MAABA Hosts 2011 NAPABA Central Region Conference


MAABA hosted the National Asian Pacific American Bar Association’s (NAPABA) Central Region Conference (CRC) from August 19-21, 2011.  The conference brought out Asian Pacific American attorneys to St. Louis, Missouri from around the Central Region and both coasts.

The CRC programming included a welcome reception at Armstrong Teasdale’s offices in Clayton, dinner out on the Delmar Loop, and karaoke at Star KTV.

Continuing legal education seminars were conducted on Saturday, August 20.  CLE topics included Employment Law, which was taught by MAABA member Heidi Durr, a partner at national labor and employment firm Ogletree Deakins Nash Smoak & Stewart.  An Immigration Law CLE was presented by local attorneys and MAABA members Nalini Mahadevan, Tony Gao, and Jay Kim. General Counsel for UniGroup, Jan Alonzo, led a panel discussion on “How In-house Counsel Selects Outside Counsel” along with panelists Ruth Kim, General Counsel for Fleishman-Hilliard, Inc., Iggy Yuan, General Counsel of First National Bank of St. Louis, and Warren Nakatani, Counsel for UniGroup.  Hon. Judy Draper, Washington University School of Law Professor, Pauline Kim, and MAABA co-founder, James Robinson presented “Asian Americans in the Law” highlighting court cases affecting Asian Americans.  Project Manager of the Midwest China Hub Commission, Doug Potts, and Missouri State Senator Eric Schmitt, discussed the background and current status of the Midwest China Hub Commission, the effort to bring a China Cargo Hub to St. Louis Lambert Airport, and the establishment of Missouri’s first EB-5 Regional Center.

NAPABA CRC attendees were taken on a tour of Busch Stadium, home of the St. Louis Cardinals baseball team, after the CLE programming.

On the evening of August 20, a Gala Dinner was held at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Clayton and guests included Missouri Supreme Court Chief Justice, Rick Teitelman, Missouri Court of Appeals Judge, Hon. George Draper, President-Elect of the Missouri Bar, Lynn Ann Vogel, President of the St. Louis County Bar Association, Tom Lang, Executive Director for the St. Louis County Bar Association, Jill Lang, and many others.  MAABA President, Alexander Lee, and Chair of the NAPABA CRC Planning Committee, Daniel Sakaguchi, gave welcome remarks at the Gala.

U.S. District Court Judge (Northern District of Illinois), Hon. Edmond Chang, gave the keynote address.  MAABA was honored to welcome Judge Chang who was unanimously confirmed as a United States District Judge for the Northern District of Illinois by the Senate in December 2010.  Judge Chang began service on the court in January 2011, and was at that time the youngest federal judge in the nation.  He is the first APA Article III Federal judge in the Seventh Circuit.

The CRC received strong support from NAPABA leadership as NAPABA President, Paul Hirose, NAPABA Executive Director, Tina Matsuoka, NAPABA Central Region Governor, LG Almeda, and former Regional Governor, Gene Woo all attended the Conference.

MAABA wishes to thank all of the attendees of the 2011 NAPABA CRC.  It also would like to thank all of the sponsors of the NAPABA CRC, and extends a special thank you to Armstrong Teasdale for being its Host Sponsor.  MAABA also thanks Daniel Sakaguchi, the Chair of the NAPABA CRC Planning Committee, for his leadership in helping MAABA put on a tremendous conference.  Finally, MAABA thanks its outstanding CRC Planning Committee for its hard work and dedication.  The 2011 NAPABA CRC would not have been possible without you!

NAPABA CRC Planning Committee
Phillip Boyd
Anna Cheng
Lilian Doan
Hon. Judy Draper
Heidi Durr
Richard Juang
David Kim
Alexander Lee
Julie Madsen
Maylin Mahoney
Elizabeth Nguyen
Monica Patankar
James Robinson
Daniel Sakaguchi
Johnny Wang

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