Weekly Newsletter        |         August 12, 2014
In This Issue
Message from the BALIF Board 
 
Greetings! 


 

I hope you are enjoying your summer. It was great seeing such a big turnout at last week's happy hour!


 

BALIF's Amicus Committee and our pro bono counsel, Munger, Tolles & Olson have been busy this summer working on the marriage equality front. BALIF has recently filed amicus briefs for cases in the 6th, 7th, and 9th Circuits, and will submit a brief in the 5th Circuit next month, challenging state statutory and constitutional gay marriage bans in Michigan, Kentucky, Tennessee, Indiana, Wisconsin, Idaho, and Texas.


 

The amicus briefs argue that the marriage bans inflict tangible legal and economic harm on same-sex couples and their children without any legitimate governmental purpose. We are pleased that the decisions coming out of the 4th and 10th Circuits (where BALIF also submitted amicus briefs) have struck down as unconstitutional the marriage bans in Virginia, Utah, and Oklahoma, though it is still a waiting game pending the disposition of the petitions for writ of certiorari that were recently filed with the U.S. Supreme Court for each of the cases.


 

BALIF is proud to have coordinated with numerous other bar associations, LGBT organizations, and civil rights groups from around the country in submitting these briefs. If you would like to join BALIF's Amicus Committee, or wish to recommend a case for the submission of an amicus brief, please contact us at amicus@balif.org.


 

Leah Nutting

BALIF Board Amicus Chair


 

 

Minority Bar Coalition - 
Seeking New Directors!

 

Are you energetic, outgoing, organized, reliable, and creative-and do you want to make a difference in the legal profession?  Then put your talents to great use by becoming an MBC Director. And help take MBC to the next level!

 

Please apply by sending your current resume and an outline for two projects (e.g. networking mixer, MCLE, mentoring event, community service, etc.) that you would be willing to design, lead, and manage for MBC to ms@alchemyip.com by 5 pm on Friday, August 15, 2014.

Pride Law Fund
Upcoming Events

Celebrate the 35th Anniversary of Pride Law Fund with a variety of events in 2014!


August 17: Third annual Boat Cruise around the Bay
Details:  Float with PLF in support of LGBT fellowships!
  
 
Also keep an eye out for details about the first annual Brewery Tour this fall and the second annual Gay Ski Day this coming winter!
 
Donate to Pride Law Fund:  
Pride Law Fund
P.O. Box 2602
San Francisco, CA 94126-2602
 
Follow us on Facebook:
BALIF "Connections" Mentorship Program - Kickoff Happy Hour on September 4

When: Thursday, September 4, 2014

Where: The Holding Company, 2 Embarcadero Center, SF

Time:     6 pm - 8 pm

 

Please join BALIF for a happy hour to kick off BALIF's 2014-2015 "Connections" mentorship program! It's the perfect time for mentor/mentee pairs to meet each other in an informal setting. It's also a great opportunity to meet and mingle with LGBT attorneys and law students. BALIF's Young Lawyers & Law Students Committee and Social Committee will provide drinks and appetizers. All are welcome!

 

Mentor/mentee pairs are being assigned on a rolling basis in the next few weeks, and it's not too late to join the program as a mentor or mentee. For more information about the mentorship program, see the program guidelines(scroll down) and description on the BALIF website, or email Julie Wilensky, jwilensky@lewisfeinberg.com.


BALIF Files Amicus Curiae in the 
7th Circuit Court of Appeals

BALIF filed an amicus curiae brief last week in the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals in the consolidated cases Baskin v. Bogan, Fujii v. Commissioner of the Indiana State Dept. of Revenue, Lee v. Abbott, and Walker v. Wolf, supporting the right of same-sex couples in Indiana and Wisconsin to marry and to have out-of-state marriages recognized. The press release can be viewed here.

 

The brief argues that the marriage bans of Indiana and Wisconsin are unconstitutional and that the tangible legal and economic harm inflicted by the bans, including the denial of substantial benefits and the perpetuation of stigma and discrimination, cannot be remedied by the availability of domestic partnerships or civil unions.

 

"We applaud the decisions out of the 4th and 10th Circuits striking down similar bans," said Leah Nutting, BALIF's Amicus Committee chair, noting recent cases where BALIF has also submitted amicus briefs. "And we are heartened by the 7th Circuit's emergency order requiring Indiana to recognize the out-of-state marriage of a set of plaintiffs in this case, where one spouse is suffering from a terminal illness. The case illustrates the very real and irreparable harm suffered by same-sex couples while waiting for the marriage bans to work their way through the courts."

 

Fourteen other civil rights groups joined BALIF on the brief. The brief was filed with pro bono support from Jerome C. Roth and Nicole S. Phillis of the law firm of Munger, Tolles & Olsen.

 

Click here to read the amicus brief.

Latta v. Otter Amicus Brief Filed

BALIF filed an amicus curiae brief on Friday, July 25, with the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals in Latta v. Otter supporting the right of same-sex couples in Idaho to marry and same-sex couples who have been married out-of-state to have their marriages recognized in Idaho. The Court will hear Latta, on appeal from the District of Idaho, in September. Sevcik v. Sandoval, the Nevada marriage equality case on appeal from the District of Nevada, for which BALIF filed an amicus brief last October, is also scheduled to be heard by the court in September.

The brief argues that excluding same-sex couples from the institution of marriage causes tangible legal and economic harm and denies substantial benefits, including the federal benefits extended to same-sex marriages following the Supreme Court's decision in United States v. Windsor.

 

 "Some critical federal benefits are linked to the place of domicile, so even same-sex couples married legally in other states are prevented from enjoying these benefits if they currently reside in states, such as Idaho, that do not recognize same-sex marriage," said Leah Nutting, chair of BALIF's Amicus Committee. 

 

More than thirty other civil rights groups joined BALIF on the brief. The brief was filed with pro bono support from the law firm of Munger, Tolles & Olsen, with Jerome C. Roth and Amelia L. B. Sargent heading the effort.

2014-2015 BALIF "Connections" Mentorship Program

 

BALIF's Connections mentorship program is seeking mentors and mentees for 2014-2015. For more information, see the program guidelines and description on the BALIF website. If you are a law student, recent law school graduate, or newer attorney seeking a mentor, or if you are an experienced attorney interested in serving as a mentor, please contact Julie Wilensky, jwilensky@lewisfeinberg.com. Mentor/mentee pairs will be assigned on a rolling basis from July-September.

BALIFBuzz

Sharon Alkire

Congratulations to BALIF member, Sharon Alkire, who opened The Law Office of Sharon Alkire, a family law practice serving Alameda and Contra Costa Counties.  

Inaugural BiLaw Caucus - 
2014 LavLaw Conference

Bisexual and Bi-Allied BALIF Members,

We're holding the inaugural BiLaw caucus at Lavender Law in NYC this year and we'd love to see you there! See below for details and let me know if you have any questions!

 

BiLaw Caucus

3:45pm - 5:15pm on Friday, August 22

Room TBA

 

The inaugural BiLaw caucus will be held in New York as part of the National LGBT Bar Association's 2014 Lavender Law Conference and Career Fair.

 

BiLaw is a currently informal group of bisexual-identified and bi-allied attorneys, academics, and law students. This inaugural caucus is an opportunity to network with other bi-identified lawyers and discuss areas of the law relevant to bisexual people. All bi-identified and bi-allied attorneys are encouraged to attend.

The organizers will provide some structured discussion after a meet-and-greet.

 

If you would like to join the group in advance of the Caucus to join in our discussions, please click here: https://groups.google.com/forum/#!forum/bilaw

KABANC Annual Gala- Save the Date!
On Friday, September 26, KABANC will hold its annual gala at the Crowne Plaza in Palo Alto, 4290 El Camino Real, Palo Alto, CA 94306, to celebrate its 31st anniversary. Please save the date! Details are forthcoming, and we very much look forward to seeing you there!

As in years past, we will be awarding a scholarship to a law student for bar related studies. If you would like to support our Foundation and its efforts to provide scholarships to law students, please reach out to Liz Kim at Liz.Kim@hiscox.com

 
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 in the right hand column 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).
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?

Promotion?

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 JOBS from the menu on the left.

Upcoming Events
August 17 - PLF Sunset Bay Cruise
August 26 - BALIF Volunteer Day 
September 4 - "Connections" Mentorship Happy Hour
BALIF Board of Directors
Jamie Dupree & John Robert Unruh
  
Peter Catalanotti
Secretary

Mario Choi
Treasurer

Andrew Vu &
Lilah Sutphen 
Judiciary Co-Chairs

Nick Clements & 
Mario Choi
Gala Co-Chairs  

 

Meaghan Zore 

Leah Nutting
Amicus Chair     

Joseph Rocha & Midori Hirai
Katie Carlson
BALIF Administrator 
Our 2014 Sponsors
Senior Partner Level
 
 
Partner Level

A&P


Fenwick
HB Logo
Kilpatrick

Mofo
Sedgwick2
Seyfarth


Wilson

Advocate Level

 

A.L. Nella & Company, CPAs 

AT&T 

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 Coie 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 

JAMS 

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 
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P.O. Box 193383
San Francisco, CA 94119

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