• President's Message by Janet Hong
  • Celebrate Women's Herstory Month: A Fundraiser for Reproductive Justice and Benefitting Black Women for Wellness, Featuring Dipti Singh, General Counsel of Planned Parenthood of Pasadena & San Gabriel Valley: March 16, 2023
  • California Women Lawyers Issues Sobering Report on Attrition of Women in Law
  • Honoring Our Women Legal Trailblazers: WLALA Student Liaison Danielle Garcia; Second Vice President/ Treasurer and WLALA Foundation Treasurer Farah Tabibkhoei; WLALA Foundation Board Member Jazmine Smalley; and Board of Governors Member Cynthia E. Organ
  • WLALA Celebrates Investiture of Board of Governors Member Judge Magdalena Reyes Bordeaux as United States Bankruptcy Judge
  • WLALA President Janet Hong and President-Elect Jeannine Taylor Show Support for UCLA Law Women and Womxn of Color Collective
  • Now Available! Limited Edition WLALA Sweatshirt to Benefit WLALA Foundation
  • WLALA Career Mentoring Committee Virtual Networking Event: March 3, 2023
  • Legal Name and Gender Marker Change Pro Bono Project with Bet Tzedek: March 9, 2023
  • Mentor Jet at Pepperdine Law School: March 20, 2023
  • Apply to Join WLALA's Nominating Committee
  • Become a WLALA Officer
  • WLALA Inclusive Leadership Training: Waiting List Now Open!
  • WLALA Needs YOU to Mentor to a Law Student
  • WLALA Foundation Now Accepting Fran Kandel Public Interest Fellowship Applications
  • Post-Roe Resources: Pro Choice and Reproductive Rights Committee of WLALA, Board of Governors Member Vanessa Adriance and President Janet Hong Host Online Forum Featuring Erwin Chemerinsky, Dean of UC Berkeley School of Law
  • Member News
  • Welcome New Members!
  • What's Really Stopping You From Applying? A Discussion About the Imposter Phenomenon and the Judicial Application Process: March 11, 2023
  • Save the Date: California Women Lawyers - So, You Want to Be a Judge? March 16, 2023
  • Save the Date: Roadways to the Bench: Who Me? A Bankruptcy or Magistrate Judge? April 3, 2023
  • Save the Date: Food from the Bar is Back! April 17th to May 31st

In recognition of Women’s Herstory Month, I honor my mother Sally Hong. Born in the countryside of Jeonju in South Korea, she first immigrated to a town outside of Hanover, Germany, to work as a nurse in the 1960s. She lived there for five years before coming to the U.S. alone with no family and no friends. Unable to speak English and with her nursing degree not valid in the US, she answered an ad in the classified section of the LA Times and landed her first job as a housekeeper. She then became a private duty nurse for a German woman who loved my mom because she spoke German. My mom eventually started her own business: first she ran a Mexican food stand downtown and then worked as a sewing contractor in South LA for over 20 years. 

My mother has led a life of service. Every aunt, uncle, cousin, and second cousin that immigrated to this country was able to come because of my mother. 

She has been very active in her church for many years. Each year she travels to Bolivia or Peru with fellow church members to help local communities. For years, she spent time on Skid Row with her church members cutting hair. She refused to wear gloves because she said, "I don't want to give them hurt feelings." For my mom, her volunteerism was as much about service as it was about preserving another person's dignity.

At age 80, she became the President of her retirement home association. When she decided to accept the position, she said: "This is my last chance to serve." She coordinated Bingo games for the residents. At the first Bingo soirée, the residents cooked their favorite dishes to share with everyone. My mom was ready with prizes for the winners. Everyone had a great time. All the while, she was building community.

I am proud to be my mother’s daughter. I also strive to build community with other women lawyers. I hope you will join WLALA on March 16th at a fundraiser for reproductive justice with our Sister Bar Associations. All proceeds will benefit Black Women for Wellness, a reproductive justice organization. Let us build community and serve where we are needed with humility and humanity. We may even fit in some rounds of Bingo.

Janet Hong and her Mom Sally Hong at her 80th birthday celebration.

California Women Lawyers Issues

Sobering Report on Attrition of Women in Law

California Women Lawyers ("CWL") recently issued a report based on the research of Patrick Krill - founder and principal of Krill Strategies - discussing the factors that cause women to leave the legal profession. The report also makes recommendations for employers on how to address these factors and promote retention of women in the practice of law.

“The legal profession is hard on all lawyers, but especially women lawyers, who are more likely to leave the profession because of work-family conflicts and other stressors,” CWL president Ana Storey said. “CWL is proud to partner with the California Lawyers Association to highlight the reasons women consider opting out of the law and what the profession can do to keep women and women of color.”

Krill’s 2021 study of California and D.C. lawyers – “Stress, drink, leave: An examination of gender-specific risk factors for mental health problems and attrition among licensed lawyers” – found that 24.2% of women were considering leaving the legal profession due to mental health problems, burnout, or stress, compared to only 17.4% of men surveyed. The top factor for women leaving or contemplating leaving the profession was work-family conflict, even though the women surveyed were less likely to be married with children than the men surveyed.

The CWL-CLA report issues a call to action for legal employers, offering recommendations and strategies for retaining women – and all – lawyers.

Among the recommendations:

  1. Offer flexible employment options
  2. Prioritize employee well-being
  3. Enhance attention to leadership training and professional development
  4. Deploy strategies to promote connection and a sense of belonging
  5. Utilize strategies for accountability

The report also recommends that job-seekers and law students learn about the well-being in law crisis and assess a potential employer’s culture and the prioritization of the well-being of its personnel.


Honoring Our Women Legal Trailblazers

WLALA Student Liaison Danielle Garcia Selected as Editor in Chief of UCLA Law Review

WLALA Student Liaison Danielle Garcia (she/her), currently a 2L at UCLA School of Law, is dedicated to race and social justice. She has nearly a decade of experience as a direct service provider, policymaker, and coalition builder addressing homelessless in Seattle, Washington. Her desire to get to the root causes of homelessness and social issues, led Danielle to the University of California Los Angeles where she is working towards a joint degree in law and public policy at the School of Law and the Luskin School of Public Affairs. Danielle is a rising 2L with specializations in Critical Race Studies and Public Interest and Public Law. She is a graduate teaching assistant in the School of Public Affairs. Last summer, Danielle externed for the Honorable Fernando Olguin at the Central District Court of California and started a research assistant position with the UCLA Critical Race Studies’ project, CRT Forward. When Danielle is not at school, she enjoys exploring LA beaches and hikes with her partner and dogs, Ari and Hazel.

Farah's Headshot

Second Vice President/Treasurer and WLALA Foundation Treasurer Farah Tabibkhoei is the founder and shareholder of Dominium Law, APC, which specializes in commercial litigation, managed care litigation, elder abuse, and judgment enforcement. Prior to forming Dominium Law, APC, Farah was in the Global Commercial Disputes Group at Reed Smith where her practice primarily focused on managed care, product liability, and commercial disputes.

Ms. Tabibkhoei has substantive experience defending managed care organizations in provider litigation and arbitrations involving the Knox-Keene Act, ERISA, the Affordable Care Act, fraudulent billing and prompt pay laws. She leads the telehealth task force and closely monitors the complex legal and regulatory issues arising from telehealth laws and regulations.

She also has substantial experience defending medical device manufacturers of Premarket-Approved and 510(k)-cleared medical devices facing complex product liability litigation involving recalls and FDA warning letters.

Ms. Tabibkhoei received her J.D. from USC Gould School of Law and is a magna cum laude graduate of UC Irvine. Ms. Tabibkhoei volunteers her time as a mentor with Legal Education Access Pipeline (LEAP), serves on the Pro Bono Advisory Council with Asian Americans Advancing Justice Los Angeles and has been a member of the WLALA Board of Governors since 2017.

In her spare time, she enjoys boating, hiking, reading, and exploring the Channel Islands.

WLALA Foundation Board Member Jazmine Smalley is the Pro Bono Coordinator and a Registered Legal Services Attorney at Inner City Law Center. Jazmine enlists pro bono counsel to provide eviction defense and wrap around legal support for low-income tenants in Los Angeles County. Throughout her academic and professional careers, she has been deeply dedicated to representing the interests of marginalized communities.


Before joining ICLC, Jazmine represented corporate clients in a variety of complex civil litigation matters relating to state constitutional law, securities, bankruptcy, and SEC and DOJ investigations. As part of her pro bono work, she has advised clients on a variety of matters, including housing law, asylum applications and consumer debt protection.

Cynthia's Headshot

Board of Governors Member Cynthia E. Organ was recently elevated to partner in Glaser Weil’s Litigation Department. She represents clients in state and federal courts and in arbitrations in a wide variety of matters, including employment, breach of contract, breach of fiduciary duty and trade secret actions. Cindy’s recent trial experience includes second chairing an eight-day jury trial and a ten-day arbitration.

Peter Weil, managing partner of Glaser Weil, recognized Cindy for her “immense dedication to the practice of law and a resounding commitment to the Firm, [her] clients and the broader community."

While in law school at the University of Southern California, Ms. Organ served as a judicial extern for the Honorable Phillip S. Gutierrez of the United States District Court for the Central District of California and a Content Editor of the Southern California Review of Law and Social Justice. After graduating from law school, Ms. Organ served as a judicial clerk for the Honorable Chief Justice F. Michael Kruse of the High Court of American Samoa. She received her undergraduate degree from Princeton University.

This is Ms. Organ’s fourth year serving on the Board of Governors of the Women Lawyers Association of Los Angeles.

WLALA Celebrates Investiture of

Board of Governors Member

Hon. Magdalena Reyes Bordeaux

as United States Bankruptcy Judge

On February 9th, 2023, WLALA members attended the Investiture Ceremony of Board of Governors Member Judge Magdalena Reyes Bordeaux as a United States Bankruptcy Judge in Riverside, California. Notably, Judge Reyes Bordeaux is the first Latina bankruptcy judge in the Ninth Circuit.

Celebrating in community at the investiture (from left to right): Board of Governors Member Maribel Reynoso-Blunt; Board of Governors Member Judge Magdalena Reyes-Bordeaux; and President Janet Hong.

WLALA President Janet Hong and President-Elect Jeannine Taylor Show Support for UCLA Law Women and Womxn of Color Collective's Galentine's Day Gala

On February 23rd, 2023, WLALA members showed their support for student organizations at UCLA School of Law: UCLA Law Women and the Womxn of Color Collective for their annual fundraiser. The "Galentine's Day Gala" celebrates the power of female solidarity. Notably, Board of Governors Member Leana Taing is a founding member of the Collective.

A joyful moment at the event (from left to right): Anissa McGregor; President-Elect Jeannine Taylor; President Janet Hong; WLALA Student Liaison Danielle Garcia; Board of Governors Member Leana Taing; and WLALA Member Samara Cidrim

Showing the true spirit of a supportive Galentine (from left to right): President Janet Hong; Anissa McGregor; Deliah Bayon; Trinity Haywood; and President-Elect Jeannine Taylor.

Now Available! Limited Edition WLALA Sweatshirt to Benefit the WLALA Foundation

Donate $100 to the WLALA Foundation Charitable Campaign and receive this luxurious and limited edition sweatshirt free! All proceeds go to our scholarships, fellowships and non-profit community partners.


WLALA Career Mentoring Committee Virtual Networking Event

Bet Tzedek Clinic
Bet Tzedek 3
Mentor Jet @ Pepperdine

Mentor Jet is a terrific way to meet and advise several law students in one evening. The program pairs mentor judges and lawyers with students who spend a short time chatting before moving on to a new pairing. The goal is to introduce students to a number of potential contacts in the legal community. Each year this program is a hit!


We welcome all mentors, but if you went to Pepperdine Law School we especially encourage you to join us. Email MentorJetRSVP@gmail.com to RSVP by March 13, 2023 or with any questions.

Apply to Join WLALA’s Nominating Committee

WLALA is accepting nominations for members of the 2023 Nominating Committee, which will interview and select the nominees for WLALA’s Executive Committee for the 2023-2024 year. The Nominating Committee consists of Immediate Past-President Mary McKelvey, President-Elect Jeannine Taylor, and five WLALA members, no more than three of whom may be current Board members. The five members will be elected by mail in or in person voting at the Sister Bar HerStory event on March 16th. Nominations for the committee must be made no later than 10 a.m. on March 6, 2023.


Anyone interested in serving on the Nominating Committee should email Mary McKelvey, Jeannine Taylor, or Kay Burt at info@wlala.org

Become a WLALA Officer

WLALA is accepting 2023-2024 Officer applications. If you have served on the WLALA Board for at least one year, you may seek election as an Officer. The deadline for submitting an application is March 31, 2023.


Inclusive Leadership Training

WLALA believes in supporting Women Leaders and in being a place where women leaders can grow their knowledge, develop their relationships, and hone their leadership skills. To that end, we are offering a unique experience to our WLALA members free of charge. This 4 hour, 2 part training series (includes 2 hour of bias CLE) will provide you with a solid understanding of Inclusive Leadership and will increase your performance as a leader. This training program is a "must-do" for anyone striving to be a DYNAMIC leader of the 21st Century. This is a rigorous and authentic training program that leaves you with practical skills, tools, guides and checklists that are sure to elevate and enhance your career, personal goals, networking.

Waiting list available.


WLALA Needs YOU Mentor a Law Student

WLALA needs attorney mentor volunteers like YOU since our increased presence in the legal community has led to increased participation among local law schools. WLALA's Law Student Mentoring Program pairs law student members with lawyer members to encourage and facilitate the development of women law students. Mentors and mentees are matched based on interests and background where possible. The program is flexible; mentors and mentees choose when and how to stay connected with one another, whether through e-mail, telephone, in-person meet ups, or a combination. Many participants find that the one-on-one mentoring relationship becomes a long-term friendship.


The WLALA Foundation Fran Kandel Public Interest Fellowship enables law students to work with an organization or individually to develop and implement a project in the field of public interest law in the spirit of Fran Kandel. The WLALA Foundation is a non-profit 501(c)(3) charitable organization created to increase the utility of the law as an instrument of social justice. Since 1985, the WLALA Foundation has awarded over 30 law student grants totaling over $137,000.

The WLALA Kandel Fellowship is designed to fund social justice-oriented projects with a tangible outcome. Strong preference is given to applicants who have the support of a sponsoring organization and who have arranged for an organization or suitable individual to supervise their project. Each Kandel Fellow may receive up to $6,000. This amount is intended to cover project expenses and provide a stipend.

The purpose of the WLALA Kandel Fellowship is to:

Provide help to the disadvantaged by funding original projects that will directly benefit the under-represented in the greater Los Angeles area; Educate and expose law students to legal concerns affecting the disadvantaged; and,

Encourage the legal community’s involvement in public interest law by funding students who show the capability of and commitment to assisting those in need.

Applications are due on April 14, 2023 by 5:00 p.m.


Food from the Bar is Back! 

Since 2009, WLALA has participated in the annual Food from the Bar campaign, a month-long friendly competition among law firms and legal offices to support the Los Angeles Regional Food Bank’s mission to make sure that no child in our community goes hungry. The month-long campaign (April 17th to May 31st) has raised over $6 million during the time it has been in existence in Los Angeles, and has become the major source of support for the Food Bank.

WLALA has participated each year of the Food from the Bar campaign through individual donations by WLALA members and volunteering at the Food Bank. There are opportunities for every WLALA to get involved in some way. Please save the dates for these important Food from the Bar events! 

March 26:  Kickoff Brunch

April 29, May 6, 13, 20:  Family & Friends Volunteer Days at Food Bank (for kids as young as five and up)

Pro Choice and Reproductive Rights Committee of WLALA, Board of Governors Member Vanessa Adriance and President Janet Hong Host Online Forum Featuring Erwin Chemerinsky, Dean of UC Berkeley School of Law

On February 24th, 2023, Dean Erwin Chemerinsky of UC Berkeley School of Law led a discussion on reproductive rights facilitated by President Janet Hong and Board of Governors Member Vanessa Adriance. In case you missed it, a recording of the discussion will be available soon.

WLALA Foundation Board Member Ji-In Houck will be a featured panelist for "Flying Solo" an event coordinated by the Asian Pacific American Bar Association and the San Gabriel Bar Association.

Welcome to Our New Members

Patricia Adams

Itzayary Aguilar

Morvarid Ahmadi

Kholood Alshami

Jessica Anvar

Destini Blunt

Violet Canelo

Carissa Casolair

Meshi Chitrit

Samara Cidrim

Stephanie Cook

Sarah Cork

Sylvia Ewald

Livia Espiritu

Eliana Farahat

Sophia Harrison

Jennifer Hays

Talia Horrow

Donald Karr

Reyna Lee

Jacqueline Lendvsi

Jessica Lim

Kelsey Lobisser

Beverly Luu

Madlen Hakobyan

Alyssa Martinez

Alisa McKissick

Elizabeth Monroe

Natalia Moya

Meyers Nave

Lillian Petruzzi

Callie Plapinger

Aris Prince

Jessica Slusser

  Grace Song

Julia Staudinger

Sophie Tohl

Lisa Von Eschen

Ronni Whitehead Otieno

Brittany Wiehe

Shonique Williams

Twila White

Local Bar Calendar
View Local Bar Calendar Here

We Need YOU!

For Committees, Sections and Liaisons

Did you know that WLALA is run almost entirely by volunteers? If you're interested in participating in WLALA Committees, Sections or acting as a Liaison, visit our website to find out more and sign up now!

Sign Up Here
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.
Visit WLALA'S Career Center
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.
View WLALA Webinar Recordings

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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