WLALA's Executive Committee with Supervisor Holly Mitchell (from left to right): Jeannine Taylor, Noelle Natoli, Mary McKelvey, Supervisor Holly Mitchell, Janet Hong, Jennie Wang VonCannon and Farah Tabibkhoei
by Mary McKelvey
I am intrigued by people who live their lives in service of an ideal greater than themselves, and by how important this quality has been in our country’s evolution and how vital it is to our future. In the wake of Memorial Day, the dawn of Juneteenth, and the upcoming Fourth of July holiday, it seems the common theme is the tremendous courage of individuals who willingly risk everything for both personal liberty and collective freedom.
As many of our fundamental freedoms hang in the balance, I find myself compelled to examine the characteristics and motivations of those who voluntarily sacrifice everything to open doors and secure freedom for others. The passion and selflessness of these brave souls embodies the necessary and potent elements required if we are to continue working toward a more perfect union.

June is Pride Month and that immediately brings Harvey Milk to mind. His visionary courage moved the needle for the LGBTQIA+ community at a time of unprecedented hatred and hostility. His bold and unapologetic proclamation of his identity as a gay man and his subsequent election to public office brought fresh hope and inspiration. Milk spoke passionately of the American ideal of equality, proclaiming, “Gay people, we will not win our rights by staying quietly in our closets.… We are coming out to fight the lies, the myths, the distortions. We are coming out to tell the truths about gays, for I am tired of the conspiracy of silence, so I’m going to talk about it. And I want you to talk about it. You must come out.” He was passionate, persistent, and proud and he inspired others to do the same.
WLALApalooza Save the Date: July 13!

Presented by WLALA Foundation's Financial Development Committee
Save the date for WLALA's biggest fundraising event of the year, back in person! With a silent auction and networking, it will be a fun evening for all!

Perch, Bar Thirteen
6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.
Breaking Out and Rising Up:
Stories from Female Trailblazers in their Pursuit of Justice 
On May 19, 2022, WLALA's Criminal Justice Section hosted a dynamic program featuring three criminal law trailblazers who all founded or co-founded their own firmsYasmin Cader, Alexandra Kazarian, and Jennifer Williamsmoderated by Ivy Slater, a trailblazer herself in the field of business. Set in the beautiful outdoor space of Kaplan Marino's new offices on Fairfax, the event was an evening of good food and drinks, amazing desserts, and a real sense of networking, support, and community.
Support Harriet Buhai Center for Family Law 
Each year more than 500 poor women, most of whom are mothers, get legal help from the Harriett Buhai Center for Family Law, which was founded by Black Women Lawyers and Women Lawyers Association of Los Angeles in 1982 to help women victims of domestic violence who could not afford legal help. The Center has grown, but has never veered from that original mission of providing free legal assistance to poor women, who consistently make up 80 percent of all the people receiving aid. Stories about their lives are found here. The Center is a vital institution in Los Angeles where women facing poverty and abuse, challenges of single parenthood, low-wage jobs, childcare burdens, and more come for comfort, seasoned advice, and tangible legal aid.
We hope you will give today to a local cause that so directly aids poor mothers.
  • $50 contributes to an initial screening for domestic violence.

  • $150 helps provide a mom with her first full legal interview with an attorney.

  • $250 provides offers a mom the legal assistance to prepare her initial request for custody and support.

  • $500 helps provide a mom with the opportunity to complete a family law case and begin a new chapter in her life.
WLALA Raises Over $5,000 for Food from the Bar
The Food from the Bar Committee is pleased to report that, thanks to the generosity of WLALA members, WLALA raised over $5,000 for the benefit of the Los Angeles Regional Food Bank in the annual Food from the Bar campaign, which officially ended on May 31.  (The Food Bank will still accept donations through June 7, however; you can still contribute HERE or by check made payable to “Los Angeles Regional Food Bank.”)

To celebrate this achievement, please join other members of the campaign at a free closing reception and award ceremony to be held at the end of the business day on June 29, in the outdoor patio adjoining Noe restaurant at the Omni Hotel downtown. It will be an informal gathering to announce recipients of various awards and fundraising levels, and celebrate another successful campaign.

Thank you to those WLALA members who volunteered at the Food Bank and who contributed online or anonymously (apologies if we missed anyone):

If you have any questions or would like further information, please reach out to WLALA’s Food from the Bar liaison, Kathleen M. McDowell, at 213-683-9134 or kathleen.mcdowell@mto.com.
Elayne Berg-Willion
Judith Chirlin
Winnie Chong
Luci-Ellen Chun
Michelle DeCasas
Alyssa Dickerson
Jean Domanski
Susan Formaker
Anne Garrett
Patricial Fullinwider Dill
Karla Kerlin
Jennifer Leland
Reg Levy
Mary McKelvey
Jennifer Novak
Cathy Ostiller
Jill Piano
Amy Proctor
Merete Rietveld
Rebecca Rosenberg
Arin Scapa
Ariella Simonds
Julie Stromberg
Farah Tabibkhoei
Jeannine Taylor
Taylor Wagniere
Jessica Walker
Rosalyn Zakheim
WLALA's Executive Committee Members Attend Unity Bar Summit
On May 21, 2022, WLALA Executive Committee members Janet Hong (President-Elect), Jeannine Taylor (Second Vice President/Treasurer), and Farah Tabibkhoei (Secretary), along with Southwestern Law School student Delys Fang, attended the 2022 Unity Bar Summit promoting diversity and excellence in the judiciary at UC Davis Law School. The Unity Bar Summit featured Chief Justice of California Tani G. Cantil-Sakauye, California Supreme Court Associate Justice Martin J. Jenkins, and the governor’s Judicial Appointments Secretary Luis A. Céspedes.
WLALA's Executive Committee Members Attend Joint APA Bar Association Summer Mixer
On June 1, 2022, WLALA Executive Committee members Janet Hong (President-Elect), Jeannine Taylor (Second Vice President/Treasurer), and Jennie VonCannon (Communications Officer), along with board member Elaine Chang and WLALA Advisory Council member and SCCLA President Celene Chan Andrews, attended the 2022 Joint APA Bar Association Summer Mixer at the Bonaventure Brewing Company in downtown Los Angeles.
Big Law's Record-Breaking Diversity Gains Show Industry's Commitment to Progress

by Jessie Yount
*Subscription to ALM's Law.com required to read full article
Become Modern Day Harriet Tubmans on the Overground Reproductive Railroad

by Julie A. Werner-Simon
On May 10, 2022, just days after U.S. Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito's leaked opinion in Dobbs was published in Politico, WLALA held a Zoom forum to answer member concerns about the impending end of Roe v.Wade. There were over 50 attendees. The Zoom participants came up with a variety of suggestions as to (i) what to do while awaiting the final opinion in the Dobbs case, and (ii) what to do after the opinion is issued.  Several of the lawyers discussed wanting to travel across state lines to help out-of-staters access California's reproductive care. Some were concerned about bar licensure repercussions for participating in conduct that is actionable in another state (e.g., Texas' SB 8) but legal and/or permissible in California. Participants were asked to report back to WLALA. One of our members did the research and presented her follow-up to WLALA in a local legal newspaper.  The member's article was published in the Los Angeles Daily Journal on May 25, 2022. It encourages California lawyers to "Become a Modern Day Harriet Tubmans on the Overground Reproductive Railroad."
Welcome to Our New Members
Jessica Bina
Amie Chang
Sonum Dixit
Martha Escutia
Jasmine Gomez
Erica Khaine
Poonam Kumar
Sarah Jane Longalong
Amy Longo
Zara Mokhtar
Cassie Palmer
Heather Renschler
Caroline Sayers
Jamie Wright
Stephanie Peatman
Stephanie Peatman’s connection with WLALA began as a first-year student at Southwestern School of Law when she was matched with one of her first mentors. WLALA’s partnership with Southwestern law students led to a still-existing relationship with Wendy Ray, who has supported Stephanie throughout her career. When Stephanie entered the law firm-world, women made up a small percentage of equity partners and were seldom seen in lead roles at trial; thus, the team of mentors she built around herself was essential to her success. Stephanie continued the example of paying it forward by joining the Board of WLALA in the Career Mentoring Section, where she now provides guidance to women lawyers who are often entering pivotal stages of their personal lives at the same time as pursuing fulfilling careers. A mother of two young children, Stephanie remains fully committed to her path and says that mentors pulled her through the many challenges of managing personal and career obligations, making it possible to achieve the goals she set for herself as that wide-eyed first year law student. Today, Stephanie is a trial lawyer and acts as local and national counsel for global clients at DLA Piper. Knowing we are stronger together, Stephanie hopes to help other women lawyers find their professional footing and be their authentic selves. Welcome Stephanie!
NLSLA's Music for Justice
Join Neighborhood Legal Services of Los Angeles County (NLSLA) for a night of Mariachi music and delicious food at the historic LA Plaza de Cultura y Artes in downtown Los Angeles.
ABA's Professional Success Summit: Save the Date
Local Bar Calendar
Career Center
Did you know that your WLALA membership allows you to access our exclusive Career Center? The Career Center has employment opportunities ranging from non-profit organizations to government employers to law firms.
WLALA Webinar Recordings
WLALA webinars have been recorded and are available for purchase. Following your purchase, access to the recording will be sent via email. If MCLE credit applies, the materials will be sent after we receive confirmation that the video has been viewed.
iDepo will make a donation to WLALA if you schedule a court reporting or videotaped deposition with them as follows:

  • $20 donation to WLALA for each court reporting services of at least 100 pages per day.
  • $50 donation to WLALA for each videotaped deposition with at least 100 pages per day.

When scheduling, please email or call and mention code "WLALA." 
Email Calendar@iDepoReporters.com or call 323-393-3768. 

iDepo will send donations to WLALA within 90 days after receipt of payment of invoices.
The Women Lawyers Association of Los Angeles ("WLALA") promotes the full participation in the legal profession of women lawyers and judges from diverse perspectives and racial and ethnic backgrounds, maintains the integrity of our legal system by advocating principles of fairness and equality, and improves the status of women by supporting their exercise of equal rights, equal representation, and reproductive choice.
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