Weekly Newsletter        |        November 8, 2016
In This Issue
Message from the BALIF Board 
I hope you all had a lovely weekend, and aren't losing too much sleep over the presidential election.  It's puzzling and dizzying to think about how we got here, but as most of you know --- a lot is at stake, both on the national level as well as the state and local levels.  While I am personally terrified at the mere possibility of a Trump victory, I believe that America will do the right thing --- choosing experience, progressivism, and discipline over bad temperament, intolerance, unchecked vitriol, divisiveness, and a lack of respect for American values and our Constitution --- and elect Hillary Clinton to be its first-ever female President. 
Our state and local elections and ballot measures also offer opportunities for us all to exercise our power to effectuate social change, advance progress, and seat progressives at the local and state levels.  For just a few examples, California is voting whether to end the death penalty, and numerous progressive LGBT politicians are competing in tight local and state races. 
Please remember to vote today.   Your voice will carry.  We will make history.  Together. 


Ashley Pellouchoud
BALIF Board Young Lawyers & Law Student Co-Chair
BALIF Files Fourth Circuit Amicus Brief in Case Challenging North Carolina's Anti-Transgender Law
On October 25, 2016, BALIF filed an amicus (friend of the court) brief in the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals in Carcaño v. McCrory, a case challenging H.B. 2, North Carolina's discriminatory law that targets transgender people for discrimination in public schools and facilities.
The plaintiffs sought a preliminary injunction enjoining enforcement of the portion of H.B. 2 that bars transgender people from using single-sex restrooms consistent with their gender identity. Although the district court granted a limited injunction barring enforcement of H.B. 2 by the University of North Carolina against three of the plaintiffs who are transgender,  the court declined to bar broader enforcement of H.B. 2 under the Constitution's Equal Protection Clause, leaving transgender people who live in or visit North Carolina vulnerable to the harms imposed by H.B. 2. The plaintiffs appealed the denial of broader injunctive relief under the Equal Protection Clause to the Fourth Circuit.
BALIF's brief  argues that H.B. 2 facially discriminates against transgender people based on sex, and that it is a classic example of unlawful sex stereotyping. Its restroom provisions are rooted in the stereotype that all people should act in a manner consistent with society's expectations about the sex they were assigned at birth. The brief highlights the significant body of law confirming that targeting transgender people for their perceived gender non-conformity is sex stereotyping that violates constitutional and statutory prohibitions on sex discrimination.
" In a variety of contexts and for many years, the federal courts have recognized that sex stereotyping of transgender people is a form of unlawful sex discrimination," said Julie Wilensky, chair of BALIF's Amicus Committee. "H.B. 2 is no different."
The Impact Fund  and its attorneys Lindsay Nako and Lynnette Miner served as BALIF's amicus counsel, and Impact Fund also joined the brief. 
In addition to BALIF and Impact Fund, a broad coalition of 35 additional bar associations and non-profit legal organizations joined the brief:  AIDS Legal Referral PanelAlameda Contra Costa Trial Lawyers AssociationAsian American Bar Association of the Greater Bay AreaAsian Americans Advancing Justice - Los AngelesAsian Pacific Islander Legal OutreachAtlanta Women for EqualityBar Association of San FranciscoBet Tzedek Legal ServicesBiLawCalifornia Rural Legal Assistance, Inc.Centro Legal de la RazaCivil Rights Education and Enforcement CenterDallas LGBT Bar AssociationEast Bay La Raza Lawyers AssociationGeorgia Association for Women LawyersHawai'i LGBT Legal AssociationKansas City Lesbian, Gay, and Allied LawyersLatinoJustice PRLDEFLegal Aid Society - Employment Law CenterLGBT Bar Association of Greater New YorkLGBT Bar Association of WisconsinMassachusetts LGBTQ Bar AssociationNational Employment Law ProjectNational Employment Lawyers AssociationNational Queer Asian Pacific Islander AllianceNew Mexico Lesbian and Gay Lawyers AssociationNorth Carolina Advocates for JusticeQueen's Bench Bar AssociationSacLEGALSanta Clara County Bar AssociationStonewall Law Association of Greater HoustonTom Homann LGBT Law AssociationTransgender Legal Defense and Education Fund, Inc.Vietnamese American Bar Association of Northern California, and Virginia Equality Bar Association.


BALIF November Happy Hour

When: Thursday, November 10, 2016 6-8 pm

Where Port Bar, 2023 Broadway, Oakland 94612

What: BALIF's November Happy Hour will be in the East Bay this month! Come out and enjoy a cocktail or two with other fellow BALIF members. Hope to see you there!

RSVP on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/events/696866613821132/?notif_t=plan_user_joined&notif_id=1477861364269996

Practising Law Institute Presents:
Representing Transgender Clients:
Practical Skills and Cultural Competency
John Robert Unruh 
Law Office of John Robert Unruh
Bay Area Lawyers for Individual Freedom (BALIF)

PLI is pleased to present this important new pro bono program! Attend this program to learn how to represent transgender and gender nonconforming people in the many legal disputes that frequently impact this community. The stellar faculty of experienced attorneys and advocates will share practical skills to enable attendees to competently represent transgender clients in areas such as employment, health care, identity documents and detention.

Register for free today!

San Francisco and Live Webcast - November 16, 2016

Key Topics Will Include:
  • Transgender and gender nonconforming 101: definitions and best practices
  • Employment law developments
  • Health care developments
  • Education developments
  • Detention developments
  • Identity documents
Special Feature:
  • Earn one hour of Elimination of Bias Credit!
As part of PLI's commitment to public service and the pro bono activities of the legal community, there is no fee to attend this program.

Credit Information: CLE and CPD Credit. 

BALIF Holiday Party 2016
Save the Date!!!

Join us for our annual holiday party and ring in some holiday cheer!! 

December 14, 2016
6:00- 9:00 pm

Devil's Acre
256 Columbus Ave
San Francisco, CA 94133

ALRP Free 2016 MCLE Trainings
Reasonable Accommodations in Housing
  • Thursday, November 105:30-7:00pm
  • Presented by Deborah Thrope, Esq. - National Housing Law Project - nhlp.org
  • 1.5 General CLE Credits
Reasonable Accommodations in the Workplace
  • Thursday, December 15:30-7:00pm
  • Presented by Alexis Alvarez, Esq. - Legal Aid Society-Employment Law Center - law-elc.org
  • 1.5 General CLE Credits
Creating Workplaces Free from Gender Identity Bias
  • Wednesday, December 75:30-7:00pm
  • Presented by Shawn Meerkamper, Esq. - Transgender Law Center - transgenderlawcenter.org
  • 1.5 Elimination of Bias CLE Credits
This is a  free  training open to all attorneys, paralegals, law students, and those interested in the legal field.  We hope to see you there!

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

Future Trainings and ALRP Events:  Click Here

SABA-NC Upcoming Events
SABA-NC South Bay Lunch
Friday, November 18, 2016, 12:00 - 1:30 PM
UlavacharU (685 E El Camino Real, Sunnyvale, CA 94087)
Please join us for the SABA-NC Monthly South Bay Lunch. This is a great opportunity to meet and catch-up with other attorneys in the South Bay. This month's lunch is at UlavacharU in Sunnyvale. If needed, the phone number is (408) 310-3111. Please RSVP to events@southasianbar.org.
SABA-NC 24th Annual Gala
Friday, February 24, 2017, 6:00 - 11:00 p.m.
San Francisco Design Center (101 Henry Adams Street San Francisco, CA, 94103)
Save the date for SABA-NC's 24th Annual Gala! Additional details forthcoming. Please contact gala@southasianbar.org for sponsorship opportunities.

CRLA LGBT Program - 
2017 Summer Law Fellow

California Rural Legal Assistance, Inc. (CRLA) is seeking a law school fellow for a 10-week summer position with CRLA's LGBT Program.  The LGBT Program addresses the intersections of race, immigration status, and poverty within the framework of advancing rural LGBT rights. The program engages in direct legal representation and other innovative forms of legal advocacy that leverage collaborations with a range of rural stakeholders.  The LGBT Program Summer Law fellow will work under the supervision of the LGBT Program Director to provide direct legal services and support litigation and other systemic advocacy.  Priority types of legal cases include petitions for U, T, and VAWA non-immigrant status, employment discrimination cases, education rights cases, and legal name and gender petitions.  The law clerk may request to be placed in any one of CRLA's office locations, and the LGBT program will strive to accommodate the law clerk's preferred location.  
The fellow will receive a grant in the amount of $8,800 from the California Bar Foundation.
Applicants must have completed their second year of law school and must have strong writing skills. Candidates must possess a passion for social justice and poverty related
issues, as well as sensitivity to working with people from diverse backgrounds. Special consideration will be given to students who have a demonstrated commitment to serving low income or disadvantaged communities. Students who speak Spanish and are familiar with LGBTQ issues are encouraged to apply.
Applications will be accepted through  February 28, 2017. Please submit a cover letter and resume, a list of at least three references and writing sample to:  hr@crla.org and  lcisneros@crla.org. Please write "LGBT Summer Fellow" in the subject line. CRLA will contact applicants selected for an interview.

SABA-NC Public Interest 
Fellowship Application
Applicants can apply anytime for a fellowship because they are issued on a rolling basis. They may be used for summer internships, fall semester internships, spring semester internships, and post-bar fellowships for both spring and fall graduates. Please find the application here.  Please note that applicants do not have to be of South Asian descent to apply. All applicants are welcome, and we look forward to reviewing submissions from members of your organization.  
2016-2018 Tyron Garner Memorial Fellowship
Interested in a fellowship?  Please consider applying for the 2016-2018 Tyron Garner Memorial Fellowship for African-American LGBT Civil Rights:  http://www.lambdalegal.org/about-us/jobs/all_20160916_garner-fellow
Probate Referee Program Opportunities -
from the 
Office of the State Controller Betty Yee
State Controller Betty Yee is searching for attorneys, certified public accountants, and certified  appraisers from diverse backgrounds to serve as probate referees. Our search encompasses everyone  including people of all races, genders, and LGBT status.

Probate referees are officers of the court who are appointed by the State Controller. They provide  reliable appraisals of all estate assets including businesses, securities, real estate, and personal
properties. Probate referees are not state employees; their fees are paid by the estates (trusts)  involved. For any appraisal required by law, probate referee fees are 1/10 th of one percent of the total  assets. The minimum fee is $75 plus expenses such as mileage and photos.

Qualification criteria and application information are on the Controller's website at  www.sco.ca.gov/eo_probate.html. The next probate referee examination will be held in April 2017.
People who meet all the qualifications and pass the examination may be contacted for an interview  by a panel of judges and attorneys. Controller Yee will decide whom to appoint after considering the  panel's recommendation.

Follow BALIF on Instagram
Follow @BALIFSF on Instagram!

We know a picture is worth a thousand words! See what we are up to and behind the scenes updates. Sharing photos on social media? Please tag us!
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!


Alex Touma

BALIF Membership Co-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.

November 10 - BALIF November Happy Hour
November 16 - PLI: Representing Transgender Clients 
December 10 - Beer Bust Benefiting BALIF
December 14 - BALIF Holiday Party
Our 2016-2017 Sponsors
Partner Level

Counsel Level


HB Logo




Advocate Level

Benefactor Level

Individual Sponsors

BALIF Board of Directors
Jessica Bogo & Peter Catalanotti
Julie Wilensky
Secretary & Amicus Chair

Mario Choi

Nick Clements
Judiciary Chair

Sarah Nicole Davis & 
John Unruh
Gala Co-Chairs  


Alex Touma
Shauna Madison

CCBA Chair

Stan Sarkisov
Communications Chair 

Jamie Dupree
Programs Chair

Ashley Pellouchoud & David Sims
Young Lawyers & Law Students Co-Chairs  

Daniel Faessler
Social Action Chair

Jennifer Orthwein
Lauren Pietsch
Lindsey Rosellini
Community Ambassador Chair  

Sam Potts & Stephan Ferris
Katie Carlson
BALIF Administrator 
Follow BALIF

BALIF Foundation

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