AABANY Hosts a Membership Mixer at Little Island on July 30

Hard to believe this amazing park was once a pier seeing its last days in Lower Manhattan! Members braved the strong winds on this beautiful summer evening for our Membership Mixer at Little Island on July 30.  Between small bites and beers, new friends were made, old acquaintances emerged, and we got to experience live performances, catch a great view of the sunset, and discover the newest TikTok-famous attraction. We were surprised by the unannounced visit of Simone Nguyen Chung, AABANY’s former Program Associate, who left AABANY to move to California where she attended UCLA Law School. She came to New York City last week to … take the California bar exam remotely. She said it was less distracting that way. Um … okay. Thanks for joining us, Simone, and best of luck to you in all your future endeavors!

In-person mixers are back– don’t let the summer pass you by! Click here to sign up now for some mingling at Yankee Stadium on August 6– guests are welcome! Registration deadline is August 5th; tickets are $5 for members and $20 for non-members (must prepay at full price, will receive refund upon actual usage of ticket).

AABANY Board Director Margaret Ling Moderates ABA CBLA Opening Program on June 29

On June 29, Asian American Bar Association of New York (AABANY) Board Director and Real Estate Committee Co-Chair Margaret Ling moderated the American Bar Association’s (ABA) Collaborative Bar Leadership Academy (CBLA) Opening Program titled: “Effective Marketing, Advocacy and Public Relations Strategy.” The panelists for the event were Edgar Chen, Esq., National Policy Director for the National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA); Elia Diaz-Yaeger, Esq., President of the Hispanic National Bar Association (HNBA); Tricia “CK” Hoffler, Esq., President of the National Bar Association (NBA); and Dinesh Kumar, Esq., Vice President of Public Relations for the South Asian Bar Association (SABA) of North America. The panelists discussed the role of minority bar associations in facing widespread social and political issues as well as the unique voice of advocacy that minority bar associations can utilize. The discussion also explored different ways of reaching membership through websites, newsletters, and other methods.

AABANY thanks Karl Riley, the Chair of the CBLA, for organizing the panel event as well as ABA for hosting the discussion at such a critical moment for the Asian-American community.

The Asian Columbia Alumni Association Honors Hyung Bak at the Third Annual Hong Yen Chang Award Ceremony

On May 20, the Asian American Bar Association of New York (AABANY), along with the Asian Columbia Alumni Association (ACAA), Columbia Law School Association, and the Korean American Lawyers of Greater New York (KALAGNY), co-sponsored the Third Annual Hong Yen Chang Award Ceremony to honor Hyung Bak, Columbia Law School alumnus and General Counsel at Warby Parker.

The Annual Hong Yen Chang Award Ceremony is held in honor of the first known Chinese-American lawyer, Hong Yen Chang (1860-1926). Chang was, himself, a graduate of Columbia Law School and graduated with honors. He was recommended to bar admission, but was prevented from practicing in New York state because he was not a citizen. He brought suit and the New York Supreme Court ruled in his favor, licensing him to practice in New York in 1888. Chang then moved to California, hoping to be admitted to practice in the state but was rejected in 1890 due to the Chinese Exclusion Act. In 2015, more than a century later, the California Supreme Court admitted Chang to the California Bar. In May 2014, AABANY awarded Chang posthumous membership in the association, in celebration of AAPI Heritage Month. Chang was a trailblazer in the legal profession for all Asian Americans who came after him. The Hong Yen Chang Award is thus presented to Columbia alumni who embody Chang’s pioneering spirit and serve as role models and leaders in both their workplace and their communities.

This year’s award recipient, Hyung Bak, is the first lawyer in his immigrant family. As he was growing up, Hyung was all too aware of being “other” at school and at his workplace. He recounted how he was forced to develop a thick skin and persevere despite the comments and discrimination he faced. Hyung also described how he was often overlooked for networking functions, because of his race and the passive stereotypes associated with it. He also emphasized the importance of “claim[ing] your space at the table” as an Asian American to counteract these stereotypes and be heard. Now, Hyung works as General Counsel at Warby Parker, and is a leader in raising awareness surrounding the discrimination Asian Americans face daily. Hyung has led and participated in a number of different forums at Warby Parker about race and diversity, anti-Asian violence, bystander intervention, and many other topics in order to open up the conversation and create a safe space for individuals to discuss these issues. Hyung, through Warby Parker, has also been involved in initiatives to give back to businesses owned by people of color and to increase diverse representation in a number of different fields.

AABANY congratulates Hyung for this well-deserved honor and acknowledges his role as a leader in the Asian American community.

AABANY Hosts Weekly Membership Mixer on August 28

On August 28, 2020, the Membership Committee hosted their weekly Zoom Membership Mixer, with 19 participants in attendance. The icebreaker question this week asked participants “What were your favorite moments as a Member of AABANY?” Members mentioned attending Fall Conference, Annual Dinner, and AABANY after parties. 
On Friday we said thank you to our Student Leader volunteers for their work during the pandemic. We were all impressed with these talented law students who found time to give back to New York’s Asian American community with COVID-19 relief assistance and rent relief applications, along with many other activities, led by Will Lee, Vice Chair of the Student Outreach Committee.

Congratulations to Long Dang, one of our illustrious Student Leaders, for winning a $50 VISA gift card!

The Membership Committee previously hosted Monthly Mixers at bars, ballparks, stadiums, operas, etc, but due to COVID, we have moved online to offer members a weekly outlet to share their feelings, see old friends, and make new connections. Mixers start at 6:30pm on Friday and the main event ends at 7:30pm but people have stayed on after 7:30pm for smaller breakout groups.

Membership Committee will continue to host weekly Zoom mixers until it is safe to gather together again in person. 

We are giving away door prizes in some weeks. In order to win, you must be a member and must RSVP on the aabany.org calendar entry to get a raffle number. Non-members can join the Zoom mixer but won’t be eligible to win a prize. 

Mixers are not recorded, and are LIVE, so don’t miss out.

AABANY Hosts Weekly Zoom Membership Mixer on June 12

On June 12 2020, the Membership Committee hosted their weekly Zoom Membership Mixer, with 19 participants in attendance.  The icebreaker question posed to the participants was: “What is a motivational or inspirational moment or story that sticks out in your mind?” Members reported some favorite quotes: “I’m not saying I’m gonna change the world, but I guarantee that I will spark the brain that will change the world.” (Tupac); “Tomorrow’s world is yours to build.”  (Yuri Kochiyama);  “The people who are crazy enough to think that they can change the world, are the ones who do.” (Steve Jobs).  Other members recalled moments with mentors which stayed with them. One partner told  a young associate: “Speak up for what you want, you have to ask.” “There is the argument you prepare, the argument you make and the arguments you wish you made.” “Learn from your mistakes.” “Apply to every scholarship and opportunity and you can reach your goals.”

The Membership Committee previously hosted Monthly Mixers at bars, ballparks, stadiums, operas, etc, but due to COVID, we have moved online to offer members a weekly outlet to share their feelings, see old friends, and make new connections. Mixers start at 6:30pm on Friday and the main event ends at 7:30pm but feel free to stay on after 7:30pm for smaller breakout groups.

This week, after the main mixer, a breakout group of 6 members stayed to discuss the upcoming elections, civil unrest and the latest news. 

We are giving away door prizes in some weeks. In order to win, you must be a member and must RSVP on the aabany.org calendar entry to get a raffle number. Non-members can join the Zoom mixer but won’t be eligible to win a prize. Congratulations to Chris Kwok for winning a PBS Passport subscription this week!

 Mixers are not recorded, and are LIVE, so don’t miss out. This week’s mixer will take place on Friday, June 19 , at 6:30 pm. Register by June 18 at https://www.aabany.org/events/event_details.asp?legacy=1&id=1366640

AABANY Hosts Weekly Zoom Membership Mixer on June 5

On June 5, 2020, the Membership Committee hosted their weekly Zoom Membership Mixer, with 25 participants in attendance. The icebreaker question posed to the participants was: “Who is your favorite villain from television, movies, or literature?” Members reported their favorite villains as Emperor Palpatine and Darth Vader of Star Wars, Khan Noonien Singh of Star Trek, Professor Moriarty from Sherlock Holmes, Negan from Walking Dead, Cersei Lannister from Game of Thrones, Tony Soprano, Jack the Ripper, Agent Smith of Matrix, Mother Nature in Disney films, Bridget Gregory of the Last Seduction, Thanos in Marvel Universe, Maleficent of Sleeping Beauty, Hannibal Lecter, and Joker in Batman (both Jack Nicholson and Heath Ledger).

The Membership Committee previously hosted Monthly Mixers at bars, ballparks, stadiums, operas, etc. but due to COVID, we have moved online to offer members a weekly outlet to share their feelings, see old friends, and make new connections. Mixers start at 6:30pm on Friday and the main event ends at 7:30pm but feel free to stay on after 7:30pm for smaller breakout groups.

This week, after the main mixer, a breakout group of 12 members stayed to discuss anti-Asian hate crimes in the age of COVID, and the current protests happening in response to the death of George Floyd.

We are giving away door prizes in some weeks. In order to win, you must be a member and must RSVP on the calendar entry for the mixer to get a raffle number. Non-members can join the Zoom mixer but won’t be eligible to win a prize. Congratulations to Kevin Hsi for winning an Amazon gift card this week!

Mixers are not recorded, and are LIVE, so don’t miss out. This week’s mixer will take place on Friday, June 12 , at 6:30 pm. Register by June 11 at https://www.aabany.org/events/event_details.asp?legacy=1&id=1366639

AABANY Hosts Weekly Zoom Membership Mixer on May 29

On May 29, 2020, the Membership Committee hosted their weekly Zoom Mixer Membership Mixer, with 29 participants in attendance. In honor of Membership Director Beatrice Leong’s birthday, the icebreaker question posed to the participants was: “What was your favorite or most memorable birthday memory or gift?” The overwhelming answer by most participants was “getting drunk on their 21st birthday.” Other answers included a one-week alcohol bender, birthday parties in McDonald’s with childhood crushes, Tokyo birthdays, birthdays where members took the LSAT and passed the bar exam. Members’ favorite gifts included a Voltron toy, a song written in their honor, and a 3D printed toy of the member’s likeness.

This mixer featured Trivia Night hosted by Sal Chan. Sal is Chief of Operations at the trial boutique Mukasey Frenchman & Sklaroff. Thank you, Sal! Anyone interested in joining Zoom trivia nights every Thursday can email Sal at  sal.chan@mfsllp.com.

We had enough attendees to form four teams. Three of the teams stayed through two full rounds of quetstions. The winning team was “Taking Back Monday.” Congratulations to team members Andrew Kao, Puja Sharma, Kevin Hsi and William LimDuring the game, we encouraged participants to donate to a fund, with the winning team getting to pick which charity or cause they wished to support. Taking Back Mondays kindly agreed to donate to AABANY’s Pro Bono Clinic. Thank you, Taking Back Mondays!

The Membership Committee previously hosted Monthly Mixers at bars, ballparks, stadiums, operas, etc., but due to COVID, we moved online to offer members a weekly outlet to share their feelings, see old friends, and make new connections. Mixers start at 6:30pm on Friday and the main event ends at 7:30pm but people have stayed on after 7:30pm for smaller breakout groups.

We are giving away door prizes during some weeks. In order to win, you must be a member and must RSVP on aabany.org to get a raffle number. Non-members can join the Zoom mixer but won’t be eligible to win a prize. Mixers are not recorded, and are LIVE, so don’t miss out.

This week’s mixer will take place on Friday, June 5, at 6:30 pm. Register by June 4 at https://www.aabany.org/events/event_details.asp?legacy=1&id=1366638. We hope to see you there.

AABANY Hosts Weekly Zoom Membership Mixer on May 22

On May 22, 2020, the Membership Committee hosted their weekly Zoom Mixer Membership Mixer, with 21 participants in attendance. The icebreaker question posed to the participants was “What song would be playing if you had to  make an grand entrance?” Members named “Fly Me to the Moon,” “Game of Thrones” theme song, “Eye of the Tiger,” “Final Countdown,” K-Pop classics, “‘Law and Order” theme, “Juicy,” “Young, Scrappy and Hungry,” and more great songs.

This mixer featured AABANY Treasurer Will Hao, Alston & Bird Associate Will Lee, Pro Bono Committee Vice Chairs Karen King and Kwok Ng who gave members a preview of an upcoming COVID-19 small business relief community presentations.

The Membership Committee previously hosted Monthly Mixers at bars, ballparks, stadiums, operas, etc, but due to COVID, we are moving online to offer members a weekly outlet to share their feelings, see old friends, and make new connections. Mixers start at 6:30pm on Friday and the main event ends at 7:30pm but feel free to stay on after 7:30pm for smaller breakout groups.

We are giving away door prizes on some weeks. In order to win, you must be a member and must RSVP via the calendar entry on aabany.org to get a raffle number. Non-members can join the Zoom mixer but won’t be eligible to win a prize. Mixers are not recorded, and are LIVE, so don’t miss out.

This week we gave away a Hulu subscription – congratulations to Bryan Cheah for winning! Congratulations to Bryan also for graduating from Rutgers Law School, and we wish you the best of luck in preparing for the bar exam!

Please register at https://www.aabany.org/events/event_details.asp?legacy=1&id=1366637 to join us on May 29, for a possible trivia night, and to celebrate Beatrice’s birthday!

AABANY Goes to the Hello Panda Lantern Festival at Citifield

On Friday, January 17, 2020, thirty AABANY members and friends braved the cold weather to enjoy a mixer at Citifield for the Hello Panda Lantern Festival.

Members were able to walk around the beautifully crafted structures, lit in colorful lights against the black night sky. Members also took a break from the cold and warmed up with hot cocoa and food while networking.

We thank AABANY’s Government Service & Public Interest, Pro Bono and Community Service, Young Lawyers, and Membership Committees for co-sponsoring this event.

To find out more about the Government Service & Public Interest Committee go to https://www.aabany.org/page/113. To find out more about the Pro Bono & Community Service Committee go to https://www.aabany.org/page/117. To find out more about the Young Lawyers Committee go to https://www.aabany.org/page/123.
To find out more about the Membership Committee go to https://www.aabany.org/page/130.

March Monthly Membership Hour

On March 20, 2019, our Membership Committee held its last Monthly Membership Happy Hour of the fiscal year at Karaoke City in Midtown Manhattan. A crowd of AABANY members and future members gathered to meet and mingle over drinks, delicious Korean food, and karaoke.

Both Brian Song, President-Elect, and Yang Chen, Executive Director, gave a shout out to David Sohn, Membership Director and Membership Committee Chair, for all his hard work in putting together the Monthly Membership Happy Hours as a unique way to let prospective members learn about AABANY.

We thank the Litigation Committee and the Military and Veterans Affairs Committee for co-hosting this successful happy hour, with more than 30 attendees. If you are not already a member, we hope your attendance brings you closer to becoming a member or renewing your membership. And thanks to all the members who came out.

To learn more about joining AABANY go to https://www.aabany.org/page/130