Celebrate 2024 AAPI Heritage Month with AABANY!

In celebration of AAPI Heritage Month this year, AABANY is presenting or co-sponsoring several events this month. We hope to see you all there! Follow the links for more details, and please note the registration deadlines.

May 4, 2024

AABANY Presents: Bi-Monthly Pro Bono Clinic in Brooklyn

12:00 pm – 3:30 pm, Chinese-American Planning Council, Inc. 4101 8th Avenue 4th Floor Brooklyn, New York 11232.

Registration is closed for this event.

May 7, 2024

AABANY Presents: Asian Americans and the Law: The Constitution in Action

4:30 pm – 6:30 pm, King & Spalding 1185 6th Ave New York, New York 10036.

Registration is closed for this event.

May 8, 2024

AABANY Co-Sponsors: The Asian American/ Pacific Islander LGBTQ Struggle for Justice

12:30 – 2:00 PM, QUEENS SUPREME COURT 88-11 Sutphin Boulevard, 2nd Floor Courtroom 25 Jamaica, New York 11435

Registration is closed for this event.

May 8, 2024

Crowell & Moring Hosts: Asian American Pacific Islanders (AAPI) and the Fight for Marriage Equality

5:30pm – 8:30pm, Crowell & Moring

Two Manhattan West 375 Ninth Avenue New York, New York 10001

This event is the New York premier of the latest AABANY Trial Reenactment.

Registration is closed for this event.


May 9, 2024

AABANY Solo & Small Firm Practice Committee Presents: How to Start Your Solo and Small Firm Part II

6:30 PM to 8:00 PM

33 Whitehall St. Floor 8 New York, New York 10004

Registration is closed for this event.

May 10, 2024

AABANY’s Membership Committee Presents: Movie Night: Monkey Man

05/10/2024, New York

Registration is closed for this event.

May 14, 2024

AABANY Presents: May General Counsel Breakfast (Invitation Only)

9:00 am – 10:00 am

Registration is closed for this event.

May 14, 2024

AABANY Presents: Roots to Success for Asian Small Business Ventures

6:30 – 8:30 PM, Littler Mendelson P.C. 900 Third Avenue, Fl. 8 New York, New York 10022
Registration is closed for this event.

May 14, 2024

AABANY Military & Veterans Affairs Committee Presents: Group Outing to See An American Soldier
7:00 pm, Perelman Performing Arts Center

New York, New York 10006

Registration is closed for this event.

May 14, 2024

AABANY Co-Sponsors: Multi-Bar Association Trivia Night at Jack Rabbit

6:00 pm Jack Rabbit

1010 Elmwood Ave Buffalo, New York 14222
Registration is closed for this event.

May 15, 2024

AABANY Co-Sponsors: Trivia Night at Goldie’s Tavern
7:00 pm – 9:00 pm, Goldie’s Tavern

135 W 30th St New York, New York 10001

Registration is closed for this event.

May 16, 2024

AABANY Real Estate Committee Presents: “Fighting Real Estate and Deed Fraud in the Big Apple”

11:00 am – 12:00 pm, Virtual Click here to register by May 14 and find event details

Registration is closed for this event.

May 16, 2024

AABANY’s Membership Committee & Phi Lambda Fraternity Present: Networking Reception & Meet & Greet

When: May 16 2024
6 :00 – 9:00 PM
Where: Museum of Chinese in America
215 Centre St, New York, NY 10013

Registration is closed for this event.

May 19, 2024

March with AABANY – Third Annual NYC AAPI Heritage Parade

Noon
6th Avenue and 44th Street
New York, New York

Registration is closed for this event.

May 22, 2024

Annual Dinner 2024
Cipriani Wall Street
55 Wall Street New York, NY 10005

Registration is closed for this event.
If you have any questions, please contact [email protected].

May 29, 2024

AABANY Co-Sponsors: Hon. Randall T. Eng Award
12:45 – 2:15 PM

Appellate Division, Second Department

45 Monroe Place Brooklyn, NY 11201

Click here to register and find event details.

May 29, 2024

AABANY Co-sponsors: Franklin H. Williams Commissions AAPI Heritage Month Program

5:30 – 8:00 PM

Brooklyn Law School

Subotnick Conference Center, 205 State Street
Brooklyn, NY 11201

Click here to register and find event details.

May 29, 2024

AABANY Litigation Committee’s Quarterly Dinner

6:30 PM

Buddha Bodai

5 Mott St, New York, NY  10013

Click here to register and find event details.

May 30, 2024

AABANY Litigation Committee’s Quarterly Meeting

12:00 – 1:00 PM

Via Zoom

Click here to register and find event details.

May 30, 2024

AABANY Co-Sponsors: Trial Reenactment: From ‘Tokyo Rose’: to the China Initiative”

6:00 – 9:00 PM

A&O Shearman

599 Lexington Avenue, New York, NY 10022

Click here to register and find event details.

May 30, 2024

AABANY IP Committee Co-Sponsors: Fireside Chat with In-House Counsel

5:30 PM

Desmarais LLP

230 Park Ave, 25th Floor, New York, NY  10169

Click here to register and find event details.

May 31, 2024

AABANY Trusts & Estates Committee Presents: Monthly Meetings

5:30 – 7:30 PM

Via Zoom
Click here to register by May 29 and find event details.

Contribute Your Expertise in a Meaningful Way: Become a NAPABA Co-Chair!

NAPABA committees and networks enable our members to gain access to a robust knowledge-sharing network of seasoned AANHPI professionals. NAPABA’s committees focus on substantive practice specialties or specific service areas, such as civic engagement. NAPABA’s networks encompass individuals with similar experiences, such as solo practice or military service. These peer-led groups serve as a networking community and enable members to learn best practices and stay on top of the latest legal trends.  

NAPABA is seeking committee or network co-chair recommendations from the membership to fill vacancies and we urge you to consider contributing your expertise and experiences in a meaningful way within NAPABA. Serving as a co-chair presents a unique chance to take up a leadership role within NAPABA, connect with AANHPI attorneys in your practice area or who share similar experiences, and enhance your professional profile. Many of our committee and network co-chairs have later served on NAPABA’s Board of Directors. 

Who can become a co-chair?

An appointee must: 

  • Have demonstrated proven leadership skills; 
  • Have demonstrated the highest standards of personal integrity and trust professionally and personally; 
  • Have personal and professional experience relevant to the goals/objectives of the Committee; 
  • Have demonstrated a commitment to the furtherance of the Committee’s goals, including leadership and pipeline development; 
  • Be a member in good standing of NAPABA or a NAPABA affiliate; and 
  • Be willing to serve for a six-year term.

What information do I need to provide?

We request applicants submit the following materials in a SINGLE PDF:

  • A Resume or similar material that demonstrates personal or professional experience relevant to the goal(s) and objective(s) of the committee or network.
  • A Statement of Interest demonstrating the following:  
  • Proven leadership skills in NAPABA, local NAPABA affiliates, or other professional activities
  • The highest standards of personal integrity and trust in all professional and personal activities
  • Additional details outlining your personal or professional experience relevant to the goal(s) and objective(s) of the committee or network not outlined in your resume.
  • Biography

Where do I apply?

Ready to apply? Click on the button below to start your application! The deadline to apply is Monday, September 18, 2023 at 5:00 pm ET.

Committees and networks with co-chair vacancies:

Committees

  • Bankruptcy & Restructuring Committee 
  • Cannabis/CBD/Hemp Law & Policy Committee 
  • Civil Rights Committee 
  • Corporate Transactions Committee 
  • Data Privacy & Security Committee 
  • Dispute Resolution Committee 
  • Diversity and Inclusion Committee 
  • Energy, Environment & Sustainability Committee 
  • Entertainment Law Committee 
  • Government Enforcement & Compliance Committee 
  • Immigration Committee 
  • Insurance Law Committee 
  • Litigation Committee 
  • Mass Torts & Class Actions Committee 
  • Pro Bono & Community Service Committee 
  • Real Estate Committee 
  • Tax Committee 
  • Trusts & Estates Committee 
  • Wellness Committee 

Networks

  • In-House Counsel Network
  • Law School Professors & Administrators Network 
  • LGBTQ Network 
  • Partners Network
  • Public Sector Network 
  • Solo & Small Firm Network

If you have any questions about our committees or networks or the application process, please contact [email protected].

AABANY Real Estate Committee Holds CLE Program on Matrimonial and Domestic Relations in Real Estate

On June 22, 2023, AABANY’s Real Estate Committee organized a highly informative CLE program over Zoom, entitled “Matrimonial & Domestic Relations in Real Estate,” featuring speakers Margaret T. Ling from Amtrust Title Insurance Company and Jackie Harounian from Wissleman, Harounian, & Associates. The program sought to shed light on the complex dynamics surrounding real estate disputes in cases of matrimonial and domestic relations. Wendy Yu from Yu Law, P.C. served as moderator.

Magaret T. Ling commenced the session by sharing various scenarios and real-life cases of divorced couples who found themselves entangled in real estate disputes. Following Margaret’s remarks, Jackie Harounian offered insights into the key considerations individuals should keep in mind when navigating the intersection of divorce and real estate. She emphasized the critical role of prenuptial agreements in establishing clear guidelines and protecting both parties’ rights. The presentation served as a valuable opportunity for attendees to gain a better understanding and foundation regarding proactive measures required in matrimonial and domestic relations when real estate is involved.

AABANY thanks Flushing Bank, Wissleman, Harounian, & Associates, Amtrust Title Insurance Company, and Korean American Lawyers Association of Greater New York for co-sponsoring this event. We also thank Margaret T. Ling and Jackie Harounian for sharing their expertise. Thanks to all the attendees for taking time out of their day to learn and support.

To learn more about the Real Estate Committee and how you can get involved, click here.

AABANY Congratulates Margaret Ling on her New York State Bar Association Member Profile

AABANY congratulates Margaret Ling on her New York State Bar Association (NYSBA) member profile published on July 25, 2022. Focusing on her career path and the importance of promoting diversity, equity, and inclusion, the member profile speaks to the necessity of making progress against discrimination in the legal profession. 

Margaret noted that “women and people of color are [still] not making partner and leaving prestigious firms after 20 years of service.” Discussing her personal experiences with racism and sexism in the field, Margaret stated, “now I mentor young lawyers because there was no one there to help me. I tell them that you have to speak up for your work and fight to be recognized for it.” Read more here.

NYSBA was founded in 1876 and currently has a membership base of over 70,000 individuals, with its headquarters in Albany, NY.

Outside of her work for the NYSBA, Margaret Ling is also a former AABANY Board member, most recently serving as Director of Development. She is the founding Co-Chair of the AABANY Real Estate Committee and continues to co-chair it today. Upcoming events featuring AABANY’s Real Estate Committee include AABANY Real Estate Committee Presents: “Emoticons, Emojis, Smileys and Stickers” CLE on August 3, 2022, and AABANY Real Estate Committee Presents: “Representing Foreign Purchasers & Foreign Sellers” CLE on August 10, 2022.

AABANY Real Estate Committee Presents “Cannabis Law and Real Estate” CLE on August 3

On August 3, the AABANY Real Estate Committee presented a “Cannabis Law and Real Estate” CLE, which explored the current state of real estate in New York State, within the context of recent cannabis legalization and a growing cannabis industry. Real Estate Committee Co-Chair Margaret Ling moderated the webinar, welcoming four speakers to introduce and explain current cannabis law and real estate practices, before opening the floor for a Q&A session.

Kristin Jordan spoke first, giving a broad overview of New York State’s adult use cannabis bill, the Marijuana Regulation and Taxation Act (“MRTA”), which was passed on March 31, 2021. Kristin is the Executive Director of Asian Cannabis Roundtable, a NYC-based professional networking community for those engaged in the cannabis industry, and Founder of Mannada. She explained how the bill positioned the state’s new cannabis regulatory body under the State Liquor Authority, because developing an entirely new agency would take too long. The new body comprises three agencies, the Office of Cannabis Management, the Cannabis Control Board, and the Cannabis Advisory Board. She also enumerated the different kinds of cannabis licenses available under the MRTA:

  1. Cultivator,
  2. Processor,
  3. Cooperative (non-profit),
  4. Distributor,
  5. Retail,
  6. Microbusiness,
  7. Delivery,
  8. Nursery, and
  9. On-site consumption.

In terms of New York real estate, Kristin noted that cannabis legalization and its budding industry would exact the most tangible effect on leases for retail stores, warehouses, and distribution facilities, because they provide the brick and mortar for cannabis businesses. Finally, she emphasized that since cannabis legalization is so recent, cannabis law and best practices promise a steep learning curve, with so much uncharted territory.

Steve LaFredo, Chief Banking Officer at Piermont Bank, discussed cannabis and real estate specifically as it relates to banking. He emphasized that “banks are safety, soundness, and risk organizations first”; in other words, banking is a slow industry, and it would take time for banks to adapt to the growing cannabis industry. He underscored the difficulty of navigating often differing state and federal law when dealing with cannabis businesses, though he noted that New York State has been relatively progressive, as the first state to create cannabis banking guidelines under the Department of Taxation and Finance. These guidelines aim to preserve the safety, soundness, and security of businesses involved with cannabis. Steve explained that in states that have legalized cannabis, the banking industry tiers cannabis businesses into 3 categories: Tier A, those with direct contact (e.g. growing, producing, selling); Tier B, those that derive more than 25% of their business from the cannabis space; and Tier C, those that derive 25% or less of their business from the cannabis space. Banks are most likely to be receptive to working with Tier C cannabis businesses.

Since they lie precariously between state and federal regulators, most banks have a zero tolerance policy for cannabis. Disclosure and transparency are critical for finding a financial institution with which cannabis businesses can safely operate; smaller, private banks and credit unions will be most likely to open their doors to cannabis businesses. Unfortunately, cannabis businesses are still largely relegated to cash transactions, and since mechanisms for depositing and delivering cash are scarce and expensive, banks are hesitant to get involved. After the federal decision to stand down in states that have legalized cannabis, however, banks have slowly begun entering the cannabis space. Steve expressed optimism about the future of cannabis banking.

Kathleen Deegan Dickson and Danielle Tricolla of Forchelli Deegan Terrana spoke last, focusing on the role of the law firm in the cannabis space. Kathleen is a Partner and Co-Chair of the Cannabis Group at Forchelli Deegan Terrana, and Danielle is an Associate and Co-Chair of the Cannabis Group at Forchelli Deegan Terrana. They underscored the importance of “knowing what you don’t know,” since cannabis legalization not only means new legislation but also changes to existing legislation. Specifically, cannabis legalization involves changes to Public Health Law, Penal Law, Criminal Procedure Law, Civil Practice Law and Rules, Labor Law, Vehicle and Traffic Law, and General Business Law. Like Steve, they touched on the interplay between state legalization and federal prohibition of cannabis. Devoting special attention to law firm clients interested in cannabis, they explained that “cannabis law” is a multidisciplinary practice area, since it affects real estate transactions, leasing, land use, zoning, banking, labor, and employment, among other areas.

The intersection of cannabis law and real estate presents a new and exciting business area, and AABANY thanks the Real Estate Committee Co-Chairs Margaret Ling, Wendy Yu, and Jane Chen for putting together such an informative and current event. To learn more about the Real Estate Committee, visit https://www.aabany.org/page/120.

Fall Conference 2020: Allyship and Black Lives Matter—Racism, Bias, and Xenophobia in Our Communities

On September 26, 2020, as part of AABANY’s 11th Annual Fall Conference, the AABANY Real Estate Committee and Issues Committee hosted a plenary session on the ongoing racial reckoning following the death of George Floyd and the rise in xenophobia against Asian Americans since the beginning of the pandemic. The panel included:  

  • Margaret T. Ling, Development Director and Real Estate Committee Co-Chair at AABANY and Senior Counsel at Big Apple Abstract Corp. (Moderator)
  • Letitia James, 67th Attorney General for the State of New York
  • Rahul Agarwal, Executive Assistant United States Attorney at the United States Attorney’s Office for the District of New Jersey
  • Paula T. Edgar, Attorney, CEO of PGE LLC, and Partner of Inclusion Strategy Solutions LLC
  • Chris Kwok, Co-Chair of the Issues Committee and Asia Practice Committee at AABANY and a mediator and arbitrator with JAMS
  • Carmelyn P. Malalis, Chair and Commissioner of the New York City Commission on Human Rights

The esteemed panel discussed their experience addressing the issues of racism, bias, and xenophobia in their different capacities as government officials, bar association leaders, and diversity and inclusion specialists, especially in the context of the ongoing pandemic. As the opening speaker, Paula Edgar provided an informative presentation on systemic racism, the varying responses of Corporate America, and the importance for companies and law firms to invest in resources for diversity training as part of an urgent call to incorporate actionable plans into their missions for equity and inclusion. More importantly, allyship transcends performative activism, or surface-level activism, on social media and demands a sustained and active approach to listen to the experiences of marginalized communities, educate oneself on race-related history and issues, and speak out against any injustice. 

In highlighting the importance of using our vote at this historical moment, New York State Attorney General Letitia James suggested that the participation of more people of color in law-enforcement can be one of the ways to sustain the BLM movement and push for substantive, lasting changes. Some of the projects at the Attorney General’s Office include a lawsuit against the US Postal Service for their attempt to delay the vote-by-mail ballots and an effort to advocate for immigrants to ensure that they are counted in the 2020 US Census. Attorney General James emphasized the need to stay hopeful and utilize our vote as citizens to protect our democracy. 

Rahul Agarwal focused on the recent rise in hate crimes against Asian Americans and stressed the importance of active reporting on the part of community members to help law enforcement personnel investigate these crimes and open cases. Rahul explained that the law enforcement community takes reports on hate crimes very seriously because the perpetrators’ hatred often affects many individuals, and since the targeted population can become fearful, it is crucial for law enforcement to act quickly. 

Noting from a survey the significant increase in people’s perception and experience with racial inequality since 2016, Carmelyn Malalis described the active outreach by the New York City Commission on Human Rights to marginalized communities and its employment of staffers who speak a total of over 30 different languages at the Commission to increase community engagement. Echoing Attorney General James’ comment on the value of allyship, Commissioner Malalis added that allyship also means recognizing that the constructed narratives about marginalized groups are often inconsistent with the lived experiences of people in those communities. She emphasized the need to actively work on dismantling one’s biased preconceptions. 

Referring to the Stop AAPI Hate’s recent record of about 2,600 hate crimes and incidents against Asian Americans in the past six months, Chris Kwok suggested that the actual number is most likely a lot higher since there has been insufficient attention directed towards AAPI hate crimes and a general lack of active reporting in the AAPI community. Chris highlighted the importance for Asian Americans to support the BLM movement since we are all fighting to challenge white supremacy and ensure justice in the United States. He concludes by emphasizing the need to say “BLM”— since black lives had been defined as property for decades, we, as allies in the BLM movement, should acknowledge the hashtag’s reflection of that history and recognition of the equal rights that every person deserves.

Thank you to Margaret, Attorney General James, Commissioner Malalis, Rahul, Paula, and Chris, for this insightful panel discussion. Thanks also to the AABANY Real Estate Committee and Issues Committee for organizing this event. To view a recording of the plenary session, click here or on the image above.

AABANY Presents: Real Estate Closing in the New Norm: The New Rules & Practices

On July 23, AABANY’s Real Estate Committee presented a CLE Program on real estate closings in the COVID-19 era. The panel focused on how the real estate market is adapting to COVID-19 through new rules and practices and detailed the current state of property transactions. Speakers included Jason Wang, Licensed Real Estate Salesperson at COMPASS, Wendy Yu, Counsel at Yu Law, and Jane Chen, Associate at Forchelli Deegan Terrana LLP. The program was moderated by Margaret Ling, co-chair of the committee and Senior Counsel at Big Apple Abstract Corporation.

Margaret Ling began the panel with an update on the current New York state real estate legal landscape. This included the 202 executive order mandate by Governor Andrew Cuomo, declaring a state of emergency to permit only essential businesses. As a result, most real estate showings are now virtual and transactions are digital. Open houses are permitted only if social distancing measures are maintained.

Jason Wang spoke on his experience as a real estate salesperson at the inception of the pandemic and shared market observations. Because of at-home quarantine, buyers have begun to realize what they want in a home property and so there is a continued demand for property. Additionally, residents who fled New York City during the pandemic on-set may return in the near future and strengthen the real estate market.

Wendy Yu then outlined client protection concerns during virtual transactions. This includes taking into account that many buyers are now making offers without ever seeing property in person, emphasizing the need to place buyer protection clauses in contracts. Other considerations involve death clauses, in case that one party is no longer capable of continuing the transaction, as well as maintaining a flexible approach, so that either seller or buyer may be granted extra transaction time in case of pandemic-related challenges.

Jane concluded the panel by providing insight into co-op property transactions. Specifically, co-op boards that typically meet on a regular basis are now meeting less frequently, making it difficult for potential buyers to be interviewed for acceptance. Furthermore, because co-op boards are responsible for serving the interests of all building residents, it is important for interested buyers to keep in mind the visitor restrictions that exist in these communities.

Thank you to speakers Jason Wang, Wendy Yu, and Jane Chen for their time and insight, and Margaret Ling for moderating. Those interested in learning more about AABANY’s Real Estate Committee can do so here

AABANY Presents: Lunar New Year Celebration and Networking Event at Chase Bank

On January 28, 2020, Margaret Ling, AABANY Real Estate Committee Co-Chair, hosted and organized the Lunar New Year Celebration and Networking Event at Chase Bank located at 41-22 Bell Bvd, Bayside, New York.

Over 50 attorneys attended the reception. A lovely buffet was served, and entertainment was provided by master paper cutting artist Mr. Hou-Tien Cheng. AABANY’s Real Estate Committee collaborated with the following organizations to present this event: Queens County Bar Association Diversity and Inclusion Committee; KALAGNY; Big Apple Abstract Corporation; Chase Bank; and Forchelli, Deegan and Terrana, LLP. Margaret Ling, who is both the Co-Chair of the AABANY Real Estate Committee and the Co-Chair of the Queens County Bar Association Diversity and Inclusion Committee, will continue to organize these joint collaborative bar events in the near future.

We thank everyone that attended and wish everyone a prosperous Lunar New Year!

AABANY Goes to the Opera: “La Bohème” at the Met

On Nov. 14, the Membership Committee together with the Asia Practice, Intellectual Property, and Real Estate Committees hosted a Night at the Opera, gathering about 30 AABANY members with friends and family to see a performance of “La Bohème” at the Met in Lincoln Center.

Before the performance a group of attendees mingled and enjoyed drinks and quick bites at the bar outside the Family Circle. Then, at 7:30, everyone went inside to take their seats. The AABANY contingent took up nearly three rows of seats.

For some it was a first-time experience that was greatly enhanced upon the discovery of subtitles that appeared on a thin bar that stretched across the row. Each person could see the subtitles displayed directly in front of them.

The sets were breathtaking and the score by Puccini was classic and timeless. The performances were excellent, and the main cast included two Asian Americans, with Hei-Kyung Hong playing the tragic character Mimi.

By all accounts, this event was a hit among those who attended. Talk is already brewing about another Night at the Opera. Stay tuned!

Thanks to everyone who came, and thanks especially to Membership Director Beatrice Leong for organizing the event.

AABANY Presents: Understanding Opportunity Zones and 1031 Exchange Deferrals

On November 14, 2019, the AABANY Real Estate Committee presented a CLE and networking event entitled “Understanding Opportunity Zones and 1031 Exchange Deferrals.” The CLE program was presented by John J. Lee, Esq, Vice President and Account Executive of IPX 1031. Margaret Ling, Co-Chair of the AABANY Real Estate Committee moderated the program. Thanks to our sponsors: Xavier Wong of First Republic Bank, KALAGNY, and  Big Apple Abstract. John Lee discussed the basics and the differences between the 1031 Exchange Program and the Tax Deferral Structures provided by Qualified Opportunity Zones. In the photo, from left to right: Margaret Ling, Co-Chair of AABANY Real Estate Committee; Qili Li, MD; John Lee of 1031 Exchange; George Xu of Century Development LLC; Larry Litwack of Big Apple Abstract Corp.