Weekly Newsletter        |          July 10, 2013
Message from the BALIF Board



Since our Prop 8/DOMA victories, I haven't been able to stop humming the tune to "Winds of Change"...


Take me to the magic of the moment

On a glory night

Where the children of tomorrow dream away

in the wind of change


This Scorpions' classic is from 1991.  I was a sophomore in college back then, and vividly recall how the lyrics of this song celebrated German reunification, the end of the Cold War, and the fall of communism in Eastern Europe .


The "Winds of Change" have been blowing in the Bay Area as well.  Everywhere I turn, I see our BALIF brothers and sisters standing prouder, wiser, and more forcefully - because together, we survived (and won) a decade-long war for marriage equality in our state.  Our attorneys are advancing up the law firm ladders, and getting promoted through the corporate and government ranks.  Our in-house counsel members are becoming decision-makers.  We're remembering the need for LGBT judges, and redoubling our efforts to recruit.  We're helping our law students and young attorneys gets jobs and become more qualified candidates.  We're finally standing-up for our long-neglected transgender family, and putting an exclamation mark behind our female members (!).


The BALIF Board has been busy laying plans for our 2013-14 year.  We can't wait to unveil what's coming, and we're so, so glad you're along for the ride. 


BTW: Here's a link to the music video if you're so inclined: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n4RjJKxsamQ 


Looking forward to greeting you soon,


On Lu

BALIF Board Co-Chair

2013- 2014 BALIF 
"Connections" Mentorship Program

It's that time of year again! BALIF's "Connections" Mentorship Program is looking for mentees seeking to gain valuable insight into the profession, and mentors who want to provide guidance and experience to the "younger" crowd. Both mentors and mentees must be able to commit to constant communication, and must be able to meet at least a few times during the course of the mentorship year (September-May).


Mentors should be more senior, experienced attorneys or judges in their field(s) of practice. Mentees can be law students, attorneys just beginning their careers, or even more senior attorneys looking to expand their horizons or to move into a different legal focus.


Applications are available for the program. Please email younglawyers@balif.org, and in the subject line note either "Mentor" (if you are seeking to be a mentor) or "Mentee" (if you are looking to be mentored). If you have any questions, please email the Chair of the Young Lawyers and Law Students Programs Committee Chair at younglawyers@balif.org.

Happy Hour Mixer

The Alameda-Contra Costa Lawyers Association and Consumer Attorneys of California cordially invite attorney-members of bar associations affiliated with the Minority Bar Coalition to our Happy Hour Mixer. Please make sure you RSVP and see you there!


Event: ACCTLA / CAOC Happy Hour Mixer

When: July 11, 6-8 pm

Where: Ozumo, 2251 Broadway, Oakland

Please RSVP to Sam Farmer at samantha@caoc.org


Free drinks and appetizers!

After Windsor & Perry: What's Next for the Marriage Equality Movement

Friday, July 12, 201312:00pm - 1:30pm
Morrison & Foerster LLP
425 Market Street
San FranciscoCA
The Bay Area Lawyer Chapter of the American Constitution Society and Bay Area Lawyers for Individual Freedom present:


After Windsor and Perry: What's Next for the Marriage Equality Movement


  • Matthew Coles, Deputy National Legal Director, American Civil Liberties Union
  • Rita F. Lin, Partner, Morrison & Foerster LLP
  • Therese Stewart, Chief Deputy City Attorney, San Francisco City Attorney's Office; Member, Board of Advisors, ACS Bay Area Chapter
And moderated by:
  • Craig Konnoth, Deputy Solicitor General, Inaugural Earl Warren Fellow, California Solicitor General's Office
The Court has finally spoken on Proposition 8 and the Defense of Marriage Act.  What does this mean for the future of marriage in California and across the nation?  What are the next steps for the marriage equality movement?  The ACS Bay Area Lawyer Chapter and BALIF are pleased to present a panel of speakers who have been deeply involved in the cases and in the movement to speak on these issues.



Lunch will be provided.  Thank you to Morrison & Foerster LLP for generously hosting this event.
Marriage in America:
Life After Windsor & Perry
Join BASF's LGBT Equality Committee for an exciting panel discussion to discuss the impact of the recent U.S. Supreme Court rulings in the same-sex marriage cases (Hollingsworth v. Perry, et al. and United States v. Windsor) and to explore the impact of these cases on the marriage equality movement nationwide.

Speakers include:
Matt Coles (Deputy Legal Director and Director of the ACLU Center for Equality, ACLU)
Chris Stoll (Senior Staff Attorney, NCLR)
Kristin Perry and Sandra Stier (Plaintiffs in Hollingsworth v. Perry, et al.)
Moderated by Yolanda Jackson, Deputy Executive Director and Diversity Director, The Bar Association of San Francisco

Hosted by
The Bar Association of San Francisco
301 Battery Street, 3rd Floor

Wednesday, July 17, 2013
Panel discussion: 5:00 - 6:30 p.m.
BASF LGBT Partners, Associates and Counsel Reception to follow: 6:30 - 7:30 p.m.

Please RSVP online by July 15th at

For more information contact Nicole Britton-Snyder at 415-782-8914
Shattering the Judicial LGBT Glass Ceiling
As an active supporter of efforts to increase representation of Asian-American LGBT lawyers in the judiciary, AABA's LGBT Committee is proud to debut its Judges Seminar Series with an in-depth look at the careers of four trailblazing LGBT judges.

Our honored guests include:
  • Justice Rives Kistler of the Oregon Supreme Court, the first open LGBT justice in the country;
  • Justice Sabrina S. McKenna of the Supreme Court of Hawai`i, the first open LGBT Asian-American female justice in the country;
  • Justice Barbara Lenk, the first open LGBT justice of the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court; and
  • Federal Magistrate Judge Donna Ryu of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, the first LGBT Asian-American female judge in the Northern District.
This seminar will explore each judge's unique experiences, challenges, and lessons learned throughout their career. This is not an event to be missed! MCLE credit is available.

Event Details
Event Title: Shattering the Judicial LGBT Glass Ceiling
Date: Thursday, July 18, 2013
Time: 5:30-8:00 pm

5:30-6:00...Opening reception
6:00-7:00...Presentation + Q & A
7:00-8:00...Closing reception

Orrick (8th Flr.)
405 Howard Street
San Francisco, CA 94105

*Space is limited
*No cost to AABA/BALIF members and law students; $25 for non-members
*To RSVP, please email Maggie Owyang at  aaba.bayarea@gmail.com or sign up on AABA's Calendar. 
Prenup is not a Dirty Word: Marrying and Registering with Heart and Smarts


Marriage. It's in the air. And in the courts. And all over the press. Marriage is a civil right, marriage is romantic .... and marriage is a contract with your partner. Unless you specify otherwise, the terms of the contract are pre-written by the state. This contract is the only contract most people enter into without reading or knowing the terms. In fact - where can one even find those terms? If you are considering marrying and/or domestic partnering, we encourage you to think about what you want your marriage or registered partnership to look like. Do the rights and obligations set by the state fit your relationship - or do you want to customize them?


Join us July 25, 2013!


The LGBT Center

1800 Market Street

San Francisco, CA 94102

In this workshop, we will address:
- Why do a pre-nup? (Or not!)

- What can we address in a pre-nup?
- How can we go about creating a pre-nup?

Presenters are: Charles Spiegel (charlesspiegellaw.com), Heba Nimr (hebanimr.com), and Dylan Miles (milesfamilylaw.com)

Up Your Alley & Folsom Street Fair Volunteers Needed!


The Transgender Law Center is proud to be one of the partners selected by the Folsom Street Fair to provide volunteers for the Folsom Street Fair and its baby brother, Up Your Alley.


To be a success, TLC needs BALIF members' help. TLC needs BALIF to step up and be a volunteer. It's easy, it's fun, and you'll still have plenty of time to enjoy the fair.


All you have to do is go to a brief orientation meeting, and then show up and work a shift. A variety of volunteer tasks are available. You'll meet terrific people and have fun while at the same time helping Transgender Law Center become a strong, solid partner of the Folsom Street Fair.


Up Your Alley is on July 28th and the Folsom Street Fair is September 29th. More information can be found here: http://folsomstreetfair.org/fair-faq.php


Please let Trans Law Center Board Member Shawn Demmons (shawn.demmons@gmail.com) know ASAP if you can volunteer for either event. TLC needs you, BALIF members!

Iranian American Bar Association 
Sixth Annual Dinner
The Iranian American Bar Association invites BALIF Members to their Sixth Annual Dinner on Thursday, August 15, 2013, at 6:30pm.  This year's keynote speaker will be Mr. Cyrus Amir-Mokri, the U.S. Treasury Department's Assistant Secretary of Financial Institutions!  Tickets can be purchased tickets here . 
Castro Offices for Rent
2 or 3 offices available in prime Victorian in Castro. Share flat with estate planner/generalist and building with other attorneys. We are congenial, collegial, experienced and respectful.


Rents: 1,100 for smallest office; 1200 for med office and $1,400 for front parlor office (fireplace, etc.). Included in rent: shared reception/paralegal office and conference room, and small kitchen space. Not included in rent: utilities, and cleaning. Floor is well-wired for internet for easy plug and play.


Contact: Michael @ 861-9900
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.
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.

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!


BALIF members should have received our invitation to join our newly-created Listserv. You must proactively respond to the request in order to be added to our Listserv. If you didn't get a request, please let us know by emailing technology@balif.org or balif@balif.org.

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 must be current 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
July 12- After Windsor & Perry- What's Next for the Marriage Equality Movement
July 17- Marriage in America: 
Life after Windsor & Perry
July 18- Shattering the Judicial LGBT Glass Ceiling
July 25- Workshop: Prenup is Not a Dirty Word
In This Issue
BALIF Board of Directors
On Lu & Jamie Dupree  
John Robert Unruh


Elizabeth Pritzker & Andrew Vu  
Judiciary Co-Chairs

John Robert Unruh & 
Lilah Sutphen
Gala Co-Chairs  

Laurie Bertolacci  

Nick Kacprowski
Amicus Chair   


Leah Nutting  

Peter Catalanotti
Outreach Chair

Jessica Bogo
Social Action Chair 

Nick Clements  
Dustin Helmer & Midori Hirai


Katie Carlson
BALIF 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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Box 47
San Francisco, CA 94102

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