AABANY Hosts First Membership Mixer via Zoom on April 1

On April 1, 2020, AABANY held its first Monthly Membership Mixer virtually on Zoom. Over 25 people joined Brian Song, who became the Immediate Past President, and Sapna Palla, who officially became the President of AABANY on the same day.

Brian remarked how it had been a tremendous honor for him to serve as President of AABANY for the past year. He was amazed at how the year went by so quickly and thanked everyone for their support and dedication in making 2019 a successful year for AABANY.

Sapna next spoke about how pleased she was to be taking on the Presidency and how AABANY’s theme of “Stronger Together: Unity in Diversity” is extremely fitting in the current situation. Sapna noted that AABANY is an exceptional community, and by sticking together, we will definitely get through this tough situation. She also encouraged people to reach out to each other professionally and socially via online platforms like Zoom until things return to normal.

Chris Kwok informed attendees about an upcoming webinar he is working on with NAPABA taking place on April 3. The webinar will discuss the rise in racist attacks against Asian Americans fueled by misinformation surrounding the spread of COVID-19 and what we can do to counter them.

Yang Chen and Chris Kwok also discussed the stimulus bill that recently passed to provide economic support to millions of Americans and businesses that are suffering as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. AABANY is working on distilling the bill down to clarify who it covers and the type of relief they are eligible for under the new bill.

Lastly, the virtual floor was opened up to all attendees for a free discussion. Members discussed the current situation and what AABANY can do to engage its members and serve the overall Asian American community in this new normal.

Overall, our first meeting on Zoom was very lively and went smoothly. In the coming weeks, AABANY is planning on hosting more and more programs online, including CLEs and informative webinars. Stay tuned!

Thanks to everyone that attended the mixer.

Here is the intro video for Glenn Lau-Kee when he was honored back in April during the Museum of Chinese in America’s Celebration of Community Heroes. The video mentions Glenn’s leadership as AABANY President (1997-98) and as the first Asian American President of the New York State Bar Association (2014-15). AABANY Executive Director Yang Chen appears in the video, along with other community leaders, to salute Glenn and his contributions to not just the Asian American community but the larger community as well. Thank you, Glenn, for all that you do. You are truly an inspiration to us all and a genuine Community Hero. Congratulations, again!

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World Journal’s Report on the AABANY/NYCLA Reception for Glenn Lau-Kee

World Journal’s Report on the AABANY/NYCLA Reception for Glenn Lau-Kee

At the NYCLA-AABANY Reception for Glenn Lau-Kee, NYSBA’s 117th President and the first Asian American President of NYSBA, Past AABANY President Vince Chang, Margaret Ling, Chair of NYCLA’s Asian Practice Committee and Director on AABANY’s Board, and Norman Kee, Glenn’s father, introduce Glenn to present his speech to all who gathered for the celebration. Thanks to Francis Chin, Director on AABANY’s Board, for the video.

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On July 16th, NYCLA and AABANY honored Glenn Lau-Kee for his historical accomplishment of becoming the 117th President of the New York State Bar Association and the first Asian-American to hold this position.

Margaret Ling, Chair of NYCLA’s Asian Practice Committee and co-chair of AABANY’s Real Estate Committee, began the program by introducing Presiding Justice of the Second Department, Hon. Randall T. Eng, to present the first remarks of the evening.

Margaret then introduced representatives from the many organizations Glenn has impacted or been part of, many of whom shared personal stories of their work with or connection to Glenn. Among the speakers were Lewis Tesser, President of NYCLA, Bridgette Ahn, Vice President of Programs and Committees for KALAGNY, Nadine Fontaine, Immediate Past President of the Metropolitan Black Bar Association, Rosevelie Marquez Morales, Co-Chair of NYSBA’s Committee on Diversity and Inclusion, Alex Lee, Vice President of Finance and Development for NAPABA, and Clara Ohr, President of AABANY.

NYCLA’s Solo and Small Firm Committee was a co-sponsor of the event, and Co-Chairs Tsui Yee and Paige Zandri offered remarks on behalf of that committee. Tsui also co-chairs AABANY’s Immigration and Nationality Law Committee. Vince Chang, a Past President of AABANY, presented remarks on behalf of NYCLA’s Federal Courts Committee, another co-sponsor of the event.

Representatives from Federal, State and City government were on hand to honor Glenn. The Governor’s Office, represented by Mecca Santana, Chief Diversity Officer, presented a greeting letter from the Governor to Glenn. Sandra Ung, Chief Legislative Assistant for Congresswoman Grace Meng, presented a commendation to Glenn from Congresswoman Meng’s office. Jimmy Yan, Chief Deputy General Counsel for New York City Comptroller Scott Stringer, offered congratulations on behalf of the Comptroller.

All of the speakers extolled Glenn for his outstanding record of leadership and status as a significant role model for Asian American, minority and under-represented groups.

After all the speeches were given, Glenn’s father, Norman Kee, a trailblazer in his own right, introduced Glenn. Glenn expressed his gratitude for the honors bestowed upon him at the reception. He urged everyone, especially young lawyers, to get involved in bar associations – any bar association – as a way to develop as lawyers and serve the profession.

Congratulations to Glenn on his historic achievement, and thanks to Margaret Ling for organizing the reception and NYCLA for hosting it. Thanks to all the government officials, bar leaders, friends and family who came out to celebrate.

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Thanks to everyone who came out on February 26, 2014, to celebrate AABANY’s 25th anniversary with us at Cipriani Wall Street. More than 850 guests registered to attend, setting a new record. AABANY also reached its goal of exceeding 1,000 paid members. Mike Huang, in his Outgoing President’s speech, publicly announced the Don Liu Scholarship to award $15,000 to APA law students who apply and meet the requirements. Significant pledges have already been rolling in.

Congratulations to our 2014 honorees: AALDEF, recipient of the Public Advocacy Award; Randal Milch, GC of Verizon, recipient of the Corporate Counsel Leadership Award; and Vernon Jordan, recipient of the I4 (Icon, Ideals, Impact, Inspiration) Leadership Award. Congratulations also to Julie Kwon, our Mentor-Mentee Program Coordinator, for winning the AABANY MVP Award.

AABANY was joined by about 30 past honorees from past annual dinners. Each was brought up to the stage during the dinner for special recognition.

MSNBC reporter Richard Lui once again expertly took us through the proceedings as MC.

Guests continued to celebrate upstairs in the mezzanine during the after-party, with open bar and live DJ.

Happy 25th anniversary, AABANY, and we are looking forward to 2014 and the next quarter century!