AABANY Presents Robe to Hon. Michael H. Park

AABANY presented Hon. Michael H. Park with a robe on Thursday, July 25, at his chambers, at the Thurgood Marshall Courthouse.  President Brian Song, joined by Judiciary Committee Co-Chairs Will Wang and Rena Malik, were on hand for the presentation.

On July 11th, AABANY co-sponsored the robing ceremony for the Hon. Michael H. Park with KAAGNY and KALAGNY at the Museum of Korean American Heritage. Click here for more details and photos. AABANY congratulates Judge Park again on his historic appointment to the Second Circuit Court of Appeals.  

Robing Ceremony for the Hon. Michael H. Park

On July 11th, at the Museum of Korean American Heritage, AABANY, along with KAAGNY and KALAGNY, co-sponsored the robing ceremony for the Hon. Michael H. Park, United States Circuit Judge for the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. The event was held to commemorate and celebrate Judge Park as the first Korean American to serve on the Second Circuit.

The program kicked off with a spirited rendition of the Star Spangled Banner. Then, Charles Yoon, President of KAAGNY, delivered opening remarks from the podium noting the historic nature of this event in Korean American history. The venue was especially fitting for the ceremony as many momentous Korean American milestones were printed on the walls—from honoring the first Korean naturalized citizen of the United States, Philip Jaisohn, to remembering the Korean comfort women. 

KALAGNY President Gene Kang then delivered heartfelt comments on the necessity of diversity on the judicial bench and how far Korean Americans have advanced in the legal profession starting out with humble origins from “a small Asian peninsula.” Next, Michael Kim, a Partner at Kirkland & Ellis and Yale Law School classmate of the Hon. Michael Park, shared a memory from when he was still in law school and Judge Park belted out an NSYNC song at Karaoke—true to Korean fashion. Kim commented that if Judge Park had decided to stay in Korea, he might be introducing a K-pop star instead of a Second Circuit Judge. Finally, the Hon. Denny Chin, the first Asian American United States Second Circuit Judge for the United States Court of Appeals, administered the oath of office to the Hon. Michael Park. Sarah Seo, Judge Park’s wife, robed him. KALAGNY generously provided the new robe for Judge Park.

After the robing ceremony, Judge Park took the stage to thank attendees and organizations such as AABANY, KALAGNY, and KAAGNY for their support. He especially thanked those who had come before him, such as the Hon. Denny Chin, in paving a path for more Asian American judges, like him, to follow. In closing, AABANY President Brian Song cited AABANY’s mission statement and shared hopes that one day, a robing ceremony for an APA judge might not appear so remarkable as many more APA judges are elevated to the bench in the future, to more accurately reflect the diversity of America.

AABANY congratulates the Hon. Michael H. Park and warmly thanks all attendees for joining us in celebrating the historic event. 

Congratulations to Meredith Miller on Being Elected as President of the Network of Bar Leaders

AABANY congratulates Meredith Miller, member of the LGBT Bar Association of Greater New York , and Founder of Miller Law, PLLC, on her election as President of the Network of Bar Leaders for the upcoming year. Many congratulations for the rest of the elected leadership as well. AABANY is a proud member of the Network of Bar Leaders, and we are pleased to recognize Margaret Ling, AABANY’s Director of Development, as a member of the Network of Bar Leaders’ Executive Council.

Congratulations to Bridgette Ahn, Immediate Past President of the Network of Bar Leaders, for a spectacular year as President. We are proud to count her as an AABANY member!

President
Meredith R. Miller
Member Organization: LGBT Bar Association of Greater New York  

First Vice President
Yacine Barry-Wun 
Member Organization: New York Women’s Bar Association

Second Vice President
Eve GuillerganMember Organization: Korean American Lawyers Association of Greater New York

Treasurer
Michael Kohan 
Member Organization:  Queens County Bar Association

Recording Secretary
Edwina F. Martin 
Member Organization: Staten Island Women’s Bar Association

Corresponding Secretary
Denisse Mira  Organization: Hispanic National Bar Association 

Executive Council
Gloribelle Perez, Dominican Bar Association 
William F. Dahill, Federal Bar Association
Domenick Napoletano, Brooklyn Bar Association
Ron Katter, Jewish Lawyers Guild
Margaret Ling, Asian American Bar Association of New York 
Jason Clark, Metropolitan Black Bar Association Hon. Jeffrey Levin, New Rochelle Bar Association  
Tanya Blocker, Association of Black Women Attorneys   
Bridgette Y. Ahn, Immediate Past President (Mandatory Position)

Congratulations to Will Ng on Being Honored by the American Bar Association

AABANY is proud to announce that William H. Ng, Shareholder at Littler Mendelson P.C. , has been recognized as a Top 40 Young Lawyer by the American Bar Association (ABA) Young Lawyers Division. To read the full press release on the Littler website, please go here: https://www.littler.com/publication-press/press/aba-young-lawyers-division-names-littlers-william-h-ng-among-2019-top-40

The ABA On The Rise Award program provides national recognition for young lawyer members who exemplify a broad range of high achievement, innovation, vision, leadership, and legal and community service. To read more about the 2019 ABA Honorees, go here: https://www.americanbar.org/groups/young_lawyers/awards_scholarships/on_the_rise/2019-honorees/

Congratulations to Brian Song on Being Honored by the Network of Bar Leaders

On Wednesday, June 12, the Network of Bar Leaders held its Presidents’ Dinner, a gathering to honor the Presidents of the Network of Bar Leaders’ member bar associations. The dinner was held at the Golden Unicorn in Chinatown, and AABANY was proud to be a Gold Sponsor at the event.

The program kicked off with opening remarks from New York State Attorney General Letitia James. Then, Hon. George B. Daniels, United States District Judge for the Southern District of New York, was honored, followed by his presentation of a keynote speech. As a multi-course banquet was served, some thirty-five Presidents from the Network of Bar Leaders’ member associations lined up to be presented with the President’s Awards by Hon. Jeffrey K. Oing, Justice of the Supreme Court, Appellate Division, First Department.

AABANY congratulates its President Brian Song and all the Network of Bar Leaders’ member association Presidents who were honored and recognized at the Presidents’ Dinner. Many AABANY Board Officers and Directors and Committee Chairs were in attendance to celebrate with Brian Song and other bar association Presidents and leaders in attendance.

Photo courtesy of Network of Bar Leaders

We also congratulate Network of Bar Leaders President Bridgette Ahn on this highly successful event. To learn more about the Network of Bar Leaders, visit https://www.networkofbarleaders.org/ . For more photos from the event, see the Network of Bar Leaders’ album at https://photos.app.goo.gl/xyoR66SUX78UEDTL9

Carol Lee Honored with ALI’s Distinguished Service Award

AABANY congratulates Carol Lee, Advisory Committee member, on being honored with the American Law Institute’s Distinguished Service Award at their 96th Annual Meeting on May 22, 2019. The American Law Institute was founded in 1923 and is the leading independent organization in the United States producing scholarly work to clarify, modernize, and otherwise improve the law. The American Law Institute’s Distinguished Service Award is given to a member who has played a major role in Institute over many years.

Carol Lee is Special Counsel at Taconic Capital Advisors, an SEC-registered investment advisor based in New York City that manages private investment funds with total assets under management of approximately $6.7 billion. She has clerked for Judge J. Skelly Wright of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, and for Justice John Paul Stevens of the United States Supreme Court.

Ms. Lee was elected to the American Law Institute in February 2008 and was elected to the Council in May 2012. She is also a member of the Projects Committee and previously served on the Investment Committee.

Ms. Lee was presented the award by Raymond J. Lohier Jr. of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit to honor the significant contributions she made to the American Law Institute over the years. To see photos from the awards presentation go to https://www.ali.org/news/articles/carol-f-lee-receives-alis-distinguished-service-award/.

Please join AABANY in congratulating Carol Lee on receiving this well-deserved honor.

Congratulations to Joon Kim on Receiving the Hon. George Bundy Smith Pioneer Award

On Thursday, May 23, 2019, Joon Kim, Partner at Cleary Gottlieb and AABANY member, was presented with the Hon. George Bundy Smith Pioneer Award at the New York State Bar Association’s “Smooth Moves: Career Strategies for Attorneys of Color” program at Lincoln Center. The Hon. George Bundy Smith Pioneer Award recognizes lawyers who demonstrate commitment to legal excellence, community service and mentoring. The program was sponsored by the Commercial and Federal Litigation Section of the New York State Bar Association.

Joon Kim has led a distinguished career over two decades at high levels of government and in private practice at Cleary Gottlieb, personally trying over a dozen federal jury trials and actively participating in dozens more. He is also a regular speaker and panelist at leading industry conferences on criminal and regulatory matters.

Please join AABANY in congratulating Joon Kim for this well-deserved award and honor.

Photo courtesy of Cleary Gottlieb. Used with permission.

PRESS RELEASE: AABANY CONGRATULATES KATHY HIRATA CHIN ON BEING SELECTED TO RECEIVE THE INAUGURAL HONG YEN CHANG AWARD BY THE COLUMBIA LAW SCHOOL ASSOCIATION AND ASIAN COLUMBIA ALUMNI ASSOCIATION AT THE NEW YORK COUNTY LAWYERS ASSOCIATION

NEW YORK – May 24, 2019 – The Asian American Bar Association of New York (“AABANY”) is proud to announce that Kathy Hirata Chin, Partner at Crowell & Moring LLP and longstanding member of AABANY, will be honored at the New York County Lawyers Association (NYCLA) at the Inaugural Hong Yen Chang Reception on Tuesday, May 28, 2019. The Columbia Law School Association and Asian Columbia Alumni Association are recognizing Ms. Chin with this honor, and the reception is co-sponsored by AABANY, the Asian Practice Committee of NYCLA, the Korean American Lawyers Association of Greater New York, and the Network of Bar Leaders. Ms. Chin is a 1980 graduate of Columbia Law School.

In 1872, 13-year-old Hong Yen Chang came to the United States to be groomed as a diplomat. He earned degrees from Yale University and Columbia University’s law school and passed the bar exam. However, after passing the bar examination, he was first denied admission because of his lack of U.S. citizenship due to the Chinese Exclusion Act. A special act of the New York Legislature (N.Y. L.1887 c. 249) allowed his admission despite this bar and in 1888, Hong Yen Chang reportedly became the first Asian American attorney admitted to the bar in New York. Hong Yen Chang then moved to California and applied for admission to the bar there but was denied in 1890 due to his lack of citizenship. Not until 2015 was this exclusion remedied, when the California Supreme Court granted an application from members of the UC Davis Asian Pacific American Law Students Association for posthumous admission of Hong Yen Chang.

“Although the very first Asian American lawyer in New York State was admitted over 130 years ago, the legacy of exclusion, discrimination and bias continues to preserve a Bamboo Ceiling in 21st century America,” states AABANY President Brian Song. “We are grateful that Kathy Hirata Chin has been a vital champion, role model and trailblazer in the fight for diversity and inclusion in the legal profession and are proud to count her among our most prominent members. We congratulate her on being selected to receive the Hong Yen Chang Award.”

Kathy Hirata Chin is an accomplished litigator who has handled dozens of appellate cases, concentrating her practice in healthcare and real estate. After graduating magna cum laude from Princeton University and graduating from Columbia University School of Law, where she was a Harlan Fiske Stone Scholar and Editor-in-Chief of The Columbia Journal of Transnational Law, Ms. Chin joined Cadwalader, Wickersham & Taft LLP, becoming one of the first minority and women Partners in 1990.

Nominated by Mayor Rudolph Giuliani, Ms. Chin served on the New York City Planning Commission from 1995-2001. Nominated by Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg, Ms. Chin served on the New York City Commission to Combat Police Corruption in 2003. She has also served on Governor Mario M. Cuomo’s Judicial Screening Committee for the First Judicial Department from 1992-1994; the Magistrate Judge Merit Selection Panel for the Eastern District of New York from 1992-1999; the Gender Bias Committee of the Second Circuit Task Force on Gender, Race, and Ethnic Fairness; the New York County Lawyers’ Association’s Task Force to Increase Diversity in the Legal Profession; and Chief Judge Judith S. Kaye’s Commission to Promote Public Confidence in Judicial Elections from 2003-2006; and the New York County Lawyers’ Association Board of Directors.

In December 2012 and again in December 2014, she was nominated for appointment to the State Court of Appeals by the New York State Commission on Judicial Nomination. In April 2016, she was appointed by Gov. Andrew Cuomo to the First Department Judicial Screening Committee. Since January 2016, Kathy has served as a member of the Second Circuit Judicial Council Committee on Civic Education & Public Engagement, focusing on historic reenactments as a teaching tool. With her husband, the Hon. Denny Chin of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, and teams of lawyers and judges from AABANY, she has developed and presented reenactments of famous cases such as Korematsu vs. U.S, to teach lawyers and the community about the significant contributions made by Asian Americans to the social, political and legal history of the United States.

Ms. Chin has played a critical role in initiating and sustaining change within many organizations, in the legal profession and the community. Please join AABANY in congratulating Ms. Chin on this well-deserved honor.

For more information, please contact Yang Chen, AABANY Executive Director, at (212) 332-2478, or direct any inquiries to main@aabany.org.

The Asian American Bar Association of New York is a professional membership organization of attorneys concerned with issues affecting the Asian Pacific American community. Incorporated in 1989, AABANY seeks not only to encourage the professional growth of its members but also to advocate for the Asian Pacific American community as a whole. AABANY is a New York regional affiliate of the National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA).

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Congratulations to Judge Pamela Chen

Congratulations to Judge Pamela Chen, U.S. District Court Judge at the Eastern District of New York, on being honored by the Brooklyn Women’s Bar Association and the Asian American Judges Association of New York during an Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Celebration held at the Brooklyn Bar Association building at 123 Remsen Street in downtown Brooklyn on Monday, May 13. We were joined by many State and Federal Court judges who came out to celebrate with Judge Chen. We even had a lion dance, which may have been the first time this Chinese tradition was observed at the Brooklyn Bar Association.

In 2012, President Obama nominated Judge Chen to serve as a Federal District Court Judge in the Eastern District of New York. The United States Senate confirmed her nomination on March 4, 2013, and she became the first Chinese-American female Article III judge outside of California and the second-ever Chinese-American female federal judge in U.S. history, continuing to add to the rich legacy of the Second Circuit and New York State.

As AABANY Executive Director Yang Chen Stated: “During May, we celebrate Asian Pacific American Heritage Month, and it is a most fitting tribute that we recognize and honor a distinguished jurist like Judge Chen, who has been a champion of diversity and inclusion in the legal profession. Judge Chen has been an active AABANY member for many years, and we proudly followed Judge Chen’s path to the bench and her rise over the years, and congratulate her on this well-deserved honor.”

Please join AABANY in congratulating Judge Pamela Chen.

Congratulations to Hon. Lillian Wan, Recipient of the Brooklyn Bar Association’s Diversity Award

On Wednesday May 8, the Brooklyn Bar Association held its annual meeting on Wednesday and honored nine members of the local legal community during a ceremony at the Brooklyn Bar Association building on Remsen Street. AABANY is proud to note that its member, Hon. Lillian Wan, received the Diversity Award. Read the full article in the Brooklyn Daily Eagle here.

From Yang Chen, Executive Director:

“AABANY congratulates Justice Wan on being honored with the first-ever Diversity Award from the Brooklyn Bar Association,” states Executive Director Yang Chen. “We have followed Justice Wan’s path to the bench and her rise over the years, and we commend the Brooklyn Bar Association for recognizing her with this well-deserved honor, recognizing her role as a trailblazer in the Asian American community and as a champion of diversity and inclusion in the legal profession and the community.”

Read the full AABANY press release here.