Weekly Newsletter        |         September 17, 2013
Message from the BALIF Board



It was great to see so many of BALIF's female (and male) members at the Give 'em L! LGBT Salon & Talk-Show last Thursday. The speakers were engaging, the views of our new Bay Bridge in the backdrop were stunning, and the two rooms filled with BALIF women were vibrant throughout the evening. Thank you for all who attended. I hope you enjoyed the event as much as I did!

With the change of seasons we are going to help change the look of our local Glen Park Elementary school. Mark your calendars to join us on October 26, 2013 to help give the school a new face, meet other BALIF members and members of the community, and pay-it-forward to our community.

Enjoy the warm weather, treat yourself to a scoop (or two) at one of San Francisco's iconic ice cream shops, and have a great week!

Lilah Sutphen 

BALIF Gala Committee Co-Chair



Thank You for attending Give 'em "L"!


Thank you for attending Give 'em "L" -- the first in BALIF's salon-style event series for women. We had a great time seeing familiar faces and meeting new colleagues.  BALIF hopes to do another one in the near future!


We would really appreciate your feedback about the event. If you have a quick minute, please fill out our event survey and let us know what worked well, as well as any ideas you have for how we can make the event even better.



Also, if you're interested in becoming a BALIF member, but didn't have a chance to sign up at the event, you can join through our online membership page.


BALIF Membership: http://www.balif.org/membership


We look forward to seeing you at the next BALIF event!

BALIF's Inaugural LGBT Ladies Salon


San Francisco, Sept. 13, 2013 - On Sept. 12, over sixty women came out to see an all-female panel of legal luminaries including Therese Stewart, chief deputy attorney at the San Francisco City Attorneys Office, in BALIF's first ever LGBT Ladies Salon. The event was hosted and co-sponsored by Novak Druce Connolly Bove + Quigg LLP.


The participants focused their discussion on decisions that arose from this year's Supreme Court term. Stewart related her personal experiences litigating on behalf of San Francisco in the fight for marriage equality starting from San Francisco's issuing of marriage licenses in 2004 to the Supreme Court's June decision in Hollingsworth v. Perry upholding the invalidation of Proposition 8.


Other featured speakers included Theodora Lee, attorney and shareholder at Littler Mendelson; Ilona Turner, legal director of the Transgender Law Center; and Pamela Fulmer, partner at Novak Druce and early contributor to the marriage equality litigation. Leah Nutting, programs committee chair at BALIF, moderated. In addition to Perry, the participants discussed the impact of decisions related to the Defense of Marriage Act and employment law.


The Bar Association of San Francisco (BASF) LGBT Equality Committee served as the other co-sponsor of the inaugural event. 

2013- 2014 BALIF 
"Connections" Mentorship Program


The BALIF's "Connections" Mentorship Program is open to those young attorneys and law students seeking mentorship from more experienced attorneys and judges, and to seasoned attorneys looking to give back to the community by providing guidance and expertise to the "younger" crowd. Mentors and mentees must be able to commit to constant communication, and must be able to meet at least several times during the course of the mentorship year (September-May).


Mentors should be judges or more senior, experienced attorneys 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 do something new!


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

ALRP List of Free 
Fall 2013 MCLE Trainings



Bar Association of San Francisco

301 Battery Street, 3rd Floor

San Francisco, CA 94111, Board Room


1.5 General CLE Credits



Immigration Options for Bi-national Couples after DOMA

Thursday, September 26, 5:30-7:00pm

    • Presented by Kelly McCown, Esq., McCown & Evans LLP

Overview: Topics will include: immigration options for same-sex, bi-national couples after DOMA; requirements for fiancé visas or marriage-based green cards; and differences between applying for a green card in the U.S. vs. abroad.


Wills & Trusts for LGBTQ Couples after DOMA

Tuesday, October 1, 5:30-7:00pm

    • Presented by Deb Kinney, Esq., Johnston, Kinney & Zulaica LLP

Overview: This presentation will discuss the ramifications of the Windsor and Perry decisions by the US Supreme Court in June.  Although same-sex couples have greater rights now, not all rights transfer and not all federal agencies have set clear policy yet. We will review how benefits will be affected, options for couples considering marriage, and how to draft trusts. Are one, two, or three trusts necessary? Do children need added protections? Bring your questions for an interactive seminar.


Using State and Federal Law to Protect Debtors from Collections Harassment

Wednesday, October 2, 5:30-7:00pm

    • Presented by Noah Zinner, Esq., Housing and Economic Rights Advocates

Overview: This training will review debtor rights under the federal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act and its state analog, the Rosenthal Act. We will discuss tools and strategies for keeping clients from being harassed by creditors. We will also discuss in particular the new California legislation (effective January 1, 2014) and its expansion of consumer rights in relation to third-party "debt buyers."


Identity Theft and Undocumented Immigrants

Tuesday, October 22, 5:30-7:00pm

    • Presented by Sean Perdomo, Esq.,Law Office of Sean Perdomo

Overview: Undocumented immigrants with work histories face many obstacles relating to their admissibility to the U.S. when applying for immigration benefits. This course will advise participants on the current state of the law relating to identity theft and its application to undocumented immigrants applying for immigration benefits.


Applied Mindfulness for Attorneys: Substance Abuse Awareness

Thursday, November 7, 5:30-7:00pm

    • Presented by Kim Nicol, Esq., Attorney at Law

Overview: This class provides an introduction to the science of mindfulness, including how meditation can reduce the physiological symptoms of stress. We'll examine the relationship of stress to substance abuse, and discuss ways to use mindfulness as a stress-management strategy. This class includes a brief, 5-minute meditation, but is focused on understanding the science of meditation and mindfulness, and its practical application to your own life.


Navigating IRS Collection Procedures: From Assessment to Resolution

Thursday, November 14, 5:30-7:00pm

    • Presented by Adria Price, Esq., Price & Associates LLP, and Aubrey Hone, Esq., Hone Maxwell LLP

Overview: This panel presentation will focus on IRS collection procedures and how to properly handle various types of notices and collection efforts. We will provide practical tips on how to effectively and efficiently navigate the IRS system, as well as explore options to resolve issues with the IRS, including penalty abatement and lien removal. We will also discuss new developments in the wake of the demise of DOMA and will touch upon discharge of taxes in bankruptcy.


Making the Most of Mediation in Family Law

Tuesday, November 19, 5:30-7:00pm

    • Presented by Joann Babiak, Esq., Babiak Law Offices

Overview: This presentation provides basic information about mediation relating to family law matters.  Participants will explore some of the underlying principles of facilitative, transformational, and evaluative mediation and gain perspective on these different approaches to mediated dispute resolution. Participants will engage in interactive exercises to deepen understanding of certain mediation techniques and develop new insights regarding the importance of preparing clients for family law mediation sessions.


Negotiation on Behalf of Tenants in SF

Wednesday, December 4, 5:30-7:30pm

    • Presented by Deepa Varma, Esq., Eviction Defense Collaborative

Overview: This training will cover:

Negotiation generally: how to work with the skills you have, and compensate for the skills you lack;

Negotiation in housing court: what is a good deal? What the best I can get?

Client communication: how to do work with clients who are not on the same page as me;

Working with mediators: leveraging a system stacked against us.



Email: mcle@alrp.org or

Call: 415-701-1200 ext. 303

ABA Diversity Committee Luncheon

American Bar Association, Section of Taxation

Fall Meeting, September 19-21, 2013, Hyatt Regency, San Francisco, CA

Register at: http://meetings.abanet.org/meeting/tax/fall13/ 


Diversity Committee Luncheon and Panel


Friday, September 20, 2013


Tax Implications for Same-Sex Couples After DOMA.  Where Does the Code Go From Here?


On June 26, 2013, the Supreme Court in Windsor v. United States invalidated Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA).  What will be the implications of the Court's decision on the application of Federal tax laws to same-sex couples?  Panelists will discuss the tax planning challenges faced by same-sex couples and other Federal and state laws, such as estate and gift tax complications, taxation of Social Security benefits and employer-provided health coverage, the availability of certain deductions and exemptions, and the possibility of filing amended returns.  The panelists will share their insights on the Supreme Court's rulings in Windsor and in Hollingsworth v. Perry.  The panel will also share ideas on necessary IRS guidance in light of these decisions.


Moderator:  Laura R. Westfall, King & Spalding , New York , NY.

Panelists:  Professor Patricia A. Cain, Santa Clara Law, Santa Clara, CA; Shannon Price Minter, Legal Director, National Center for Lesbian Rights, San Francisco, CA; Eric A. San Juan, Senior Attorney-Advisor to the National Taxpayer Advocate, Office of the Taxpayer Advocate, Washington, DC (invited); Shawn Newman, Law Office of Shawn C. Newman, P.A., Wilton Manors, FL; Stephen B. Tackney, Deputy Associate Chief Counsel, Employee Benefits, Office of Division Counsel/Associate Chief Counsel, TE/GE, IRS, Washington, DC (invited).

San Francisco Legal Professionals Association (SFLPA) Fundraising Event
The San Francisco Legal Professionals Association (SFLPA) is hosting a fun membership and fundraising event on Saturday, September 21, 2013 from 4-8 p.m. at Q Bar (456 Castro). There will be a beer bust, 2-1 specials, and great company. It's also a Jersey Night! so show off your team pride. All are welcome and we'd love to see some attorneys and staff stop by for a drink and some good times.
WLAC Annual Judges' 
Dinner & Silent Action
Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Featured Panelists
Hon. Tara Desautels - Alameda County Superior Court Judge 
Nancy O'Malley - Alameda County District Attorney
Aundrea Brown - Alameda County Assistant Public Defender
Laura Stein - Senior Vice President and General Counsel, Clorox

The Faculty Club at U.C. Berkeley
6:00 pm Reception and Silent Auction
7:15 pm Dinner and Panel Discussion
ALRP Needs You at Folsom Street Fair


The AIDS Legal Referral Panel is a proud beneficiary of the 2013 Folsom Street Fair on Sunday, September 29, 2013. We need more volunteers than ever at San Francisco's most popular leather/fetish fair. By volunteering, you ensure that ALRP can continue providing low-cost legal services to people living with HIV/AIDS.


Volunteer shifts and more information is on our website at:



To sign up, please contact ALRP Volunteer Coordinator Jennifer Schuster at jennifer@alrp.org or (415) 701-1200 ext. 303. Thank you!

APABA-SV Annual Scholarship & Commitment to Diversity Awards Banquet
This year marks APABA-SV's twenty-eighth anniversary! As part of our ongoing commitment to the community, APABA-SV will be holding its annual Scholarship and Commitment to Diversity Awards Banquet on Friday, October 4th at the Sofitel San Francisco Bay, located at 223 Twin Dolphin Drive, Redwood City, CA. We will be recognizing the recipients of our Corporate and Law Firm Diversity Awards, as well as our scholarship recipients who have demonstrated leadership and commitment to the Asian Pacific American community. 

This year's keynote speaker will be Justice Sabrina Shizue McKenna from the Supreme Court of Hawaii. 

Where: Hotel Sofitel, 223 Twin Dolphin Drive, Redwood City, CA 94065 (map) 

When: Friday, October 4th, 2013 
Cocktails: 6 PM 
Dinner: 7 PM 

Questions? Email us at: apabasv.diversity@gmail.com 

Banquet proceeds will help fund scholarships and internships of the APABA-SV Charity, as well as the general operations of APABA-SV. 

Taylor Cashwell





Congratulations to BALIF member and 3L at Hastings, Taylor Cashwell, who accepted an offer to return to Fenwick & West LLP, as a corporate associate, next fall.




Richard Gilbert




Richard Gilbert,  having practiced ERISA law for 39 years -- most recently at Orrick (1981 - 2010) and Trucker Huss (2010 - 2013) -- retired from the practice of law on August 30.



API Legal Outreach 38th Anniversary

The API Legal Outreach family cordially invites you to join us as we celebrate our 38th Anniversary on Friday October 18, 2013, at the Saint Mary's Cathedral, 1111 Gough Street, San Francisco, CA. For 38 years, we have worked against long-standing barriers to equal justice by providing linguistically and culturally appropriate legal and social services. Our annual dinner is the perfect opportunity to learn more about the services we provide and communities we serve. More than 400 guests will attend! Meet our staff, law clerks, volunteers, Board of Directors, donors and sponsors while having a wonderful time. 


Purchase tickets today here! 


Please consider making a donation if you are unable to attend. Your generous support will allow us to continue to provide critical services to the marginalized community members.

Hasting's Women's Law Journal (HWLJ) 25th Anniversary and Symposium
The Hastings Women's Law Journal (HWLJ) will be commemorating its 25th Anniversary with a symposium on October 18, 2013 entitled "Onward and Upward: Breaking Past Gender Barriers in Law and Tech." This year we will be celebrating our 25th Anniversary by inviting women in leadership roles to discuss the opportunities and obstacles they have faced in the work place. While women have come far in the last twenty-five years in terms of achieving equality in position, opportunities, and pay, we still have further to go. Our purpose in selecting speakers and panelists is to provide a comprehensive overview of the different types of work places women encounter in the Bay Area, including law firms, non-profits, start-ups, and politics. We also would like to address how the next generations of women have legal protections against inequality in the workplace.

Our discussion is framed by an overview of the four patterns of gender bias. Gender bias presents itself in four distinct patterns, as described by the Director for Worklife Law, Joan Williams: women have to work twice as hard to get half as far; women must choose between being liked and being respected; mothers are assumed incompetent and uncommitted; gender bias turns women on each other. Panel 1 will cover women's experiences in the law. Our speakers have been in a variety of working environments including non-profits, the judiciary, academia, and private practice. Panel 2 will reflect on women's experiences in the tech world, featuring women entrepreneurs, investors, and IP attorneys. Lastly, Panel 3 will cover policy developments in the Bay Area and resources for women leaders. Our speakers are executive directors, founders, and coaches. 

For More Information, please contact:
Amanda Hamilton, BALIF member and HWLJ Executive Symposium Director, (415) 797-7090, hamiltam@uchastings.edu

Dustin Helmer and Midori Hirai, BALIF Student Representatives
San Francisco Downtown Offices for Rent

Small law firm seeks 1 or 2 tenants to sublease two light-filled private offices, with some open space flexibility in 1400 square foot suite in classic, famous building in the heart of downtown. Larger office is approx. 200sf and the smaller is about 120sf and full of light and open-able windows. Suite includes wireless/ethernet, phone system, receptionist, kitchenette, on-site conference room, lots of storage and friendly people. Depending upon how much space you need, rent would be 1250 to 3500K, with tons of flexibility on layout and price. Looking for people on the right side of what they are doing. Insurance defense lawyers would probably be happier someplace else.  


Craiglist listing includes photos:  http://sfbay.craigslist.org/sfc/off/4043479177.html 

Please email rrwp6-4043479177@hous.craigslist.org for more information.

San Francisco Office for Rent
Available now! Lovely 11 ft x 13 ft (143 sq. ft.) window office in Class A building. Large office can accommodate one or two people comfortably. Furniture available or you can bring your own. Other professionals in suite are lawyers and commercial real estate brokers.

- Newly remodeled 30th floor of prime location on Market between 1st and 2nd
- Suite views from Tiburon to the Bay Bridge to China Basin to Twin Peaks
- Office views of skyline and Twin Peaks, amazing sunset views
- Light filled
- 24 hour security/doorman in lobby
- 24 hour access to the office
- Shared conference room
- Kitchen with complimentary coffee, tea, water and soda
- Shared copier/fax/printer 
- Nortel phone system
- Internet -- wireless and LAN
- Shared reception/administrative services 


Please reply to Jill McCall at jmccall@cornerlaw.com or 415-974-6028.

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; $1,200 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 @ 415-861-9900


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
October 10- BALIF Happy Hour
October 26- Beautification of Glen Park Elementary 
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  

Meaghan Zore 

Nick Kacprowski
Amicus Chair   


Jennifer Orthwein
Communications Chair 

Leah Nutting  

Peter Catalanotti
Outreach Chair

Jessica Bogo
Social Action Chair 

Nick Clements  
Denise Bergin
Public Relations Chair

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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