AABANY Co-Hosts Webinar on Becoming a Magistrate Judge

On May 20, 2020, the Judiciary Committee of the Asian American Bar Association of New York (AABANY) and the Public Interest Committee of the South Asian Bar Association of New York (SABANY) co-hosted a panel on how to become a Magistrate Judge. Recently, the Eastern District of New York announced vacancies for four US Magistrate Judge positions, the first time so many opportunities have been simultaneously available since the positions were created. The webinar provided important information and advice for individuals who might be considering a career as a Magistrate Judge.

The event featured panelists Hon. Sanket Bulsara, Hon. Peggy Kuo, and Linda Lin. Judge Bulsara was appointed as a Magistrate Judge of EDNY on August 28, 2017, and previously served as Acting General Counsel of the Securities and Exchange Commission. Judge Kuo was appointed on October 9, 2015, and prior to her appointment, she served as the Acting Deputy Chief of the Civil Rights Division Criminal Section at the U.S. Department of Justice; litigation counsel at Wilmer Hale, LLP; Chief Hearing Officer at the New York Stock Exchange; and Deputy Commissioner and General Counsel of the New York City Office of Administrative Trials and Hearings. Linda Lin is the General Counsel of Business Unit Support at QBE North America and a member of the EDNY Magistrate Judge Merit Selection Panel. Austin D’Souza, Principal Law Clerk to Hon. Faviola A. Soto at the New York Court of Claims and Vice President of Public Relations at SABANY, served as the moderator.

Judge Bulsara and Judge Kuo discussed their responsibilities as Magistrate Judges. They emphasized that though their docket is heavily civil, varying between 400-500 cases per judge, they also play an important role on the criminal side. Magistrate Judges are on criminal duty approximately once every ten weeks, during which they preside over arraignments, initial appearances, and bail hearings. They also conduct jury selection in felony cases. Judge Bulsara noted that his favorite part of being a Magistrate Judge is presiding over naturalization ceremonies and interacting with wonderful colleagues.

Linda Lin described the application process and how potential candidates are evaluated. Members of the Selection Panel independently review the applications and decide on which candidates to interview. Prior to the interview, the panel conducts due diligence and may reach out to references beyond those mentioned in the candidate’s application. The Selection Panel also requests writing samples, preferably those that demonstrate analysis and are centered around advocacy and litigation. Finally, five names are presented to the Board of Judges, who decide whom to appoint as a Magistrate Judge. While reviewing applications, members of the Selection Panel look for the following qualities: scholarship, from academic records to achievements; active practice of the law, including breadth and depth of experience, professional competence, and pro bono and public service activities; knowledge of the court system and recent experience in front of the federal bench; and personal attributes, or judicial temperament.

Judge Kuo advised individuals applying to become a Magistrate Judge to prepare for their interviews by going back and reading their application and writing samples, looking up the biographies of members of the Selection Panel, and reviewing the Rules of Civil Procedure. Judge Bulsara urged candidates to take advantage of the mock interviews offered by AABANY and sit in on proceedings in court.

We thank our panelists for speaking on the program and sharing insightful advice about the process of becoming a United States Magistrate Judge. Thanks also to Austin D’Souza for serving as an excellent moderator. For more information on AABANY’s Judiciary Committee, please see https://www.aabany.org/page/115.

Press Release: NAPABA Celebrates the Confirmation of Patrick Bumatay to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit

For Immediate Release December 10, 2019

WASHINGTON – Today, Patrick J. Bumatay was confirmed to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.

“NAPABA congratulates Patrick Bumatay on his historic confirmation to serve on the U.S. Courts of Appeals for the Ninth Circuits,” said NAPABA President Bonnie Lee Wolf. “Judge Bumatay is the first Filipino American to serve as a federal appellate judge and the first openly gay judge on the Ninth Circuit. We are proud to have supported Judge Bumatay’s nomination.”

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.

NAPABA thanks President Trump for nominating Patrick Bumatay to the bench.

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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.

NAPABA | 1612 K St. NW, Suite 510 | Washington, DC 20006 | www.napaba.org

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).

Survey: Mapping Statelessness in the United States

Survey: Mapping Statelessness in the United States

PRESS RELEASE | NAPABA Supports Judges Lucy Koh and Florence Pan at Nomination Hearing

NAPABA Supports Judges Lucy Koh and Florence Pan at Nomination Hearing

WASHINGTON — Today, Judges Lucy H. Koh and Florence Y. Pan sat before the Senate Judiciary Committee during a hearing on their nominations to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit and the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, respectively.

“Today’s hearings demonstrate that Judge Lucy Koh and Judge Florence Pan are two highly qualified nominees,” said Jin Y. Hwang, National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA) president. “Both are experienced and fair jurists who were unanimously confirmed by the U.S. Senate for their current positions, and they continue to receive strong bipartisan support. It is also important that these two nominees have been and would be trailblazers for Asian Pacific American women in the federal judiciary.

“NAPABA urges for a prompt vote by the Senate Judiciary Committee and for the Senate to swiftly confirm Judge Koh to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit and Judge Pan to the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia.”

Judge Lucy H. Koh was unanimously confirmed by the Senate, 90-0, to the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California in 2010. She enjoys bipartisan support, including former California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, who appointed her to the Superior Court of California – County of Santa Clara. If confirmed, Judge Koh would become the first Korean American woman to be a circuit court judge and only the second Asian Pacific American woman to serve as a federal appellate court judge.

Judge Florence Y. Pan was confirmed to the Superior Court of the District of Columbia by unanimous consent by the Senate in 2009, following her nomination by President Obama. She enjoys bipartisan support for her nomination, including former Attorney General Michael Mukasey. If confirmed, Judge Pan will be the first Asian Pacific American woman to serve on the federal district court bench in the District of Columbia.

NAPABA provided testimony in support of Judges Koh and Pan, stating: “Judge Koh and Judge Pan would both make an immediate contribution as a federal circuit court judge and a federal district judge, respectively. Their qualifications, integrity, intellect, and commitment to the justice system are unquestionable. They bring a talent and understanding of the issues before the court, and a willingness to tackle complex issues, that is inspiring… [T]he swift confirmation of both Judge Koh and Judge Pan is important to NAPABA and the Asian Pacific American community.”

For more information, the media may contact Brett Schuster, NAPABA communications manager, at 202-775-9555 or bschuster@napaba.org.

SDNY BOARD OF JUDGES ADOPTS LOCAL RULE 83.10, A PLAN FOR CERTAIN § 1983 CASES AGAINST THE CITY OF NEW YORK

The Board of Judges of the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York has adopted Local Civil Rule 83.10, which governs how certain 1983 cases against the City of New York are managed.

Initially a pilot program implemented in 2011, the goal of the Local Rule is to improve the administration of justice by standardizing discovery and the dates of production, resulting in more material being produced earlier in the process so as to aid in the required early mediation or settlement conference. The 1983 Plan is responsible for the settlement of 70% of Plan-eligible cases in the first six months after the filing of a complaint.

The Board of Judges extended the pilot program in 2013, and it adopted the plan into the courts Local Rules after soliciting public feedback on the program. The rule will become effective upon approval by the Second Circuit Judicial Council. Prior to the revised rule taking effect, the public is invited to comment. Comments are to be submitted in writing on or at the close of business on Friday, July 20, 2014 to:

Edward A. Friedland
District Court Executive
U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York
500 Pearl Street, Room 820
New York, NY 10007-1312

A complete version of the Plan and the codified Local Rule follows this notice and can be found at the court’s website at http://www.nysd.uscourts.gov.

PRESS RELEASE: NAPABA Applauds Confirmation of Indira Talwani to the Federal District Court for Massachusetts

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: May 8, 2014

Contact: Emily Chatterjee (202) 775-9555

NAPABA APPLAUDS CONFIRMATION OF INDIRA TALWANI
TO THE FEDERAL DISTRICT COURT FOR MASSACHUSETTS

WASHINGTON — Today, Indira Talwani was confirmed to United States District Court for the District of Massachusetts with a 94-0 vote. Talwani will be the first person of Asian descent to serve as a federal judge in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, the first person of Asian descent to serve as an Article III judge in the courts covered by the First Circuit, and only the second female Article III judge of South Asian descent nationwide.

“Indira Talwani’s confirmation is cause for further celebration as we observe Asian Pacific American Heritage Month,” said William J. Simonitsch, president of the National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA). “With her confirmation, Judge Talwani makes history as ‘the first’ of many titles and we congratulate Judge Talwani on her accomplishments.”

Prior to her confirmation, Judge Talwani was partner at the Massachusetts law firm of Segal Roitman and the San Francisco law firm of Altshuler Berzon LLP. After graduating for law school, she clerked for the Honorable Stanley A. Weigel on the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California. Judge Talwani has been recognized for several awards, including: Best Lawyers in America (2013); Massachusetts Super Lawyers (2012); Top 10 Lawyers of the Year, Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly (2010); and Chinese Progressive Association’s Workers Justice Award (2012). Judge Talwani received her J.D. from the University of California Berkeley School of Law and B.A. from Harvard/Radcliffe College.

NAPABA applauds President Obama for this nomination, and thanks Senator Elizabeth Warren for her support of Judge Talwani. Her confirmation today increases the number of active Asian Pacific American Article III judges to 25 nationwide: 4 federal appellate court judges and 21 federal district court judges.

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The National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA) is the national association of Asian Pacific American attorneys, judges, law professors, and law students. NAPABA represents the interests of over 40,000 attorneys and 68 state and local Asian Pacific American bar associations. Its members include solo practitioners, large firm lawyers, corporate counsel, legal service and non-profit attorneys, and lawyers serving at all levels of government. NAPABA continues to be a leader in addressing civil rights issues confronting Asian Pacific American communities. Through its national network of committees and affiliates, NAPABA provides a strong voice for increased diversity of the federal and state judiciaries, advocates for equal opportunity in the workplace, works to eliminate hate crimes and anti-immigrant sentiment, and promotes the professional development of people of color in the legal profession.