The NAPABA Central Regional Conference will include a viewing of the film, And Then They Came For Us, followed later in the evening by special guest speaker George Takei, which will include a book signing of his new book, They Called Us Enemy. Copies will be available at the conference.
Northeast Regional Conference
September 21 Fordham Law School for NYC New York, NY
Calling All Those Similarly Situated: Hot Topics and Recurring Issues in Class Action Litigation
Class actions today come in all shapes and sizes, on behalf of all kinds of individuals, and seek broad relief for all types of infractions. For many publicly traded companies, highly regulated industries, manufacturers, retailers, service providers, and employers of a sizable workforce, the threat of a class action lawsuit can be palpable and constant. Our panelists will discuss some recent trends and noteworthy decisions in class action practice, as well as recurring themes and issues for practitioners prosecuting, defending, or counseling companies vulnerable to these bet-the-company lawsuits.
The panel will also seek to demystify class action practice by addressing some of the following questions: Why are class actions attractive for plaintiff’s attorneys and what are the risks and pitfalls of bringing them? Why are they so scary to defendants? What are some ways to potentially circumvent class actions? What is the anatomy of a typical class action? What are some practical tips and considerations for discovery, class certification, and settlement? How can these strategies vary depending on the nature of the suit (e.g., securities, labor, mass torts, antitrust, consumer protection)?
Sung W. Kim, Esq., Special Counsel, Kelley Drye & Warren LLP
The ‘Business Case’ for Diversity & Inclusion: Lessons Learned from In-House, Government, and Law Firm Counsel
Today’s economic climate is one of constant change. Increased regulatory compliance, technological innovation, low interest rates, and other factors have together created a highly challenging business environment. In order to remain competitive, companies and law firms are placing a growing emphasis on legal teams that are resilient, creative, and diverse. Governmental entities are also beginning to recognize the importance of diversity and inclusion in their recruiting efforts.
This panel discusses the growing awareness that diversity and inclusion are not only helpful, but also critical towards the success of an enterprise. Senior in-house, government, and law firm counsels will discuss how staffing diverse legal teams has driven superior business results and contributed towards their organizations’ success. This panel will also discuss unique opportunities that exist for teams that can successfully apply diversity and inclusion to their practices. Finally, the panel will also discuss how APA attorneys may position themselves to identify and help meet these needs, stepping forward as leaders during this critical juncture.
Sahang-Hee Hahn, Esq., Assistant Vice President and Counsel, MassMutual
In-House Attorneys serve dual roles in that they act as both attorneys for their respective companies, as well as clients in working with outside counsel. As such in-house attorneys have added responsibilities to keenly understand ethical issues both as attorneys and clients. Seasoned panelists will consider and discuss issues such as who the client is, escalating potential issues/violations, and attorney client privilege/work product from both in-house and outside counsel perspectives.
An-Ping Hsieh, Esq., Senior Vice President and General Counsel, Hubbell Incorporated
Edward S. Cheng, Esq., Partner, Sherin and Lodgen LLP
Jung Choi, Esq., Senior Counsel, Bristol-Myers Squibb Company
Clara Ohr, Esq., Legal Counsel and Compliance Officer, LUKOIL Pan Americas, LLC
A Shot in the Dark: The Peter Liang/Akai Gurley Tragedy
Akai Gurley, a 28-year-old African-American man, was fatally shot on November 20, 2014, in Brooklyn’s Louis H. Pink Houses, by rookie NYPD Officer Peter Liang, who had entered a stairwell with his firearm drawn. The shooting was declared an accidental discharge; the bullet ricocheted off the wall and Gurley was struck once in the chest and later died from the shot. On February 10, 2015, Liang was indicted by a grand jury on manslaughter, assault, and other criminal charges, and on February 11, 2016, Liang was found guilty of manslaughter and official misconduct, becoming the first NYPD officer in over a decade to be found guilty of shooting and killing a citizen while on duty. The shooting and trial touched off a firestorm of opinion and protests, and in the post-Ferguson era, the case has added another twist to the intense ongoing debate about race and accountability in policing, as well as the Asian American community’s place in that debate and race relations.
This panel will explore criminal procedural issues in the context of the Peter Liang trial, such as the indictment and grand jury process, what is the standard for homicide versus manslaughter, and will also look at the civil rights aspect of the case. How did the APA community respond to the tragedy and what can we learn from it going forward?
Alexander M. Lee, Esq., Principal, The Law Offices of Alexander M. Lee
Christopher M. Kwok, Esq., Supervisory ADR Coordinator, U.S. EEOC (appearing in individual capacity)
Jin P. Lee, Esq., Principal, The Law Office of Jin P. Lee
Sandra Leung, Esq., Executive Vice President and General Counsel, Bristol-Myers Squibb Company
Vinoo Varghese, Esq., Principal, Varghese and Associates, P.C.