Weekly Newsletter        |        September 29, 2015
In This Issue
Message from the BALIF Board 

BALIF and other members of the California LGBT Bar Coalition recently released a groundbreaking report on the status of LGBT presence in the California state and federal judiciary.  The report explores why a diverse judiciary requires more LGBT judges, analyzes causes of the lack of diversity, and identifies remedies to improve diversity. Click here for a copy of the report.

Among the key findings in this first in the nation survey was that 45 of California's 58 counties do not have any LGBT judges.  In other words, the LGBT community is not represented in the judiciary in 78% of the counties in California.

To help remedy this lack of diversity, the BALIF Judiciary Committee is actively encouraging BALIF members to consider applying for or running for the bench as part of our Pipeline program.  We have established an LGBT Judges Council and an LGBT Senior Attorneys Council to provide advice and mentorship to junior and mid-level attorneys who are considering a judicial career.

If you are a BALIF member who would like to be part of our Pipeline program, please email me at judiciary@balif.org

And, we'll see this Sunday at the Castro Street Fair! Sign up to volunteer with BALIF here. 

Denise Bergin
BALIF Board Judiciary Chair

BALIF October Happy Hour
We're doing things a little differently in October!

Two of our members, Boone Callaway & David Helbraun graciously agreed to let us host a more domestic happy hour at their home, in the beautiful Duboce Triangle area. If you are interested in attending, please RSVP and save the date for Thursday, October 8th, 2015.

Please join BALIF for our October Happy Hour at the home of BALIF Members!

Thursday, October 8th, 2015

Boone Callaway & David Helbraun
117 Castro Street (near 14th Street)
San Francisco, CA 94114

BALIF Social Action Committee 
Call for Volunteers!!!!
Sunday, October 4, 2015
Come out and Volunteer at Castro Street Fair
Shift 1: 10am - 2pm
Shift 2: 1:30pm - 5:30pm

Volunteer for one or both shifts collecting donations at the gates.  All donations and proceeds go directly to charitable causes important to the Castro community.  This is a family-friendly event, so feel free to bring friends, coworkers, classmates, children, significant others, and pets! 

Castro Street Fair takes place on Castro Street between 16th and 19th Street from 11am - 6pm.  For information about Castro Street Fair, please see: http://www.castrostreetfair.org/

Light refreshments will be provided for the duration of both shifts.

The first 15 people who sign up to volunteer will receive a Starbucks gift card on the day of the fair!  In order to qualify, you must be an active member of BALIF.  If you are interested in volunteering, please send an email with your name and preferred shift time.    

For questions and/or interest in volunteering, please email socialaction@balif.org.

SPARK! Transgender Law Center's
13th Anniversary Celebration

Congratulations to Herman Hoying, a BALIF member, Attorney at Morgan, Lewis & Bockius, and passionate advocate on behalf of incarcerated transgender people, for earning Transgender Law Center's Ally Award. On October 1st Herman, along with an inspiring cohort of awardees, will be honored at SPARK! - Transgender Law Center's 13th Anniversary Celebration, taking place at Sir Francis Drake, a Kimpton Hotel in downtown San Francisco. The event will be emceed by Ian Harvie, comedian and co-star of the award winning series Transparent. If you were one of the 400+ people who attended last year, you know this is a party to NOT miss.

Check out this year's fantastic cohort of inspiring honorees, join the host committee, buy tickets or sponsor the event. - http://transgenderlawcenter.org/spark

ALRP Free 2015 MCLE Trainings

Separating with Heart and Smarts: Consensual Dispute Resolution in LGBTQ Separation and Divorce
Transferring Assets at Death: Do You Really Need Probate?
  • Tuesday, October 20, 5:30-7:00pm
  • Presented by Sandra Price, Esq. - Partner at Sideman & Bancroft LLP
  • 1.5 General CLE Credits
Social Security & Overpayments
  • Thursday, October 22, 5:30-7:00pm
  • Presented by Amy Orgain, Esq - Staff Attorney at Homeless Action Center
  • 1.5 General CLE Credits
Asylum Law for LGBT and Gang-Based Claims
  • Wednesday, November 4, 5:30-7:00pm
  • Presented by Christine Lin, Esq. - UC Hastings Center for Gender & Refugee Studies
  • 1.5 General CLE Credits
Wage & Hour Claims for People Living w/ HIV - Sponsored by the State Bar's Labor & Employment Law Section
All Classes take place at:
Bar Association of San Francisco
301 Battery Street, 3rd Floor, Board Room
San Francisco, CA 94111
Call: 415-701-1200 ext. 303 
IABA- NC Annual Gala
Iranian American Bar Association 
Northern California Chapter's 
8th Annual Gala
Date: October 8, 2015
Location: Fairmont Hotel, 950 Mason Street, SF

From the Heart 
32nd Annual Reception & Auction
On Wednesday, October 14, 2015,  the AIDS Legal Referral Panel of the San Francisco Bay Area (ALRP) will commemorate 32 years of serving the legal needs of people living with HIV/AIDS throughout the San Francisco Bay Area by hosting its ALRP From the Heart 32nd Annual Reception & Auction. The Reception, ALRP's biggest fundraising event of the year, will feature special guest host San Francisco Supervisor David Campos. This year's Reception is expected to draw more than 250 attendees from the legal and HIV/AIDS communities.

Individual tickets for the Reception start at $100.  For more details or for tickets, please visit www.alrp.org or contact Jim McBride, Director of Development at 415/701-1200 ext. 301, or by email at jim@alrp.org.

SFTLA Fellowship Program

BALIF Partner Exchange Luncheon

When: Thursday, October 22, 2015; Thursday, November 19, 2015; Tuesday, December 15, 2015; Thursday, January 21, 2016  

Time: 12:30pm to 2:00pm
Where: San Francisco City Club (155 Sansome, 10th Floor)
What: Gourmet buffet lunch with other partners and firm owners
Cost: $40 payable by cash or check only
BALIF has created the BALIF Partner Exchange to bring together our members that are looking to network and exchange business and ideas.  This event is exclusively for BALIF members who are partners or owners of their firm with 7 years or more of experience. 

Space is limited so only the first 11 to RSVP to jdupree@fddcm.com may attend. 

Save the Date for BALIF's Social Action Fundraiser
Save the Date for BALIF's Social Action Fundraiser
On Thursday, October 29, 2015
Lookout Bar (3600 16th St. in SF)
6pm - 9pm

This event will be a Fundraiser with proceeds going to El/La Para Translatinas.  In addition to fundraising, there will also be food, drinks, and of course, fun!
Details to Follow...
LGBT Asian / South Asian Attorney Networking Reception
Thursday, Oct 29, 2015
6:00 - 8:00 PM
Davis Wright Tremaine LLP
505 Montgomery Street, Suite 800 | San Francisco, CA 94111
Thanks go out to SABA-NC and Vid Prabhakaran for helping us secure the host.
BALIF's Connections
 Mentorship Program
It's that time of the year again! BALIF's Connections mentorship program is seeking mentors and mentees for 2015-2016. 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 the Young Lawyers and Students Programs Committee, younglawyers@balif.org. Mentor/mentee pairs will be assigned on a rolling basis from July-September.
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.


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 JOBS from the menu on the left.

October 4 - Volunteer at the Castro Street Fair
October 8 - BALIF October Happy Hour
October 29 - BALIF's Social Action Fundraiser
November 19 - BALIF Resume Review/ Mock Interview Event
December 9 - BALIF Holiday Party- Save the Date!
Our 2015 Sponsors
Partner Level
Counsel Level


HB Logo



Advocate Level


A.L. Nella & Company, CPAs 


Gibson Dunn & Crutcher  

Jones Day 

Latham & Watkins LLP 

Morgen Lewis & Bockius LLP 

MUFG Union Bank

O'Melveny & Meyers LLP 

Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP 

Pacific Gas & Electric

Perkins Coie LLP 

Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP 

Sanford Heisler Kimpel, LLP 

Sheppard Mullin Richter & Hampton 

Shook Hardy & Bacon LLP 


Benefactor Level


Callaway & Wolf

Carroll, Burdick & McDonough LLP

Clarence, Dyer & Cohen LLP / Swanson & McNamara LLP 

Cooley LLP 

Cotchett, Pitre & McCarthy, LLP

Farella Braun + Martel LLP 

Futterman Dupree Dodd Croley Maier LLP 

Golden Gate University, School of Law 

Jackson Lewis LLP 


Lewis, Feinberg, Lee & Jackson, P.C. 

Littler Mendelson P.C. 

Lubin Olson & Niewiadomski LLP

Manning & Kass, Ellrod, Ramirez, Trester LLP 

Munger, Tolles & Olson LLP 

Novak Druce Connolly Bove + Quigg LLP

Paul Hastings LLP 

Pritzker Levine LLP

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  


Individual Sponsors


Dave Arellano, Altep, Inc.   

Michael Colantuono, Colantuono Highsmith & Whatley, PC 

David Fermino, Sideman & Bancroft LLP 

David M. Helbraun, Helbraun Law Firm 

Frederick Hertz, Law and Mediation Office of Frederick Hertz

John Hill, Law Offices of John E. Hill, P.C.

Hon. Stuart Hing & Rhoda Hing, Alameda County Superior Court

James Kealohi, Pathways Personnel

David Monroe, Able & Monroe P.C.

Todd Norris, Bullivant Houser Bailey 

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

Cheryl Sena, Sena Family Law 

Hon. James L. Warren (Ret.), JAMS  

BALIF Board of Directors
Jessica Bogo & John Robert Unruh
Peter Catalanotti

Mario Choi

Denise Bergin 
Judiciary Chair

Nick Clements & 
David Sims
Gala Co-Chairs  


Meaghan Zore 

Julie Wilensky
Amicus Chair     

Jennifer Orthwein
Communications Chair 

Jamie Dupree
Programs Chair

Felicia Medina & Shauna Madison
Young Lawyers & Law Students Co-Chairs  

Brandon Lawrence & Daniel Faessler
Social Action Co-Chairs 

Dmitri Pikman
Lindsey Rosellini
Community Ambassador Chair  

Joseph Deignan, Alex Lemberg & Sam Potts
Katie Carlson
BALIF Administrator 
Follow BALIF


BALIF | | info@balif.org | http://www.balif.org
P.O. Box 193383
San Francisco, CA 94119