AABA Law Foundation Newsletter - November 2017

2017 Message from the AABA Law Foundation President Chris Noma:

On behalf of the AABA Law Foundation (ALF), I am making a huge shout out and thanks to all of you who made 2017 a phenomenal year of giving.

First and foremost, I’d like to thank and recognize our incredible major donors:  Raymond L. Ocampo Jr., who donated $10,000 for scholarships and public interest grants, Stuart and Rhoda Hing, who donated $10,000 for scholarships and public interest grants, the Minami, Tamaki, Yamauchi, Kwok & Lee Foundation, which donated $10,000 for the Garrick S. Lew Fellowship, and the Nassiri & Jung Foundation, which donated  $10,000 for a public interest grant.

Because of their generosity which was MATCHED by donations from YOU, our AABA members,  ALF was able to grant an amazing $37,500 in scholarship and $35,000 in public interest grants in 2017 – a landmark achievement.  Listed below are all the recipients of the scholarships and grants that your donations made possible.  Thank you, thank you, thank you!

And now, please join us in 2018 so we can continue to provide the much needed legal support for our Asian Pacific American community as we look forward to the coming year. 

Giving Tuesday is around the corner, and you can give online, by clicking HERE or the link below. If you prefer, you can send a check payable to the AABA Law Foundation and mail to P.O. Box 387, San Francisco, CA 94104.


On behalf of the 2017 Board, thank you for your generosity and support!

President: Christine Noma, Wendel, Rosen, Black & Dean
Treasurer: Charles Jung, Nassiri & Jung
Secretary: Celia Lee, Goldfarb & Lipman

Board of Directors:
Deanna Gan, Law Offices of Deanna Gan
Jennifer Y. Lee, Law Offices of Jennifer Y. Lee
Suzanne Yamamoto, Old Republic Exchange
Marie Ma, Senior Corporate Counsel GAP
Stanley Young, Covington & Burling



Scholarship winners with Judge Victor Hwang at the 2017 Annual Dinner

2017 Scholarship and Grant Campaign: 

Ana Duong (Raymond L. Ocampo Jr. Family Scholarship).  Berkeley Law School.  During college, Ana interned at the Asian Law Caucus as a voting rights intern.  Ana plans to pursue a career in public interest law.  She would like to provide legal services and educational programs to low-income and under-resourced API communities.

Christopher Gordon  (Joe Morozumi Scholarship).  University of Michigan.  Chris has interned with the Asian Law Caucus, working in housing and immigration, and for One Justice, providing legal assistance in its immigration program.  Christopher plans to return to the Bay Area to continue pursuing his career goal of providing free legal services to the Bay Area’s underserved Asian communities. 

Tarah Powell-Chen  (Asian Pacific American Judges Scholarship).  University of San Francisco Law School.  Tara interned her first year at Legal Assistance for Seniors in Oakland, working primarily with elderly Asian immigrants.  She has a special interest in protecting the legal rights of seniors and those with medical health issues, and advocating for the Bay Area elderly Asian communities to get the medical attention and proper care they deserve.   

Wendell Lin (AABA Scholarship).  UC Hastings College of the Law.  Wendell has worked for Mayor Ed Lee’s office and on the campaigns of many APA public servants in San Francisco.  He has also worked for the Asian Pacific Islander American Public Affairs Association and the Chinatown Development Center.  Wendell is dedicated to increasing civic engagement,  political awareness, and community involvement in the Asian Community.

Christopher R. Gueco  (Garrick S. Lew Fellowship).  UC Hastings College of the Law.  Christopher has clerked for the Alameda County, Marin County, and the San Francisco Public Defender's Offices.  His goal is to fight on the “front lines” for change, and has received two offers to work for the Public Defender’s office.

Sayuri Takagawa (AABA Summer Grant).  UC Hastings College of the Law.  Sayuri used her summer grant to work in the Alameda County Public Defender’s Office this past summer and plans to work in the public interest throughout her legal career. 

Mengfei Sun (AABA Summer Grant).  Berkeley Law.  Mengfei used her summer grant to work at the Asian Law Caucus in the Workers’ Rights Clinic.  She has also volunteered at East Bay Sanctuary Covenant, where she interviewed clients and helped prepare asylum applications. 

Stacy Elizabeth Young (2017 State Bar 3L Diversity Scholarship) co-sponsored by​ ALF. Stanford.  Stacy is dedicated to social justice work as she has participated in two full-time law clinics, public interest internships, and pro bono opportunities.  At Stanford, she received the Hon. Thelton E. Henderson prize for excellence in a clinical course for her work in the Youth and Education Law Project.  Upon graduation, Stacy joined the Youth Law Center in San Francisco as an Equal Justice Works Fellow.

Asian Americans Advancing Justice - Asian Law Caucus: $5,000 from Raymond L. Ocampo Jr., matched by $5,000 from ALF.

Korean Community Center East Bay – Immigration Integration Program: $10,000 from Nassiri & Jung Foundation, matched by $10,000 from ALF.

SF Chapter of the Council on American Islamic Relations: $5,000 funded by Munger, Tolles & Olson and ALF.

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Profiles of 2017 Summer Grant Recipients

AABA offers grants to help fund qualified summer law clerks to work on projects that provide free legal services to the Asian American community. Applicants must be sponsored by a nonprofit legal organization that has agreed to supervise the applicant for the summer for at least 10 weeks. The grant is funded by the AABA Law Foundation through the Community Services Committee of AABA. 

Mengfei Sun, 2L, Berkeley Law
During her 1L year, Mengfei Sun volunteered at Asian Law Caucus' Workers' Rights Clinic to help with client intakes, identify issues with supervising attorney, and convey advice and referrals. Mingfei continued to work for the ALC Workers Rights Clinic as a 2017 AABA Law Student Summer Grant recipient. She has also volunteered at East Bay Sanctuary Covenant, where she interviewed clients and helped them prepare applications for affirmative asylum. She is an active member of Berkeley's Asian American Law Journal and helped plan the annual symposium for 2017. 


Sayuri Takagawa, 2L, UC Hastings College of Law
After finishing her undergraduate education at UC Berkeley in 2013, Sayuri Takagawa remained in the Bay Area to compete internationally with her Tae Kwon Do team and address domestic human trafficking. Her previous professional work has been in the nonprofit industry addressing CSEC (commercial sexual exploitation of children). As a former advocate and resource provider for exploited systems involved youth and group home manager, Sayuri decided to pursue her JD at UC Hastings College of the Law to be a more zealous advocate for vulnerable populations who face discrimination. As a recipient of the 2017 AABA Law Student Summer Grant, Sayuri worked in the Alameda County Public Defender's Office.  She hopes to continue working in the public interest sector, and envisions working in policy to elevate the Asian American political voice as well as create policies that would help facilitate a more sustainable and equitable society for all.

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