wife of 20 plus years.  My job is very exciting – I deal with all our clients’ creditors, collections agencies and attorneys. I process all our client’s bills statements, warnings letters, and law suits. I’m the one who spends one hour or more on the phone finding the accounts or negotiating the best deal I can for our clients.

I’m from Mexico and I came to this country 20 years ago. I speak Spanish, and I would love to learn Japanese and Korean. We have two smart twin girls. One of my greatest enjoyments is to listen to audio self improvement books, and classical music.

I dance Kahiko and Auana hula, and wake up every morning to a Zumba exercise routine.

My purpose is to help our clients find debt freedom as soon possible, between 2 years or less. I do have constant communication with our clients about their case, and I want our clients to feel that I do care deeply from my heart.

Julia Oaten, Attorney

I attended the University of Manchester, (UK) gaining a B.A. with Honors in Art History, before obtaining my J.D. from the University of Baltimore School of Law. Before moving to Hawaii and specializing in bankruptcy, I practiced criminal law as a Public Defender in Annapolis, MD.

While I am Cuban – Armenian, I grew up in England. My family and I moved to Hawaii in 2007 when my husband was offered a great job here. I stayed at home until we were all settled in and then responded to Blake’s job offer, and have been here ever since. I am the proud owner of an English bulldog and I enjoy fishing and hiking Oahu’s beautiful island with my husband and young son.

I really enjoy helping our clients achieve a fresh start and hopefully relieve them of some of the stress being in debt can cause while protecting them from creditors and helping them survive the bankruptcy process with their dignity intact.

Brenda Cochran, Paralegal

Brenda Cochran earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from Manchester University (Indiana) in Fine Arts and Business Administration. She is a Federally licensed Healthcare Facility Administrator and is commissioned by the State of Hawaii Department of the Attorney General as a Notary Public. Brenda has lived in the Ala Moana area for many years. The best part of her job is helping clients achieve their goals.

Dora Casillas, Paralegal

Prior to coming to this beautiful island, Dora Casillas lived in Simi Valley, California where she worked in the legal field for 18 years. Dora finds bankruptcy law the most rewarding where at the end of the day, she knows she helped many obtain a fresh start leading to a less stressful life.

Born in Texas and raised in California, Dora is fluent in Spanish. She enjoys the breathtaking sunrises and sunsets, along with the hiking trails and beaches. Dora is thrilled to be here and to have the opportunity to work with such a great team to serve the people of Hawaii.