Weekly Newsletter        |          March 12, 2013
Message from BALIF Co-Chairs 


We'll keep it short and simple this week - don't dare miss the BALIF's 33rd Annual Gala on Friday at the Bently Reserve!  If you need reasons to come, check out our Top Five list below.


We hope to see you there! 

Chelsea HaleyNelson & On Lu

BALIF Co-Chairs



BALIF's 33rd Annual Gala: 
The Top Five Reasons Not to Miss BALIF's Simply Fabulous! 33rd Annual Galagala

gala 2013  

BALIF's 33rd Annual Gala is this Friday. There's still time to get your tickets here.

In case you need an extra push, here are the Top Five reasons

why you don't want to miss this year's festivities:


1. A Year Worthy of Celebration


BALIF's 33rd Annual Gala celebrates being Simply Fabulous! There has never been a better time to be out and proud. Indeed, it has been a year for the record books. Marriage equality was affirmatively recognized at the ballot box in three states, and an effort to discriminate against our community was rejected in a fourth. The military now permits lesbian and gay service members to serve openly with honor. And at his inauguration, President Obama inspiringly spoke of "all of us" being equal, but that "[o]ur journey is not complete until our gay brothers and sisters are treated like anyone else under the law."


2. Deserving Honorees


We honor The Gay & Lesbian Victory Fund for helping LGBT leaders get elected (Community Service Award); and AIDS Legal Referral Panel, which celebrates 30 years of providing free and low-cost legal services to persons living with HIV/AIDS (Legal Service Award).





3. There Has Never Been a Better Time to Go Solo!


Don't Be Shy...Ditch the herd and come SOLO to the Gala. Start with the COME SOLO Reception-a party within the pre-party-at Bar 333 at Le Meridien Hotel at 5:30 pm. Meet and mix with BALIF friends and colleagues in our private room. Afterwards, we'll head over to the Bently Reserve together for the Gala.


4. No Stuffy Assigned Seating; Mix & Mingle All Night Long...


This year, BALIF takes over the Bentley Reserve. No stuffy, assigned seating at this year's Gala, so you can mix and mingle throughout the night with 600+ attorneys, judges, lawmakers, in-house counsel, and law students. Awaiting you are gourmet food and dessert stations, a red carpet entrance, DJ & dance floor, photo booth, and much, much more. It's sure to be the party of the year.


5. Pre And Post-Parties To Round Out Your Night


You can start early and stay late at BALIF's Simply Fabulous! Pre and Post Party venues. From 5:30 to 7:00 p.m., join us at Blanc et Rouge or Bar 333 at Le Meridien Hotel as we get the party underway with cocktails and conversation. After the Gala, follow us to LookOut in the Castro, where your Gala nametag gets you in the door.


Bar 333 at Le Meridien Hotel  

Private Room

333 Battery Street


Blanc et Rouge

Two Embarcadero Center

Front Street at Sacramento Street



3600 16th Street


Individual Gala tickets can be purchased  here


Click here to see the most up-to-date Gala schedule!
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:


Advocate Level 

Huron Consulting Group 

O'Melveny & Myers LLP   

Benefactor Level
Littler Mendelson, P.C.
San Francisco City Attorney's Office
Sheppard Mullin
Don't Be Shy
Ditch the herd and come SOLO to the Gala. Start with the COME SOLO Reception -- a party within the pre-party -- at Bar 333 at Le Meridien Hotel at 5:30 pm. Meet and mix with BALIF friends and colleagues in our private room.  Afterwards, we'll head over to the Bently Reserve together for the Gala.  Get your ticket at www.balif.org.
Win an IPad at the Pride Law Fund Raffle
Support pride law fund and have a chance to win some spectacular items at this years gala.  Come visit the pride law fund table at the BALIF Gala and purchase a raffle ticket 1 for $10 or 3 for $20.  This year we are raffling off a brand new IPad, 2 nights at any Kimpton Hotel in America, 2 orchestra tickets to the SF Ballet,   a shirt from the upcoming collection from Adrogyny and much more. 

Pride Law Fund promotes the legal rights of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgendered community, and people living with HIV and AIDS, by funding legal services and projects and by sponsoring education and outreach. Pride Law Fund has assisted innovative academic programs, supported the development and distribution of legal and educational materials, and financed independent and documentary film projects to educate the public. Now in its thirty second year, Pride Law Fund is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt, non-profit, charitable organization
BALIF Table for Six Singles
March 26th at 7:00 pm
Let's go on a classic San Francisco adventure in search of great food (at a great price). Throw in some great people and some thoughtful conversation; and we have the perfect week day evening.  And who knows . . . you just might meet that special someone.  A table for the gentlemen. A table for the ladies.
RSVP to ed@edwardjoylaw.com. Your favorite restaurant suggestions are welcome. 
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.
Congratulations to BALIF Member 
David Tsai

Perkins Coie's David Tsai has been recognized by the Daily Journal 

as one of the top "Five Associates to Watch" in California. David's profile, which appeared in the February 27 special section that included the Top 20 Under 40 attorneys in California, focused on his intellectual property experience and his work in the Taipei office.


David is a great asset to the Perkins Coie San Francisco office and we are extremely pleased that his hard work, dedication to community service and extraordinary business development skills have been recognized.

Please join Perkins Coie in congratulating David on this prestigious and well deserved recognition!
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.
Announcing Reed Smith's 
2013 Diverse Scholars Program
The National LGBT Bar Association is pleased to present Reed Smith's 2013 Diverse Scholars Program. Reed Smith has a strong commitment to diversity which has resulted in a firm in which diversity and inclusion permeate the culture. Rewarding young future leaders for their efforts in the area of diversity and introducing them to the Reed Smith culture are two important goals of this program.

Click here for more details.
ALRP Free Winter 2013 MCLE Training

Elder Law & Consevatorships 

  • 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!

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


You can earn 2.5 CLE hours at this event.


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].


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.
Queen's Bench Invites You to a Panel Discussion

Thursday, April 18, 2013
6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. 


International Women's Rights
An informative discussion of the challenges women face
in their quest for equal rights around the world


  • Judge Farjana Yesmin
  • Judge Ruth Astle
  • Judge Mary Kasango
  • Nancy J. Newman

Golden Gate University School of Law, 536 Mission Street, San Francisco 


Admission free for QB members and students.  

To register, contact admin@queensbench.org or 415-249-9280.

See  flyer for more details.

$10 for non-members. Click here to purchase ticket.

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.

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.

BALIF Member-Endorsed Events


BALIF member Enrique A. Monagas serves on the Board of Directors of the New ConservatoryTheatre Center and gives two-thumbs up to "A Benefit Concert to End Bullying."  The concert benefits the New ConservatoryTheatre Center's Youth Aware program that combats homophobia. 


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!
**Do you have an event or activity that you'd like to publicize to BALIF members? Send details to balifnews@gmail.com 
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.

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 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

Sheppard Mullin
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

Littler Mendelson 

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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