AABANY Pre-OCI Information Session: What Do Corporate Lawyers Do?

On Tuesday, July 22nd, AABANY’s Corporate Law Committee and Student Outreach Committee hosted an insightful Pre-OCI Information session, “What do corporate lawyer do?”, at Paul, Weiss. With more than 30 law school students and undergraduate students in attendance, Executive Director Yang Chen welcomed everyone and introduced the moderator, Terry Shen. 

The panel started with Terry introducing each distinguished panel speaker. The panelists comprised both in-house attorneys from top firms in the industry and corporate law lawyers at prestigious law firms, each with a different specialty practice area within the landscape of corporate law:  

•    Jasmine Ball, Partner, Debevoise & Plimpton LLP

•    Parkin Lee, Senior Vice President and Chief Legal Officer, The Rockefeller Group 

•    Marianne Chow-Newman, Counsel, The Hearst Corporation

•    Lawrence G. Wee, Partner, Paul Weiss Rifikind Wharton & Garrison LLP 

•    Terry Shen (Moderator), Partner, Kramer Levin Naftalis & Frankel LLP

Addressing the question “what do corporate lawyer do?”, the panelists talked about why they chose corporate law, their daily role as a corporate lawyer, the interaction and relationship with corporate clients, the kind of tasks a junior associate will encounter, and interview techniques for the upcoming OCI (on-campus interview) season on campus. 

First, the panelists explained five different subdivisions of corporate law: Capital Markets, Credit & Leverage Finance, Mergers & Acquisitions, Restructuring, and Investment Management. Different from litigation and what has been portrayed in the media, corporate lawyers rarely go to court or draft motions. Instead, corporate lawyers offer legal advice to corporations who attempt to operate and grow their business. Coming from an engineering background in his early career, Parkin Lee characterized his role as a corporate lawyer as “engineering with words.” The nature of corporate operation requires lawyers to write a tight contract, understand the needs of their clients and negotiate on their behalf, build trust between two parties who want to do business, and explain complicated deal structures to the client. Young lawyers need to have the capability to negotiate, conduct due diligence, and strengthen relationships with clients.  

The event concluded with a discussion of the deal team culture and “bro culture” in law firms. Although one does not need to thrive in the bro culture to succeed, Terry drew a connection between bro culture with the work ethic of a young lawyer, illustrating the reliability, can-do mindset and intellectual curiosity embodied in both deal team culture and bro culture.  

We would like to sincerely thank Larry Wee and Paul, Weiss for hosting the event by providing food, beverages, and an excellent space. We also thank the Corporate Law Committee and Student Outreach Committee for putting together this valuable and meaningful program for current or prospective law students.

To learn more about the Corporate Law Committee, please click here.

To learn more about the Student Outreach Committee, please click here.

NAPABA and MAABA Celebrate Judge George Draper III’s Appointment as Chief Justice of the Missouri Supreme Court

For Immediate Release
July 25, 2019
For More Information, Contact:
Navdeep Singh, Policy Director
202-775-9555; nsingh@napaba.org

The National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA) and the Missouri Asian American Bar Association (MAABA) celebrate the appointment of member and supporter the Honorable George W. Draper III as the Chief Justice of the Missouri Supreme Court.

Judge Draper was first appointed to the Missouri Supreme Court in 2011. He first joined the bench in Missouri in 1994. He is the second African American to serve as Chief Justice. He is a graduate of Morehouse College and received his law degree from Howard University. He and his wife, the Honorable Judy P. Draper, are members of the NAPABA Judicial Council.

“NAPABA extends warm congratulations to the Hon. George W. Draper III, on his recent appointment, on his recent appointment as Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Missouri. The second African American judge to serve on Missouri’s high court, Judge Draper has been outstanding in his support of diversity and inclusion in the state’s legal community, and a long-time friend to NAPABA and its Missouri affiliate, MAABA,” said NAPABA President Daniel Sakaguchi.

“We congratulate Judge Draper on his appointment as the Chief Justice of the Missouri Supreme Court. Judge Draper has been a stalwart supporter of MAABA since its inception, and we have confidence he will continue to be a fair and impartial judge and to protect the rights of all Missourians,” said Frances Barbieri, president of MAABA.

NAPABA Judicial Council Chair the Hon. Benes Aldana (Ret.) said, “We are so proud of our friend, Justice George Draper, who recently became the newest Chief Justice of Missouri. Throughout his career, Chief Justice Draper has exhibited steadfast commitment to safeguard individual rights on an equal basis for all. He is widely respected for his inclusive leadership and he has served as a role model and inspiration for many in the legal profession. We look forward to continuing our great relationship with him and his wife, Judge Judy Draper, both members of the NAPABA Judicial Council.”

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The National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA) is the national association of Asian Pacific American (APA) attorneys, judges, law professors, and law students. NAPABA represents the interests of over 50,000 attorneys and over 80 national, state, and local bar associations. Its members include solo practitioners, large firm lawyers, corporate counsel, legal services and non-profit attorneys, and lawyers serving at all levels of government. NAPABA engages in legislative and policy advocacy, promotes APA political leadership and political appointments, and builds coalitions within the legal profession and the community at large. NAPABA also serves as a resource for government agencies, members of Congress, and public service organizations about APAs in the legal profession, civil rights, and diversity in the courts.

To learn more about NAPABA, visit www.napaba.org, like us on Facebook, and follow us on Twitter (@NAPABA).

GSPI and Prosecutors Committees Co-Sponsor July Membership Mixer

On Thursday, July 18, 2019, AABANY’s Membership Committee, Government Service & Public Interest (GSPI) Committee, and Prosecutors Committee hosted a Membership Mixer with members, colleagues, and friends at Stout NYC on West 33rd Street. 

Members and non-members alike enjoyed reconnecting with familiar faces and building new relationships. We filled an entire side room in the cellar of Stout. The date of the mixer coincided with the birthday of former Prosecutors Committee Co-Chair Helen Ahn, who sadly passed away last November. To read the tribute to her in the Winter 2018 issue of The Advocate, click here. The Prosecutors Committee brought a birthday cake to mark the occasion and to honor Helen’s memory.

The Membership Committee held a special raffle. To be eligible for prizes, attendees had to follow AABANY’s Instagram account and post about the Membership Mixer. A special shout out to Jimei Hon and Melanie Rios for winning free memberships, and Abraham Lee for winning an international whiskey flight courtesy of BARO by Chefs Society.

To learn more about the GSPI Committee, go here. To learn more about the Prosecutors Committee, go here.

Join the Membership Committee and the Prosecutors Committee for an outing to watch a Yankees game at Yankee Stadium on August 16. To view the event, click here.

Attorney General’s Honors Program Application

Since 1953, the Attorney General’s Honors Program has been recognized as the nation’s premier entry-level federal attorney recruitment program.  The Honors Program attracts candidates from hundreds of law schools across the country representing a broad cross-section of experiences and interests.  Selections are made based on many elements of a candidate’s background, including a demonstrated commitment to government service, academic achievement, leadership, journal, moot court and mock trial experience, clinical experience, past employment, and extracurricular activities that relate to the work of Justice and the relevant component.  The Department of Justice seeks high caliber attorneys to advance its mission and welcomes applications from candidates whose backgrounds reflect the Nation’s rich diversity

Key Dates

  • July 31: Application opens
  • Early September: Application deadline
  • Late September:  Interview candidates selected
  • Mid-October – early November:  Main Honors Program interview period
  • Late November – February:  Offers Extended

For more information, please check the link: https://www.justice.gov/legal-careers/entry-level-attorneys

Department of Justice’s Summer Law Intern Program Application

The Summer Law Intern Program (SLIP) is the Department of Justice’s competitive recruitment program for compensated summer internships.  Law students who participate in the SLIP benefit from an exceptional legal experience and invaluable exposure to the Department of Justice.  Interns represent diverse backgrounds and  interests, and come from a wide range of law schools throughout the country.

SLIP Deadlines & Key Dates

  • July 31 – Application Opens
  • Early September:  Application Deadline
  • Early October: Interview Candidates Selected
  • Mid. Oct – early November: Telephone Interviews
  • Late Nov. – January/ February:  Offers Extended

For more information, please check the link: https://www.justice.gov/legal-careers/summer-law-intern-program

AABANY Judiciary Committee Holds Quarterly Meeting at NYC Civil Court

On Tuesday, July 17th, the Judiciary Committee held its quarterly meeting at NYC civil court located in Lower Manhattan. The meeting was led by Co-chairs Rena Malik and William Wang. During the meeting, the attendees heard about highlights of past events, such as the robing ceremony of Judge Michael Park, and also actively engaged in a discussion on how to prepare and improve future investiture ceremonies for prospective APA judges. The discussion also covered screening panel training for next spring and applications for AABANY endorsement for members who wish to ascend to the bench. After hearing about AABANY’s participation in screening panels in New York, several attendees kindly offered help to connect the committee with eligible speakers for the screening panel training.  At the end of the meeting, the co-chairs and the attendees brainstormed possible topics on what should be presented at this year’s Fall Conference, which is being held in conjunction with the NAPABA Northeast Regional. They also proposed ideas of possible events in the future, such as a clerkship panel, to enhance diversity on the bench. Thank you to all the attendees who came and shared their ideas, and we look forward to your involvement in the future work of the Judiciary Committee. To learn more about the Judiciary Committee visit their webpage at https://www.aabany.org/page/115

AABANY and SABANY Co-Sponsor Careers in Alternative Dispute Resolution (“ADR”) Panel

On Monday, July 15th, AABANY, along with SABANY, co-sponsored a panel on Careers in Alternative Dispute Resolution (“ADR”) at the JAMS office located on the 16th floor of the New York Times Building at 620 8th Ave. The panel featured Dr. Kabir Dhuggal, Senior Associate at Arnold & Porter, Robyn Weinstein, ADR Administrator at the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York, Rebecca Price, Director of the ADR program at the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York, and Chris Kwok, mediator and arbitrator at JAMS, ADR Services. Chris Kwok is a Board Director of AABANY, Co-Chair of the Asia Practice Committee, and Chair of the Issues Committee. The panel was moderated by Amit Kumar, Managing Attorney at the Law Offices of William Cafaro. 

After a brief introduction of the panelists, Kumar first asked panelists, “How did you become involved in ADR?” The panelists’ responses ranged from studying it early in law school to falling into the realm of ADR later. Price noted her background as a social worker in helping to make the transition to working in ADR more naturally. Kwok affirmed that and humorously added, “When I try to describe mediation, I sometimes tell people that I’m a psychologist with a law degree.”

The panelists also spoke on key skills for thriving in a career in ADR. These skills included patience, engaged listening, an entrepreneurial spirit, and a genuine passion for the work. Dr. Dhuggal especially emphasized the necessity of robust legal writing skills. He advised, “Legal writing is an art that needs to be finessed. Make every effort you can. A simple way to do this is to find a senior whose writing you particularly admire and tell them that you’d like to co-author a piece with them.” Everyone commented on the importance of meaningful networking as well—be it through organizations such as AABANY and SABANY to even organizing panels with professionals you’d like to reach out to. 

Other topics discussed during the well-attended panel included improving diversity in ADR, domestic ADR vs. international ADR, and predictions on future trends in the career pathway. Afterwards, attendees munched on assorted snacks from Cafe Zaiya while networking—as discussed during the panel. Thank you to all of our accomplished panelists for sharing their valuable insights! 

NAPABA Extends Condolences on the Passing of U.S. Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens

For Immediate Release
July 17, 2019
For More Information, Contact:
Navdeep Singh, Policy Director
202-775-9555; nsingh@napaba.org

The National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA) extends its sincere condolences to the family of retired United States Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens, who passed away on July 16th in Florida at the age of 99. He was the longest-lived Supreme Court justice in United States history. Justice Stevens was appointed by President Gerald Ford in 1975 and served until 2010. His thirty-five year tenure on the bench made him the third-longest-serving Justice in the history of the Court.

“Justice Stevens had a significant impact on the United States and our understanding of the law and its evolution,” said NAPABA President, Daniel Sakaguchi. “He was part of and authored decisions in landmark cases that came before the Supreme Court. He will be remembered for his impartial commitment to the rule of law, his efforts to safeguard principals of liberty and equality and his dedicated service to the country, both on the bench and as veteran of World War II.”

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The National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA) is the national association of Asian Pacific American (APA) attorneys, judges, law professors, and law students. NAPABA represents the interests of over 50,000 attorneys and over 80 national, state, and local bar associations. Its members include solo practitioners, large firm lawyers, corporate counsel, legal services and non-profit attorneys, and lawyers serving at all levels of government. NAPABA engages in legislative and policy advocacy, promotes APA political leadership and political appointments, and builds coalitions within the legal profession and the community at large. NAPABA also serves as a resource for government agencies, members of Congress, and public service organizations about APAs in the legal profession, civil rights, and diversity in the courts.

To learn more about NAPABA, visit www.napaba.org, like us on Facebook, and follow us on Twitter (@NAPABA).

Join AABANY for the 2019 Asian American International Film Festival (AAIFF)

AABANY will be co-sponsoring three film screenings with Asian CineVision for the 2019 Asian American International Film Festival this summer. These three film screenings include:

Jeff Adachi, the Sam Francisco Public Defender and filmmaker who passed earlier this year has been a pioneer in the justice system and API cinema. To celebrate his legacy, two of his documentaries will be shown, along with a tribute by Corey Tong and John Woo before the screening.

Seadrift follows the story of what begins as a dispute over fishing territory into an eruption of violence and hostility against Vietnamese refugees along the gulf coast. Seadrift examines a shooting of a white crab fisherman by a Vietnamese refugee, and its aftermath, which continues to reverberate today.

AABANY’s reenactments site also has information on Vietnamese Fishermen v. Ku Klux Klan, which is the trial that ensued from these conflicts in Seadrift, TX.

Shorts: Identities is a series of eight documentary shorts which all tackle the question: “What does it mean to be Asian, to be a part of the Asian Diaspora?” These shorts confirm that there is no singular answer to this question, and cover topics as wide-ranging as Cambodian doughnut shops (Doughnuts for Dollars) to the young Harvard student who started the non-profit, PERIOD org (Period Girl).


The screening for A Tribute to Jeff Adachi will be held at the Museum of Chinese in America, while the Shorts: Identities and Seadrift screenings will be held at Regal Essex, Theater B.

Please click the links to register and learn more about the films. AABANY members will receive a discount code once they register for the event on the AABANY website. 

For more information on the AAIFF, click here