AABANY Hosts February Monthly Membership Mixer at Atwood

On Wednesday, February 19, 2020, AABANY’s Membership Committee, together with Corporate, Issues, Litigation, Solo & Small Firm Practice, and Professional Development Committees hosted a Membership Mixer with members, colleagues, and friends at Atwood Bar & Lounge in Midtown East. Over twenty attendees filled a private section reserved for our group. Our membership programs provide opportunities to network and to learn more about AABANY by meeting current members and leaders. Keep an eye out for our future events including an outing to see “West Side Story” on Broadway on March 19. To learn more about the Membership Committee, go to https://www.aabany.org/page/130

Chinese American Veterans of World War II Honored with Congressional Gold Medal

On December 20, 2018, President Donald Trump signed the Chinese-American World War II Veteran Congressional Gold Medal Act into law. The Act finally recognizes the achievements and contributions of Chinese Americans who served in the U.S. Armed Forces during the Second World War.

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.

To learn more, see: https://www.nbcnews.com/news/asian-america/chinese-american-wwii-vets-receive-congressional-gold-medal-n950986

Serve the APA Community by Joining the AABANY Community Response Task Force

AABANY’s Issues Committee is pleased to invite you to join the newly formed AABANY Community Response Task Force!

The Community Response Task Force (CRTF) is AABANY’s answer to the rapidly changing legal landscape and the need for quick, effective, and coordinated responses to the emergent issues that affect our communities. AABANY is firmly committed to being a strong voice and steadfast advocate on behalf of the Asian-American/Pacific-Islander community. In the past several months, we have all been witness to sweeping changes that necessitated powerful legal responses. While there have been some great triumphs, there were often times when it was difficult to obtain information, to find ways to contribute, or to organize a response quickly enough to be effective.

The CRTF is specifically designed to address these needs. The CRTF will serve as a central clearinghouse for information and coordination – tailoring the alerts sent to each volunteer based on that volunteer’s preferences and the needs of the community. Alerts and actions will range from emergency legal services to direct non-legal service actions and from workshops to rallies. 

Furthermore, the CRTF will not simply be a reactive body but we will seek to proactively research and prepare for issues on the horizon by reaching out to experts and formulating effective responses. We will also be reaching out and collaborating with other organizing bodies in order to present a more united and broad-based response to issues that affect our communities.

So, where does that leave you?

The CRTF is seeking first and foremost to create a database of willing, ready, and able volunteers, like you, who want be a part of the response. We will activate volunteers based on the subject area, the type of response, and the interests of each volunteer. 

We are also looking for people to become members of the Task Force itself, helping to research and anticipate possible future issues, reaching out to experts and developing toolkits, and coordinating with
other organizations.

If you are interested, please fill out the this form or feel free to email us directly at crtf@AABANY.org

We keep all responses and information confidential in the Task Force Database. Information contained therein will not be shared with anyone outside of the Task Force and are solely for the purpose of organizing and coordinating Task Force activities.

To learn more about the Issues Committee, visit http://www.aabany.org/?page=154

Live Chat with the New York Times: Confronting Racism Against Asian-Americans

Live Chat with the New York Times: Confronting Racism Against Asian-Americans

Congratulations to AABANY’s New Co-Chairs of the Issues Committee for 2015-2016!

AABANY is proud to announce the appointments of three new Co-Chairs of the Issues Committee for the 2015-2016 term!

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Christopher Kwok is the Supervisory Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) Coordinator for the Mediation Program at the US EEOC – New York District Office. Mr. Kwok graduated from UCLA Law School, where he served on the Asian American Pacific Islander Law Journal, and from Cornell University, where he majored in Government and minored in Asian American studies. He is also a graduate of Stuyvesant High School.

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Song Kim is a Staff Attorney and former Kirkland and Ellis Fellow of the Anti-Trafficking Initiative at the Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund, where she represents victims and survivors of human trafficking on immigration and civil matters. Song is a graduate of New York University School of Law, and the University of Southern California, where she received her B.A. in Sociology.

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Yan Cao is a Skadden Fellow at South Brooklyn Legal Services where she represents low-income clients on student debt matters.  She is a 2013 graduate of NYU Law School where she was a Root-Tilden-Kern Scholar and served as the first Asian-American Editor-in-Chief of the NYU Law Review.  After graduating, she clerked for Judge J. Paul Oetken of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York and Judge Raymond J. Lohier Jr. of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit.  Yan grew up in Gainesville, Florida and lives in Brooklyn.

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AABANY’s Issues Committee examines and considers a variety of issues that impact, directly or indirectly, the APA community and provides recommendations to AABANY’s Board on whether or not the association should, consistent with its mission, take action on the issues, and if so, in what way and to what extent. AABANY’s Issues Committee continues to seek motivated legal talent to join this committee in expanding AABANY’s activity in accordance with its stated mission of advocating for the APA community.

AABANY is excited to work with the new Co-Chairs and looks forward to a collaborative year!

Summer Reception at Kenyon & Kenyon

For the last few years, AABANY’s July Board meeting has taken place at Kenyon & Kenyon thanks to the graciousness of past AABANY President John Flock.  John was also recently honored by AABANY’s Prosecutors’ Committee, along with Hon. Randall Eng and Hugh Mo, at the Third Anniversary Reception of the Prosecutors’ Committee held at NYCLA on June 30.

In keeping with tradition, and to enjoy the marvelous views of New York Harbor from the 11th floor terrace of Kenyon & Kenyon, AABANY held a summer reception open to all right before the Board meeting.  We also took the opportunity to invite the 2011 Joint Minority Bar Judicial Internship Program (JMB JIP) participants to pick up their stipend checks for the summer.  Thanks to all the JMB JIP sponsors for making the stipends possible.

To make the party even livelier, Issues Committee Chair Joe Gim hosted a meet-and-greet for all those who were interested in joining AABANY’s Issues Committee to come and hear from Joe what the Committee is about and how anyone interested in legal issues affecting the APA community could get involved.  Joe collected many names and e-mail addresses from those who were in attendance.  We anticipate that at least some of those people knew they were signing up for the Issues Committee.  If you wish to get involved with the Issues Committee but were not able to attend the reception, you can reach Joe at joe.gim@aabany.org.  He will surely be glad to hear from you.

The hour-long reception lasted a little over an hour, after which Board members and committee chairs who were present headed down to the third floor conference room for the Board meeting.  Quite a few of the reception attendees decided to stay for the Board meeting, making for a very crowded conference room.  It was great to see so many people interested in attending an AABANY Board meeting.  We hope you found the experience instructive and not soporific.  And for those who wish to attend AABANY Board meetings, they are usually held on the first Tuesdays of the month at various locations.  The next one will take place on Tuesday, August 2, at Constantine Cannon, starting at 7 pm. Register your attendance at this link.