NAPABA Applauds the Confirmation of Lisa Wang to the U.S. Court of International Trade


For Immediate Release:
 
Date: February 1, 2024 
ContactRahat N. Babar, Deputy Executive Director for Policy 

WASHINGTON – Today, the United States Senate confirmed Lisa Wang to serve on the U.S. Court of International Trade. She is the second from the AANHPI community to serve on this Article III court.

“We congratulate Lisa Wang on her confirmation to serve on the U.S. Court of International Trade,” said Anna Mercado Clark, President of NAPABA. “She brings deep experience to the bench having worked in private practice and government service, including at the Department of Commerce and in the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative.”

The U.S. Court of International Trade, an Article III court, has nationwide jurisdiction over civil actions arising from U.S. customs and international trade laws. Appointments to the U.S. Court of International Trade are lifetime appointments.

“Today, President Biden has appointed 30 AANHPI Article III judges that the U.S. Senate has confirmed. We thank President Biden for nominating Ms. Wang and his continued efforts to extend his record-breaking benchmark of AANHPI judges,” said Priya Purandare, Executive Director of NAPABA.

Lisa Wang served as the Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Enforcement and Compliance, and she was the U.S. Department of Commerce’s delegate on the Interagency Working Group for the White House Initiative on Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians, and Pacific Islanders. In that role, Assistant Secretary Wang supported the Administration’s whole-of-government agenda to advance equity, justice, and opportunity for AANHPI communities. 

Before her appointment at the Department of Commerce, she was a partner at Picard Kentz & Rowe LLP, where she focused on international trade law matters, including antidumping, countervailing duty litigation, and trade policy issues. Assistant Secretary Wang also served as Senior Attorney with the Office of the Chief Counsel for Trade Enforcement and Compliance at the Department of Commerce, as Assistant General Counsel in the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative, and as Senior Import Administration Officer at the U.S. Embassy in Beijing, where she was awarded Commerce’s Bronze Medal Award for Distinguished Performance. She received her J.D. from Georgetown University Law Center in 2006 and her B.S. from Cornell University.

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The National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA) represents the interests of over 60,000 Asian Pacific American (APA) legal professionals and nearly 90 national, state, and local APA bar associations. NAPABA is a leader in addressing civil rights issues confronting Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander communities. Through its national network, NAPABA provides a strong voice for increased diversity of the federal and state judiciaries, advocates for equal opportunity in the workplace, works to eliminate hate crimes and anti-immigrant sentiment, and promotes the professional development of people of all backgrounds in the legal profession.

NAPABA Applauds the Confirmation of Judge Kenly Kiya Kato to the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California

For Immediate Release: November 7, 2023
Contact: Rahat N. Babar, Deputy Executive Director for Policy
WASHINGTON – Today, the United States Senate confirmed Judge Kenly Kiya Kato’s nomination to the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California. 

“NAPABA congratulates Judge Kato on her confirmation to the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California. An experienced jurist, her service as a U.S. Magistrate Judge on that court since 2014 has been exemplary,” said Sandra Leung, President of NAPABA. “Active in the AANHPI community, her commitment to public service and access to justice was shaped by the incarceration of her parents during World War II solely because they were of Japanese descent.”

“Judge Kato is the 26th Article III judge from the AANHPI community that was nominated by President Biden and confirmed by the U.S. Senate. President Biden continues to extend his record of judges from the AANHPI community,” said Priya Purandare, Executive Director of NAPABA. “We thank President Biden for nominating Judge Kato and the late Senator Feinstein and Senator Padilla for recommending her.”

Prior to Judge Kato’s confirmation to the U.S. District Court, she served as a U.S. Magistrate Judge in the U.S. District Court, Central District of California. Earlier in her career, she maintained a private practice and was a deputy federal public defender. Judge Kato was a law clerk to the late Judge Robert M. Takasugi of the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California and is a graduate of the University of California at Los Angeles and Harvard Law School.
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The National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA), represents the interests of over 60,000 Asian Pacific American (APA) legal professionals and nearly 90 national, state, and local APA bar associations. NAPABA is a leader in addressing civil rights issues confronting Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander communities. Through its national network, NAPABA provides a strong voice for increased diversity of the federal and state judiciaries, advocates for equal opportunity in the workplace, works to eliminate hate crimes and anti-immigrant sentiment, and promotes the professional development of people of all backgrounds in the legal profession.

NAPABA Applauds the Confirmation of Arun Subramanian to the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York

For Immediate Release: 
Date: March 10, 2023
Contact:  Priya Purandare, Executive Director

WASHINGTON – March 10 – On Wednesday, Arun Subramanian was confirmed to the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York. Subramanian is the first South Asian American to serve on the Southern District of New York.

“NAPABA congratulates Arun Subramanian on his historic confirmation,” said Sandra Leung, president of NAPABA. “A child of immigrants, Mr. Subramanian is the first lawyer in his family, and this week, he became the first South Asian American judge to serve on the Southern District of New York. Like his family, we are proud to see him represent us.”

“The Southern District of New York is one of the most influential and active federal trial courts in the U.S.,” said Priya Purandare, executive director of NAPABA. “In addition to overseeing America’s largest financial institutions, it is also the location of one of the largest populations of AAPIs in the nation. We urge the Senate to continue confirming candidates that are representative of our nation.”

Subramanian was a partner at Susman Godfrey LLP where he chaired the firm’s pro bono practice and focused on consumer protection, antitrust, commercial class actions, and contract and tort litigation. In 2021, Subramanian was appointed by Chief Justice John Roberts to serve on the Advisory Committee for the Federal Rules of Evidence. Subramanian clerked on the U.S. Supreme Court for Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit for Judge Dennis Jacobs, and on the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York for Judge Gerald E. Lynch. He is a graduate of Columbia Law School and Case Western Reserve University.

NAPABA thanks President Biden for nominating Arun Subramanian and Senate Majority Leader Schumer and Senator Gillibrand for recommending and supporting his nomination.

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The National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA), represents the interests of over 60,000 Asian Pacific American (APA) legal professionals and nearly 90 national, state, and local APA bar associations. NAPABA is a leader in addressing civil rights issues confronting APA communities. Through its national network, NAPABA provides a strong voice for increased diversity of the federal and state judiciaries, advocates for equal opportunity in the workplace, works to eliminate hate crimes and anti-immigrant sentiment, and promotes the professional development of people of all backgrounds in the legal profession.

NAPABA Applauds the Confirmation of Cindy K. Chung to the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit

For Immediate Release: 
Date: February 13, 2023
Contact Priya Purandare, Executive Director

WASHINGTON – February 13. The Senate confirmed Judge Cindy K. Chung to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit. She is the first Asian American to serve as an appellate judge on the Third Circuit.

“NAPABA congratulates Judge Chung on her historic confirmation to serve on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit,” said Sandra Leung, president of NAPABA. “A dedicated public servant, Judge Chung broke barriers when she was confirmed as the first AAPI to serve as U.S. Attorney in Pennsylvania. Today, we celebrate our 16th active AAPI U.S. Circuit Court Judge.”

Before serving as U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Pennsylvania, Chung served as a trial attorney in the Criminal Section of the Department of Justice’s Civil Rights Division, where she prosecuted the first case under the Shepherd-Byrd Hate Crimes Act. She also served as an assistant district attorney at the District Attorney’s Office, New York County, and investigation counsel in the Official Corruption Unit. Chung began her legal career as a law clerk for Judge Myron Thompson on the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Alabama. She received her J.D. from Columbia Law School and her B.A. from Yale University.

“Judge Chung is active in the Asian American legal community, including participating in community briefings and events addressing anti-Asian hate incidents with our affiliate the Asian Pacific American Bar Association of Pennsylvania (APABA-PA). We congratulate Judge Chung on her confirmation,” said Priya Purandare, executive director of NAPABA.

NAPABA thanks President Biden for nominating Cindy K. Chung and Senator Casey, Senator Fetterman, and retired Senator Toomey for recommending and supporting her nomination.

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The National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA), represents the interests of over 60,000 Asian Pacific American (APA) legal professionals and nearly 90 national, state, and local APA bar associations. NAPABA is a leader in addressing civil rights issues confronting APA communities. Through its national network, NAPABA provides a strong voice for increased diversity of the federal and state judiciaries, advocates for equal opportunity in the workplace, works to eliminate hate crimes and anti-immigrant sentiment, and promotes the professional development of people of all backgrounds in the legal profession.

NAPABA Applauds the Confirmation of Judge John Z. Lee to the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit


WASHINGTON – 
Today, [Sept. 7], the U.S. Senate confirmed Judge John Z. Lee to the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit. Judge Lee is the first Asian American appellate judge to serve on the Seventh Circuit. 

“NAPABA congratulates Judge Lee on his historic confirmation to the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit,” said A. B. Cruz III, acting president of NAPABA. “Judge Lee is an experienced jurist with a decade of experience as a U.S. District Court Judge for the Northern District of Illinois. Moreover, Judge Lee’s story, the son of a coal miner and a nurse who immigrated to the United States when he was only five years old, resonates with many in our community.”

Judge Lee is an active member in the AAPI legal community, serving as a former Board Member of the Asian American Bar Association of the Greater Chicago Area (AABA Chicago) and continues to be active with both AABA Chicago and NAPABA. He was the President of the Board of Directors for the Coordinated Advice and Referral Program for Legal Services (CARPLS), a co-founder of the Willow Creek Legal Aid Clinic in Hoffman Estates (a joint program between CARPLS and Willow Creek Church), and the President of the Board of Directors of Asian Human Services. 

In addition to his service as a U.S. District Court Judge for the Northern District of Illinois since 2012, Judge Lee worked in private practice and as a trial attorney in the Environmental and Natural Resources Division of the U.S. Department of Justice. He is a graduate of Harvard Law School and Harvard College.

NAPABA thanks President Biden for nominating Judge Lee and Senator Durbin and Senator Duckworth for recommending and supporting his nomination..
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The National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA), represents the interests of over 60,000 Asian Pacific American (APA) legal professionals and nearly 90 national, state, and local APA bar associations. NAPABA is a leader in addressing civil rights issues confronting APA communities. Through its national network, NAPABA provides a strong voice for increased diversity of the federal and state judiciaries, advocates for equal opportunity in the workplace, works to eliminate hate crimes and anti-immigrant sentiment, and promotes the professional development of people of all backgrounds in the legal profession.

NAPABA Applauds the Confirmation of Judge Roopali H. Desai to the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit

For Immediate Release:
Date: August 5, 2022

Contact: Priya Purandare, Executive Director

WASHINGTON – Yesterday, the U.S. Senate confirmed Judge Roopali H. Desai to the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. Confirmed in record time, Judge Desai is the first South Asian American judge to serve on the Ninth Circuit.

“NAPABA congratulates Judge Desai on her confirmation to the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit,” said A. B. Cruz III, acting president of NAPABA.” Judge Desai is a trusted legal expert with a broad coalition of bipartisan support. Her experience, legal acumen and background brings much needed representation and legal diversity to the Ninth Circuit.”

Previously Judge Desai served as partner at Coppersmith Brockelman. She served as a law clerk for The Honorable Mary Schroeder, Chief Judge on the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit and is a graduate of the University of Arizona James E. Rogers College of Law, the Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health, and the University of Arizona.

NAPABA thanks President Biden for nominating Judge Desai and Senator Sinema and Senator Kelly for recommending and supporting her nomination.

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The National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA), represents the interests of over 60,000 Asian Pacific American (APA) legal professionals and nearly 90 national, state, and local APA bar associations. NAPABA is a leader in addressing civil rights issues confronting APA communities. Through its national network, NAPABA provides a strong voice for increased diversity of the federal and state judiciaries, advocates for equal opportunity in the workplace, works to eliminate hate crimes and anti-immigrant sentiment, and promotes the professional development of people of all backgrounds in the legal profession.

NAPABA Applauds the Confirmation of Judge Nina Y. Wang to the United States District Court for the District of Colorado

For Immediate Release: July 19, 2022
Contact: Priya Purandare, Executive Director

WASHINGTON — Today, the U.S. Senate confirmed Judge Nina Y. Wang to the U.S. District Court for the District of Colorado.

“NAPABA congratulates Judge Nina Y. Wang on her confirmation to the U.S. District Court for the District of Colorado,” said A.B. Cruz III, Acting President of NAPABA. “Judge Wang’s childhood experience of navigating the immigration system for two years to correct an administrative error gave her an understanding on the importance on how courts affect the lives of individuals. We are proud to see her represent our community and bring not just her vast knowledge as a magistrate judge and as a federal litigator, but her personal experience that makes her an inspiration for our community.”

Judge Nina Y. Wang is a U.S. magistrate judge for the U.S. District Court for the District of Colorado. Previously, she served as an Assistant U.S. Attorney in Colorado and was a partner at Faegre Baker Daniels LLP. Judge Wang clerked for the Honorable Peter J. Messitte of the U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland and is a graduate of Washington University and Harvard Law School. Active in the APA community, Judge Wang is a recipient of NAPABA’s Best Under 40 Award and served as president of NAPABA’s Colorado affiliate APABA Colorado.

NAPABA thanks President Biden for nominating Judge Nina Y. Wang and Senator Bennet and Senator Hickenlooper for recommending and supporting her nomination.

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The National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA), represents the interests of over 60,000 Asian Pacific American (APA) legal professionals and nearly 90 national, state, and local APA bar associations. NAPABA is a leader in addressing civil rights issues confronting APA communities. Through its national network, NAPABA provides a strong voice for increased diversity of the federal and state judiciaries, advocates for equal opportunity in the workplace, works to eliminate hate crimes and anti-immigrant sentiment, and promotes the professional development of people of all backgrounds in the legal profession.

NAPABA Celebrates the Confirmation of Judge John H. Chun

For Immediate Release: 
Date: March 24, 2022 

ContactMary Tablante, Associate Strategic Communications & Marketing Director

WASHINGTON –Yesterday, the U.S. Senate confirmed Judge John H. Chun to the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington.

“NAPABA congratulates Judge Chun on his confirmation to become only the second Asian American Article III district court judge in the state of Washington,” said A.B. Cruz III, acting president of NAPABA. “Judge Chun is a well-respected jurist who has deep ties to the Asian American and Pacific Islander community, including as a past president of the Korean American Bar Association of Washington and as a member of NAPABA and the Asian Bar Association of Washington.”

“We thank Senators Murray and Cantwell for recommending Judge Chun and the Biden-Harris Administration for upholding their promise to diversify the judiciary.”

AAPIs represent nearly 10% of the population and constitute the largest community of color in the state of Washington.

Judge Chun served as a judge on the Washington State Court of Appeals in Seattle, Washington and as a judge on the King County Superior Court. He has been recognized as a top Washington “Super Lawyer.” He was a clerk for the Honorable Eugene A. Wright on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit and is a graduate of Columbia University and Cornell Law School.

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The National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA), represents the interests of over 60,000 Asian Pacific American (APA) legal professionals and nearly 90 national, state, and local APA bar associations. NAPABA is a leader in addressing civil rights issues confronting APA communities. Through its national network, NAPABA provides a strong voice for increased diversity of the federal and state judiciaries, advocates for equal opportunity in the workplace, works to eliminate hate crimes and anti-immigrant sentiment, and promotes the professional development of people of all backgrounds in the legal profession.

NAPABA Celebrates the Confirmation of Lucy H. Koh to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit

WASHINGTON- On Dec. 13, the U.S. Senate confirmed Judge Lucy H. Koh to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. Judge Koh is the first Korean American female federal appellate judge in the nation’s history.

“NAPABA congratulates Judge Koh on her historic confirmation to the Ninth Circuit to become the first Korean American female federal appellate judge in the United States,” said Sid Kanazawa, president of NAPABA. “Judge Koh is a devoted public servant, a trailblazer, a mentor to young lawyers, and a dear friend. She has and continues to make us so proud.

“Thank you, Senators Feinstein and Padilla for recommending Judge Koh. Thank you, President Biden for nominating her. And thank you Leader Schumer for announcing, during our annual NAPABA Convention, that Judge Koh would receive a floor vote.”

In 2010, Judge Koh made history, becoming the first Korean American federal district court judge when she was unanimously confirmed to the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California. Prior to the federal bench, Judge Koh has served on the Superior Court of California, in the U.S. Department of Justice, as special counsel in the Office of Legislative Affairs, and as an assistant U.S. attorney. Her nomination had strong bi-partisan support, including from former California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger. Judge Koh is a graduate of Harvard University and Harvard Law School.

The National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA), represents the interests of over 60,000 Asian Pacific American (APA) legal professionals and nearly 90 national, state, and local APA bar associations. NAPABA is a leader in addressing civil rights issues confronting APA communities. Through its national network, NAPABA provides a strong voice for increased diversity of the federal and state judiciaries, advocates for equal opportunity in the workplace, works to eliminate hate crimes and anti-immigrant sentiment, and promotes the professional development of people of all backgrounds in the legal profession.

NAPABA Celebrates the Confirmation of Judge Jinsook Ohta to the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California and Judge Shalina D. Kumar to the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan

WASHINGTON – Sid Kanazawa, president of NAPABA, issued the following statement in response to the confirmations of Judge Jinsook Ohta to the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California and Judge Shalina D. Kumar to the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan:

“NAPABA congratulates Judge Ohta on her confirmation to become the first Asian American woman to serve as an Article III judge in the Southern District of California. She has a career in public service, serving as a judge on the California Superior Court and as a Supervising Deputy Attorney General in California. Judge Ohta has strong ties to the AAPI community as an active member of NAPABA and the Korean American Bar Association of San Diego. We thank Senators Feinstein and Padilla for recommending Judge Ohta.

“NAPABA congratulates Judge Kumar on her historic confirmation to the Eastern District of Michigan. She is the first Asian American to serve as an Article III judge on the federal courts in Michigan. Judge Kumar has extensive experience on the bench, serving as Chief Judge of the Oakland County Sixth Circuit Court in Michigan covering both civil and criminal matters. We thank Senators Stabenow and Peters for recommending Judge Kumar.

“December 2021 has been a historic month with a record four AAPI women judges confirmed by the Senate. We applaud Leader Schumer for his leadership and the Senate for swiftly confirming these nominees, and we thank President Biden for his commitment to diversifying the judiciary.”

Judge Ohta served as a Superior Court Judge for the Superior Court in San Diego County. Previously, she worked in the Consumer Protection Section of the California Attorney General’s Office as Supervising Deputy Attorney General. Judge Ohta clerked for the Honorable Barry Ted Moskowitz on the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California and is a graduate of Yale University and New York University School of Law.

Judge Kumar has been on the bench since 2007, and over the years, has served as a presiding judge of the Adult Treatment Court, the Chairperson of the Oakland County Criminal Assignment Committee, the bench liaison to the Oakland County Bar Association Circuit Court Committee, a member of the Michigan State Bar Professionalism Committee, and a member of the Executive Committee of the Michigan Judges’ Association. She is a graduate of the University of Michigan and the University of Detroit-Mercy School of Law.

The National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA), represents the interests of over 60,000 Asian Pacific American (APA) legal professionals and nearly 90 national, state, and local APA bar associations. NAPABA is a leader in addressing civil rights issues confronting APA communities. Through its national network, NAPABA provides a strong voice for increased diversity of the federal and state judiciaries, advocates for equal opportunity in the workplace, works to eliminate hate crimes and anti-immigrant sentiment, and promotes the professional development of people of all backgrounds in the legal profession.