Weekly Newsletter        |          March 4, 2013
Message from BALIF Co-Chairs 


Its tax time - typically a dreaded time of year, but now even more so for California domestic partners and married same-sex couples.  That is why you do not want to miss tomorrow's FREE Tax Seminar specifically for Registered Domestic Partners & Same-Sex Married Couples presented by California State Controller John Chiang, and cosponsored by BALIF and San Francisco Supervisor Scott Wiener.  Details for this event are below, and on BALIF's website. RSVP here.


And when you're done learning all you can about taxes, join us in the South Bay for this month's Happy Hour - Friday, March 8th at the Patio in Palo Alto. RSVP here.


We hope to see you soon!


Chelsea HaleyNelson & On Lu

BALIF Co-Chairs



Free Tax Seminar: Registered Domestic Partners & Same-Sex Married Couplestax

Tuesday, March 5, 2013 from 5:30 PM to 8:30 PM (PST)

San Francisco LGBT Community Center
1800 Market Street  
San Francisco, CA 94102

Please join CA State Controller John Chiang and San Francisco Supervisor Scott Wiener, in partnership with BALIF and the SF LGBT Community Center, for a FREE tax seminar specially designed for registered domestic partners and same-sex married couples.


Come enjoy light refreshments generously provided by BALIF and get updates on recent developments and trends in federal and state law and other tax policies affecting the LGBT community.


Please RSVP here

BALIF Welcomes 
Justice Jim Humes Back to the Bay Area
Last Wednesday (2/27), Orrick generously hosted BALIF's reception for new incoming Justice of the California Court of Appeal, Jim Humes. More than 75 BALIF members attended this intimate meet & greet, including three Board Members from LGLA (Lesbian & Gay Lawyers Association of Los Angeles). Guests were treated to some inspiring words from Justice Humes, as well as a hilarious quiz on interesting and unknown facts about Justice Humes.



Justice Humes (center) with several other BALIF judiciary pace-setters: (left to right) Judge Christopher R. Bowen (first out gay judge in Contra Costa County); Judge Tara M. Flanagan would (second out lesbian judge in Alameda County); Judge Paula S. Rosenstein (out lesbian recently appointed by Governor Brown to San Diego County Superior Court); and Judge Victoria Kolakowski (country's first transgender trial judge).




Justice Humes makes his point!



Pre-Reception Dinner with BALIF Board: (left to right) Joe Humes (Justice Hume's partner, and Partner at Hanson Bridgett); Natalie Leonard (California State Bar); John Unruh; Michael Wolchansky; Chelsea HaleyNelson; On Lu; Nick Kacprowski; Justice Humes

2013 BALIF Sponsors

BALIF's Simply Fabulous! Gala - March 15, 2013 7-11:30

Have your gala finery yet?  There's still time for you to be simply fabulous for BALIF's Simply Fabulous! Gala.  BALIF 2013 sponsors get complimentary tickets.  Contact Jamie Dupree at  jdupree@fddcm.com  or go to the BALIF website at  www.balif.org for sponsorship information.  Individual tickets are also on sale at  www.balif.org.


BALIF thanks this week's incoming 2013 BALIF Sponsors:


Individual Level
Peter C. Catalanotti, Manning & Kass, Ellrod, Ramirez, Trester LLP


BALIF's 33rd Annual Gala: 
Come Celebrate Being Simply Fabulous!!gala

gala 2013  



The Gala doors open at 7:00 p.m. for general admission (6:00 p.m. for those attending the VIP reception), but you don't have to wait until then to get the party started.  Ditch the office and join us for cocktails and conversation, beginning at 5:30 p.m., at one of our two pre-party venues:   


Bar 333 at Le Meridien Hotel (Private Room)

333 Battery Street




*We invite those coming alone to the Gala to join us for the Come-Solo reception, a party within the pre-party at Bar 333.  Meet and mix with other solos in our private room.  Following the reception, we'll walk over to the Bently Reserve together. 


Blanc et Rouge

Two Embarcadero Center, Front Street at Sacramento Street






Your Simply Fabulous! night doesn't have to end when the lights come on at the Bently Reserve.  Join us as we take the party to LookOut in the CastroPresent your Gala nametag at the door for free admittance.  Cash bar.


The Look-Out 

3600 16th Street 


Individual Gala tickets can be purchased  here


Click here to see the most up-to-date Gala schedule!
BALIF March Happy Hourpatio
Date: Friday, March 8, 2013
Time: 5pm
Place: The Patio, Palo Alto

BALIF is hosting a South Bay Happy Hour for our members at Stanford and Santa Clara. Both student and attorney members are encouraged to attend. Refreshments will be provided, and we have a private area reserved for our guests, so bring a friend (or two). Cheers!


RSVP here! 

Give Back to Our Community by 
Staffing BALIF's 1st Ever Career Expocareer

What is the biggest need of our young lawyers and law students? JOBS. JOBS. JOBS.   In response, BALIF is putting together our very first Career Expo on Saturday, April 6, 2013.


To our more experienced members -- here's your chance to give back to our community by staffing a practice area informational booth.  Here's a sampling of the booths; or feel free to suggest your own...

  • Law firms looking to hire associates and summer interns
  • IP Litigation
  • IP Prosecution
  • Litigation
  • Transaction
  • Criminal Law
  • Employment Law - Plaintiff
  • Employment Law - Defense
  • Immigration Law
  • Family Law
  • Estate Planning
  • Solo firms
  • Boutique firms
  • Non-Profits
  • Courts
  • D.A.
  • P.D.
  • In-House
  • Non-traditional legal careers
  • Or suggest your own booth...
We need your help.  If you'd like to staff one of the Career Expo booths, please contact On Lu at onlu@mount.com.
BALIF's New Newsletter Design

Hey all, your Communications & Public Relations Chair and Administrator here. Just wanted to kick off our new newsletter design. Hope you like it. Let us know your thoughts!


-Mario and Katie

The OUTreach Committee Needs You!
The OUTreach Committee is looking for a few good men and women to help out.  To learn more about OUTreach, please check out our committee description here.  Specifically, we are looking for Balif members to help coordinate and act as a liaison with other LGBT groups, minority bar associations, and LGBT Volunteer Groups.  Please send an email to outreach@balif.org if you are interested.
MCLE: Divorce, Dissolution, and Consensual Dispute Resolution
Resolving Same-Sex Issues

Friday, March 8, 2013
Live Webinar and Teleconference Duration: 90 minutes

Charles Spiegel, Esq.
Collaborative Practitioner
Charles Spiegel Law
San Francisco, CA


Click here to register! 

National LGBT Bar Association 
Prudential Fellowship Program
Application Deadline: March 11, 2013 at 5:00pm ET

To apply, you must submit a cover letter, resume, a list of three references and a copy of your transcript to:

D'Arcy Kemnitz, Esq.
Executive Director
National LGBT Bar Association
1301 K Street NW, Suite 1100 East Tower
Washington, DC 20005
(202) 637-7661

Please write "Prudential Fellowship Program" in the subject line of all correspondence.  All materials must be received by 5:00 p.m. ET on March 11, 2013.

All applicants must be available for phone interviews between Monday, March 18, and Friday, March 22. 

The National LGBT Bar Association is pleased to partner with Prudential Financial, Inc. (Prudential) to provide a meaningful summer internship opportunity to a highly-motivated first-year law student.  Through this partnership, the National LGBT Bar Association will select a student to join the 2013 summer law intern class at Prudential for a 10-week internship at Prudential's offices, for a stipend of approximately $10,000.  Internship positions will be located in the New Jersey tri-state area. A position may also be available in Dallas, TX.  
Working with Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Domestic Violence Survivors

Learn about issues unique to LGBT Survivors

of Intimate Partner Violence (IPV),

and how you can provide culturally competent support.

  • Is LGBT DV different from heterosexual DV?
  • Is it just "boys being boys" when gay men fight?
  • Why is the dual arrest rate in same sex DV cases nearly 10 times that of heterosexual DV cases?

Terra Slavin, Legal Director of the Los Angeles Gay & Lesbian Center,

looks at barriers faced by members of this community in accessing help, and discusses the CDC's recent report on same-sex IPV.


Tiffany Woods, Executive Director of TransVision, discusses the impact of IPV in the transgender community, and her work with the Oakland Police Department to heighten cultural awareness.


This Event is Free


When: Friday, March 22, 2013, 1pm-4:30pm

Where: Alameda County Family Justice Center

470 27th Street, Oakland

Conference Room, 2nd Floor


Please RSVP by Friday, March 15th to Sharon Alkire at

 sharon.alkire@acgov.org (Space is limited.)


Questions? Call Sharon at (510) 267-8871, or (510) 402-8649 [cell].

More info about MCLE Credits coming soon!

Zamperini / Burchell Scholarship
20th Anniversary Reception
The Queer Law Student Association (QLSA) at Golden Gate University invites you to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the Zamperini/Burchell Endowed Scholarship. QLSA will be holding a reception in honor of Professor Michael Zamperini and his partner Clay Burchell for twenty years of dedication to LGBT students at GGU.  The scholarship is awarded annually to a 3L gay or lesbian law student based on overall academic achievement and academic performance in Writing & Research courses.  

The event will be held on Wednesday, March 27, 2013 from 5:30 to 8 PM at Coblentz Patch Duffy & Bass LLP, One Ferry Building, Suite 200, San Francisco, CA 94111-4213 , please RSVP here: http://ggulawzamperini.eventbrite.com/
LGBT Parentage
"LGBT Parentage- How LGBT people create children, and when and why it matters to be a legal parent"

Thursday, April 18, 2013 
11:30 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. Lunch (provided)
12:00 p.m. - 2:00 p.m. Learning Session

This presentation will survey the different methods of creating family, including adoption, fost-adopt, surrogacy, and assisted reproduction technology. The panelists will explain the difference between a bio and non-bio parent, a natural parent under California law, second-parent and step-parent adoption, and presumed parentage for married and domestically partnered couples. Most important for financial planners and other professionals, will be tools to understand the relative costs in terms of time and money to your clients, the effect on your clients of various legal statuses, and what to suggest when things go wrong.

To RSVP, please contact Jenna Heath via email or call 415.398.2333 x115.
Northern Trust 
580 California Street, 18th Floor  
San Francisco, CA 
4th Annual California 
Diversity & Leadership Conference

Thursday, April 18 - Friday, April 19, 2013


Click here for more information and to register!


We are very fortunate to have Former Michigan Governor Jennifer Granholm as our Keynote Speaker for the Awards Breakfast on April 18, and CNN Morning Anchor Soledad O'Brien will be giving the closing Keynote Address on Friday, April 19! 



Hilton Concord

1970 Diamond Blvd

Concord, CA 94520



Please call 1-800-826-2644 and ask for reservation and then ask for the California Diversity & Leadership Conference.

BASF's Mind the Gap Program: 
Mentors Needed!

This new exciting initiative called "Mind the Gap" (MTG) is to provide recent law school graduates and young attorneys who are unemployed or underemployed with training, work experience, mentorship connections and debt reduction information. BASF is looking for attorneys to serve as mentors to MTG participants. A mentorship Listserv consisting of MTG participants and interested mentors will be created where mentees can post questions and mentors can respond with answers and general advice. 


If you are interested in becoming an MTG mentor, please email mindthegapmentor@sfbar.org


For more information, please visit www.sfbar.org/mind-the-gap.

U.S. Supreme Court Schedules 
Oral Argument Dates for 
Prop 8 and DOMA Cases

The Supreme Court announced that it will hear oral argument in Hollingsworth v. Perry, the federal constitutional challenge to California's Proposition 8, on Tuesday, March 26, 2013. The Court also announced that it will hear oral argument in United States v. Windsor, a constitutional challenge to DOMA, on Wednesday, March 27, 2013. The Supreme Court granted certiorari in both cases on December 7, 2012. BALIF looks forward to becoming involved in these cases. Decisions on both these cases are expected by the end of June.   


Click here to read the Windsor case (DOMA), a brief that BALIF was invited to join as co-amicus.

 Click here to read the Perry case (Prop 8), a brief that BALIF coordinated as the lead amicus on behalf of approximately 60 other organizations.
A Benefit Concert to End Bullying

New Conservatory Theatre Center

A Benefit Concert to End Bullying

Featuring the Yale Whiffenpoofs
with Special Guest Star Taye Diggs


Saturday April 20, 2013 at 8:00 pm
Palace of Fine Arts Theatre
San Francisco, CA

Click here to buy tickets!

Click here for more information!

For more than 30 years, New Conservatory Theatre Center (NCTC) has been at the forefront of addressing pressing social issues through theatre. 


One of our core programs is YouthAware which uses theatre as the medium to address health and wellness issues critical to young people today such as violence and bullying, drug and alcohol abuse, and homophobia.


In support of YouthAware, NCTC is pleased to be the beneficiary of the Concert to End Bullying, starring the Yale Whiffenpoofs andBroadway/Film/TV star Taye Diggs, performing April 20, 2013 at 8:00 PM at San Francisco's beautiful and historic Palace of Fine Arts theatre.

ALRP Free Winter 2013 MCLE Training
Introduction to Landlord/Tenant Law
  • Tuesday, March 5, 5:30-7:00pm
  • Presented by Ora Prochovnick, Esq., John F. Kennedy University Housing Advocacy Clinic
  • Bar Association of San Francisco, 301 Battery Street, 3rd Floor, Board Room, San Francisco, CA 94111
  • 1.5 General CLE Credits


Elder Law & Conservatorships

  • Tuesday, March 12, 5:30-7:00pm
  • Presented by Helene Wenzel, Esq., Law Office of Helene V. Wenzel
  • Bar Association of San Francisco, 301 Battery Street, 3rd Floor, Board Room, San Francisco, CA 94111
  • 1.5 General CLE Credits


Introduction to Trusts for LGBTQ Clients

  • Wednesday, March 27, 5:30-7:00pm
  • Presented by Bill Ambrunn, Esq., Law Offices of Bill Ambrunn
  • Bar Association of San Francisco, 301 Battery Street, 3rd Floor, Board Room, San Francisco, CA 94111
  • 1.5 General CLE Credits


Click here for more details!

Lesbian Businesswomen Social
You are invited to a wine and hors d' oeuvres social!

April 18, 2013
5:00-7:00 pm

Monty White LLP
1000 Fourth Street, Suite 425
San Rafael, CA

Hosted by:
Barbara Monty

Lenore O'Connor
Chartered Financial Consultant


Please RSVP by April 10th to lenorejoconnor@gmail.com.

We Want Your BALIFBuzz

We all love that section in our alumni newsletters that talks about who's doing what.


Well, we're introducing the BALIFBuzz to show-off all the great things that our members are doing.  BALIFBuzz will be appearing in the weekly BALIF newsletter.   


New job?

New client?


Court victory?

Significant settlement?

Baby on the way?

Recently married or engaged?

Speaking engagement?

Award, recognition, certification, or degree?  

Or anything else you're excited about...


Keep it to one or two lines.  Please send to membership@balif.org.


Can't wait to hear your great news!


Lauri Bertolacci

BALIF Membership Chair

Job Postings Now on BALIF Website

All job postings can be found here!  


BALIF membership is required to view the job postings. Simply log into the BALIF website with your membership ID and password, and select the JOBS from the menu on the left.

Upcoming Events
March 5- Tax Seminar for Domestic Partners
March 8- BALIF March Happy Hour
March 15- BALIF Annual Gala
April 6- BALIF's First Career Fair
In This Issue
BALIF Board of Directors
Chelsea HaleyNelson & On Lu,  
BALIF Board 
Laura Maechtlen, Secretary 
John Robert Unruh, Treasurer  


Susan Bluer, Judiciary Committee Chair


Michael Wolchansky, 
StateBar/Conference of Delegates Committee Chair 

John Robert Unruh & 
Jamie Dupree,  Gala Co-Chairs 

Michael Wolchansky & Peter Catalanotti, Outreach/Current Events Committee Co-Chairs 

Laurie Bertolacci, Membership Committee Chair

Elizabeth Pritzker, Young Lawyers & Law Student Programs 

Lilah Sutphen & Nick Clements, Programs Committee Co-Chairs

David Sims, Social Committee Chair  


Mario M. Choi,  Communications & Public Relations Chair 

Nick Kacprowski, Amicus Committee

Nathan Bewley, Aditi Fruitwala & 
Milo Beitman,  Law Student Representatives
Katie Carlson, Administrator
Our 2013 Sponsors
Partner Level

HB Logo



Advocate Level


A.L. Nella & Company, CPAs

Bingham McCutcheon LLP

Cooley LLP

Farella Braun + Martel LLP

Huron Legal

Jones Day

Kirkland & Ellis LLP

Latham & Watkins LLP

Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP

Nixon Peabody LLP

O'Melveny & Meyers LLP


Perkins Cole LLP

Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP

Santa Clara University School of Law

Shook, Hardy & Bacon LLP


Benefactor Level


AT&T Legal Department

Clarence, Dyer & Cohen LLP / Swanson & McNamara LLP

Futterman Dupree Dodd Croley Maier LLP

Gibson Dunn

Jackson Lewis LLP


Lieff Cabraser Heimann & Bernstein, LLP

Mount, Spelman & Fingerman

Munger, Tolles & Olson LLP

Neilson & MacRitchie Investigators

Office of the California Attorney General

Paul Hastings

Pritzker Law

Reed Smith LLP

Robert Half Legal

Roeca Hass Hager LLP

Rosen Bien Galvan & Grunfeld

San Francisco City Attorney's Office

San Francisco District Attorney's Office

Schiff Hardin LLP

Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP

Special Counsel

Stein & Lubin LLP

Turner Boyd

University of San Francsico School of Law

Wald & Thorndal P.C.

Wells Fargo


Individual Sponsors


Peter C. Catalanotti, Manning & Kass, Ellrod, Ramirez, Trester LLP

Michael Colantuono, Colantuono & Levin, P.C.

Todd Norris, Bullivant Houser Bailey

Debra R. Schoenberg, Schoenberg Family Law Group, P.C.

Cheryl Sena, Sena Family Law

Jonathan Shapiro, Wilmer Hale

Hon. James L. Warren (Ret.), JAMS

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