On March 11, AABANY co-sponsored a book release of Robert Tsai’s new book, Practical Equality. The event was held at Seyfarth Shaw LLP, and was also co-sponsored by UCLA Alumni New York Tri-State Network and Association of Asian American Yale Alumni.
Robert L. Tsai is a professor of law at American University. He is the author of Practical Equality and America’s Forgotten Constitutions and his essays have appeared in Boston Globe, Washington Post, Los Angeles Review of Books, Politico, Boston Review, and Slate.
Professor Tsai’s new book discusses a practical approach towards fighting for equality through the lens of legal ideas. It proposes that arguments not directly relevant to equality may achieve the goals of equality. It offers an alternative and more practical approach to the fight for justice.
The event mainly featured a panel discussion of the book. We were honored to have on the panel Hon. Denny Chin, Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, Suzanne Kim, Professor of Law at Rutgers Law School and Judge Denny Chin Scholar, and Professor Robert Tsai, the book’s author. The panel discussion featured many subjects, including Judge Chin and Prof. Kim’s thoughts on the book, people of colors’ historic struggles for justice, and contemporary political issues. The panel ended with a Q&A session, during which the audience engaged the panelists with questions raised by the panel discussion and the issues addressed in the book. Afterwards, the audience got to mingle among each other and with Professor Tsai, who also signed copies of the book which were made available for sale.
AABANY would like to congratulate Professor Tsai on the release of his new book. We thank Judge Chin, Professor Tsai, and Professor Kim for participating in the event. We thank Chris Kwok, Chair of the Issues Committee, for organizing the event. We also thank Seyfarth Shaw LLP for hosting the event at their office, and UCLA Alumni New York Tri-State Network and Association of Asian American Yale Alumni for co-sponsoring the event.
The bill passed due to the efforts of everyone involved in the Chinese American WWII Veterans Recognition Project. The mission of the project was to recognize, honor and celebrate the military service of approximately 20,000 Chinese Americans who fought in the Second World War.
Chris Kwok, AABANY Board Director, Issues Committee Chair and Asia Practice Committee Co-Chair, participated in the effort to get the legislation passed. Chris served on the Steering Committee of the Chinese American WWII Veterans Recognition Project and acted as Legal Counsel to the Committee.
Brian Song, AABANY President-Elect, and Chris Kwok, as AABANY Issues Committee Chair, also advocated for passage of the bill at NAPABA Lobby Day in Washington, DC, during APA Heritage Month in 2018.
AABANY commends Chris Kwok and Brian Song for their efforts and advocacy in support of getting this very important legislation passed.
Congratulations to Chris Kwok, Director on AABANY’s Board and Chair of the Issues Committee and Co-Chair of the Asia Practice Committee, on being published in the New York Law Journal. Below is a quote from his article, which can be accessed by clicking the link above. Please note that to read the entire article, you must have a New York Law Journal subscription.
Given the historical exclusion of minorities from the legal profession, the lack of diversity in alternative dispute resolution (ADR) is not surprising. The diversity and inclusion issue is magnified by the unique features of the ADR field. Neutrals with diverse backgrounds can help administer justice in today’s increasingly diverse society, as they are a reflection of the people they serve. Of course, mere diversity is not enough; the meaningful inclusion of those diverse candidates in the industry is the next chapter of the ADR story.
Last week, on December 8, AABANY co-sponsored with SABANY and MuBANY a panel discussion on moving forward post-election, hosted by Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher. The New York Law Journal ran an article about it (follow the link in the title; subscription may be required). Our Issues Committee Co-Chair, Chris Kwok, was among the distinguished panelists in this timely, topical and important conversation.
From the article:
From left [referring to the photo in the article], Lisa Khandhar, director of the South Asian bar; Sania Khan, assistant state attorney general in the Civil Rights Bureau; Sharaf Mowjood, Huffington Post senior reporter; Ali Alsarraf, an associate at Gibson Dunn; Merium Malik, director of the Muslim bar; Arun Venugopal, WNYC reporter; Amol Sinha, vice president of public relations for the South Asian bar; Christopher Kwok, supervisory ADR coordinator at the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and Asian American bar issues committee chairman; and South Asian bar president Rippi Gill, a senior associate at Lazare Potter & Giacovas.
A Shot in the Dark: The Peter Liang/Akai Gurley Tragedy
Akai Gurley, a 28-year-old African-American man, was fatally shot on November 20, 2014, in Brooklyn’s Louis H. Pink Houses, by rookie NYPD Officer Peter Liang, who had entered a stairwell with his firearm drawn. The shooting was declared an accidental discharge; the bullet ricocheted off the wall and Gurley was struck once in the chest and later died from the shot. On February 10, 2015, Liang was indicted by a grand jury on manslaughter, assault, and other criminal charges, and on February 11, 2016, Liang was found guilty of manslaughter and official misconduct, becoming the first NYPD officer in over a decade to be found guilty of shooting and killing a citizen while on duty. The shooting and trial touched off a firestorm of opinion and protests, and in the post-Ferguson era, the case has added another twist to the intense ongoing debate about race and accountability in policing, as well as the Asian American community’s place in that debate and race relations.
This panel will explore criminal procedural issues in the context of the Peter Liang trial, such as the indictment and grand jury process, what is the standard for homicide versus manslaughter, and will also look at the civil rights aspect of the case. How did the APA community respond to the tragedy and what can we learn from it going forward?
Alexander M. Lee, Esq., Principal, The Law Offices of Alexander M. Lee
Christopher M. Kwok, Esq., Supervisory ADR Coordinator, U.S. EEOC (appearing in individual capacity)
Jin P. Lee, Esq., Principal, The Law Office of Jin P. Lee
Sandra Leung, Esq., Executive Vice President and General Counsel, Bristol-Myers Squibb Company
Vinoo Varghese, Esq., Principal, Varghese and Associates, P.C.
A photo posted by AABANY (@aabany) on May 15, 2016 at 12:58pm PDT
AABANY was at the Coalition of Asian Pacific Americans (CAPA) 2016 Festival, and though there was a little rain in the morning, people still turned out in droves! Thanks to Yang Chen, Chris M. Kwok of the Issue Committee, Charles Chen of YLC Committee and Thalia Huang of GSPI Committee who manned the tables. There were 40 organizations represented at the Festival, and we were able to outreach to the Asian American community about AABANY’s pro bono initiatives.
Check out the video of Asian American Federation’s From Yellow Peril to Islamophobia: How Asian Stereotypes Impact Our Lives Today from April 12, 2016. Nearly 100 people joined AAF for the important conversation on the very real ways that discrimination shapes our lives.
The talk starts at marker 0:17 and ends at 1:51. Among the panelists was our very own Issues Committee Co-Chair Chris Kwok, Senior Mediator at the EEOC. We’re proud to have his candor and expertise as part of our leadership. He will also be chairing our Fall Conference luncheon plenary session. Stay tuned for news on that important conversation.
Sponsored by CUNY Diversity Projects Development Fund
Please join us for a conference on, Asian American Leadership at CUNY and Higher Education, on Friday, May 6, 2016, from 9:30am to 5pm, at the CUNY Graduate Center, 365 Fifth Avenue, Concourse Level, Manhattan. This conference is free and open to the general public.
There is a remarkable absence of Asian Americans in the upper ranks of leadership at CUNY,and in higher educationnationwide. AAARI will release the findings of its CUNY Asian American Leadership Initiative Report at this conference, and will address recommendations for outreach and recruitment, as well as development of the student and faculty pipeline for leadership.
This conference will focus on why there is a lack of Asian American leadership, best practices for recruitment and professional development, student leadership, tenure and promotion, as well as the importance of Asian American and Asian Studies in preparing and inspiring the next generation of Asian American Leaders.
Keynote Speaker Dr. Santa Ono, President, University of Cincinnati
CUNY Asian American Leadership Initiative Report: Findings, Recommendations and Accountability
Trajectory to the Top – Barriers on the Path to the Presidency
Best Practices: Government Agencies, Foundations, Corporate Sector and Professional Organizations
AABANY’s Issues Committee Co-Chair, Chris Kwok, will be speaking on this panel.
Tenure and Promotion: Process and Advice
State Of Asian American and Asian Studies at CUNY and Its Importance to Asian American Leadership in Higher Education
Foundation for the Future – Working Group Discussions
To RSVP and to view the full program for this conference, please visit www.aaari.info/2016leadership.htm. Please be prepared to present proper identification when entering the building lobby.