Weekly Newsletter        |          March 25, 2013
Message from BALIF Co-Chairs 



At a recent BALIF networking event, I had the following exchange with a young lawyer ("YL"): 

YL: I was told to come to this networking event. Who are you?

oN: My name is On Lu. Pleased to meet you.

YL: Do you do anything with this group? What does it do any way?

oN: Sure. I try to stay involved. BALIF represents the interest of LGBT legal professionals in the Bay Area, and...

YL: Well, since this is a networking event, is your firm hiring?

oN: Yes, we are for...

YL: How much do you pay?

oN: Well...

YL: So what does your firm do any way?

oN: We're an IP litigation boutique...

YL: Can I give you my resume to give to your boss?

I put down my martini and pulled YL aside.  We had a nice chat about the right ways (and the wrong ways) to network. YL explained that he came from a top tiered law school that didn't teach its students how to network. This made me think about the job process that so many of our members are undergoing right now, and whether there was anything BALIF could do to better equip them. What resulted is BALIF's 2013 Career and Networking Expo - scheduled for Saturday, April 6. Our goal is simple - to help our members GET JOBS. More than anything, the Expo is designed to be practical. We want our members to walk-away from this event with information they can put to use immediately. Read more about the Expo below, and how this event will empower your job search. As of this morning, TEN employers (and counting) will be hiring for laterals, young attorneys, and law students at the Expo. For those on the job search, there is no wiser use of four hours on a Saturday afternoon.

We look forward to seeing you there. 

Chelsea HaleyNelson & On Lu

BALIF Co-Chairs



Calling All Potential BALIF Board Members -- Submit Your Nominations For The BALIF Board of Directors Now!

BALIF will be electing new Board members on April 16, 2013 for   

the 2013-2015 term, and invite our members to nominate candidates for consideration. Each Director holds office for two years, and we invite third-party and self-nominations for open director positions. To nominate someone for a director position, please send a candidate statement of 250 words or less to lmaechtlen@seyfarth.com and  balif@balif.org by Friday, March 29, 2013 at 5:30 p.m.


Elections will be online, and there will be an opportunity for individuals to vote in person at the General Membership Meeting on Tuesday, April 16, 2013 at the Sausage Factory from 6 - 8:30 pm. The results will be announced at the end of the General Membership Meeting.


Questions about the Board?  Visit this link, or contact


Need  a Job? Time for a New One?career1


Saturday , April 6 , 2013
1 pm - 5 pm
Golden Gate University School of Law

Click here to RSVP!



Mario, your Communications Chair here. I recently had a short conversation with On Lu, BALIF's Co-Chair and originator of BALIF's 2013 Career & Networking Expo, about the upcoming Expo:


What made BALIF decide to organize this event?


Our members need it. The legal market is still recovering from the recession, and it's been challenging for many BALIF members to get jobs. Yes, the BALIF Board does a great job with our happy hours, parties, and social events, but we're all deeply committed to helping our members with perhaps their greatest need - getting a job! Over the past year, I have personally helped about a dozen of our members get their jobs. I wanted to expand the effort on a broader scale to assist as many as possible. The idea is to bring the employers who are hiring to our members in one large, practical setting. At the same time, I wanted to better prepare our members for the job search.


Who is involved in the effort?


The whole Board has jumped in to help - especially our Membership Chair (Laurie Bertolacci) and Young Lawyer & Law Students Chair (Elizabeth Pritzker). The Board has been busy recruiting established BALIF members to staff the Job Fair portion of the Expo. Our Board Law Student Reps are reaching-out to all the Bay Area law schools. Susanne Aronowitz (Associate Dean for Law Career Services & Alumni Relations at GGU) has also been invaluable in helping to put together this event. Robert Half Legal is bringing half a dozen hiring experts to the Expo, and we have diversity specialists and hiring managers from several Bay Area firms helping out as well.


Will there be any employers at the event that are actually hiring?


More than we thought! We had planned for 2-3. As of this morning, we have ten employers looking to hire for about 20 openings. What a success it would be if a dozen or so BALIF members get jobs as a result of this event.


Other than the "newbies" of the profession, who else should attend this event?


Lawyers who are looking to transition into other practice areas or firms. Many of the employers looking to hire are seeking laterals.


What practice areas will be represented?


Just about every practice area you can think of. We have BALIF members staffing tables for 30+ practice areas ranging from the courts, to patent prosecution, to non-profits, to family law, to non-traditional legal careers that benefit from a J.D. The idea is offer our members a wide spectrum of career options.


What should I wear? What should I bring with me?


Business casual. The event takes place on a Saturday afternoon, but dozen of firms, employers, and legal hiring professionals will be attending. You want to make good impression on the people who may become your next boss. Bring resumes. Bring questions. And bring a great attitude. Take advantage of the mock interview sessions, and one-on-one resume review opportunities.


What makes this event different from others?


It's practical. We want our members to walk-away from this event with information they can put to practice immediately -- as opposed to yet another lecture from on-high. To that end, we've planned for one-on-one resume review sessions with professional legal recruiters, and mock interviews with law firm hiring managers. For our "Power Networking" Panel, we invited BALIF members who actually got their jobs through the BALIF network to teach our audience how to do it.  We also have a hilarious networking panel that will "demonstrate" the right and wrong ways to network.


Thanks, oN!


The Expo takes place on April 6, 2013, at Golden Gate University, beginning at 1 p.m. Please RSVP here


Co-sponsored by Golden Gate School of Law and Sedgwick LLP.  

BALIF Career & Networking Expo
Confirmed Employers and Practice Areas 

3/25/13 Update- TEN employers (and counting) will be hiring

laterals, new attorneys, and/or interns at the Expo (indicated by ** below).


U.S. District Court for the Northern District of CA
IP Prosecution - Weaver Austin **
Workers Compensation Def - Laughlin Falbo Levy & Moresi **
Arbitration & Mediation - JAMS
Public Defender - Alameda County
Legal Recruiter - Robert Half Legal **
IP Litigation - Mount Spelman & Fingerman **
IP Prosecution - Novak Druce **
Complex Commercial Litigation - Kirkland Ellis
Real Estate Litigation - Manning & Kass
Labor & Employment Defense - Seyfarth Shaw
Labor & Employment Defense - Hanson Bridgett **
Immigration Law - HaleyNelson & Heilbrun, LLP
Family Law - Wald & Thorndal
Estate Planning - Ed Joy, Attorney at Law
Mediation - Mediation Law Offices of Barbara S. Bryant
Government Agency - Dept of Health and Human Services
Small Firm - Law Offices of John T. Hendricks **
Small Firm - Kaplan Fox
Mid-Sized Firm - Farella Braun Martell
Mid-Sized Firm - Bullivant Houser Bailey
Large Firm - Sedgwick **
Large Firm, Intellectual Property - Fenwick **


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. 
Join the BALIF Listserv!

Have a job or need one? Civil procedure question? Need a

referral? Have something important to ask ... or news to tell? Want to get to our members quickly? Join our Listserv!


Over the next few weeks, we will be sending out requests ONLY to BALIF members to join our newly-created Listserv. You must proactively respond to the request in order to be added to our Listserv (we will try to send out reminders to those of you who did not have the chance to respond). If you don't get a request by the end of April, please let us know. And, if you want to be added sooner than we can send out requests, shoot an email to technology@balif.org or balif@balif.org.

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. DtsaiColor


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!
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


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!

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.  


An audio recording of the oral arguments will be released on the Supreme Court website the same day they are heard. 


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.
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/
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.

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
April 6- BALIF's First Career Fair
May 7- BALIF Comedy Night
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

Jennifer & Meredith Orthwein 

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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