Weekly Newsletter        |         April 15, 2014
In This Issue
Message from the BALIF Board 
It's time to mix it up a little! It was great to see everyone who came out to the BALIF mixer with CAOC & the Minority Bar Coalition this past Thursday, and hopefully everyone is geared up for our discussion about the LGBT legal and political developments in Israel on April 17th and our 'Give 'em L!!' LGBT Ladies Salon & Talk-Show: Judge's Edition coming up on May 1st!

As we move towards the end of our year, I hope that everyone does their due diligence and votes in our BALIF elections for next year's Board of Directors! Your vote is your voice, and your voice counts, whether it's online or at the Sausage Factory on April 24th. We have a great group of dedicated people running for next year's Board, so go vote!    

Midori Hirai

BALIF Board Law Student Representative



Vote in the 2014 Elections for BALIF's Board of Directors!


It's election time! We have a fabulous and diverse group of candidates seeking election or re-election to the BALIF Board of Directors this year.


BALIF's bylaws require gender parity on the Board, with equal numbers of positions allocated to Directors who identify as male or female, and additional positions allocated to those who identify as gender non-conforming. This year, BALIF members will elect four male Directors, three female Directors, and two law student Directors (one male and one female). No one has elected to run in a gender non-conforming category.


This year's candidates are:

Denise Bergin

Felicia Medina

Meaghan Zore

Pete Catalanotti

Nick Clements

Dustin Helmer

Brandon Lawrence

Mike Riess

Dmitri Pikman


Law student candidates:

Midori Hirai

Mona Hosseiny

Joseph Rocha

Dalton Rodriguez


Read their candidate statements here. Elections will be online from April 10 to 5:00 p.m. on April 24, and ballots will be sent by email to all current BALIF members. If you have not received your ballot yet, please contact balif@balif.org.


You can also vote in person at the BALIF Annual Meeting and Election Happy Hour on Thursday, April 24 at the Sausage Factory from 6 - 8:30 p.m. The in-person voting will end at 7 p.m., and election results will be announced at the end of the evening..


Good luck to all the candidates, and see you on April 24!





May 1, 2014, 6-8pm


Back by popular demand: BALIF's second LGBT Ladies Salon & Talk-Show!


You do not want to miss this -- here come the judges! Join us for a spectacular evening with trailblazing judges sharing their experiences and perspectives from the bench, and touching upon issues concerning women, LGBT, and women of color in the legal profession and judiciary. This fun and informative talk-show styled discussion will be followed by a networking reception to mingle with fellow LGBT attorneys and law students. Register early as space is limited!


Featured speakers:



San Francisco Superior Court



San Francisco Superior Court



Alameda County Superior Court


Moderated by LEAH NUTTING,BALIF Programs Committee Chair



6:00 - 8:00 pm, Thursday, May 1, 2014


Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman

Four Embarcadero Center, 22nd Floor, San Francisco, CA 94105



6:00 - 6:30: Welcome and Meet & Greet

6:30 - 7:30: Talk Show and Q&A

7:30 - 8:00: Reception


RSVP here!


LGBT Legal & 
Political Developments in Israel
The legal and political landscape for LGBT residents of Israel is changing rapidly, with emerging issues involving surrogacy for gay male couples, co-parenting arrangements, accommodation for transgender people, and the lack of civil marriage. Elinor Sidi is the director of Jerusalem Open House, a central location for social support, political activism and legal advocacy for the LGBT community. Sidi has also been involved in numerous social and political engagements regarding the role of Orthodox religion in LGBT affairs, and the concerns of gay Palestinians living in Israel. Come hear Sidi discuss the recent legal and political developments that affect the gay community in Israel. Thursday, April 17, 2014, 4:30 p.m. at the Bar Association of San Francisco, 301 Battery Street, San Francisco.   


This event is co-sponsored with the Bar Association of San Francisco's LGBT Equality Committee & International Human Rights Committee.

Attendees must RSVP by emailing Fred@Frederickhertz.com
ALRP Free Spring 2014 MCLE Trainings


Medical Marijuana Law and HIV

  • Wednesday, April 30, 5:30-7:00pm
  • Presented by Joseph Elford, Esq.
  • Bar Association of San Francisco, 301 Battery Street, 3rd Floor, Board Room, San Francisco, CA 94111
  • 1.5 General CLE Credits

Social Security and Overpayments

  • Tuesday, May 6, 5:30-7:00pm
  • Presented by Amy Orgain, Esq., and John Fasesky,Esq., Staff Attorneys at ALRP
  • Bar Association of San Francisco, 301 Battery Street, 3rd Floor, Board Room, San Francisco, CA 94111
  • 1.5 General CLE Credits


  • Tuesday, May 8, 5:30-7:00pm
  • Presented by Lisa Sitkin, Esq., Managing Attorney at Housing and Economic Rights Advocate
  • Bar Association of San Francisco, 301 Battery Street, 3rd Floor, Board Room, San Francisco, CA 94111
  • 1.5 General CLE Credits

The Nuts and Bolts of Handling Motor Vehicle Accident Cases

  • Tuesday, May 13, 5:30-7:00pm
  • Presented by Michelle Mandel, Esq., Law Offices of Michael and Michelle Mandel
  • Bar Association of San Francisco, 301 Battery Street, 3rd Floor, Board Room, San Francisco, CA 94111
  • 1.5 General CLE Credits

Bankruptcy Law

  • Wednesday, May 28, 5:30-7:00pm
  • Presented by Martha Simon, Esq. and Pat McMahon, Esq.
  • Bar Association of San Francisco, 301 Battery Street, 3rd Floor, Board Room, San Francisco, CA 94111
  • 1.5 General CLE Credits

Disability Discrimination in the Workplace

  • Thursday, June 5, 5:30-7:00pm
  • Presented by Noah Lebowitz, Esq.
  • Bar Association of San Francisco, 301 Battery Street, 3rd Floor, Board Room, San Francisco, CA 94111
  • 1.5 General CLE Credits

$60k Dilemma: Special Needs Trusts or Spend Downs?

  • Tuesday, June 10, 5:30-7:00pm
  • Presented by Steve Dane
  • Bar Association of San Francisco, 301 Battery Street, 3rd Floor, Board Room, San Francisco, CA 94111
  • 1.5 General CLE Credits


Email: mcle@alrp.org or

Call: 415-701-1200 ext. 303

Legal Issues Regarding
Transgender Children- MCLE 4/22

Alameda County Family Law Association presents Introduction to Legal (and Other) Issues Relating to Transgender Children

Presented by Ilona Turner, Esq.


Attorney Ilona Turner has been the Legal Director at Transgender Law Center since January 2012.  Prior to that time, she was a staff attorney at the National Center for Lesbian Rights (NCLR), where her work frequently focused on issues affecting transgender clients, and lobbyist for Equality California, where she helped to shepherd groundbreaking legislation that prohibited housing and employment discrimination against transgender people in California.


Tuesday April 22, 2014

Alameda Superior Court, Department 5

1225 Fallon Street, Oakland, CA

12:15 pm to 1:15 pm

MCLE credit in Elimination of Bias will be provided


Please contact Justyn Lezin, Esq. at justyn@cabellolezin.com with questions.
BALIF / SF La Raza Summer Fellowship
BALIF / SF La Raza $5000 Summer Fellowship

AABA Law Student Summer Grant
Deadline- April  25, 2014

The Asian American Bar Association of the Greater Bay Area (AABA)  is offering one or more grants to help fund qualified summer law clerk(s) this summer to work on legal projects that provide free legal services to the Asian American community.


Click here for full details.

THE DEADLINE TO SUBMIT APPLICATIONS IS APRIL 25, 2014. The selection committee will then convene and interview the top candidates shortly after the submission deadline. AABA will award the summer grant(s) at AABA's Annual Summer Law Clerk Reception (Date TBD). Please e-mail your application to AABASummerGrant@gmail.com.
Lambda Legal Soiree

Join Lambda Legal for a fun networking evening in support of Lambda's impact litigation, public policy and education work. Help Lambda protect and expand the rights of LGBT people and people with HIV - marriage equality, youth and senior issues, health care, employment, housing, benefits and beyond. From Alaska to Alabama. Lambda has been there fighting for the last 41 years.


Friday, April 25, 2014

Cocktails 6-7:30

Dinner and Program 7-9:00

Soiree Lounge 9-11:00 with DJ Christopher B and Velocity Circus


For more about the event or if interested in participating as an event sponsor, please contact Jennifer Bing at jennifer@bing-sf.com or call (415) 800-8127.


Volunteers Needed for Citizenship Workshop on 4/26/2014

The New Americans Campaign project is holding a Citizenship Workshop on Saturday, April 26, 2014. The Citizenship Workshop will be at San Jose City College, Tech Building (corner of S. Bascom and Moorpark Ave.), 600 South Bascom Ave., San Jose, CA 95128 from 9 AM to 4 PM.  During the workshop, we will assist lawful permanent residents with the naturalization process. If you are interested in volunteering, please do the following: (1) Sign up by registering at http://goo.gl/7s51So; and (2) Attend one of four volunteer trainings (April 7, 14, 19, or 22) at the Asian Law Alliance office, 991 W. Hedding Street, Suite 202, San Jose, CA 95126. For any questions, please contact Volunteer Coordinator Judy Hinh at ALAVolunteerCoordinator@gmail.com.
Pride Law Fund
Upcoming Events
Celebrate the 35th Anniversary with Pride Law Fund in 2014.  

Save the date for our third annual Boat Cruise around the Bay on May 31, 2014 and keep an eye out for details about the first annual Pride Law Fund Wine Bus Adventure in Napa in the fall. 

You can donate on our website  at
http://www.pridelawfund.org/donate.php or send checks to Pride Law Fund, P.O. Box 2602, San Francisco, CA 94126-2602)
Seeking Women & Minority Arbitrators 
for Kaiser Permanente Panel


The Office of the Independent Administrator (OIA) is seeking qualified individuals who want to join its pool of possible arbitrators. There is no fee to do so and the OIA receives no money from the neutral arbitrators.


The OIA administers the arbitration system between Kaiser Permanente Health Plan, Inc., and its six million members in California. We administer about 650 cases a year and have approximately 275 neutral arbitrators on the panel. The panels are divided by region; Northern California, Southern California, and San Diego. The parties select their neutral arbitrator by striking and ranking 12 randomly generated names supplied by the OIA, or by jointly selecting any neutral arbitrator upon whom they can agree.   Neutrals set their own fees and are paid by the parties.


Among other requirements, neutral arbitrators must either be lawyers with either ten years of substantial litigation and/or arbitration experience; retired state or federal judges; or lawyers with specifically designed arbitration training.   Medical malpractice experience is not required. You must agree to follow the OIA Rules and ensure that the deadlines set forth in the Rules are met.


If interested, please go to the OIA at www.oia-kaiserarb.com. You may complete the application on line. You may also obtain copies by emailing oia@oia-kaiserarb.com or by calling 213-637-9847. The qualifications and a copy of the application are attached.

2014 Lavender Law Conference & 
Career Fair Student Awards

The National LGBT Bar Association is now accepting submissions for the Student Leadership Award, the Michael Greenberg Writing Competition and the International Association of LGBT Judges Writing Competition


Student Leadership Award

The National LGBT Bar Association's Student Leadership Award is the organization's highest honor for law students. The award will recognize a law student who has demonstrated leadership within their school and in the surrounding community, especially in the area of LGBT equality.


Michael Greenberg Student Writing Competition

Established in memory of Michael Greenberg, a former National LGBT Bar Association board member and Philadelphia attorney who died in 1996 from complications with AIDS, this exciting competition is dedicated to encouraging and recognizing outstanding law student scholarship on the legal issues affecting lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) persons.


International Association of LGBT Judges Student Writing Competition

The International Association of LGBT Judges sponsors a writing competition for all law students attending the 2014 Lavender Law Conference & Career Fair. This is an exciting opportunity for law students who wish to pursue their career as a member of the United States judiciary.



All three student awards will follow the same final submission date of Friday, May 16, 2014 at 5:00pm ET. Late entries will not be considered. Students are able to enter all competitions, but only if they turn in different works for each submission.

Click here for full competition details. Should you have any questions, please send them to info@LGBTbar.org.

ACBA - Judicial Mentoring Project
ACBA - Judicial Mentoring Project:  Thinking about applying for a judicial appointment. Diverse applicants needed.  Rolling application process through July 2014.  Please consider applying.   For more information: https://www.acbanet.org/Committees/EastBayDiversityBarCoalition.aspx
State Bar of California-
2015 JNE Commission
State Bar of California - 2015 JNE Commission:  Diverse applicants/commissioners needed.  Deadline to apply is June 2, 2014.  15 openings anticipated.  Please consider applying.   For more information:  http://cc.calbar.ca.gov/CommitteesCommissions/OtherEntityAppointments/JudicialNomineesEvaluation.aspx
Follow BALIF on Twitter!


BALIF's twitter feed is up and running.  Follow us to see BALIF news, event info, #ThrowbackThursday posts, and more.  Just click the Twitter button at the bottom of the newsletter or here.


Uber Discount for BALIF Members
Request a ride with the push of a button! Uber is offering new users $20 off your first ride. Text BALIF to 827-222. You can also sign up at uber.com/go/BALIF and download the app for Android, Blackberry, or iPhone. Then sit back and enjoy the magic of Uber, everyone's private driver. (Valid for new users only, TAXI excluded).
Are you an expert in your field? Get your name in BALIF's new Expert Directory and get quoted!


BALIF members are experts in almost every legal specialization from antitrust to family law and we want to leverage our extensive media contacts list to raise the profiles of our experts. When a journalist needs an expert on securities law, prison law, employment law, or whatever your specialization is, she'll call you for that quote. 


If you want to be included in the BALIF Expert Directory,

please send a short email with the following to PR@balif.org:


Name, title and place of business


Fields and/or sub-fields you are an expert in (E.g., Employment and ERISA)


No more than 500 words on what makes you an expert: specific work experience, length of experience, published articles or books, and speaking appearances related to your topic.

Please reply only if you can truly be considered an expert in your field; general guidelines are at least 7-10 years of practice and/or additional qualifications that separate you from other attorneys.

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!


Meaghan Zore 

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
April 17- LGBT Legal & Political Developments in Israel
April 24- BALIF Board Election Night
May 1- Give 'em L! LGBT Ladies Salon & Talk Show 
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
Dustin Helmer & Midori Hirai
Katie Carlson
BALIF Administrator
Our 2014 Sponsors
Senior Partner Level
Partner Level


HB Logo



Advocate Level


A.L. Nella & Company, CPAs 


Bingham McCutchen  

Farella Braun + Martel LLP 

Jones Day 

Mintz, Levin, Cohn, Ferris, Glovsky and Popeo, P.C. 

Nixon Peabody LLP 

O'Melveny & Meyers LLP 

Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP 

Perkins Cole LLP 

Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP 

Santa Clara University School of Law 

Sheppard Mullin Richter & Hampton 

Shook Hardy & Bacon LLP 


Benefactor Level


Clarence, Dyer & Cohen LLP / Swanson & McNamara LLP 

Cooley Godward Kronish LLP 

FTI Consulting 

Futterman Dupree Dodd Croley Maier LLP 

Gibson Dunn & Crutcher 

Golden Gate University 

HaleyNelson & Heilbrun LLP 

Heath Newton LLP 

HendricksMurry, P.C. 

Jackson Lewis LLP 


Latham & Watkins LLP 

Lewis, Feinberg, Lee, Renaker & Jackson, P.C. 

Lieff Cabraser Heimann & Bernstein, LLP 

Littler Mendelson 

Munger, Tolles & Olson LLP 

Paul Hastings LLP 

Pritzker Law 

Reed Smith LLP 

Roeca Hass Hager LLP 

San Francisco City Attorney's Office

San Francisco District Attorney's Office 

Schiff Hardin LLP 

Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP 

Special Counsel 

Stein & Lubin LLP 


Individual Sponsors


Altep, Inc.  

Todd Norris, Bullivant Houser Bailey 

Michael Colantuono, Colantuono & Levin, P.C. 

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

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

 Cheryl Sena, Sena Family Law 

Judge Vaughn Walker ADR/Law Office Vaughn R Walker 

Hon. James L. Warren (Ret.), JAMS  

Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale and Dorr LLP 
Follow BALIF


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P.O. Box 193383
San Francisco, CA 94119

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