AABA Newsletter

Excerpts from the Induction Speech by AABA President, Eumi K. Lee
June 2015

I am truly humbled to take the helm of AABA, as the fifteenth female – and the first Korean American female – president.

In preparing my remarks for tonight, I reflected upon the theme of transition.

As many of you know, I am pregnant. Our son will be Michael’s and my first child. Having this life-changing event happen less than three months into my term as AABA President has made me think a lot about change and new beginnings. I have thought about my past experiences, what I want to impart upon our child and what I hope for him in the future. It has been a time to look back and reflect, all while looking expectantly forward.

Similarly with AABA, as we enter our 39th year, it is a time to reflect upon the lessons from the past and begin planning for the future – including our 40th Anniversary next year and the next 40 years to come.

Thus, I want to focus my remarks tonight on looking back, understanding the lessons from the past – as well as moving forward and bringing our strengths to bear now and in the future. 

First, in looking back, it is important to recognize where we came from and how far we have come. 

For many of us, our past is inextricably tied to the immigrant experience – whether we are first generation or fourth generation – in this country.

My parents were immigrants, and I was the first in my family born in the United States. Like many of us, this experience shaped my childhood. Growing up, I sometimes served as a cultural and linguistic interpreter for my parents.  I saw people treat them differently because of their race and accent.

Although I know there are times that my parents struggled to understand some of my earlier choices – whether it was focusing on race relations at Pomona College during Saegu also known as the LA riots – or participating in Teach for America in Oakland rather than going to immediately to law school or medical school – I knew that despite their protests, in their hearts they knew why.

It is imperative for the next generation of AABA to understand the discrimination and the racism experienced by our community. I remember the first time that I was asked in a fake Asian accent by a classmate in grade school if I was hungry and needed rice to eat.  I remember kids telling me I looked like Connie Chung.  And I remember being chased down the street in D.C. by a stranger who was yelling “immigrant get out of my country” while bystanders observed but did nothing to intervene. I know that many of you have had this same or similar experiences.

That’s why I want future AABA members to know that – despite discussions of a post-racial society and despite the success that many of us have attained – racism is real and exists today as evidenced by recent events that have captured our nation’s attention.

That being said, there has been much progress. In speaking with some of our more senior members at the Justice Kennard celebration, they reminisced about when AABA could have annual ski trips because the membership was so small. Even less than ten years ago, our annual dinner was small enough to be in a restaurant in Chinatown. We’ve since outgrown all the locations in Chinatown. Never in my wildest dreams as a kid growing up in Tennessee, would I have imagined being before you tonight taking the helm of almost 700-person strong organization.

This leads me to my next point – the power of community. With 700 members, we have so much potential in terms of what we can do, what change we can effect. I want the future generation of AABA to understand the importance and power of community and to leverage that power.

When I say “community,” I mean that on two levels. First, there is the Asian American community. It is diverse and inclusive of South Asians, Southeast Asians, Pacific Islanders, as well as East Asians. In addition, our Asian American community reaches across delineations of gender and sexuality. In terms of our lawyers, it encompasses a wide range of practices in a variety of setting from corporate law to criminal prosecution and defense from public law to public interest. This rich diversity is reflected in AABA’s creation of the Public Law, LGBT, and Women’s Committee in recent years.

In addition, I mean “community” on a broader level. Growing up in Tennessee I didn’t have the luxury of a Korean American or even an Asian American community. Looking towards the future, it is paramount that the next generation of AABA understands that we must work not only for the Asian American community but also for the broader community – in partnership not only with our sister API bars, but with BALIF, La Raza, and Charles Houston – to ensure diversity within our profession.

Relatedly, in looking forward, we must remember our activist roots and our commitment to public service.

This takes the shape in various forms within AABA. As discussed tonight – it takes place in part through our community service work – including partnering with API Legal Outreach to host two monthly pro bono clinics in San Francisco and Oakland. To give you a sense of scope – in the past two years, we have served over 350 low income clients through these clinics.

This also takes form in the work by the civil rights committee and in the amicus work that we perform. AABA has a long history of this type of activism. In 1977, less than a year after our formation, AABA signed onto the Supreme Court amicus brief in the Bakke affirmative action case. Earlier this month, AABA signed onto another amicus brief written by Munger Tolles & Olsen on behalf of BALIF to strike down the statutory and constitutional same sex marriage bans in Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio, and my home state of Tennessee. We have and must continue being leaders in these struggles.

With these reflections in mind, I want to share a little bit about my vision for this year. In this year of transition and in applying the lessons from the past to pay it forward, I have two main goals.

The first goal is to strengthen AABA and ensure that it is here for years to come.

  • This includes continuing my work in operationalizing and strengthening AABA’s corporate governance and structure.
  • We will continue to diversify our membership in every sense
  • And I will ensure that our pipeline to leadership remains strong by continuing to support the AABA Law Foundation and our students.

My second goal is to strengthen AABA’s place in the community by working in coalitions with others and supporting our members.

  • This includes building upon AABA’s history of activism and expanding our pro bono programs.
  • In addition, we will mentor our attorneys on every level and in various forms of practice – whether private or public interest, plaintiff or defense side, criminal or civil.
  • And we will continue our efforts to diversify the bench through our mentorship program and in coalition with others.

In closing, I wanted to take extend my deepest gratitude to Minami & Tamaki, Hanson Bridgett, Keker & Van Nest, Morgan Lewis & Bockius, and all of our sponsors tonight. AABA couldn’t do the work that it does without you.

I also wanted to thank the board and past and present officers – including Celia Lee, Ted Ting, Hung Chang, and especially Miriam Kim – for all their help with the dinner. Ted, you will be sorely missed.

On a personal level, I wanted to thank my dear friends, as well as my colleagues and my former students who came out tonight to support. To my Hastings colleagues, you inspire me by the work you do every day. To my current and former students – you inspire me to keep doing what I do.

And finally, I wanted to thank my family – my mother, father, my brother (Eugene) and his partner (Sharon), and my husband who is my constant supporter and my partner in crime.

Finally I want to thank all of you for your support tonight and throughout this upcoming year.

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In This Issue:

AABA’s 38th Annual Installation Dinner

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The AABA 38th Annual Installation Dinner was a tremendous success. Over 750 AABA members, non-members and honored guests gathered together at the Hyatt Regency in San Francisco to thank the outgoing President Theodore Ting for his excellent work over the last year and to welcome Eumi Lee as the new AABA President.

In addition, AABA awarded numerous distinguished awards during the dinner. AABA awarded the Joe Morozumi Award for Exceptional Legal Advocacy to Ray Buenaventura, the Mayor of Daly City. Mr. Buenaventura is one of the most well respected criminal IMG_5524defense attorneys in California and has served two consecutive terms as the Chair of the Private Defender Program Committee in San Mateo County. Mr. Buenaventura gave a powerful speech about his own work advocating on behalf of important API legal issues while also remembering the experiences he had with Mr. Morozumi, the award’s namesake, who was a trailblazer for API lawyers. He also made special mention about the influence Dale Minami had as a mentor and trailblazer for countless API attorneys and dedicated his award to Mr. Minami.

IMG_5504AABA also congratulated four law students that received an AABA Law Foundation scholarship to assist them with their legal studies: the Judges Scholarship winner, Jason Siu, a law student at UC Hastings; the Ocampo Scholarship winner, Chriselle Raguro, a law student at Golden Gate University; the Morozumi Scholarship winner, Jaslenn Singh, a law student at UC Berkeley; and the ALF Scholarship winner, Kristina Pham, a law student at UC Hastings. The AABA Law Foundation is a non-profit organization that awards annual scholarships to API law students to assist with the growing costs associated with legal education.

Furthermore, the AABA Law Foundation partnered with Charles Jung and the Nassiri & Jung foundation and raised over $20,000 and awarded a $20,000 grant to the Asian Pacific Islander Legal Outreach for API Legal Outreach to continue providing high-quality legal services to low-income clients in the community. Miriam Kim, AABA Law Foundation’s then-President, was instrumental in raising the impressive amount of funds on behalf of the foundation.

The night ended with Eumi Lee’s closing remarks where she not only set forth her vision for the future of AABA, but also honored the organization’s past. Eumi Lee is the 15th female AABA President in AABA’s 38-year history. During her closing remark, Ms. Lee presented her 14 predecessors, who were all met with rousing applause. AABA has a longstanding commitment to diversity, not only in regards to race and national origin but also in regards to gender. Eumi has made it a priority as AABA President to focus on gender equality issues affecting the legal community and to push for promotion of women in legal leadership positions.

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AABA thanks everyone who attended the AABA 38th Annual Installation Dinner. Under the leadership of Eumi Lee, the officers, and board members, the 2015-2016 term will undoubtedly carry on AABA’s tradition and legacy as the champion and the voice for the community.

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Farewell Speech – Ted Ting

Alright, alright, alright. That’s how I started my speech last year, and that’s how I’m ending my term.

If you were here last year, you may recall that I talked about several things:

  • I compared lawyers to superheroes. With great power comes great responsibility. The need for lawyers to offer leadership and stand up for what’s right, even if it’s not popular. And we saw that happen in many ways. Just one example was the public defenders’ black lives matter demonstration organized by AABA Past President Jeff Adachi.
  • I mentioned my goal would be hosting as many AABA events as possible. We did that.

AABA organized or co-sponsored over 100 events this year, averaging 2 every week. We had something for everybody – government lawyers, solo/small firm lawyers, pro bono-interested lawyers, in-house, junior associates, senior associates, and partners. To borrow a familiar tagline: AABA – we were everywhere you wanted us to be.

I’m very pleased that we could recognize Justice Kennard’s career and put on a panel discussion on Ferguson and Eric Garner.

  • I asked you to increase your participation. And you did.

You increased our membership, you came to our events, you joined our committees, and you signed on as panelists for our events. You helped the AABA Foundation reach an unprecedented amount of donations.

So I thank you for your contributions. I’d also like to give thanks to several others who have helped me this year.

Thank you to my fabulous wife, Melanie Dunn, and my kids for always supporting me and enabling me to do my job this year.

Thanks to my company, Bank of America, and my many colleagues for supporting my endeavors.

Thanks to Joan Haratani, my good friend and one of the finest people I know, for her mentorship, and her firm Morgan Lewis for repeatedly supporting our events.

Thanks to Dale Minami for his omnipresent support, guidance and wisdom.

I could not have done my job without the incredible support of the committee members, the committee co-chairs, the directors, and the officers – especially Eumi Lee, who set a gold standard as Vice President this year, and Miriam Kim, who managed to find time as a mother, partner, and dual board member for the AABA Law Foundation and AABA.

IMG_5619With every superhero story, there is the next chapter. For example, we all know there’s an Avengers sequel this year, with a new adventure and new challenge. Similarly, this coming year is another chapter for me, and also for AABA. And we need you to help write the story.

With your support, I’m confident Eumi will lead AABA to even greater success. So please…donate to the Law Foundation, volunteer at our clinics, share your knowledge and wisdom with other members, mentor someone.

While I may be rolling off the Board, I’m not disappearing from AABA. I’ll continue to support AABA as a member too.

It’s been a privilege and an honor to be AABA President. Thank you.

Excelsior,

Ted Ting

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AABA Presidents #28 and #34: What Are They Up to?
By John B. Lough, Jr., Community Services Committee Co-Chair

The road to AABA President is not a hurried one. The journey begins with becoming an active AABA member. From there, the committed member obtains an appointment to be a committee co-chair. Demonstrating excellence in leading a committee and after some self-reflection on that co-chair’s place within AABA, the interested co-chair seeks the votes to be elected a director-at-large. Serving at least two AABA fiscal years and doing much soul searching, the director-at-large pursues the votes to get elected each year to move up the officer ranks (secretary, treasurer, vice president/president-elect). At the end of that journey, this person joins the small club of AABA Presidents. The few who travel the road to AABA President dedicates at least a decade of their life to the journey, but what happens to these select few after their presidency?

AABA catches up with Victor M. Hwang (28th) and Billy Chan (34th) at their offices over coffee.

Victor M. Hwang – the 28th AABA President

Victor M. Hwang served as AABA President from 2004 to 2005 where the theme of social justice resonated through his Presidency. He currently serves as Deputy Director at Asian Pacific Islander Legal Outreach (API Legal Outreach) and maintains a solo practice, Law Office of Victor M. Hwang, http://roninlawyer.com/.

1. It has been about 10 years since your presidency. What have you been up to?

When I was president, I was here as managing attorney at API Legal Outreach. I was here until 2011, so I did a six-year term here. Then I went to the [San Francisco District Attorney’s] office to take over their civil rights prosecution of hate crimes and human trafficking cases. I was there for six years, then, more recently, I returned as Deputy Director of API Legal Outreach.

2. Do you miss being AABA president?

I don’t think I miss being AABA president. I miss being closely connected to a group of lawyers. I miss the community of AABA. I’m still friends with the folks I met through AABA, but I know AABA is what you make of it. It was always a busy commitment. Not something I can do with three kids now.

3. With it being 10 years since your presidency and you have had some time to reflect, what are you most proud of from that tenure?

Looking back at some of the accomplishments, one of them was expanding the AABA clinics that are probably more successful then they were back then. That was one of the things that I was pushing on as AABA President.

One other thing that I was proud of accomplishing was working and finding a pro bono attorney to work on the case of Eddy Zheng who was put in solitary confinement for pushing for ethnic studies within the prison system. This comes to mind because next week I will be testifying in Eddy’s case as he faces his final deportation hearing. So that is something that I have stayed with for 10 years. And Eddy during that 10 year period has accomplished more than I have in terms of anti-violence and anti-gang work and community bridge building. This is something that I am proud that AABA took a position on.

One other thing is having a lot of Asian community groups take a position on marriage equality. At the time, it was a bit more controversial, and there weren’t so many groups signed on to it. We were the first Asian American group to lead the charge, and it became easier after we had so many mainstream Asian American groups sign on. AABA was one of the first groups to sign on, and AABA was very involved in drafting the first amicus brief in support of marriage equality. Ten years later it seems like a no brainer, but back then I don’t think we had that many open LGBT attorneys within AABA. Now they have their own committee so that is a sign of progress.

Finally, AABA taking the leadership to restart the minority bar coalition that started in 2004 and continues to this day. This is a sign of some need and measure of progress that still exists.

4. Imagine that you are at the installation dinner. What advice would Older Victor give Younger Victor?

I remember before being sworn in as AABA President and having lunch with Kevin Fong who is an AABA institution. Kevin use to have a tradition of having lunch with each incoming AABA president. His advice, which is what I would give to myself, is that you need to plan ahead. A year is a short time, and there are so many demands on an AABA President in terms of attending other bar association functions and joining onto things that it’s easy to lose your own agenda. He suggested identifying three projects to push for and limit it to those three projects; and have the year mapped out in advance, even before assuming office, so you have a better plan to implement those projects.

5. How would you encourage prospective members to join and support AABA?

AABA can be a great vehicle for making professional contacts but for also making lifelong personal friendships. Even right now in my 22nd year in practice and after I left the [District Attorney’s] office and started my own firm, I thought it was helpful to be part of the AABA Solo and Small Firm committee. I got referrals; I got tips and advice from younger practitioners but from those who have being doing solo practice longer. AABA has always been a great resource and a great community of folks. It’s what you make of it.

6. Finally, what motivated you to serve on the Board and as President?

I saw AABA as a vehicle for change. As a side note on how I got recruited onto the Board, we use to hold fundraisers and the annual dinners at Empress of China, and I was recruited as AABA’s first bartender. I would always run the bar at the Empress of China. I donated all the alcohol, and we put out tip jars. The events use to be open, hosted bar at all the AABA events, which made AABA a very popular bar function. We would raise several thousand dollars in tips and would donate the tips to the scholarship fund, and that was how I initially got involved then recruited onto the Board.

Then I saw that folks outside do care what AABA thinks, and when it takes a position on a cutting edge issue or support a candidate, I think it has some weight, so that is why I became involved in the Board. Then through my work with Asian Law Caucus and API Legal Outreach, I saw an opportunity to build a tighter partnership between law firm attorneys and the public interest community, and that is why I took on the challenge of the presidency. I think most folks at big law firms or solo/small practice want to give back to the community in some way, and AABA was the vehicle that they can give back to the community.

Billy Chan – 34th President

Billy Chan - photoBilly Chan served as AABA President from 2010 to 2011. When Billy assumed the Presidency, the nation and the legal community were technically out of the Great Recession, but the effects stretched beyond the “official” dates in the history books. Billy’s Presidency faced a legal community where firms were shedding attorneys and law students were fearful that they did not have jobs. It is in the shadow of this economic crisis that Billy took the reins of the AABA Presidency and steered AABA to adapt to the needs of its membership.

Billy has been a solo practitioner since 2006, the Law Offices of Billy Chan, http://chanlawoffices.com/.  Billy provides a wide range of corporate, intellectual property, and entertainment counsel.

1. What have you been up to since your presidency?

Nothing specific. After the presidency, you get a general sense of having a lot of time back. It is really nice. Stuff that gets neglected like family, friends, and work, you can devote time back to these things.

2. What do you miss about being AABA President?

I miss being aware what the organization is doing. The organization does a ton, and as President, you have a big sense of the accomplishment of the organization. But not being president or on the board, I miss that. I still see the people, so I can’t say that I miss seeing people, but it is AABA itself.

3. It has been almost 5 years since your presidency. What are you most proud of?

Don’t know whether I can put a finger on it, but when I was President, it was a tough time in the economy. People were afraid. No one was hiring. Law students could not get work. No one was getting rehired. When you are in this atmosphere, there was a danger that AABA would fall on the wayside. That said, the Board and I did a good job keeping AABA alive and thriving.

4. Imagine that you are at the Installation Dinner, and you see Younger Billy. What advice would you have for him?

Do even more. The Presidency is a short time to get stuff done. It’s not even a full year to get things done when you consider that by the end of the year, elections and the dinner are underway. You basically have three-fourths of a year to get things done. I feel like I pushed hard and the board pushed, but there is always room to do more.

5. How would you encourage prospective members to join and support AABA?

You have to understand the needs of potential members and make AABA attractive to them. AABA does a good job with good, consistent programming, and programs that address the needs of the under- and unemployed. Law students are freaking out, and we should work to make AABA be their organization and tell them how to deal with or provide a venue to help them.

6. What motivated you to serve on the Board and as President?

Two things. AABA never had a Filipino president, so that was one motivation. The other is that I have known AABA since law school and always respected the people on the Board and the work they did. Since AABA had such an impact in the early part of my career, I wanted to be part of keeping the organization going for other people.

Closing Thoughts

There is life after being AABA President. While each President brings his or her own vision to the Office, one cannot deny the dedication, commitment, and respect each has for AABA. AABA is what you make of it, and Victor and Billy definitely made something of it and continue to be a part of the AABA community. Who will be next to embark on the road to AABA President?

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Alternative Careers Event for Lawyers
By Stephen Chong, Solo & Small Firms Committee Member

On Thursday, February 5, 2015, the Solo and Small Firms Committee teamed up with the Bar Association of San Francisco (BASF) to host “Transitions: Alternative Careers for Lawyers,” a panel and mixer. The event featured a distinguished panel of speakers – Kyungah “Kay” Suk, mediator and founder of Forward Mediation; Jinah Conroy, business developer at Courtroom Sciences, Inc.; Manuel Tumaneng, Jr., wealth management advisor at Merrill Lynch; Marina Sarmiento Feehan, founder of Positive Counsel, a career consulting firm; and Kelly Kang, real estate agent with Sotheby’s International Realty. Around 30 professionals – including AABA and BASF members – attended the event, held at BASF in San Francisco.

The panelists shared their personal stories about why they left their traditional legal careers, the paths that led them to make their transitions, and the benefits they now reap from having made the change. A few of the tips gleaned from the Q&A session include:

  • Be honest with yourself if you are unhappy with your career in law.
  • Learn what your natural skills are. Your ideal job should allow you to use 75% of your natural skill set.
  • Gain as much experience as possible in your chosen field of work, even if it means starting from the bottom.
  • Make your decision to leave the law profession a positive story.
  • When looking to enter a new field or industry, leverage your networking contacts to get your foot in the door.
  • If you cannot find the right job opportunity, create it.
  • Finally, although the decision can be nerve-wracking, you can ultimately be much happier in your new career, as all of the panelists are.

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After sharing their wisdom, many of the panelists and attendees joined the Solo & Small Firms Committee for a drink or two at a happy hour mixer, co-hosted by the Social Committee at Osha Thai. There, everyone had a chance to unwind, re-connect, and share more war stories over drinks and appetizers.

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Legally Asian 2015
By Lisa P. Mak, Community Services Committee Co-Chair

This year marked the sixth year for the ever-popular Legally Asian conference, the annual prelaw diversity program sponsored by AABA and other local minority bar associations. On Saturday, February 7, 2015, high school and college students filled the Alumni Reception Center at the University of California, Hastings College of the Law to hear distinguished Asian-American lawyers and local law students share their experiences about becoming part of the legal profession. In addition, for the first time, Legally Asian included an interactive mock class component where the attendees got a real taste of the law school setting.

In recent years, the cost of law school has increased, enrollment numbers have dropped, and graduates still struggle to find legal jobs while saddling high amounts of debt.  Against this backdrop, Legally Asian sought to address very relevant questions about whether law school is still worth it, and what graduates can do with a law degree.  Attendees gained a fuller understanding – intellectually, culturally, and emotionally – of what it means to be part of the profession, especially as a minority attorney.

As in past years, Legally Asian 2015 was structured so that high school and college students heard from lawyers who work in different areas of law and who have used their law degrees in various ways. AABA President Ted Ting also made a special appearance and captivated the students with his motivating remarks, encouraging them to join the “superhero” ranks of lawyers.

The first panel of the day was the Firm and In-House Panel moderated by Lin Chan (Associate, Lieff Cabraser Heimann & Bernstein and AABA Civil Rights Committee Co-Chair). This panel featured Vidhya Prabhakaran (Partner, Davis Wright Tremaine and SABA-NC Co-President), Shaamini Babu (Partner, Saltzman & Johnson), Christina Hsiang (General Counsel, Lit Motors), and Billy Chan (Owner, Law Offices of Billy Chan and AABA President, 2010–2011). During this panel, students learned about working at firms and companies of different sizes, including BigLaw, smaller firms, solo practice, and in-house positions.

Following the Firm and In-House Panel was a panel discussion with Bay Area law students. CSC Co-Chair Lisa P. Mak moderated the Law Student Panel, which included Michelle Geronimo (UC Hastings), Richard May (Santa Clara Law), and Stephanie Vo (USF) as panelists. The students gave insightful advice on how they decided to come to law school, what to do in college to prepare, the value of work experience, and tips on the law school admissions process.

CSC Co-Chair John B. Lough, Jr. then led the mock class component of the program, a concept that was implemented for the first time this year. Students first watched fictional depictions of law school classes in The Paper Chase and Legally Blonde films.  Then the students broke up into small groups and with the help of law student volunteers, they read and discussed a real criminal law case usually taught during 1L year.  Then “Professor Lough” led a class discussion of the case using a soft version of the Socratic method. Attendees volunteered or were cold called to answer questions about the case, respond to hypotheticals, and think about the intellectual and theoretical framework of criminal law.  Essentially, the students got a taste of what it meant to “think like a lawyer.”

The attendees next heard from practitioners in the Public Interest/Public Sector world. The Honorable Judge Steven Owyang (Administrative Law Judge (Ret.)) moderated the panel, which included the Honorable Judge Stuart Hing (Alameda Superior Court), Abigail Rivamonte Mesa (Deputy Public Defender, San Francisco), Cindy Liou (Owner, Cindy Liou Consulting), and Shalini Swaroop (Regulatory Counsel, Marin Clean Energy). The panelists conveyed a real sense of how their work impacted their clients and society, and discussed the importance of mentorship and remembering one’s roots and community.

The final attorney panel of the day was the Alternative Careers Panel, where the panelists showed that lawyers can have successful, unique careers outside the traditional practice of law. Charles Jung (AABA Director-at-Large and Partner/Founder of Nassiri & Jung LLP) moderated this distinguished panel that featured Mayor Ray Buenaventura of Daly City, Kay Suk (Owner & Mediator, Forward Mediation), Nikki Dinh (Program Associate, Blue Shield Foundation), and Jay Kim (Managing Director, Major, Lindsey & Africa).

Besides the panels and mock class, the day included a networking lunch for the attendees, where a number of Asian-American guest attorneys and law students came to speak with the students and share their experiences.

The Legally Asian 2015 planning committee included Community Services Committee Co-Chairs Claire Y. Choo, John B. Lough, Jr., and Lisa Mak, as well as an army of attorney and law student volunteers: Ashlee Cherry, Stephen Chong, Kim Crawford, An Dang, Michelle Geronimo, Vanessa Leonardo, Alston Lew, Richard L. May, Christine Oh, Stephanie Vo, Elisha Yang, Stephanie Yee, and Shiho Yamamoto. In the continuing tradition of collaboration, Legally Asian 2015 also had the support of local minority bar associations. A big thank you to our sponsors this year – AABA, South Asian Bar Association of Northern California, Filipino Bar Association of Northern California, and Korean American Bar Association of Northern California.

At the end of the day, the students left with a sense of what it means to be an Asian-American lawyer and leader, and hopefully were inspired to join the “superhero” ranks of lawyers.

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8th Annual AABA In-House Mixer at INDO Restaurant and Lounge
By Suzette Torres, Co-Chair, In-House Mixer Planning Committee

On February 12, 2015, AABA’s In-House Committee hosted their 8th Annual In-House Mixer at INDO Restaurant and Lounge. This year’s mixer can be best described as the “Power Happy Hour.”  With over 80 people in attendance, the mixer connected attorneys from in-house legal departments with private law firms from a wide range of practices including business litigation, IP, employment law, workers compensation, real estate, and finance. The beautiful weather complimented the array of delicious food and drink provided by INDO Restaurant and Lounge.

Some lucky attendees left with prizes as the mixer included a silent auction benefiting the AABA Foundation to raise money for scholarships and a raffle made possible by our generous sponsors Morrison Forrester, Leeo, Inc., and Veritex.

Thank you to everyone who joined us at the event and to our volunteers from Golden Gate University School of Law, UC Hastings College of the Law, and Santa Clara Law. A special thank you to our AABA Board Member, Marina Sarmiento Feehan, for her leadership and guidance in making this event possible. The In-House Committee wishes to acknowledge the hard work of it committee members who planned and organized this mixer: Event Co-chairs, Lauriebeth Bugawan, Suzette Torres, and Christina Hsiang; event committee members, Sandy Liu, Amanda Gau, and Pamela Ng.

The AABA In-House Committee consists of over 300 APA in-house attorneys from around the Bay Area and is the largest APA In-House group nationally. We provide networking, educational and development opportunities for in-house attorneys.

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