NAPABA Files Amicus Brief in Supreme Court Affirmative Action Case

For Immediate Release:
Date: August 3, 2022

Contact: Priya Purandare, Executive Director

WASHINGTON – The National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA) filed an amicus brief in the cases challenging affirmative action before the Supreme Court, Students for Fair Admissions v. Harvard and Students for Fair Admissions v. University of North Carolina. We were joined on the brief by the National LGBTQ+ Bar Association.

In the brief, the bars reiterated their support for the principles laid out in Grutter v. Bollinger (2003), which allowed the consideration of race as a factor in college admissions as part of a holistic admissions process. The brief lays out the importance of diversity in the legal profession and the impact overturning holistic admissions in college on current efforts to diversify the legal pipeline. The brief did not address the second question posed by the Court about the practices and policies implemented by either Harvard or the University of North Carolina.

NAPABA has consistently supported the principle of holistic admissions since it first submitted an amicus brief in Grutter with a coalition of Asian Pacific American organizations. NAPABA was joined by other diverse bars reiterating their support for affirmative action and the impact on the legal profession in both Fisher v. Texas (2013) and Fisher v. Texas (2016). This principle was codified and most recently affirmed by the NAPABA Board of Governors as the organization’s standing policy in 2015.

NAPABA thanks Dan Bromberg, Appellate Practice leader, and Shelby Dyl of Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP, for serving as pro bono counsel on this brief. We thank Albert Giang of King & Spalding LLP and Radha Pathak of Stris & Maher LLP, for their leadership as Co-Chairs of NAPABA’s Amicus Committee and contributions to the brief. A special thanks to Kevin Fong, former NAPABA Amicus Chair, for his advice and contributions.


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.

Press Release: NAPABA Statement on the Harvard Admissions Case

For Immediate Release
October 2, 2019
For More Information, Contact:
Navdeep Singh, Policy Director
202-775-9555; [email protected]

WASHINGTON – Late yesterday, Judge Allison D. Burroughs of the U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts issued a ruling that upheld the use of race conscious admissions in Students For Fair Admissions v. Harvard. NAPABA applauds the Court for reaffirming that (1) diversity remains a critical and compelling interest for universities to achieve; and (2) the consideration of race as one of many factors in a holistic admissions process is a permissible means to evaluate an individual student’s application.

“The ruling makes clear that it is vital for students to be able to share their whole selves when applying to college,” said NAPABA President Daniel Sakaguchi. “NAPABA is encouraged that the Court upheld the principle of holistic, race-conscious admissions, recognized that race continues to matter in people’s daily lives and experiences, and eloquently underscored the importance diversity in education. While the Court found Harvard did not engage in intentional discrimination against Asian American applicants, NAPABA also supports continuing efforts by colleges and universities to improve their admissions processes, including work to recognize and address implicit bias, so that all parts of a thoughtful and holistic admissions system work together to ensure that all students have equal opportunities free from discrimination.”

NAPABA supports efforts to increase diversity, equity, and inclusion in education and the consideration of race as part of a holistic, individualized admissions process.


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.