The MNAPABA Women's Committee hosted a brunch and candid conversation at Loan Huynh's home in Golden Valley. Special thanks to Loan Huynh and Cynthia Lee for organizing!
With the local affinity bars, MNAPABA brought a broad cross-section of over 50 employers together with 80+ law students to answer questions and give advice. Many conversations carried on well past the official closing time.
Special thanks to Dorsey & Whitney for generously sponsoring and hosting, as well as our partner affinity bars.
Minnesota Association of Black Lawyers | Minnesota Hispanic Bar Association |Minnesota Lavender Bar Association| Minnesota Women Lawyers
MNAPABA joins the National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA) in condemning the revised executive order signed by President Trump stopping refugee admission and continuing a Muslim Ban.
“As Asian Pacific Minnesotans, many of us know well the burdens of immigration and life as refugees,” said MNAPABA President Ben Kwan. “We also know first-hand that the welcoming American spirit of diversity and inclusion is a set of values many of us count as the foundation for our success and the solidarity we feel with our new neighbors. In joining NAPABA in condemning the President’s latest Executive Order, we take a stand against divisive policies that do more to divide us than keep us safe.”
“The executive order is a continuation of the same policy that discriminates against and devalues refugees and members of the Muslim community,” said NAPABA President Cyndie Chang. “We must refuse to act out of fear and intolerance. We must not return to the dark chapters of our history where we judged people by the color of their skin, how they prayed, or where their family came from. We must stand up for our values of equity, justice, and opportunity.”
See below for NAPABA's full statement, which we have decided to support.
NAPABA and SABA Condemn the President’s Second Attempt
to Exclude Refugees and Implement a Muslim Ban
WASHINGTON — The National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA) and the South Asian Bar Association of North America (SABA) condemn President Trump’s new executive order that includes many of the discriminatory provisions of his earlier order, which also sought to stop refugees from entering the United States and halt immigration from several Muslim-majority countries. These orders, which are based on the misguided idea that certain religious and ethnic populations are more prone to violence, are incompatible with American values, and will not make our communities safer or our nation stronger. Notably, the order, continues to 1) suspend refugee admission for 120 days, 2) reduce and limit the number of refugee admissions, and 3) targets individuals from six Muslim-majority countries, suspending entry of individuals for 90 days, with some exceptions.
"The President's Executive Action does nothing more than advance an anti-Muslim agenda espoused during the campaign under the guise of National Security,” said SABA President Vichal Kumar. “A refugee, by definition, is a person who has been forced to leave their country in order to escape war, persecution, or natural disaster. The supposed justification for this Executive Action punishes this person for the very same war and persecution that is causing them to leave in the first place."
The new executive order clarifies it is not applicable to certain individuals, such as valid visa holders whose documents were issued on or before Jan. 27, 2017, lawful permanent residents, and dual-national passport holders. The order will take effect on March 16, 2017.
The executive order continues to require regular reports be published on suspected criminal activity committed by foreign nationals and refugees. When combined with reporting requirements under other immigration related executive orders, these reports will generate greater mistrust and fear of immigrant communities.
Both NAPABA and SABA joined litigation against the executive order enacted on Jan. 27, 2017. Our members have been at the airports assisting families, in the field educating communities about their rights, and in the courts supporting local and national pro bono efforts. Read our original statementhere.
NAPABA and SABA join our fellow attorneys, the Asian Pacific American community, and Americans of all backgrounds in reiterating our commitment to diversity and justice. We remain committed to ensuring that all are free from discrimination and racial and religious profiling.
For more information, contact:
NAPABA is the national association of Asian Pacific American attorneys, judges, law professors, and law students. NAPABA represents the interests of over 50,000 attorneys and over 75 national, state, and local bar associations. Its members include solo practitioners, large firm lawyers, corporate counsel, legal services and non-profit attorneys, and lawyers serving at all levels of government. NAPABA engages in legislative and policy advocacy, promotes APA political leadership and political appointments, and builds coalitions within the legal profession and the community at large. NAPABA also serves as a resource for government agencies, members of Congress, and public service organizations about APAs in the legal profession, civil rights, and diversity in the courts.
SABA North America (formerly NASABA/North American South Asian Bar Association) is a voluntary bar organization and serves as an umbrella organization to 26 chapters in the United States and Canada. SABA North America is a recognized forum for professional growth and advancement for South Asian attorneys in North America and seeks to protect the rights and liberties of the South Asian community across the continent. Learn more at www.sabanorthamerica.com.
National Asian Pacific American Bar Association | 1612 K St. NW, Suite 510 | Washington, D.C. 20006 | www.napaba.org
Link to statement on NAPABA website
On February 22, 24 lawyers and 8 law student volunteers gathered at the Hmong American Partnership in East St. Paul to serve the community at a Legal Advice Day. MNAPABA Outreach Committee member Summra Shariff organized the event in partnership with the Volunteer Lawyers Network, Hmong American Bar Association and the Hmong American Partnership. A diverse group of clients received help on a variety of legal issues, including immigration, criminal, housing, civil, and family law matters. At the clinic, clients received help drafting pleadings, immigration forms, and accessing other legal resources. In addition, interpreters were on hand to makes sure all clients understood the advice provided.
Prior to the Legal Advice Day, all volunteers participated in a training at Robins Kaplan LLP. Moving forward, we hope to establish a regular monthly clinic to provide much needed legal services in east St. Paul, an area where there are few affordable legal resources and many people who need help.
MNAPABA member Victor Chan advises a client at the Legal Advice Day on February 22, 2017
Thank you to all who attended the Annual Winter Retreat. Special thanks to Judge Peter Reyes for leading a career workshop and his continued support of MNAPABA.
Below are some photos of the event courtesy of Yi-Chao Chang.
February may be the shortest month measured in days--but let it be known that this month comes to a close having seen active participation from all corners of our Minnesota Asian Pacific American Bar Association membership.
From Lunar New Year dim sum to our annual Winter Retreat to serving a couple dozen clients in need at our Legal Advice Day in St. Paul, MNAPABA members and friends came out in force to celebrate our community and serve.
February was also a month the APA community took stock of of where we've been and how far we still have to go (and help others go, frankly). On February 19, many of us took pause to note the 75th anniversary of the signing of Executive Order 9066 by President Franklin D. Roosevelt. As we all know, the order authorized the evacuation of all persons deemed a purported "threat" to national security from the West Coast to relocation centers further inland. In the next 6 months, over 100,000 men, women, and children of Japanese ancestry were moved to assembly centers. They were then evacuated to and confined in isolated, fenced, and guarded relocation centers, known as internment camps. Fox 9 did a story on the commemoration of the historic anniversary at the Minnesota History Center that aired on the 19th and featured survivors of the incarceration camps (full disclosure, that's my fiancé Ted Haller, journalist/lawyer reporting--let's say I'm glad I talked this up a lot at the dinner table).
There's a recap of our February events below, but before we dwell too much on the past, I'd like to highlight another action-packed month ahead that I hope each and everyone of you will join us for.
Judges & Craft Beer - A New Twist on Our Annual Judges Reception (Next Tuesday!)
The number eight is really great, isn't it? If you're familiar with Chinese customs--you know the number eight carries a lot of lucky significance. Eight also happens to be the number of active and senior MNAPABA Asian Pacific American judges we can now celebrate in the State of Minnesota. Eight! We're only about half way to full demographic representation, but we're making progress as an APA community.
Please join MNAPABA on Tuesday, March 7, 2017 at 5:30 p.m. to celebrate our APA state and federal judicial officers at this year's annual Judges Reception. This year, our "host" judge is the Hon. Tony Atwal, Ramsey County District Judge. Gov. Mark Dayton appointed Judge Atwal to the bench last May.
Instead of congregating in chambers this year, we are taking the Judges' Reception out into the community. Next Tuesday, join us at the Boom Island Brewing Company in Northeast Minneapolis where we'll also get to celebrate an APA-owned business. The Belgian-styled brewery is co-owend by Qiuxia Welch, who supervises the business and marketing side of things along with her brewer husband, Kevin. Even Qiuxia’s parents played a critical role in the business, leaving their home in Chengdu, China, to help construct the brewery and fill in as needed during the company's early years. Both Qiuxia and Judge Atwal will both have remarks for us about their journeys to places few APAs have gone before.
Don't forget to RSVP so we have enough provisions--light appetizers provided by MNAPABA.
Affinity Bar Job Symposium: This Summer & Beyond
If you've ever talked to longtime friend and sponsor of MNAPABA, Jerry Blackwell, about the work we do in the diversity bar you've probably heard him talk about B-HAGs -- Big, Hairy, Audacious Goals.
Five affinity bars got together after the first of the year and came up with a BHAG (bee-HAG) to serve our Twin Cities law students -- the Affinity Bar Jobs Symposium: This Summer & Beyond on March 21, 2017 at Dorsey & Whitney.
Registration is nearly full--so employers and students who want to participate should register as soon as possible.
We set out to create an event that would answer student questions at a critical time before spring finals and with about two months until summer--we want to bring our diverse law students into one room and demystify the legal hiring process across the profession and for students at each level. The event will include a one-hour panel/Q&A with attorneys with job-seeking tips from all corners of the profession followed by an "organized but informal" networking session where legal employers will assume mapped-out stations in the room and students will get the opportunity to traverse the space. They'll be encouraged to work the room and learn about new areas of practice and meet hiring reps and lawyers from areas where they know they have interest.
I'm particularly excited about this event and thankful for our very own Aalok Sharma, VP of Membership, for taking the lead on planning this B-HAG along with representatives from MABL, MHBA, MLBA, and MWL. Thanks, Aalok, and thanks to Dorsey & Whitney for hosting what looks to be a full-house on the 21st!
Our Second (of Many More to Come) Legal Advice Day is a Huge Success
Last Wednesday, more than two dozen lawyers and law student intake volunteers gathered at the Hmong American Partnership on Arcade Street in St. Paul to serve the community in our second-ever MNAPABA/HABA/VLN Legal Advice Day.
All together, we served some 29 clients on issues including immigration, criminal, housing, civil, and family law matters. (Right: MNAPABA member Victor Chan advises a client at the Legal Advice Day on February 22, 2017)
It was quite something to hear some of our clients' stories and address their needs--from the dire to just a basic desire to understand their legal rights and obligations. It was also amazing to see the diversity of participation from among our membership and friends--from the newest law students to the general counsel of a Fortune 100 company, it wasn't about us. Our clients looked at us all the same, with appreciation.
Very special thanks to Summra Shariff of Robins Kaplan LLP for coordinating the clinic along with Volunteer Lawyers Network, the Hmong American Bar Association, and the Hmong American Partnership. Summra is MNAPABA's former VP of Outreach and coordinates her law firm's pro bono efforts. We appreciate Robins Kaplan's support of this effort including all that the firm did to host our clinic training day.
Our Legal Advice Day was so smoothly run that its organizers plan to bring it back to HAP on a periodic basis--perhaps for a few hours one day a month. Be on the lookout for details in an upcoming newsletter.
The Winter Retreat Fosters MNAPABA Relationships Amongst the Pines
About 25 members took part in this year's Winter Retreat in Deerwood, Minnesota, the weekend of February 10th. Law students and practitioners gathered for a fun weekend away from the Twin Cities.
We'd like to thank the Hon. Peter Reyes of the Minnesota Court of Appeals for joining us at the retreat and presenting a seminar on the importance of personal and career planning. Thank you, Judge Reyes for being a tremendous MNAPABA members, supporter, and "honorary Asian."
That'll do it for this edition of the President's Newsletter. Here are some other bar and community events you don't want to miss:
In this month's newsletter: volunteer opportunities, the winter retreat, API day at the capitol, MHBA gala, and more...
@mnapaba | page | group
The Executive Board met on January 10. The board discussed updates on judicial endorsements, the summer fellowship program, attending API day at the capitol, efforts to increase diversity in selecting judiciary candidates and in the legal profession, and more planning for upcoming events in 2017.
In the past month, you may have seen MNAPABA at these community events:
This month's newsletter is longer than past editions, here is a brief preview of its contents:
Please volunteer your services at our pro bono Legal Advice Day clinic on February 22 to help refugees and immigrants access much needed legal services.
We are conducting this clinic at the Hmong American Partnership, which helps diverse people, including Hmong, Karen, Somali and Latino populations. With help from you and our colleagues at the Hmong American Bar Association and Volunteer Lawyers Network, I hope we can offer assistance to people who need it the most, especially during a time where there’s considerable uncertainty and fear in immigrant communities. Clients will be coming to the clinic seeking help in a variety of areas, including housing, immigration, small business issues, family law, criminal defense, general civil matters, etc.
All volunteers are strongly encouraged to attend the training on February 14, where we will cover basic information about the populations you’ll be helping and the general clinic process. If you’re unable to attend in person, teleconferencing is available. The training will also be videotaped.
Your help is needed. Please sign up today.
The United States District Court—District of Minnesota's Open Doors to Federal Courts program is an annual program that encourages young people from rural and inner city areas to pursue careers in the justice system. The program usually features a mock trial and a career showcase.
Help show students how the judicial system works, and ask some questions about "Equal Justice Under Law" and talk about how laws can get changed and how systems can get changed....or how they can continue on the same path....
We have TWO mock trial scenarios in which the volunteer attorneys (you) may choose from, to present to the students; one is a civil scenario, and one is a criminal scenario. We will be holding two training sessions - the training sessions will be identical, just two separate offerings of dates; March 16, 2017 at 5:30 p.m. and March 21, 2017 at 5:30 p.m. They will be held at the U.S. District Court house in the jury assembly room. At the training session, you will receive training on cultural competence and working with youth in an engaging and meaningful way. CLE credit -Elimination of Bias is being applied for.
More details are forthcoming.
D. Minn. Community Outreach Page
Each month, we are highlighting one of our members. This is part of an ongoing effort to help MNAPABA members get-to-know one another. Read below about...
Assistant Ramsey County Attorney
Hamline University School of Law
Fue is an Assistant Ramsey County Attorney working in the Child Support Unit of the Human Services Division. He has been with the Ramsey County Attorney’s Office since 2013. Fue is a graduate of Hamline University School of Law, and before he joined the RCAO, was a law clerk to the Hon. Gail Chang Bohr.
Fue is the current president of the Hmong American Bar Association, and is the 2017 St. Paul Chamber of Commerce Young Professional of the Year Award recipient. Fue is also on the board of Urban Boatbuilders, a nonprofit organization promoting youth development through the building and use of boats.
Relationship with MNAPABA
Fue credits NAPABA, the National Asian Law Students Association (NAPALSA) and MNAPABA with expanding his network, most notably introducing him to his wife, fellow member Maisue Xiong, whom he met at the national NAPALSA convention in Boston in 2009.
(Special thanks to Melitta Dreschler for preparing this month's Member Spotlight.)
NAPALSA is looking for a student in the Midwest region to fill the Midwest Regional Director position on this year's NAPALSA Board. I was hoping that you may be able to reach out to any students, or the schools in Minnesota, and announce the open position.
Regional Directors are responsible for recruitment, outreach, and support of local NAPALSA Affiliates and Members. The Regional Director of each region is responsible for actively contacting every APALSA in his/her region and encouraging each APALSA to affiliate formally with NAPALSA.
Contact NAPALSA President Ali Hakusui if interested.
Directly following Lobby Day, NAPABA is offering lawyers — whether in-house, law firm, government, public interest, or academia — a day-long leadership training program on May 24, 2017, in Washington, D.C.
Registration Requirements: All direct NAPABA members with 5-10+ years of experience are invited to participate at a special rate of $200. The first 30 applicants who register by the deadline of April 12, 2017, at 5 p.m. EDT, or until the workshop is at capacity, will be accepted into this special pilot program.
Click here for complete workshop information and to register.
The Minnesota Hispanic Bar Association invites its members and friends to join it in celebrating the Twelfth Annual MHBA Gala! This year, Sonia Nazario, Pulitzer Prize winning journalist and author of Enrique’s Journey, joins us as our keynote speaker for the MHBA Gala!
In addition, the MHBA is pleased to award the 2017 Manuel Guerrero Courage in Leadership Award to the Honorable Ann D. Montgomery, Sr. U.S. District Judge, District of Minnesota.
Finally, the MHBA Gala will feature live music from salsa band Tropical Zone Orchestra!
The Council on Asian Pacific Minnesotans, a MN state agency, invites you to join them at this year’s “API Day at the Capitol” on Wednesday, February 8th, 2017, from 10:00-11:30 a.m.
The Council aims to send a clear message to our policy makers that the Asian Pacific Islander (API) communities have come of age, and that we are ready to assist them in their ongoing endeavor to create public policies that are equitable and broadly impactful.
To attend this year’s API Day at the Capitol is as successful as possible, please register at: EventBrite Registration Link.
Bryan Wong has been elected to be the new Chief Executive Officer and Managing Partner at HSML - the first Chinese American attorney to take on this leadership role. (bio)
Rong (Christine) Yang, patent attorney and attorney at law, has been elevated to partner at HSML. (bio)
Alexander Kim, patent attorney and attorney at law, has been elevated to partner at HSML. (bio)
Amol Kavathekar, patent attorney and attorney at law, has been elevated to partner at HSML. (bio)
Masako Yoshida, patent attorney and attorney at law, has been elevated to partner at HSML. (bio)
Share Member Professional/Personal News
in next month's newsletter (here)By Friday, March 3, 2017.
Questions about the Newsletter?Contact Vincent Pham
New opportunities are posted weekly on the Members-Only Job Board. Login to browse and see details.
21 postings added since the last newsletter:
Student Board Member - Midwest Regional Director | NAPALSA
1L Summer Associate | Lindquist & Vennum LLP (Minneapolis, MN)
Diversity in Law Scholarship | Zelle LLP
Committee Member | MN Supreme Court No-Fault Arbitration Standing Committee (Saint Paul, MN)
Supervising Attorney - Housing Discrimination Law Project | Mid-Minnesota Legal Aid (Minneapolis, MN)
Judgeship | MN Court of Appeals (Eighth Congressional District of Minnesota)
Tax, Trusts & Estates Division Staff Attorney | Stinson Leonard Street (Minneapolis, MN)
Staff Attorney - Domestic Abuse and Sexual Assault Campus Project | Mid-Minnesota Legal Aid (Minneapolis & St. Cloud, MN)
Construction Law Associate | Stinson Leonard Street (Minneapolis, MN)
MN Court of Appeals | Minnesota Judicial Branch (Saint Paul, MN)
MN Supreme Court Law Clerk | Minnesota Judicial Branch (Saint Paul, MN)
Assistant Director of Academic Excellence | Mitchell Hamline School of Law (Saint Paul, MN)
Admissions Counselor | Mitchell Hamline School of Law (Saint Paul, MN)
Board Member | Minnesota Lawyers Professional Responsbility Board (Saint Paul, MN)
Compliance Officer | Minnesota Department of Human Services (Anoka, MN)
Transactional Attorney | Stinson Leonard Street (Mankato, MN)
Half-Time Legal Assistant | Mid-Minnesota Legal Aid (Minneapolis, MN)
Client Services/Intake - Full-Time or Part-Time | Mid-Minnesota Legal Aid (Minneapolis, MN)
Executive Director | Mid-Minnesota Legal Aid (Minneapolis, MN)
Counsel 1 (Higher Education/Local Government/Veterans Affairs) | Minnesota Senate (Saint Paul, MN)
Assistant Attorney/Associate Attorney | Olmsted County (Rochester, MN)
Winter Retreat (sold out)
Woodland Beach Resort
Fri to Sun, Feb. 10-12
Executive Board Meeting (register)
Minneapolis - TBD
Wednesday, Feb. 15
Legal Advice Day Clinic (register)
Hmong American Partnership
Wednesday, Feb. 22
Training at Robins Kaplan
Tuesday, Feb. 14
Judges Reception (rsvp)
Boom Island Brewing MPLS
Tuesday, Mar. 7
Affinity Bar Jobs Symposium
Dorsey & Whitney MPLS
Tuesday, Mar. 21
The Loop @ West End SLP
Thursday, Mar. 23
API Day at the Capitol (link)
Minnesota Capitol STP
Wednesday, Feb. 8
Transgender Rights CLE (register)
Dorsey & Whitney MPLS
Wednesday, Feb. 8
3:00 p.m. Panel
5:00 p.m. Social Hour
MHBA Gala (link)
Loews Hotel MPLS
Thursday, Mar. 2
Open Doors Training
U.S. District Court House - Jury Assembly Room MPLS
Mar 16 or 21
Copyright © 2016-17 Minnesota Asian Pacific American Bar Association. All rights reserved.
Over 25 members, friends, and family of MNAPABA celebrated the Lunar New Year at Mandarin Kitchen on Saturday, January 28.
I am asking you to volunteer your services at our pro bono Legal Advice Day clinic on February 22 to help refugees and immigrants access much needed legal services.
Sign-up here on the MNAPABA website or email Summra at firstname.lastname@example.org.
From the entire Executive Board of the Minnesota Asian Pacific American Bar Association, I'd like to wish you a happy new year--we hope that 2017 is off to a strong and meaningful start.
Constantly, we are reminded of how important our work remains some 30 years after our founding. Many of you likely saw the Associated Press article republished by the Star Tribune on Sunday pointing out something many of see everyday: the dearth of APAs in top legal jobs nationwide. We're lucky to have a few great exceptions here in Minnesota, but they shouldn't distract anyone from the lack of progress APAs face overall, especially on making equity partner in large private law firms. Our three-year plan includes a commitment to career advancement and fixing this and other inequities in the profession. We welcome your suggestions on programming and on engaging the stakeholders locally who can make sure APA attorneys have the relationships they need to thrive in Minnesota.
Your board has a lot planned for the coming months--with even more in the works aimed at deepening our professional and personal relationships and enriching the profession. Be on the lookout for news about March summer job symposium for students (after spring break) in collaboration with other affinity bars as well as our annual judges' reception (pencil in March 7, Judge Tony Atwal is our host this year!).
This week, consider attending the Federal Bar Association's Diversity Bar Meet & Greet | Federal Bar Association (MN) on Thursday 1/19 in Minneapolis. Next week, check out MNAPABA's own happy hour, MNAPABA MINGLE on Thursday 1/26 organized by VP of Membership Aalok Sharma and membership committee member Shaura Bagchi at the NEWSROOM in Minneapolis.
I'd like to take this opportunity to highlight a few of our upcoming offerings and to review a few of the events and initiatives MNAPABA has been a part of since I last wrote.
Can't Miss Opportunity: MNAPABA's Winter Retreat-Where Some of our Most Enduring Friendships Begin (Feb. 10-12)
I can trace many of my deepest relationships in MNAPABA back to the winter retreat as a law student, where I first met people like Veena Iyer. Veena, for example, later recruited me to the board in my first year of practice and here I am today. MNAPABA started the retreat years ago in part to introduce non-Minnesotans and non-northerners to the beauty of a Minnesota winter. I think that what some of them found was the beauty of a Minnesota winter includes hunkering down inside, in close quarters where friendships can blossom.
We'd love for you to consider attending this year's Winter Retreat the weekend of February 10-12 in Deerwood, Minnesota--it's about a two hour drive north of the Twin Cities. We have limited spots available for attorneys and law students--families are welcome. REGISTER TODAY because...
...I am thrilled to announce that the Hon. Peter Reyes of the Minnesota Court of Appeals has graciously offered to attend this winter's retreat. Judge Reyes will be leading a Saturday afternoon workshop titled "Planning for Your Own Success." The intimate setting at the retreat will be the perfect opportunity to reflect on your career, bounce ideas off of friends and peers in a confidential setting, and start developing your own plan with the help of a phenomenal mentor--Judge Reyes--who has helped countless individuals and organizations through strategic planning (including MNAPABA) over the last decade-plus. Judge Reyes will share his own plans that have helped him keep on track through many seasons of his legal career (private firm practice to in-house for a dozen years and back out to a private firm with a book of business to build to the Court of Appeals!).
We plan to arrive on Friday evening--dinner is provided after your drive up (donated by my dad of Red Moon Chinese Cafe in Eden Prairie, and me). Weather-permitting, Saturday will include outdoor activities and Judge Reyes' personal planning workshop. On Sunday evening, participants will all contribute to our annual winter retreat "potluck."
A New Year's Resolution--A Recommitment to Service--Sign up for our Legal Advice Clinic
As I discussed at the gala last fall, my goal this year is to create new opportunities for MNAPABA lawyers and law students to serve our greater community.
Please sign up for the next such opportunity: our MNAPABA Legal Advice Clinic on February 22, 2017. Training is going to take place on February 14 or 15 -- news to come. If you would like to assist in partnership with the Hmong American Partnership and the Hmong American Bar Association, please email Summra Shariff.
For those of you who have been and remain committed to service within the profession, don't forget to log your pro bono hours with the MSBA's North Star Lawyers program--MNAPABA would love to see your names on the annual list of those who give back through pro bono service.
Now is the time for all MSBA members who meet the program requirements to certify their 2016 pro bono service, including members who previously participated in the program. Please don't delay – the deadline for submitting your information is February 28, 2017. Full program information and the certification form can be found on the North Star Lawyers website at: http://www.mnbar.org/NorthStar/
MNAPABA Working to Engage with Stakeholders on Minnesota's Upcoming Article III Appointments
Congressman Erik Paulsen (MN-03) announced the formation of a judicial selection committee to review candidates and make recommendations to President-elect Trump to fill two vacancies on Minnesota’s federal district court.
MNAPABA leaders are currently engaged with various stakeholders including the co-chairs of the Rep. Paulsen committee and leaders from the affinity bar community to continue to advocate for a federal bench that reflects Minnesota's changing demographics. Last week MNAPABA's board voted to sign onto a letter with other affinity bars supporting the same.
Those wishing to be considered for the positions of Judge,U.S. District Court for the District of Minnesota should submit a letter of interest and resume between Monday, January 9, 2017 and Wednesday, January 25,2017 to: 250 Prairie Center Drive, Suite 230, Eden Prairie, MN 55344. Materials may also be emailed to the Committee at email@example.com. References will be requested at a later date during the interview process.
MNAPABA endorses highly qualified candidates for judicial office who meet our organization's endorsement criteria and participate in our vetting and interview process. Information on seeking our endorsement is located on our website.
Gov. Dayton Announces Court of Appeals Vacancy
Likewise, MNAPABA is seeking candidates to support for a new vacancy recently announced by Governor Mark Dayton on the Minnesota Court of Appeals. No Asian Pacific American has ever served on Minnesota's second-highest court.
Governor Mark Dayton announced the commencement of a process to fill an upcoming Eighth Congressional District vacancy on the Minnesota Court of Appeals. This vacancy will occur upon the retirement of the Honorable Lawrence B. Stauber at the end of May.
The application process is now open for this vacancy. Only persons who have resided in the Eighth Congressional District for at least one year shall be eligible. An individual wishing to apply may request an application by contacting Lidya Makonnen, Appointments Coordinator, via email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Application materials are due by close of business on Tuesday, February 21, 2017. Interviews are scheduled to be held on Tuesday, March 28, 2017 in Duluth.
MNAPABA Advocacy on Sentencing Reform Issues
MNAPABA took the lead last month on authoring a letter to the Minnesota Sentencing Guidelines Commission on the issue of drug sentencing reforms. Five other affinity bars co-signed the letter. MNAPABA took the stance that sentencing for repeat drug offenders should apply less-onerous sentencing guidelines that are congruent with legislative amendments signed into law by Gov. Mark Dayton last year. Communities of color are disproportionately affected by the application of the old guidelines in calculating new sentences.
Unfortunately, the commission went the other way. We will continue our advocacy on this front. You may view our letter here.
HCBA Event: 13th: From Slave to Criminal With One Amendment
The HCBA Diversity and Inclusion Committee would like to invite you to a unique event entitled, 13th: From Slave to Criminal with One Amendment? A Movie and Popcorn… and a Meaningful Discussion of an Important Amendment.
The event is taking place on Tuesday, Jan. 24 from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. See the event flyer for more information.
* * *
Hope you've enjoyed this edition of the President's Newsletter -- until next time, lookout for your next set up updates in our February monthly newsletter--if you haven't seen our recent monthly newsletter, be on the lookout for them on the first Tuesday of the month. VP of Communications Vince Pham has done a phenomenal job making them easy-to-read and valuable sources of information for our members. Thanks Vince!