PRESS RELEASE: THE ASIAN AMERICAN BAR ASSOCIATION OF NEW YORK IS RECEIVING THE AFFILIATE OF THE YEAR AWARD FROM THE NATIONAL ASIAN PACIFIC AMERICAN BAR ASSOCIATION AT ITS NATIONAL CONVENTION IN AUSTIN, TEXAS

NEW YORK – November 5, 2019 – The National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA) has selected  the Asian American Bar Association of New York (AABANY) as its Affiliate of the Year. This award recognizes outstanding NAPABA affiliates that have demonstrated an exceptional commitment to NAPABA, the legal community, and the greater Asian Pacific American (APA) community. AABANY will be presented the Affiliate of the Year Award during the 2019 NAPABA Convention in Austin, Texas, taking place November 7-10, 2019. AABANY President Brian Song will accept the award on behalf of the association at NAPABA’s Gala Dinner to be held on Saturday, November 9.

AABANY was formed in 1989 as a not-for-profit corporation to represent the interests of New York Asian American attorneys, judges, law professors, legal professionals, legal assistants, paralegals and law students. The mission of AABANY is to improve the study and practice of law, and the fair administration of justice for all by ensuring the meaningful participation of Asian Americans in the legal profession.

Over the past three decades AABANY has worked tirelessly to accomplish its mission. For example, we have regularly conducted student outreach and held workshops throughout the year on resume writing, interviewing and networking skills to help law students succeed. We are also into the ninth year of our Mentorship Program that provides individual professional development specifically tailored to the needs of mentees, many of whom are law students. In addition, now in its second year, the AABANY Leadership Development Program assists and guides senior APA law firm associates and in-house counsel through an interactive leadership training program designed to develop and promote qualified APA attorneys for partnership at law firms and leadership positions at companies.

AABANY also plays an integral part in creating diversity on the bench through our Judiciary Committee’s initiatives. AABANY’s Judiciary Committee assisted dozens of judges of Asian American, South Asian, and Pacific Islander heritage in ascending to the bench.

In addition, we collaborate with the South Asian Bar Association of New York, the Korean American Lawyers Association of Greater New York and Filipino American Lawyers Association of New York to further the interests of APAs in the legal profession by offering CLE accreditation, co-sponsoring networking events, and supporting each other’s programs and activities.

Furthermore, we serve the APA community by holding a monthly Pro Bono Clinic in partnership with the Chinese Chamber of Commerce of NY. We mobilize the expertise and language skills of AABANY’s diverse membership to provide high quality and accessible legal assistance to the Asian community on the second Wednesday of every month, at Confucius Plaza in Chinatown. In 2018-19, the Clinic served between 21-51 clients with the help of 11-21 volunteer attorneys and 5-12 interpreters each month.

Moreover, in addition to providing free legal assistance to the Asian community, we promote APA history and awareness through our historic trial reenactments. The Hon. Denny Chin and Kathy Hirata Chin have spearheaded this project for twelve years. The most recent reenactment, “Alice in Chinatown: Chol Soo Lee and His Fight for Freedom” retold the story of Chol Soo Lee, a young Korean American who was wrongly accused and imprisoned for a gangland murder in San Francisco’s Chinatown in the 1970s. AABANY has made these reenactment scripts available to schools, community groups, other bar associations and anyone who wishes to perform them. AABANY’s reenactments project has become a template for other groups to encourage civic education and engagement in our communities.

Each new historic trial reenactment premieres at the annual NAPABA Convention, but this year, the AABANY Trial Reenactment Team will be reprising “Korematsu v. United States: Fred Korematsu and His Fight for Justice” in celebration of Fred Korematsu’s 100th birthday. The cast will include luminaries such as Hon. Marilyn Hall Patel (Ret.), the judge who decided the coram nobis proceeding that overturned Korematsu’s wrongful conviction, and Dale Minami, the iconic attorney who led the team that brought about this historic outcome. Judge Patel and Dale Minami will be playing themselves, as will Karen Korematsu, Fred’s daughter, in the reenactment, which will be performed on November 8, at Friday’s Plenary Lunch Session during the NAPABA Convention.

Because of these significant contributions and achievements over the decades, AABANY has become one of the most prominent bar associations in New York and has been selected to receive the Affiliate of the Year Award from NAPABA for a second time. AABANY first received this prestigious honor in 2008 under the leadership of then-President and now Executive Director Yang Chen.

“AABANY thanks NAPABA for this important award and its recognition of our innovative efforts to engage our membership and the community,” states AABANY President Brian Song, a Partner at BakerHostetler in New York. “We are grateful for the leadership and dedication of our current and past Board Directors and Officers for bringing AABANY to this point. We especially thank and acknowledge our sponsors and our members for their support of our mission to promote the interests of APA lawyers and legal professionals and the larger community they serve. AABANY could not be NAPABA’s Affiliate of the Year without the involvement and participation of everyone in the legal profession and community who have been integral to our growth and success over the last thirty years.”

For more information, please contact Yang Chen, AABANY Executive Director, at (212) 332-2478, or direct any inquiries to main@aabany.org.

The Asian American Bar Association of New York is a professional membership organization of attorneys concerned with issues affecting the Asian Pacific American community. Incorporated in 1989, AABANY seeks not only to encourage the professional growth of its members but also to advocate for the Asian Pacific American community as a whole. AABANY is a New York regional affiliate of the National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA).

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Press Release: NAPABA Statement on the Harvard Admissions Case

For Immediate Release
October 2, 2019
For More Information, Contact:
Navdeep Singh, Policy Director
202-775-9555; nsingh@napaba.org

WASHINGTON – Late yesterday, Judge Allison D. Burroughs of the U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts issued a ruling that upheld the use of race conscious admissions in Students For Fair Admissions v. Harvard. NAPABA applauds the Court for reaffirming that (1) diversity remains a critical and compelling interest for universities to achieve; and (2) the consideration of race as one of many factors in a holistic admissions process is a permissible means to evaluate an individual student’s application.

“The ruling makes clear that it is vital for students to be able to share their whole selves when applying to college,” said NAPABA President Daniel Sakaguchi. “NAPABA is encouraged that the Court upheld the principle of holistic, race-conscious admissions, recognized that race continues to matter in people’s daily lives and experiences, and eloquently underscored the importance diversity in education. While the Court found Harvard did not engage in intentional discrimination against Asian American applicants, NAPABA also supports continuing efforts by colleges and universities to improve their admissions processes, including work to recognize and address implicit bias, so that all parts of a thoughtful and holistic admissions system work together to ensure that all students have equal opportunities free from discrimination.”

NAPABA supports efforts to increase diversity, equity, and inclusion in education and the consideration of race as part of a holistic, individualized admissions process.

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The National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA) is the national association of Asian Pacific American (APA) attorneys, judges, law professors, and law students. NAPABA represents the interests of over 50,000 attorneys and over 80 national, state, and local bar associations. Its members include solo practitioners, large firm lawyers, corporate counsel, legal services and non-profit attorneys, and lawyers serving at all levels of government. NAPABA engages in legislative and policy advocacy, promotes APA political leadership and political appointments, and builds coalitions within the legal profession and the community at large. NAPABA also serves as a resource for government agencies, members of Congress, and public service organizations about APAs in the legal profession, civil rights, and diversity in the courts.

Press Release: NAPABA Applauds the Nominations of Patrick Bumatay to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit and Judge Steve Kim to the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California

For Immediate Release
August 29, 2019
For More Information, Contact:
Navdeep Singh, Policy Director
202-775-9555; nsingh@napaba.org

WASHINGTON – President Trump announced the nominations of Patrick J. Bumatay to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit and Judge Steve Kim to the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California.

“NAPABA congratulates Patrick Bumatay on his nomination to serve on the U.S. Courts of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit,” said NAPABA President Daniel Sakaguchi. “A career prosecutor, Mr. Bumatay is an experienced attorney who will bring his strong commitment to fairness and public service to the bench. We urge the Senate to swiftly consider his historic nomination and confirm him as the first Filipino American to serve as a federal appellate judge and the first openly gay judge on the Ninth Circuit.”

“NAPABA congratulates Judge Steve Kim on his nomination to serve on the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California,” continued Sakaguchi. “A current federal magistrate judge, he is recognized by his peers on the bench and in the bar for his leadership and commitment to the practice of law. We urge the Senate to swiftly consider his nomination and confirm him to the bench.”

Patrick J. Bumatay is an Assistant United States Attorney in the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of California. He currently serves in the Office’s Appellate Section, representing the United States before the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. Bumatay has held numerous positions in public service throughout the Department of Justice, including the top three leadership offices. He clerked for Judge Timothy M. Tymkovich of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit and Judge Sandra L. Townes of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York. He is a graduate of Yale University and Harvard Law School. He is an active member of NAPABA, our affiliated bar—the National Filipino American Lawyers Association, and the Tom Homann LGBT Law Association.

Steve Kim is a U.S. Magistrate Judge for the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California. He presides over both criminal and civil matters. He was the Regional Managing Direct at Stroz Friedbarg, LLC, and is a former Assistant U.S. Attorney in the Criminal Division. He clerked for Judge Sidney R. Thomas on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit and District Judge Stephen V. Wilson in the Central District of California. He is a graduate of the University of Oklahoma, with special distinction, and Georgetown University Law Center, magna cum laude.

NAPABA commends President Trump for nominating Patrick Bumatay and Judge Steve Kim.

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The National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA) is the national association of Asian Pacific American (APA) attorneys, judges, law professors, and law students. NAPABA represents the interests of over 50,000 attorneys and over 80 national, state, and local bar associations. Its members include solo practitioners, large firm lawyers, corporate counsel, legal services and non-profit attorneys, and lawyers serving at all levels of government. NAPABA engages in legislative and policy advocacy, promotes APA political leadership and political appointments, and builds coalitions within the legal profession and the community at large. NAPABA also serves as a resource for government agencies, members of Congress, and public service organizations about APAs in the legal profession, civil rights, and diversity in the courts.

To learn more about NAPABA, visit www.napaba.org, like us on Facebook, and follow us on Twitter (@NAPABA).

NAPABA Applauds the Pending Nomination of Shireen Matthews to the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California

For Immediate Release
August 29, 2019
For More Information, Contact:
Navdeep Singh, Policy Director
202-775-9555; nsingh@napaba.org

WASHINGTON – The National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA) applauds the announcement that President Trump intends to nominate Shireen Matthews to the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California. If confirmed, Matthews will be the first Asian Pacific American woman and first Indian American to serve as an Article III federal judge in the Southern District.

Matthews is currently a partner at Jones Day. A former Assistant U.S. Attorney in the Criminal Division of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of California, she served as the Criminal Health Care Fraud Coordinator. Her work has been recognized by the Federal Bar Association, the U.S. Attorney, the Department of Justice, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Social Security Administration, and the Office of the Inspector General at the Department of Health and Human Services. She has extensive trial experience, and she has argued before the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals.

Outside of the courtroom, Matthews has demonstrated a commitment to the profession and the community. She recently served as a lawyer representative for the Ninth Circuit Judicial Conference and provides pro bono legal assistance to veterans of the U.S. Armed Forces. She is an advocate for diversity within the profession, serving on Jones Day’s Diversity, Inclusion and Advancement Committee, as the Hiring Partner for Jones Day’s San Diego office, and on the board of the South Asian Bar Association of San Diego, a NAPABA affiliate.

She clerked for Judge Irma E. Gonzalez of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California. She is a graduate of Georgetown University (magna cum laude) and the Duke University School of Law (cum laude).

“Shireen Matthews is experienced attorney, both in the public and private sectors. She will be a well-qualified addition to the bench in the Southern District of California,” said NAPABA President Daniel Sakaguchi. “Shireen is a past president of the San Diego chapter of the South Asian Bar Association, a local affiliate of NAPABA. She has demonstrated a strong commitment to serving her community and promoting diversity in the legal profession. NAPABA applauds the announcement of her pending nomination and urges the Senate to quickly confirm her to the court.”

NAPABA commends President Trump for announcing his intent to nominate Shireen Matthews. NAPABA extends its gratitude to Senators Feinstein and Harris for recommending her to the White House.

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The National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA) is the national association of Asian Pacific American (APA) attorneys, judges, law professors, and law students. NAPABA represents the interests of over 50,000 attorneys and over 80 national, state, and local bar associations. Its members include solo practitioners, large firm lawyers, corporate counsel, legal services and non-profit attorneys, and lawyers serving at all levels of government. NAPABA engages in legislative and policy advocacy, promotes APA political leadership and political appointments, and builds coalitions within the legal profession and the community at large. NAPABA also serves as a resource for government agencies, members of Congress, and public service organizations about APAs in the legal profession, civil rights, and diversity in the courts.

To learn more about NAPABA, visit www.napaba.org, like us on Facebook, and follow us on Twitter (@NAPABA).

NAPABA Applauds the Nomination of Judge Anuraag “Raag” Singhal to the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida

For Immediate Release
August 15, 2019
For More Information, Contact:
Navdeep Singh, Policy Director
202-775-9555; nsingh@napaba.org

The National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA) applauds the nomination of Judge Anuraag “Raag” Singhal to U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida by President Trump. If confirmed, Judge Singhal will be the first Asian Pacific American and Indian American to serve as an Article III federal judge in the Eleventh Circuit (Alabama, Georgia, and Florida).

Judge Singhal is a Circuit Court Judge for the 17th Judicial Circuit in Broward County, Florida. Prior to his appointment, he practiced criminal defense law and was a prosecutor in the Office of the State Attorney. He is a graduate of Rice University and Wake Forest University School of Law.

He has demonstrated a commitment to service and diversity through his involvement in the legal community. Judge Singhal has supported numerous bar associations in South Florida, including the Asian Pacific American Bar Association of South Florida, the South Asian Bar Association of South Florida, the Wilkie D. Ferguson Jr. Bar Association, the Broward County Hispanic Bar Association, and the Broward County Bar Association. He is the recipient of the 2018 Stephen R. Booher Award, presented by the Broward County Bar Association, which recognizes jurists who display humanity, integrity, and dedication to the Bench, Bar, and Community.

“Judge Raag Singhal is an experienced jurist and will be a strong addition to the bench in the Southern District of Florida,” said NAPABA President Daniel Sakaguchi. “An active supporter of our local affiliate bar association, the Asian Pacific American Bar Association of South Florida, Judge Singhal has deep connections to the community. NAPABA applauds his historic nomination and urges the Senate to quickly confirm him to the court.”

NAPABA commends President Trump for nominating Judge Singhal. NAPABA extends its gratitude to Senators Rubio and Scott for recommending Judge Singhal to the White House.

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The National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA) is the national association of Asian Pacific American (APA) attorneys, judges, law professors, and law students. NAPABA represents the interests of over 50,000 attorneys and over 80 national, state, and local bar associations. Its members include solo practitioners, large firm lawyers, corporate counsel, legal services and non-profit attorneys, and lawyers serving at all levels of government. NAPABA engages in legislative and policy advocacy, promotes APA political leadership and political appointments, and builds coalitions within the legal profession and the community at large. NAPABA also serves as a resource for government agencies, members of Congress, and public service organizations about APAs in the legal profession, civil rights, and diversity in the courts.

To learn more about NAPABA, visit www.napaba.org, like us on Facebook, and follow us on Twitter (@NAPABA).

Congratulations to Kenneth Chin on his Election as a Member of The American Law Institute

AABANY is proud to announce that as of July 2019, Kenneth Chin, Partner at Kramer Levin and AABANY member, has been elected to be a member of The American Law Institute (ALI). ALI is an academic and intellectual group that clarifies the law through Restatements, Principles, and Model Codes. The Institute’s mission is “to promote the clarification and simplification of the law and its better adaptation to social needs, to secure the better administration of justice, and to encourage and carry on scholarly and scientific legal work.”

Congratulations to Kenneth Chin on this impressive accomplishment.

To read the full press release, please see the following link: https://www.ali.org/news/articles/ali-elects-62-new-members/

To view Kenneth’s full member profile on the ALI website, please see the following link:
https://www.ali.org/members/member/140670/

NAPABA and MAABA Celebrate Judge George Draper III’s Appointment as Chief Justice of the Missouri Supreme Court

For Immediate Release
July 25, 2019
For More Information, Contact:
Navdeep Singh, Policy Director
202-775-9555; nsingh@napaba.org

The National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA) and the Missouri Asian American Bar Association (MAABA) celebrate the appointment of member and supporter the Honorable George W. Draper III as the Chief Justice of the Missouri Supreme Court.

Judge Draper was first appointed to the Missouri Supreme Court in 2011. He first joined the bench in Missouri in 1994. He is the second African American to serve as Chief Justice. He is a graduate of Morehouse College and received his law degree from Howard University. He and his wife, the Honorable Judy P. Draper, are members of the NAPABA Judicial Council.

“NAPABA extends warm congratulations to the Hon. George W. Draper III, on his recent appointment, on his recent appointment as Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Missouri. The second African American judge to serve on Missouri’s high court, Judge Draper has been outstanding in his support of diversity and inclusion in the state’s legal community, and a long-time friend to NAPABA and its Missouri affiliate, MAABA,” said NAPABA President Daniel Sakaguchi.

“We congratulate Judge Draper on his appointment as the Chief Justice of the Missouri Supreme Court. Judge Draper has been a stalwart supporter of MAABA since its inception, and we have confidence he will continue to be a fair and impartial judge and to protect the rights of all Missourians,” said Frances Barbieri, president of MAABA.

NAPABA Judicial Council Chair the Hon. Benes Aldana (Ret.) said, “We are so proud of our friend, Justice George Draper, who recently became the newest Chief Justice of Missouri. Throughout his career, Chief Justice Draper has exhibited steadfast commitment to safeguard individual rights on an equal basis for all. He is widely respected for his inclusive leadership and he has served as a role model and inspiration for many in the legal profession. We look forward to continuing our great relationship with him and his wife, Judge Judy Draper, both members of the NAPABA Judicial Council.”

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The National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA) is the national association of Asian Pacific American (APA) attorneys, judges, law professors, and law students. NAPABA represents the interests of over 50,000 attorneys and over 80 national, state, and local bar associations. Its members include solo practitioners, large firm lawyers, corporate counsel, legal services and non-profit attorneys, and lawyers serving at all levels of government. NAPABA engages in legislative and policy advocacy, promotes APA political leadership and political appointments, and builds coalitions within the legal profession and the community at large. NAPABA also serves as a resource for government agencies, members of Congress, and public service organizations about APAs in the legal profession, civil rights, and diversity in the courts.

To learn more about NAPABA, visit www.napaba.org, like us on Facebook, and follow us on Twitter (@NAPABA).

NAPABA Extends Condolences on the Passing of U.S. Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens

For Immediate Release
July 17, 2019
For More Information, Contact:
Navdeep Singh, Policy Director
202-775-9555; nsingh@napaba.org

The National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA) extends its sincere condolences to the family of retired United States Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens, who passed away on July 16th in Florida at the age of 99. He was the longest-lived Supreme Court justice in United States history. Justice Stevens was appointed by President Gerald Ford in 1975 and served until 2010. His thirty-five year tenure on the bench made him the third-longest-serving Justice in the history of the Court.

“Justice Stevens had a significant impact on the United States and our understanding of the law and its evolution,” said NAPABA President, Daniel Sakaguchi. “He was part of and authored decisions in landmark cases that came before the Supreme Court. He will be remembered for his impartial commitment to the rule of law, his efforts to safeguard principals of liberty and equality and his dedicated service to the country, both on the bench and as veteran of World War II.”

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The National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA) is the national association of Asian Pacific American (APA) attorneys, judges, law professors, and law students. NAPABA represents the interests of over 50,000 attorneys and over 80 national, state, and local bar associations. Its members include solo practitioners, large firm lawyers, corporate counsel, legal services and non-profit attorneys, and lawyers serving at all levels of government. NAPABA engages in legislative and policy advocacy, promotes APA political leadership and political appointments, and builds coalitions within the legal profession and the community at large. NAPABA also serves as a resource for government agencies, members of Congress, and public service organizations about APAs in the legal profession, civil rights, and diversity in the courts.

To learn more about NAPABA, visit www.napaba.org, like us on Facebook, and follow us on Twitter (@NAPABA).

PRESS RELEASE: THE ASIAN AMERICAN BAR ASSOCIATION OF NEW YORK, THE KOREAN AMERICAN LAWYERS ASSOCIATION OF GREATER NEW YORK, THE SOUTH ASIAN BAR ASSOCIATION OF NEW YORK AND THE FILIPINO AMERICAN LAWYERS ASSOCIATION OF NEW YORK URGE INCLUSION OF ALL VOICES IN SPECIALIZED HIGH SCHOOLS LEGISLATION

NEW YORK, June 19, 2019 – The Asian American Bar Association of New York (“AABANY”), the Korean American Lawyers Association of Greater New York (“KALAGNY”), the South Asian Bar Association of New York (SABANY) and the Filipino American Lawyers Association of New York (“FALA New York”) condemn the process by which New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio formulated his plan to reform admissions to the city’s specialized high schools because he has shut out Asian American leaders and organizations from any meaningful participation.  We believe that any legislation with such wide-ranging impact on all communities should not be permitted to move forward when the process by which it has been advanced to the legislature has been marked by excluding the voices of the Asian American community.

In June 2018, Mayor de Blasio announced his support for New York State Assembly Bill A2173 which calls for eliminating the Specialized High School Admissions Test (SHSAT), to be replaced by a new selection process.  He did so without seeking any input from the Asian American community or any of the New York Asian American elected officials at the Federal, State, or local levels. We are deeply concerned, because we believe this exclusionary process illustrates how the current debate has largely ignored and dismissed the reality that Asian Americans also face racial discrimination.

Asian Americans currently make up more than 60% of enrollment in the specialized high schools.  Pronouncing that the specialized high schools had a “diversity” problem,” Mayor de Blasio’s rhetoric problematically casts the Asian American populations in these schools as a problem that needs to be fixed and ignores the incredible diversity that exists at the schools.  

In March 2019, the Mayor recognized that his rollout was flawed and that he “wish[es] he had done it better,” promising to meet with Asian American community leaders.  That meeting finally took place three months later, on June 13, with less than a week left in the State legislative session. Even though the Mayor finally apologized to the Asian American community at that meeting, Assembly Bill A2173 continues to move forward in Albany.

We recognize that the proposed elimination of the SHSAT is a divisive issue, even within the Asian American community.  AABANY proudly led public discussions on this issue, hosting a community forum in Flushing in 2014, another forum in Manhattan in 2015 and a documentary film screening about the SHSAT called “Tested” in 2015. AABANY used these opportunities to engage speakers on opposing sides of the debate in an effort to educate the public on the differing viewpoints, including those within the Asian American communities, on SHSAT reforms.   

The Asian American community is not monolithic.  We celebrate both the diversity within the Asian American community and the diversity Asian Americans bring to American society.  We fully support improving access to quality education for all. We are invested in true diversity, one that does not envision a small pie that must be divided among competing groups.  We support building more specialized high schools and the revival of gifted and talented programs in every elementary and middle school. We support city funded SHSAT test prep for any student that wants to take it.

Given the flawed process that produced the Mayor’s plan, we oppose New York State Assembly Bill A2173.  We call upon the Mayor to withdraw his current plan and provide Asian Americans a seat at the table to develop a new plan for the specialized high schools that benefits from having all stakeholders heard and represented in developing legislation on the vital issue of a fair, equitable and diverse public education system for all.

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The Asian American Bar Association of New York is a professional membership organization of attorneys concerned with issues affecting the Asian Pacific American community. Incorporated in 1989, AABANY seeks not only to encourage the professional growth of its members but also to advocate for the Asian Pacific American community as a whole. AABANY is a New York regional affiliate of the National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA).

The Korean American Lawyers Association of Greater New York (KALAGNY) is a professional membership organization of attorneys and law students engaged with the issues affecting the Korean American community in Greater New York.  Incorporated in 1986, KALAGNY seeks to encourage the professional growth of its members as well as provide legal support for the Korean American community.

Founded in 1996, the South Asian Bar Association of New York (SABANY) is an organization of South Asian attorneys practicing in the New York City metropolitan region. The mission of the SABANY is to enhance the professional development of the South Asian legal community and act as a resource to the South Asian community at large by increasing access to justice, upholding the rule of law and improving our justice system.

FALA New York was formally organized in 2015 in New York as a not-for-profit corporation to represent the interests of New York Filipino American attorneys, judges, law professors, legal professionals, legal assistants or paralegals and law students. The mission of FALA New York is to promote the vibrant Filipino American legal community in New York by connecting Filipino American attorneys in order to share our experiences and expertise and to explore issues, cases and laws that affect the Filipino American community.

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Additional information about AABANY is available at www.aabany.org

Follow our blog at www.blog.aabany.org

Follow us on Twitter at www.twitter.com/aabany

Find us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/aabany

PRESS RELEASE: AABANY CONGRATULATES KATHY HIRATA CHIN ON BEING SELECTED TO RECEIVE THE INAUGURAL HONG YEN CHANG AWARD BY THE COLUMBIA LAW SCHOOL ASSOCIATION AND ASIAN COLUMBIA ALUMNI ASSOCIATION AT THE NEW YORK COUNTY LAWYERS ASSOCIATION

NEW YORK – May 24, 2019 – The Asian American Bar Association of New York (“AABANY”) is proud to announce that Kathy Hirata Chin, Partner at Crowell & Moring LLP and longstanding member of AABANY, will be honored at the New York County Lawyers Association (NYCLA) at the Inaugural Hong Yen Chang Reception on Tuesday, May 28, 2019. The Columbia Law School Association and Asian Columbia Alumni Association are recognizing Ms. Chin with this honor, and the reception is co-sponsored by AABANY, the Asian Practice Committee of NYCLA, the Korean American Lawyers Association of Greater New York, and the Network of Bar Leaders. Ms. Chin is a 1980 graduate of Columbia Law School.

In 1872, 13-year-old Hong Yen Chang came to the United States to be groomed as a diplomat. He earned degrees from Yale University and Columbia University’s law school and passed the bar exam. However, after passing the bar examination, he was first denied admission because of his lack of U.S. citizenship due to the Chinese Exclusion Act. A special act of the New York Legislature (N.Y. L.1887 c. 249) allowed his admission despite this bar and in 1888, Hong Yen Chang reportedly became the first Asian American attorney admitted to the bar in New York. Hong Yen Chang then moved to California and applied for admission to the bar there but was denied in 1890 due to his lack of citizenship. Not until 2015 was this exclusion remedied, when the California Supreme Court granted an application from members of the UC Davis Asian Pacific American Law Students Association for posthumous admission of Hong Yen Chang.

“Although the very first Asian American lawyer in New York State was admitted over 130 years ago, the legacy of exclusion, discrimination and bias continues to preserve a Bamboo Ceiling in 21st century America,” states AABANY President Brian Song. “We are grateful that Kathy Hirata Chin has been a vital champion, role model and trailblazer in the fight for diversity and inclusion in the legal profession and are proud to count her among our most prominent members. We congratulate her on being selected to receive the Hong Yen Chang Award.”

Kathy Hirata Chin is an accomplished litigator who has handled dozens of appellate cases, concentrating her practice in healthcare and real estate. After graduating magna cum laude from Princeton University and graduating from Columbia University School of Law, where she was a Harlan Fiske Stone Scholar and Editor-in-Chief of The Columbia Journal of Transnational Law, Ms. Chin joined Cadwalader, Wickersham & Taft LLP, becoming one of the first minority and women Partners in 1990.

Nominated by Mayor Rudolph Giuliani, Ms. Chin served on the New York City Planning Commission from 1995-2001. Nominated by Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg, Ms. Chin served on the New York City Commission to Combat Police Corruption in 2003. She has also served on Governor Mario M. Cuomo’s Judicial Screening Committee for the First Judicial Department from 1992-1994; the Magistrate Judge Merit Selection Panel for the Eastern District of New York from 1992-1999; the Gender Bias Committee of the Second Circuit Task Force on Gender, Race, and Ethnic Fairness; the New York County Lawyers’ Association’s Task Force to Increase Diversity in the Legal Profession; and Chief Judge Judith S. Kaye’s Commission to Promote Public Confidence in Judicial Elections from 2003-2006; and the New York County Lawyers’ Association Board of Directors.

In December 2012 and again in December 2014, she was nominated for appointment to the State Court of Appeals by the New York State Commission on Judicial Nomination. In April 2016, she was appointed by Gov. Andrew Cuomo to the First Department Judicial Screening Committee. Since January 2016, Kathy has served as a member of the Second Circuit Judicial Council Committee on Civic Education & Public Engagement, focusing on historic reenactments as a teaching tool. With her husband, the Hon. Denny Chin of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, and teams of lawyers and judges from AABANY, she has developed and presented reenactments of famous cases such as Korematsu vs. U.S, to teach lawyers and the community about the significant contributions made by Asian Americans to the social, political and legal history of the United States.

Ms. Chin has played a critical role in initiating and sustaining change within many organizations, in the legal profession and the community. Please join AABANY in congratulating Ms. Chin on this well-deserved honor.

For more information, please contact Yang Chen, AABANY Executive Director, at (212) 332-2478, or direct any inquiries to main@aabany.org.

The Asian American Bar Association of New York is a professional membership organization of attorneys concerned with issues affecting the Asian Pacific American community. Incorporated in 1989, AABANY seeks not only to encourage the professional growth of its members but also to advocate for the Asian Pacific American community as a whole. AABANY is a New York regional affiliate of the National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA).

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Additional information about AABANY is available at www.aabany.org

Follow our blog at www.blog.aabany.org

Follow us on Twitter at www.twitter.com/aabany

Find us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/aabany

Find us on LinkedIn at www.linkedin.com/in/aabany
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