Application Deadline: Friday, August 18 at 8:00 pm ET
The NAPABA Prospective Partners Program (PPP) application is now open! If you are a senior associate or of counsel at a major law firm who is approaching consideration for partnership, the PPP is designed for you. The PPP aims to increase the number of Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander partners at major law firms through introduction, mentorship, and relationship building. Sessions will take place at the 2023 NAPABA Convention in Indianapolis, Indiana, November 9-12.
Prospective partners will receive mentorship and guidance on their career development and connect with senior in-house counsel where they will have an opportunity to introduce themselves and the services of their firms.
Additionally, prospective partners will be paired with a partner mentor from a different law firm who will provide feedback and guidance on the prospective partner’s introduction presentation and career development.
The deadline to apply for this program is 8:00 pm ET on Friday, August 18.
On July 21, 2022, AABANY’s Student Outreach & In-House Counsel Committees hosted a virtual event to advise on the On-Campus Interviewing (OCI) process, specifically how to get an in-house counsel position. The event, part of the Student Outreach Committee’s Pre-OCI Series, ran from 5-6pm virtually on Zoom. The panel was moderated by Vivian Lee and Sharon Yang and featured the following panelists:
Michael J. Eng (MassMutual)
Kelly Koyama-Garcia (Louis Vuitton)
Madhu Goel Southworth (AMC)
Panelists discussed their individual career paths, the importance of knowing the business of the company before going in-house, how junior attorneys can best prepare themselves for an in-house role, and potential challenges for marginalized attorneys. The discussion was then followed by a Q&A session.
In advising junior attorneys how they can best prepare themselves for an in-house role, some panelists emphasized the importance of drafting experience and the ability to think and speak on the fly. While discussing the potential challenges marginalized attorneys may face, some panelists stated that things are getting better. Some panelists highlighted the importance of being above the radar by taking high visibility assignments and “knocking it out of the ballpark.”
As general career advice, some panelists advised junior attorneys to expect the unexpected, as many of the panelists never planned on working in-house themselves!
AABANY thanks the Student Outreach & In-House Counsel Committees for organizing the event, along with all panelists, moderators, and students who attended. To learn more about the Student Outreach Committee, please visit https://www.aabany.org/page/121. To learn more about the In-House Counsel Committee, please visit https://www.aabany.org/page/149 .
On Wednesday, June 29, 2022, AABANY’s In-House Counsel Committee held its annual Summer Soiree at the Castell Rooftop Lounge located atop AC Hotel New York Times Square. The beautiful midtown skyline served as the perfect backdrop to a memorable night filled with hors d’oeuvres, a variety of drinks, wines, cocktails, and many conversations. Around 100 senior in-house lawyers and senior law firm attorneys and partners attended the networking event. This was the first Summer Soiree held in person since 2019, with the 2020 soiree being canceled due to COVID-19, and the 2021 soiree held over Zoom at the beginning of 2022 as the Winter Soiree. Everyone seemed happy to be gathering in person again for this popular event.
Attendees discussed various topics ranging from career pivots during the pandemic to favorite pastimes and hobbies. While munching on mini lobster rolls and sipping curated cocktails, attendees also heard from AABANY’s Co-VP of Programs and Operations, Beatrice Leong, In-House Counsel Committee Co-Chair, Blossom Kan, and Immediate Past President, Terry Shen. Some spectacular photographs from the night taken by Karen Zhou can be found linked here.
The attendees formed a diverse cohort, representing 74 companies across industries, including Apple, Meta, Johnson & Johnson, McKinsey & Company, Inc., and top global and regional law firms.
We thank and acknowledge the following sponsors for helping us make this event possible:
Every year, the National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (“NAPABA”) presents its Best Under 40 Awards to honor exceptional Asian American Pacific Islanders (“AAPI”) attorneys under the age of 40 from across the country who have excelled in their respective fields and have demonstrated a strong commitment to the AAPI community. Among those being recognized for this year’s award is Grace Fu, General Counsel of KAYAK/OpenTable, and a Co-Chair of AABANY’s In-House Counsel Committee. Grace has achieved much success as a senior executive and in-house leader in various companies such as Barneys New York, Tiger Management, and KAYAK/OpenTable.
Grace has also demonstrated an exemplary commitment to the AAPI community. At Skadden, she was a co-lead of the Asian American Affinity Group Steering Committee, and was committed to increasing awareness of the Asian American experience at Skadden and within the legal profession. Additionally, as Co-chair of the In-House Counsel Committee at AABANY, Grace worked hard to recruit new members to the committee and to AABANY. She also currently serves as the UVA School of Law’s Dean’s Alumnae Council and the Alumni Advisory Council, where she has worked on DE&I initiatives, including AAPI recruiting.
Grace personally chose to become more deeply involved with AABANY because she wanted to gain new perspectives and be part of a community of people who have a collective interest in furthering the AAPI legal community. She is thankful for her experiences with AABANY, where she has had the opportunity to meet many talented lawyers and individuals who are passionate about the AAPI legal community. Grace also emphasizes the importance of engaging with organizations that also promote diversity beyond AAPI diversity, because she believes that diversity encompasses much more than simply race or ethnicity.
When asked to give advice to students and aspiring lawyers, Grace emphasizes the importance of building strong relationships and networking with other professionals. Grace also believes that doing excellent work and thus building a solid reputation for oneself is a must. In terms of job searching advice, Grace encourages those still exploring careers to consider their strengths and interests while being open-minded about opportunities that present themselves.
When asked what being nominated for the Best Under 40 Award means to her, Grace stated that she is truly flattered and surprised to have been recognized given that there are so many other outstanding potential candidates. She feels very honored to be able to represent the AAPI community because it is a community filled with so many accomplished professionals, and she is extraordinarily grateful for being awarded this honor.
NAPABA’s National Convention takes place in Washington, D.C., this year, and Grace will be honored at a reception for the Best Under 40 honorees on the evening of December 9th, 2021 and she will be presented the award at the Gala Dinner on Saturday night, along with the other BU40 awardees. Please join AABANY in congratulating Grace on this well-deserved recognition and honor.
On January 29, 2021, the Membership Committee hosted their weekly virtual Membership Mixer, with 19 participants in attendance. This week AABANY hosted a Zoom room to meet Board Member Andy Yoo and learn more about his career as General Counsel for education companies.
This week, participants were asked: “What was the riskiest thing you ever did in your life?” Participants answered that riskiest moves they made included partying under the influence of alcohol in foreign countries including Japan, South Korea and Mexico, traveling alone without knowing the local languages, skydiving, leaving their partnership at a private law firm to become Executive Director, moving to NYC alone to start a job, skiing on Black Diamond snow slopes, and swimming with sharks.
As always, after the regular mixer ends at 7:30pm, members are encouraged to stay for the Mixer afterparty to chat in smaller groups. This week, we were joined by AABANY President-Elect Terry Shen, and former AABANY Board Member Steve Chung and former AABANY Program Associate Simone Chung. Steve even drew a portrait of Terry. The afterparty ended at 11pm.
Congratulations to Tansy Woan, who won a Masterclass program of her choice!
Our weekly Friday mixers are open to everyone, but only members who register for the weekly mixers through the calendar entry on the AABANY website have a chance at winning a prize. Thank you to the In- House Counsel Committee for co-sponsoring this week’s mixer prize.
On Thursday, June 27th, AABANY held its 12th annual Summer Soiree, formerly known as the Wine Tasting and Networking Reception, at the Castell Rooftop Lounge located atop AC Hotel New York Times Square. The In-House Counsel Committee and the Corporate Law Committee once again co-organized this event, and around 130 senior in-house lawyers and senior law firm attorneys and partners attended this year.
Attendees networked with one another as they enjoyed an abundant selection of drinks paired with signature items prepared by the chef, with views of the Manhattan skyline from the terrace. To get our attendees to actively mingle and mix, we played an icebreaker game in which attendees had to find at least one other person in the room that matched them on various things, like where they went to school, what type of practice they are involved with, and where they have lived before coming to New York City. Congratulations to the two winners of the icebreaker, Gary Eisenberg of Perkins Coie and Jenifer Liu of JP Morgan, who each received a bottle of champagne, thanks to the generosity of Sabine Poisson.
The attendees represented 51 companies from a variety of industries, such as banking media, finance, and real estate, and 30 top global and regional law firms with offices in New York City.
We would like to give special thanks to the following sponsors for helping us make this event a memorable success:
On Thursday, March 14, 2019, the In-House Counsel Committee hosted a very successful networking event at the cozy and upscale Freds at Barneys Downtown. In-house counsel from numerous prominent companies gathered and mingled over drinks and light bites.
The attendees took the time to get to know one another and shared insights into what their work entails. The general consensus appeared to be that the in-house counsel legal experience is vastly different from that of any other practice area and to be successful in this role, one has to learn to be a jack of all trades.
We thank everyone that attended and made the event a great success.
We also thank our In-House Counsel Committee co-chairs Grace Fu, General Counsel at Barneys New York, and Blossom Kan, Assistant General Counsel at Metlife, for hosting this event. A special thank you to Grace Fu for arranging such a beautiful venue for the event.