Wednesday, August 8 | 7:45am – 9:00am
Improv … Yes, And! Using Improv Techniques to Facilitate Negotiations, Improve Public Speaking, and Manage Stress
Royale, 6th Floor
Led by in-house attorneys who have studied and performed with Groundlings, Upright Citizens Brigade, Bovine Metropolis Theatre, Impro Theatre, the Denver Performing Arts Center, Studio ACT, and LA Theatresports, this interactive (and fun!) workshop will explore how improvisation techniques can make you a fearless public speaker, a better negotiator, a stronger team player, an expert networker, a nimble problem solver, and a happier person. Through a variety of on-your-feet games and exercises, you will learn the core improv philosophy of “yes, and”, and see how it can help transform your personal and professional lives for the better.
Speakers: Paul Marchegiani, Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc.; Jason Prussman, ADP, LLC
LGBT Bar Affiliates' Problem Solving Worksession: Programs, Events and Fundraising
Uris, 6th Floor
This workshop will discuss programming, law student engagement, event planning and execution, and fundraising techniques and strategies for affiliates of the LGBT Bar.
Generational Divides - The Legal and Ethical Issues of Managing Across 4 Generations
Majestic/Music Box, 6th Floor
At your next team meeting, look to your left and then look to your right. It may surprise you to learn that your colleagues represent four generations of corporate culture: Builders, Baby Boomers, Gen X, and Millennials. Speakers will outline strategies for bridging the generational divide to maximize efficiency in the workplace and will guide attendees through an interactive, multimedia-fueled presentation illustrating characteristics of the four generations and how generational bias impacts working relationships.
Speakers: Laura Maechtlen, Seyfarth Shaw LLP; Ariel Ruiz, Uber Technologies, Inc; Joseph Vardner, Wells Fargo
12 Step/Recovery Meeting
O’Neill, 4th Floor
Wednesday, August 8 | 9:00am – 10:30am
It Was Never About The Cake: Public Accommodations and Religious Refusals in the Aftermath of Masterpiece Cakeshop
Broadway N&S & Stage, 6th Floor
The Supreme Court’s decision in Masterpiece Cakeshop v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission is a narrow ruling, tailored at core to remedy the wrong the majority found in the Colorado Civil Rights Commission’s evaluation of whether baker Jack Phillips’ religious objections to making a wedding cake for Charlie Craig and Dave Mullins’ wedding should trump their protections under Colorado’s civil rights statute. While the Court made clear that its decision hinged on the Constitutional mandate that a State may not exhibit “hostility” in its laws, regulations, or enforcement thereof, it nonetheless opened the door to the potential for a flood of litigation seeking to resolve the tension between those who wish to have the freedom to discriminate in the name of religion, and those, such as the LGBT community, who wish to fully and freely access places of public accommodation under the protection of state and local laws. This plenary session will address a number of issues that remain after the decision, including what the decision means for governmental agencies such as the Colorado Commission assessing such claims in future; how the new claims being advanced by anti-equality forces differ doctrinally from classic religious conscience claims; how to address and advocate in partnership with other communities potentially harmed by the growing push to use private religious beliefs to discriminate in public and quasi-public spaces; what cases are in the pipeline that may shed more light and potentially reach the Court in the near future; and what the LGBT community can do to protect itself and the full promise of Obergefell.
Speakers: Louise Melling, American Civil Liberties Union; Jenny Pizer, Lambda Legal; Sirine Shebaya, Muslim Advocates; Ria Tabacco Mar, American Civil Liberties Union
Moderator: Doug NeJaime, Yale Law School
Wednesday, August 8 | 10:45am – 12:15pm
Supreme Court Review: 2017-2018 Term
Ziegfeld, 4th Floor
This panel will discuss and evaluate the decisions of the Supreme Court during the 2017-2018 Term. Issues involved in the decisions of and denials of certiorari by the Supreme Court include restrictions on medical abortion, political-based redistricting, voting roll purges, the fate of the travel ban, employee waivers of arbitration class actions, public employee union fees, cellphones and privacy, long-term jailing of immigrants fighting deportation, separation-of-powers concerns with the existing patent system, jurisdiction stripping, online merchants and sales taxes, sports betting, and the constitutionality of administrative law judges. Panel members will also discuss the implications of Justice Neil Gorsuch’s first full Term on the Supreme Court.
Speakers: David B. Cruz, University of Southern California Gould School of Law; Jon Davidson, Freedom for All Americans; Ilana Eisenstein, DLA Piper
Moderator: Hon. Alexander Fernández, United States Department of Housing and Urban Development
Legal Empowerment Strategies for Challenging Immigration Enforcement at the Federal, State and Local Levels
Majestic/Music Box, 6th Floor
Now is a time of monumental struggle for marginalized communities (LGBTQ and others) across the country. Some of the communities at greatest risk are diverse, multi-identity communities targeted by the Federal Government’s draconian immigration policies. This panel will explore multi-level strategies for building power and protecting communities in the immigration context. We will explore current sites of intense conflict, such as the battles over sanctuary cities, ICE enforcement at courthouses, and local collusion with federal enforcement efforts. The panel will also address legal and extra-legal challenges to federal immigration enforcement and will discuss legal interventions and strategies aimed at tackling both substantive immigration issues as well as issues of fear and community empowerment. The workshop will address the multiple levels of work needed to engage effectively with these issues and will discuss recent legal cases and real world examples of how this work can be effectively managed across legal, media, policy, and organizing spheres.
Speakers: Ivan Espinoza-Madrigal, Lawyer’s Committee for Civil Rights and Economic Justice; Inez Friedman-Boyce, Goodwin Proctor LLP; Eden Jequinto, Transgender Law Center; Oren Nimni, Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights and Economic Justice; Kevin O’Keefe, Choate, Hall & Stewart LLP; Keren Zwick, National Immigrant Justice Center
Religion and Reproductive Rights
Odets, 4th Floor
The religious right has waged a decades-long effort to limit and roll back legal gains for people seeking access to reproductive healthcare, particularly focused on those in marginalized communities, including LGBTQ people and people of color. While marriage equality and reproductive freedom are the law of the land, these legal protections are at risk from those who claim a right to special carve-outs from anti-discrimination laws and health regulations by asserting that they cannot be complicit in activities that violate their beliefs. Their claims have gained new strength since the 2016 elections, as political and judicial appointments at the federal and state levels have emboldened these forces and given them a new and dangerous platform to enact sweeping change. Hear from leading legal advocates about how recent national developments in religious-based discrimination impact reproductive rights and how the erosion of those rights threatens LGBTQ equality.
Speakers: Taylor Brown, Lambda Legal; Sunu Chandy, National Women’s Law Center; Julie Gonen, National Center for Lesbian Rights; Scott Ruskay-Kidd, Center for Reproductive Rights
The Overcriminalization of the LGBTQ+ Communities: A Public Defense Perspective
Wintergarden, 6th Floor
The statistical realities facing LGBTQ+ communities in the criminal justice system are dire: 20% to 40% of the LGBTQ+ community is verbally harassed during interactions with police, with higher rates reported by LGBTQ+ people of color, transgender and gender non-conforming people, and LGBTQ+ youth; 19% percent of LGBTQ+ individuals have heard a judge, attorney, or other court employee make negative comments about a person’s sexual orientation and/or gender identity and expression; LGBT individuals are over six times more likely to be sexually assaulted than the general prison population; and 85% of the incarcerated LGBTQ+ individuals have requested or were required to enter solitary confinement for safety reasons. This panel, made of public defenders representing regions across the country, will discuss the experience of low-income LGBTQ+ individuals, the majority of whom are people of color, in criminal courts across the United States. The panel will also discuss the challenges facing LGBTQ+ individuals, strategies for representation, and public policy reforms intended to protect the rights of LGBTQ+ people from the time of their arrest, to possible incarceration, and post incarceration and reentry.
Speakers: Jess Braverman, Hennepin County Public Defender’s Office; Kimberly Forte, Legal Aid Society; Michael Gibbons, Legal Aid Society; Adrien Leavitt, King County Department of Public Defense; Richard Saenz, Lambda Legal; Jared Trujillo, Legal Aid Society
Changes in Transgender Legal Protections Since Trump Took Office
Wilder, 4th Floor
From 2009 to 2017, Americans had a President who could actually say “transgender” in a polite and favorable way. During that time, numerous regulations were also enacted by various agencies and cabinet level departments creating rules and regulations that were favorable to transgender people. But, beginning with the inauguration of Donald Trump and the appointment of some in his Administration, many of these gains have been removed or are under attack. This panel will address these changes and discuss steps forward.
Speakers: Diana Flynn, Lambda Legal; Hon. Phyllis Frye, Frye, Benavidez, and O’Neal; Shannon Minter, National Center for Lesbian Rights; Harper Jean Tobin, National Center for Transgender Equality
The Changing Face of Parentage: Navigating Waters with LGBT Families
Plymouth, 6th Floor
Throughout history, states have expanded the scope of parentage, reforming domestic policies to meet cultural changes, advances in technology, and directives from the U.S. Supreme Court. Though Obergefell and Windsor ostensibly granted thousands of marital benefits to same-sex couples, LGBT individuals continue to face barriers to establishing stable, legally-recognized parent-child relationships. Legal controversies surround birth certificates, application of the presumption that a child born during marriage is the child of both spouses, and whether a state will recognize parental rights of more than two intended parents. Moreover, in many states, there remains no meaningful avenue for unmarried LGBT individuals to establish parentage to children born or adopted under the shadow of unconstitutional bans on same-sex marriage. Advocates must be prepared to skillfully apply the law when helping LGBT parents navigate these issues. This panel will provide an overview of LGBT parentage and discuss guidance from SCOTUS, current trends in expansion of the presumption doctrine, nuances of adoption, non-traditional parenting doctrines, and particular vulnerabilities of low-income families, including those in child welfare proceedings.
Speakers: Angie Martell, Iglesia Martell Law Firm, PLLC; Jennifer Weisberg Millner, Fox Rothschild LLP; Kerene Moore, Michigan Advocacy Program; Nancy Polikoff, American University Washington College of Law; Virginia Tent, Latham & Watkins
How to Succeed as a Lawyer without Really Trying! The Future of the LGBTQ Attorney
O’Neill, 4th Floor
Whether you want to take the big law path, work in government, serve in public interest, or go in-house, your career path isn’t going to be a straight line. You’ll need mentoring and guidance along every part of your journey. Our panel will focus on various tips, strategies, and priorities any attorney should be thinking about as they chart their course. Be prepared for an interactive and engaging presentation where we strive to use real life examples of career coaching.
Speakers: Elizabeth Hecht, GlaxoSmithKline; Sherman Helenese, Buchalter; Ken Sanchez, Reed Smith LLP; Keith Watts, Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Stewart, P.C.
Three Steps Forward, Two Steps Back: Advancing the Welfare of LGBTQ Youth in Out-of-Home Care
Palace, 6th Floor
LGBTQ youth are significantly overrepresented in out-of-home care and often experience worse outcomes than their straight and cisgender peers. The panelists will provide an overview of recent research, current reform efforts, and emerging legal issues regarding LGBTQ youth in out-of-home care. Based on their own practices, panelists will describe successful legal strategies, as well as obstacles, in the movement to prioritize and protect the interests of LGBTQ youth in child welfare and juvenile justice settings. The panel will also discuss direct representation of LGBTQ youth in family court, impact litigation in federal court challenging systemic practices and conditions, and state and federal policy advocacy.
Speakers: Currey Cook, Lambda Legal; Danielle King, Legal Aid Society; Christina Remlin, Children’s Rights
You Can't Take It With You: Evolving Issues in Enforcing Trade Secret Protections When Employees Leave
Uris, 6th Floor
This workshop will explore the challenges faced by mature and start-up companies in protecting their trade secrets and proprietary information that is increasingly digitized. Through an interactive discussion of hypothetical scenarios drawn from recent cutting-edge cases, workshop panelists will highlight their perspectives “as in-house and outside counsel, an IT security expert and a damages expert” to explore strategies to prevent employees from walking out the door with trade secrets; to protect against claims that could arise that a new employee has brought her prior employer’s trade secrets to the new company; to balance the need for heightened security against the need for access to information; and to determine the value of misappropriated information and other damages. The discussion will elicit perspectives on the cost-benefit of security measures and pursuing claims, the different remedies available under the federal Defend Trade Secrets Act and state variants of the Uniform Trade Secrets Act, and the sensitive question of how to protect customer relationships when customers may be a source of evidence.
Speakers: Jeffrey Bajorek, KPMG US LLP; Michael Barba, BDO USA LLP; Lauren Mutti, Southern Glazer’s Wine and Spirits; William Weinberger, Parker Milliken Clark O’Hara & Samuelian, A P. C.
Administrative Law: The Lawyer's Little-Known Sword and Shield
Royale, 6th Floor
Administrative Law: The Lawyer’s Little-Known Sword and Shield
When a client comes looking for help in fighting an unfair government action, achieving a critical business goal, or moving national policy in the right direction, you might not immediately think, “I wonder how administrative law can help?” But the law around how the government can create regulations, and what those regulations can do and say, offers lawyers a set of tools that can be critical in achieving the client’s goals. The last year has shown that these tools are only becoming more important in fighting off bad policy or advancing good policy. When dealing with the Federal Government, when a client or colleague asks in outrage, “Can they do that?”, the answer is often no — and it is often because of administrative law. Our workshop aims to give attendees the power to use administrative law arguments not only to defend against improper or unjust government actions, but also to challenge existing policies and bring about positive change. We will use examples drawn from two key policy areas (health care and energy/natural resources) and from work on behalf of pro bono clients and LGBT organizations to show how a deep knowledge of administrative law can make the difference between winning and losing. The workshop will begin with a brief tally of the administrative law tools at the lawyer’s disposal, then move on to case studies in which attendees will be asked to use those tools to find creative ways to win their case or achieve their client’s goal. The workshop will focus on federal administrative law but also will touch on ways to use similar weapons in fighting or changing state and local policy.
Speakers: Andrew Furlow, Hogan Lovells US LLP; Barbara Jones, AARP Foundation; Zachary Launer, Hogan Lovells US LLP, Hon. Kristin Rosi, California Department of Insurance
Wednesday, August 8 | 2:00pm – 3:30pm
Teaching Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity
This workshop is intended for individuals who teach, have taught, or will teach Sexual Orientation/Gender Identity courses in law school or undergraduate settings. The workshop will be structured as a facilitated roundtable discussion, in which participants are invited to share syllabi and course materials on a voluntary basis and will discuss the challenges of building a syllabus for a course in a highly fluid area of law. All faculty are welcome regardless of tenurial status, and we especially invite adjuncts to join the discussion.
Speaker: Leonore Carpenter, Temple University Beasley School of Law
On the Battlefront: Advocating for Trans-Inclusive Healthcare Coverage
As Affordable Care Act regulations remain under attack, transgender community members continue to face obstacles to obtaining coverage of medically-necessary healthcare under private and public health insurance policies. This panel will provide a review of common coverage issues under marketplace, Medicare, Medicaid, and employer-based plans, and discuss advocacy techniques. Issues will include explicit exclusion of all transition-related healthcare, implicit exclusion through prohibitions on cosmetic services, and meeting diagnostic criteria for medical necessity. Practitioners will discuss preservation of rights in the administrative hearing context, strategic litigation, as well as the impact of pending federal court decisions on ongoing litigation. Finally, the panel will share the nuts and bolts of outreach initiatives aimed at supporting clients through the claims process. Audience members will also be invited to join an interactive discussion on other successful outreach efforts across the country. Come prepared to discuss what efforts have worked in your state, and learn what measures have been successful in others.
Speakers: Jay Kaplan, American Civil Liberties Union; Noah E. Lewis, Transcend Legal; Kerene Moore, Michigan Advocacy Program; Amy Nelson, Whitman-Walker Health; Liza Thantranon, Legal Services of Northern California
The Stonewall Generation's Lasting Legacy: A Strategy for Planned Giving
Today’s LGBTQ elders – those in their 50s and older – comprise the single best estate-giving demographic in history. This “Stonewall Generation” has the potential to gift billions of dollars to the LGBTQ movement and community organizations. These elders’ legacy gifts can provide for those LGBTQ nonprofits that advocate for and meet the needs of LGBTQ people – both now and for generations to come. Indeed, these legacy gifts have the potential to transform our community and its organizations from a largely hand to mouth existence to one with resources sufficient not only to meet challenges that may arise from changing political environments, but actually abundant enough to discourage the development of those challenges in the first place. Building on this premise, a group of LGBTQ-focused funders and leaders of LGBTQ organizations came together in 2015 to form the National Task Force on LGBTQ Planned Giving. After more than a year’s work, the group drafted a blueprint for a national campaign to foster awareness, knowledge, and action within the community. Three of the task force’s fifteen members – Roger Doughty, Jerry Chasen, and Thai Pham– are part of this panel. The fourth member of the panel, Deb Kinney, is a well-known San Francisco estate planning attorney. The panel will be moderated by Judi O’Kelley, Chief Program Officer of the LGBT Bar Association. For nearly everyone making a planned or legacy gift, attorneys will be a vital part of the process. Attorneys have a critical role to play – both for their LGBTQ clients and, simultaneously, in helping to realize our community’s tremendous opportunity. We will discuss the context for this effort, including the various reasons why the potential for the LGBTQ community is so vast; one organization’s experience in working with attorneys and the lessons taught by the experience; the ethical and practical aspects of engaging with clients in discussions of planning (including a discussion of messages that resonate in conversations about legacy giving); and end with an open discussion about this campaign’s ambitions and implementation.
Speakers: Jerry Chasen, SAGE; Roger Doughty, Horizons Foundation; Deb Kinney, Johnston, Kinney & Zulaica LLP; Judi O’Kelley, The National LGBT Bar Association
Developing a Career in ADR
Major ADR organizations, including AAA and CPR, have been working to increase diversity, including among LGBT-identified people, in the ranks of ADR. This panel discussion will include ADR practitioners as well as representatives of AAA and CPR to address how to build an ADR practice, the role of the ADR organizations, and the efforts to increase diversity in the area.
Speakers: Olivier Andre, International Institute for Conflict Prevention & Resolution; William Crosby, Interpublic Group; Linda Kagan, The Kagan Law Group; Jeffrey T. Zaino, American Arbitration Association
Federal Benefits for LGBT Spouses/Partners and Children
This panel address how recognition of marriage, non-marital legal relationships, and non-biological parentage by Social Security and Medicare can be integrated with your estate and life planning consultations. Both the Social Security Administration and Medicare have responded to transgender citizens in relationship recognition and treatment. The federal Office of Personnel Management has also produced online materials helpful to LGBT clients who are employed or retired. Panelists will highlight the Office of Personnel Management’s “Benefits for LGBT Federal Employees and Annuitants: Questions and Answers.” If you practice in areas of law other than estate and life planning, this presentation can help you help yourself, your friends, and your family members who will need federal safety net support and provide material for your public presentations on LGBT marriage developments.
Speakers: Cynthia Barrett, Cynthia L. Barrett P.C.; Joan Burda, Attorney at Law; Carrington “Rusty” Mead, Carrington Madison Mead, Esquire; Krisztina Szabo, Whitman-Walker Health
Transition and Transvisibility in Law Firms: Handling the Transition and Practicing After Transition.
Ziegfeld, 4th Floor
Panelists will discuss the pressures, responsibility, and pride that goes with being one of the few transgender lawyers in traditional law firm settings as well as what they believe they did that worked, what did not work, and what they would have done differently. This panel’s goals are to 1) Increase awareness of transition in commercial law practice and the ability of people and firms to accept transitioning attorneys. 2) Provide role models and examples to other closeted or emerging transgender law students and lawyers and to their firms in order to promote acceptance and integration of transgender people in commercial law practice. 3) Highlight the strategies for dealing with the challenges of being transvisible in law firms, the Bar, and the community.
Speakers: Robyn Gigl, GluckWalrath LLP; Danielle Joy Healey, Fish & Richardson, P.C.; Kelly Largey, Fish & Richardson, P.C.; Blake Liggio, Goodwin Procter LLP; Maryellen Madden, Buchanan Ingersoll & Rooney PC; Sara Schnorr, Locke Lord LLP
Ending the Fraud: Utilizing Consumer Protection Laws to Combat Conversion Therapy
Few practices hurt LGBTQ people more than attempts to “change” their sexual orientation or gender identity. However, licensed professionals continue to subject LGBTQ people to this dangerous practice, defrauding LGBTQ people through the misrepresentation that sexual orientation and gender identity can be changed at will. This panel of experts in the movement to end conversion therapy, including a survivor of conversion therapy, will provide an overview of existing laws expressly curtailing conversion therapy, and will discuss how general consumer protection laws in any state can be utilized to protect LGBTQ people from this quackery.
Speakers: Paul Burke, Ray Quinney & Nebeker; Xavier Persad, Human Rights Campaign; Carolyn Reyes, National Center for Lesbian Rights; Mathew Shurka, #BornPerfect Campaign
Improving Laws and Policies to Protect LGBTQ Sex Workers
This workshop will provide a general overview of how criminal laws and the criminal justice system harm LGBTQ people – with particular harm to transgender women, LGBTQ people of color, and LGBTQ homeless youth. A major focus of the workshop will be a presentation and discussion of the findings of a research project on sex workers in DC and how the criminal justice system affects their health and well-being. The research was conducted by Georgetown Law Center’s O’Neill Institute; Whitman-Walker Health; and HIPS, a DC-based organization that promotes the health, rights, and dignity of individuals and communities impacted by sexual exchange and/or drug use due to choice, coercion, or circumstance. The research included three focus groups with a total of 27 individuals and in-depth interviews with 12 advocates, law enforcement personnel, public health officials, legislators, and legislative staff. We will share policy recommendations based on our research to safeguard the rights of LGBT people trading sex and to address challenges that sex workers face when seeking legal and social services. In addition, we will discuss activities of DC’s Sex Worker Advocates Coalition (SWAC), and the introduction of a ground-breaking bill in DC that would decriminalize consensual sexual commercial transactions between adults.
Speakers: Sean Bland, O’Neill Institute for National and Global Health Law; Daniel Bruner, Whitman-Walker Health; Kara Ingelhart, Lambda Legal; Johanna Margeson, HIPS
Cross Border Equality: LGBT+ and Intersectionality in the US and UK Legal Sector
An overview and roundup of hot topics for LGBT+ and intersectionality/multiple identities, including research/thought leadership, regulation, and best practice, discussed by our panel of legal practitioners and D&I experts. Topics covered will include:
• Overview of the InterLaw Diversity Forum’s 2012 report Career Progression in the Legal Sector, which surveyed over 2000 UK lawyers from all strands of diversity and social mobility, and will preview some of the findings of the report’s 2018 update.
• Discussion of the ABA Model Diversity Survey, its content and signatories, as well as its impact on LGBT+ and intersectionality/multiple identities.
• Exploration of intersectionality in order to support and advance LGBT lawyers, being mindful of the additional facets to their individual senses of identity such as gender, race, ethnicity, ability status, religion, etc. that contribute to their sense of wholeness and uniqueness.
• Inquiry into what makes a successful LGBT attorney. Whether students just beginning to contemplate a legal career or established professionals with decades of experience, LGBT attorneys will find the greatest success if they balance work on diversity and inclusion issues with achieving and maintaining excellence in their chosen practice area.
Speakers: Gretchen Bellamy, Bellamy Management Consulting LLC; Brian Winterfeldt, Winterfeldt IP Group; Daniel Winterfeldt, Reed Smith LLP; Sandra Yamate, Institute for Inclusion in the Legal Profession
Trauma-Informed Legal Practice
In many practice areas, our job as attorneys is to support traumatized clients in rendering their painful experiences legible, credible, and able to neatly fit into legal frameworks of relief. When we work with incarcerated clients, detained clients, clients who are the targets of institutional and state violence and oppression, and clients who are otherwise at intersections of identity and experience that coexist with significant trauma, it is our responsibility as ethical practitioners to best serve them by ensuring that we are culturally competent to work with that trauma. In many cases, we find ourselves grappling with the physiological, psychological, and somatic effects of our client’s trauma without having any tools to understand or support those effects, or the secondary effects on ourselves. In this workshop, a panel of attorneys and advocates who provide direct services to a wide range of populations will discuss the concrete effects of trauma on the brain and body; how to build trust in attorney-client relationships; work towards your client’s physical and emotional safety; and support clients through interviews, triggers, testimony, and more. Working with traumatized clients, particularly as a member of an affected population, requires a constant practice to prevent secondary and vicarious trauma as well, and this panel will discuss strategies to ensure that our work to support clients in crisis is as sustainable as possible. We live, and have learned how to practice law, in a world infused both by trauma and by ignorance about trauma. It is valuable to share space openly about it and to gain skills to take better care of our clients and ourselves.
Speakers: Virginia Goggin, NYC Anti-Violence Project; Andy Izenson, Diana Adams Law & Mediation, PLLC; Jack Saul, International Trauma Studies Program
Wednesday, August 8 | 3:45pm – 5:15pm
This caucus meeting represents the launch of a new National LGBT Bar Prosecutors’ group, and is designed to provide prosecutors in all areas of government with an opportunity to network with colleagues and discuss emerging issues, particularly those impacting the LGBT community. All prosecutors are invited to participate.
Facilitators: Matthew Jannusch, Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office and Michael Pattarozzi, Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office
Law Professor Caucus
This interactive caucus, an informal continuation of the prior session “Teaching Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity,” provides current professors an opportunity to network with other professors and discuss emerging issues impacting the LGBT community. All law professors are invited to participate.
The First Amendment's Promise for LGBTQ Communities
In the midst of apprehension regarding the First Amendment’s threat to LGBTQ rights, this panel will explore the First Amendment’s historical role in protecting LGBTQ communities and its untapped potential to further advance LGBTQ rights. While attempts to undermine LGBTQ rights with the First Amendment, such as the Masterpiece Cakeshop litigation, must be stopped, the LGBTQ and ally community must be careful not to erode a right which has been, and should continue to be, a great friend to the LGBTQ community.
Speakers: Carlos Ball, Rutgers Law School; William Eskridge, Yale Law School; Nan Hunter, Georgetown University Law Center; Scott Skinner-Thompson, University of Colorado Law School
Be the Change You Want to See: Starting an LGBTQ Advocacy Organization
The LGBTQ community has been under unprecedented attack since the 2016 presidential election. The community has scored a number of major litigation victories since that time, but lobbying, public education, and electoral work are key parts of a winning strategy. Statewide LGBTQ groups play an essential role in this process as divided government at the federal level continues to impede progress on our community’s legislative priorities nationally. This panel will bring together the co-founders of Equality New York and its outside pro bono counsel to discuss incorporating your entity, obtaining non-profit or tax-exempt status, forming a board of directors, fundraising, and establishing legislative and advocacy priorities.
Speakers: Megan Bell, Patterson Belknap Webb & Tyler LLP; Gabriel Blau, Independent Consultant; Brian Esser, Law Office of Brian Esser PLLC; Matthew McMorrow, New York City’s Mayor’s Office
Undermining LGBTQ Equality and Inclusion in Education, Family Formation, and Public Accommodations: The Rise of State Religious Refusal Laws
Many public colleges and universities have long had all-comers policies that require student organizations receiving financial and other support from the institution not to discriminate against students based on race, sex, religion, sexual orientation, or gender identity. The Supreme Court upheld these all-comers policies as constitutional in the Christian Legal Society v. Martinez decision in 2010. However, the last several years have seen a rise in states introducing and passing legislation undermining inclusive all-comers policies at public colleges and universities, allowing student organizations to discriminate against students under the guise of religious beliefs. Panelists will discuss the rise in various religious refusal bills across the country including anti-all-comers bills, limited public forum bills, and religious exemptions for service providers. Panelists will also discuss current litigation and what is likely to come.
Speakers: Currey Cook, Lambda Legal; Breanna Diaz, Human Rights Campaign; Alison Gill, American Atheists, Inc.; Rose Saxe, American Civil Liberties Union
Sabotage: Protecting and Enforcing LGBTQ Health Rights Under Trump
The Affordable Care Act (ACA) brought significant advances in health care coverage and protections for LGBTQ communities. These protections particularly benefited some of the most vulnerable populations in our community, like immigrants, transgender people, and people living with HIV/AIDS, where stigma, discrimination, and lack of access to quality care has exacerbated health care disparities. However, these advances are under threat as the Trump Administration attempts to roll back key non-discrimination and privacy protections for LGBTQ individuals and families; eliminate requirements to cover services like HIV treatment in several major health coverage programs; cut eligibility for the Medicaid program, where 42% of people living with HIV/AIDS receive their care; and end expanded coverage options which have allowed an estimated one million LGBTQ individuals to gain health coverage over the last four years. This panel will discuss recent legislative and administrative attempts to repeal or undermine ACA protections and standards.
Speakers: Abbi Coursolle, National Health Law Program; Sally Friedman, Legal Action Center; Krisztina Szabo, Whitman-Walker Health; Wayne Turner, National Health Law Program; Jackie Vimo, National Immigration Law Center
Breaking ID Barriers: Progress and Possibilities in ID Policy Work and Litigation
Identity document policies have continued to improve over the last year, making it possible for transgender people to obtain accurate gender markers in additional states without undergoing unnecessary and unwanted medical treatment. However, efforts to improve policies in some states have dragged on for years with no progress in sight, and so, in a few states, transgender people have resorted to the courts to challenge outdated ID laws. Hear from lawyers working on these cases about the considerations that led to filing those cases, arguments the courts are finding persuasive, and the challenges they are facing, as well as their assessment of where and when we are likely to see progress in the courts. In other states, we continue to see progress in legislative and policy work to ease the barriers transgender people face in access to ID documents. States have removed outdated surgical requirements, and some have removed entirely the requirement for medical providers to confirm a gender change, replacing that with a self-attestation standard. ID policies are also finally embracing the needs of non-binary people by making it possible for a person to choose a non-binary option for their ID documents. Join us in discussing the goals and priorities of this work moving forward, the strategies that have worked in states where we’ve seen recent progress, and some of the considerations and concerns we may need to work through as we move to include non-binary options.
Speakers:Gabriel Arkles, American Civil Liberties Union; Arli Christian, National Center for Transgender Equality; Corinne Greene; Transgender Law Center; Kara Ingelhart, Lambda Legal;
Legal Services Caucus
This interactive caucus provides attorneys an opportunity to network with other legal services advocates and to discuss emerging issues that impact low-income LGBT clients. We will discuss challenges to outreach, successful community partnerships, best intake practices, special needs of the transgender community, increasing cultural competency, and strategies for navigating within the changing socio-political climate. All advocates that provide services to low-income clients are invited to participate.
Speakers: Lisa Cisneros, California Rural Legal Assistance, Inc.; Kimberly Forte, Legal Aid Society; Kerene Moore, Michigan Advocacy Program; Ming Wong, National Center for Lesbian Rights
Building a Rewarding Legal Practice - Networking and Client Development Strategies for LGBTQ+ Attorneys
This workshop will focus on strategies and considerations in building a successful and rewarding legal practice. Panelists include partners and counsel from large law firms, in-house lawyers and solo / smaller firm lawyers. Topics of discussion will include: Finding the right home and platform to build the type of practice that you want to pursue as an openly LGBTQ+ lawyer; LGBTQ+ and other community-driven marketing and networking; Responding to client-driven LGBTQ+ and other diversity requests; Networking opportunities through employer LGBTQ+ and other affinity groups; Networking in the era of social media; and Client retention and cross-marketing.
Speakers: Ailyn Abin, Celgene Corporation; John Hendricks, Hendricks Law, P.C.; Noah Kressler, Baker Donelson; Erin Law, Morgan Stanley; John Owen, Jones Day
Collaborative Practice: A More Peaceful Way to Restructure Families
Collaborative Practice, sometimes known as Collaborative Divorce, is a voluntary process in which couples and families settle disputes without resorting to litigation. Collaborative Practice provides each party with the support and guidance of their own lawyer, along with the benefit of mental health professionals, child specialists, and financial professionals, all working together as a team to help the family craft a solution that fits their unique needs. Because Collaborative Practice is designed around the unique needs of each family, and the process is controlled by the family, it is especially suited for the LGBT community. In Collaborative Practice, each person, including professionals, commits to: negotiate a mutually acceptable resolution without having courts decide issues; maintain open communication and information sharing; and create shared solutions acknowledging the highest priorities of all. Many couples find Collaborative Practice to be a welcome alternative to the often destructive, and sometimes very expensive aspects of court proceedings. Thousands of Collaborative attorneys around the world have also found it to be a healthier path for them than adversarial litigation. Some forward-thinking Collaborative professionals are now using it to help prevent family conflict, in the context of prenuptial agreements and family creation agreements. This workshop will introduce participants to the basics of Collaborative Practice, with ample opportunity for discussion, debate, questions, and information about how to connect to a Collaborative community near you.
Speakers: Carol L. Buell, Carol L. Buell Law & Mediation, PLLC; Teresa Calabrese, Mediation & Law Office of Teresa D. Calabrese; Ellen Fischer, Fenningham, Dempster & Coval, LLP; Shireen B. Meistrich, International Academy of Collaborative Professionals; Anne Tamar-Mattis, International Academy of Collaborative Professionals
Breaking Down LGBTQ Bias in the Legal Profession: Lessons from the National ABA/BBI Project
Too often, the LGBTQ community and those with disabilities are not included in efforts to expand career and professional diversity, especially in the legal profession. To address this issue, the American Bar Association (“ABA”) recently launched a first-of-its-kind nationwide study, conducted by the Burton Blatt Institute at Syracuse University (“BBI”). The study identifies the biases and other barriers encountered by LGBTQ and disabled lawyers and will help develop and implement strategies to ameliorate such biases. This project examines the unique challenges that people of differing sexual orientations and gender identities and people with disabilities face in the legal profession, and the intersectionality associated with these groups. Join this panel to learn about initial findings from this groundbreaking study, which is part of the ABA Pathway to the Profession Project, and to gain insight into what benchmarks and strategies for inclusiveness may be developed as a result of this research. Attendees will get an inside look at this study from the lead researchers and have an opportunity to explore and experience the topic in-depth.
Speakers: Ynesse Abdul-Malak, Syracuse University; Wesley Bizzell, Altria Client Services LLC; Peter Blanck, Syracuse University; Malcolm ‘Skip’ Harsch, American Bar Association
Thursday, August 9 | 7:45am – 9:00am
The LGBTQ Experience Inside the Dependency System
The challenges of the LGBTQ community are varied and wide, but they can be particularly exacerbated by the dependency system. With high rates of LGBTQ youth in the dependency system, it is increasingly important for participants in the dependency system to eliminate their own personal biases in order to better serve this population in need. Hearing from individuals that live and work within the dependency system, from foster youth that are struggling to come out of the closet or are questioning as well as from self-identified LGBTQ foster parents and lawyers who are working to eliminate barriers for all of those involved, will help shed light on the biases that still exist even in the most liberal of settings. In this workshop, you will learn recent sociological information about the foster care system and LGBTQ foster youth. Panelists will encourage participants to self-reflect on their own biases and invite the audience to participate in an open discussion using several hypothetical situations to help participants become aware of how bias manifests and how to better connect with clients.
Speakers: David Bell, Children’s Law Center of California; Sharra Greer, Children’s Law Center; Justin Guzman, Children’s Law Center of California; Yvette Letelier, Families Uniting Families
LGBT Bar Affiliates' Problem Solving Worksession: Compliance, Administration and Communications
This workshop will discuss compliance, administration, and communications techniques and strategies for affiliates of the LGBT Bar.
How Polyamory is Important and Why It Should Be Protected
While many people have misconceptions about polyamory, it is in fact simply a structure of family that differs from marriage between two people. American marriage laws are embedded with racism, sexism, ableism, and class discrimination; as a result, some people hesitate to enter into marriage, and polyamory offers an alternative. Moreover, polyamorous relationships can provide benefits that monogamous relationships cannot, including stability for families in the absence of a parent. Join our panel for a robust discussion of the ways in which polyamorous relationships provide different benefits than marriage and how several of our panelists are working to obtain legal protections for poly families.
Speakers: Bex Caputo, BexTalksSex; Ruby Bouie Johnson, Inamorata LLC; Ben Schenker, Law Office of Benjamin Schenker; Christopher N. Smith, Howard University
Economic Justice for LGBTQ Communities: National Poverty Report & Organizing Network
Belasco, 5th Floor
While the LGBTQ community has experienced a wide-range of legal and policy gains, sectors of this population continue to experience high rates of poverty and social instability. In 2014, several national groups convened to strategize about LGBTQ economic justice advocacy-forming the LGBTQ Poverty Collaborative. Members of this collaborative include the Williams institute, SAGE, The Valid Group, the National LGBTQ Task Force, the National Center for Lesbian Rights, and Whitman-Walker Health. Since 2015, the Collaborative has convened over 200 advocates and service providers in cities across the country to identify community needs and develop replicable policy solutions, resulting in a dynamic report of key local and federal policy recommendations. The legal and policy issues covered in the report highlighted the intersection of poverty in the LGBTQ community with race, criminal justice, immigration, health, work, housing, and other experiences in our communities. Come hear from some of the individuals who worked on this report and discuss innovative policy recommendations that resulted from our eight city-based consultations. This workshop will also explore strategies to build, maintain, and direct collective momentum in a productive and effective manner.Ivan Espinoza-Madrigal, Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights and Economic Justice; Priya Lane, Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights and Economic Justice; Amira Hasenbush, The Law Office of Amira Hasenbush
The Impact of the Legalization of Marijuana on American Jurisprudence
This presentation will discuss the legal history of marijuana to date and how it is impacting the law. There are currently 29 states that have some form of marijuana legalization. These recreational and medical marijuana laws have impacted almost every facet of the law and the courts. It has impacted driving laws, workplace laws, landlord/tenant laws, and banking/bankruptcy laws, to name a few. It has also impacted drug and alcohol testing at the roadside, in the courts, in probation, in the workplace, etc. The legal history of marijuana in the U.S. from its inception to prohibition to the Marijuana Tax Act to the pertinent U.S. Supreme Court cases of Raich and Leary are of growing interest, especially due to the Trump Administration’s federal policy regarding state marijuana laws. Constitutional issues are implicated as localities argue with states and states argue with the Federal Government. This presentation will also explore the 10th Amendment, due process, and equal protection arguments.
Speakers: Hon. Mary Celeste, Retired
12 Step/Recovery Meeting
Thursday, August 9 | 9:00am – 10:30am
Crisis In The Courts: The Future of LGBT Equality and the Federal Judiciary
Federal judicial appointments are lifetime appointments and are thus long-lasting legacies of presidential administrations, with the potential to dramatically shift the direction of the nation in a number of key areas. Both recent appointments and ongoing federal judicial appointee hearings have been causes of concern for the legal and LGBT communities this year as well as for other marginalized communities. Some experts believe that these recent appointments are a true legal crisis and are the most present danger to the LGBT community’s fight for equality. What will the hostile government appointments mean for the LGBT community, both in the short and long terms? Our speakers will discuss the impacts of recent judicial appointments and upcoming nominees, their importance and potential consequences, and the role of federal courts in our country.
Speakers: Sasha Buchert, Lambda Legal; Praveen Fernandes, Constitutional Accountability Center; and Elie Mystal, Above the Law
Moderator and Panelist: Eric Lesh, The LGBT Bar Association of Greater New York
Thursday, August 9 | 10:45pm – 12:15pm
Advocating Zealously for Your LGBTQ clients: An Intersectional Approach
This is an interactive workshop where participants will review and discuss the professional responsibilities of attorneys and how we as members and allies of the LGBTQ community can support, counsel, and advocate for our diverse LGBTQ clients inside and outside of the courtroom. In this workshop, we will talk about what it means to show up in an intersectional way for your clients and will discuss ways that implicit bias impacts our level of advocacy, particularly when working with LGBTQ people of color (POC) and other minority clients. We will discuss personal issues and concerns that keep us from exploring personal biases and challenge our individual perspectives to recognize triggers for implicit bias and develop techniques and methods to deal with them. The purpose of this workshop is to challenge the way we think, feel, and act towards our diverse minority clients.
Speakers: Jean Philips, New Mexico Legal Aid; Crystal Monique Richardson, Law Office of Crystal M. Richardson PLLC; Connie J. Vetter, Connie J. Vetter, Attorney at Law
The Aftermath of Masterpiece Cakeshop: Continuing the Conversation
This workshop brings together some of our movement’s great minds to continue the conversation begun at the Wednesday plenary on the aftermath of the Masterpiece Cakeshop decision. Our panelists will expand upon the plenary topic, focusing particularly upon how the Supreme Court’s ruling and the growing deference in state legislatures to religious refusals is likely to impact the trajectory of the LGBTQ equality movement, as well as how they may impact other marginalized identity groups.
Speakers: Rose Saxe, American Civil Liberties Union; Diana Flynn, Lambda Legal; Sharita Gruberg, Center for American Progress; Elizabeth Reiner Platt, Columbia Law School; Reva Siegel, Yale Law School
Establishing Family Equality: New Developments in Laws Protecting Intended Parents
This workshop will cover how different states have treated intended parents using assisted reproduction to conceive and developing law in this area. Panelists will address issues arising in states with no law on point, states with case law, states with statutes on point, and the new Uniform Parentage Act of 2017. They will offer current strategies for developing this area of law through litigation and legislation.
Speakers: Jodi Argentino, Argentino Family Law & Child Advocacy, LLC; Alana Chazan, Chazan Family Law, P.C.; Brett Figlewski, The LGBT Bar Association of Greater New York; Rebecca Levin, Jerner & Palmer, P.C.; Emily Haan, National Center for Lesbian Rights
Non-binary and Intersex Rights: Explosion of Growth; Vacuum of Understanding
The past two years have seen the beginning of an explosion in visibility and rights for people whose sex or gender is outside of the binary male and female system, with over a dozen jurisdictions having addressed the issue in some way. There has been litigation and legislation regarding the rights of people who are intersex to bodily autonomy and of people who are non-binary to accurate gender markers. There are other important legal issues related to restrooms, marriage, medicine, and the rights of minors involved. If we are to someday live in a world that recognizes that sex, gender identity, and sexual orientation have endless variations, with all possibilities valued and respected, we all need to understand these issues. Join this panel discussion addressing recent developments and what comes next.
Speakers: Toby Adams, Intersex & Genderqueer Recognition Project; Charlie Arrowood, Transcend Legal; Celeste Fiore, Argentino Family Law & Child Advocacy, LLC; J. Remy Green, Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson LLP; Alesdair H. Ittelson, interACT; Andy Izenson, Diana Adams Law & Mediation, PLLC; Shawn Thomas Meerkamper, Transgender Law Center
News, Fake News, and the State of the Free Press in 2018
For journalists and the lawyers who defend them, these can be challenging, energizing, and frustrating times. While derided by some powerful voices as an “enemy of the people,” the importance of a free, robust, and uninhibited Fourth Estate has seldom been clearer. This panel will discuss the state of the free press in 2018 and the challenges faced by journalists in the trenches and the lawyers working with them who together protect the public’s right to remain informed. Our guest journalists and attorneys will discuss, among other things, how the legal imperatives have evolved since the 2016 election, including: responses to frequent critiques from the highest levels of our government, threats to revise defamation law, the use of anonymous sources, and media litigation strategies. We will consider the rise of “fake news,” both as a pejorative hurled at mainstream media and as a legitimate threat, particularly to marginalized communities. The panel will also share their thoughts on the importance of a free press to minority populations and the tools at our disposal to maintain the integrity of our storytelling.
Speakers: Aaron Katersky, ABC News; Marian Porges, NBCUniversal Media, LLC; Linda Steinman, Davis Wright Tremaine LLP; Bryan Tallevi, NBCUniversal Media, LLC; Lam Phuy Vo, Buzzfeed
Workshop Sponsor Shell Oil Company presents: Hitting the Restart Button on Law Firm Diversity
Law firms have had diversity committees for decades now. Firms have been sponsoring activities that promote diversity, recruiting at diversity job fairs, and responding to client demands for diverse teams. Despite this decades-long investment, law firm partnerships and executive committees remain overwhelmingly white and overwhelming male. Research from the National Association of Law Placement (“NALP”) reveals that, despite decades of this so-called commitment to diversity, as of 2017, only 8.42% of law firm partners were minorities and only 22.7% were women. When we dig into these statistics, the findings are even more concerning. Only 1.83% of law firm partners in 2017 were black, and only 2.4% were Hispanic. In any industry, this return on investment would be unacceptable. Yet, law firms continue to have diversity committees, continue to sponsor activities that promote diversity, continue to recruit at diversity job fairs, and continue to do their best to build diverse teams for client matters. In other words, law firms continue to engage in the same activities that have resulted in poor results. Join a panel of law firm partners, in-house counsel, and experienced diversity professionals who will discuss what has worked and what has not. Panelists will offer new strategies to create an inclusive environment, retain diverse talent for partnership opportunities, and open new markets.
Speakers: Marla Butler, Robins Kaplan LLP; Vincent A. Castiglione, Attorney At Law; Elizabeth Davis, Burr & Forman, LLP; Richard Smith, Benton+Bradford Consulting; Michelle Waites, Xerox Corporation
Brave New World: What is on the Horizon for LGBT Elders
If you’re a lawyer who works with LGBT older adults, you are likely wondering what the legal and policy horizons look like for them. In this session, we will discuss the current rights transgender older adults have in housing (including long-term care settings), health care (yes, the Affordable Care Act is still law), and federal safety net programs (such as Social Security, SSI, Medicare, and Medicaid). We will also address challenges LGBT older adults face in accessing aging services and supports and opportunities for overcoming those challenges through advocacy and policy change. In addition, we will review our victories over the past year, how the current Administration and Congress are still attempting to roll back hard-won rights, and what you and your clients can do to fight back. Panelists will also ask the audience: What other questions do you have about the intersection of LGBT-specific rights and aging?
Speakers: Karen Loewy, Lambda Legal; Murray Scheel, Whitman-Walker Health; Aaron Tax, SAGE
LGBTQ Employment Law in Practice
Panelists will present and discuss materials from panelist Don Davis’ LexisNexis LGBTQ Employment Law Practice Guide, focusing on practical guidance for representing LGBTQ plaintiffs in employment discrimination actions and counseling employers on achieving best practices and compliance with the evolving legal landscape in this area. Panelist Don Davis is co-author of the Lexis Nexis/Matthew Bender LGBTQ Employment Law Practice Guide and practices exclusively in the area of employment law, having represented both plaintiffs and employers in LGBTQ-specific employment matters. Panelist Omar Gonzalez-Pagan is part of the Lambda Legal litigation team representing impact plaintiffs and appellants such as Jameka Evans in key cases seeking a common-sense interpretation of Title VII’s prohibition on sex discrimination to include sexual orientation discrimination. Panelist Michael Stevens has been involved in organizing and presenting at the Lavender Law Employment Law Institute in the past. A senior associate with Seyfarth Shaw, Michael practices primarily in the area of employee benefits law. Panelist Denise Visconti handles a broad variety of employment litigation matters at Littler Mendelson P.C.
Speakers: Don Davis, Mintz, Levin, Cohn, Ferris, Glousky and Popeo, P.C.; Omar Gonzalez-Pagan, Lambda Legal; Michael Stevens, Seyfarth Shaw LLP; Denise Visconti, Littler Mendelson P.C.
HIV Criminalization: Best Practices for Productive National-Local Collaborations
Over 30 states have laws in place that criminalize HIV exposure, non-disclosure, or transmission, or that apply harsher penalties for sex work or injection drug use on the basis of HIV status. These laws perpetuate stigma; undercut public health; and disproportionately affect women, sex workers, people of color, and LGBTQ communities. Efforts to reform these laws are underway across the country by coalitions that represent diverse advocacy communities, including individuals and organizations focused on LGBTQ rights, harm reduction, the health and rights of people with disabilities and living with HIV (PLHIV), and racial justice. National organizations can provide a critical role in supporting the work of state and local HIV criminal reform advocacy. This workshop will describe best practices based on the experiences of the Equality Federation, its affiliates in the states of Ohio, Kentucky, and Georgia, and the Center for HIV Law and Policy. Attendees of this workshop will be able to: 1) describe the current legal landscape of HIV criminal laws; 2) identify the intersections between advocacy for LGBTQ rights and HIV criminal law reform; 3) understand the different contexts of HIV criminalization in the states of Ohio, Kentucky, and Georgia, as well as how a national-local collaboration has been an effective response; and 4) draw lessons from these case studies to inform future advocacy that is intersectional, inclusive, and productive. The discussion will also highlight themes of transparency, the importance of centralizing and amplifying the leadership of PLHIV, and effective communication.
Speakers: Kate Boulton, Center for HIV Law and Policy; Chris Hartman, Fairness Campaign; Ana Hernández, Equality Federation; Erik Paulk, Georgia Equality; Kim Welter, KLW Consulting, LLC
Thursday, August 9 | 2:00 – 3:30pm
Bi-Sections: The Intersections of Bisexuality, Gender, Advocacy, and How its Explicit Inclusion Strengthens Sex Discrimination Arguments
This panel will consist of two parts. The first half of the panel will begin with a discussion of the intersections of bisexuality and gender, with a particular emphasis on intersex, transgender, and non-binary people. Stereotypes of bisexual people, bisexual erasure, and discrimination in social situations and the legal world varies in presentation and effect based upon gender. This is especially true for members of the intersex, transgender, and non-binary communities. However, these communities are often either not thought of, or are conflated as one and the same. Panelists will highlight the similarities and differences to explain why each of these communities must be seen as unique when considering the ways in which bisexual issues affect them. In the second half, panelists will discuss the frequently overlooked place of bisexuals in LGBTQ litigation and other legal activism. Bisexual members of our community are directly affected by rulings and legislation targeted at gays and lesbians without being addressed or having their welfare considered in many of the relevant briefs, amici, or opinions. In other areas, such as in the contexts of Title VII and marriage litigation, bisexuality (like transgender and nonconforming gender identities) sheds light on the absurdities of rigidly dichotomous sex-based legal standards. Bisexuality also helps illustrate how sexual orientation discrimination is a form of sex discrimination. Panelists will bring their perspectives as attorneys, professors, and bisexual advocates to discuss the actual and potential contributions of bisexuals and bisexuality to legal strategy and activism and the harm suffered by members of a community that frequently renders their contributions, needs, and existence invisible and irrelevant.
Speakers: Toby Adams, Intersex & Genderqueer Recognition Project; Aisha Davis, Loevy & Loevy; Heron Greenesmith, New York City Anti-Violence Project; Andy Izenson, Diana Adams Law & mediation, PLLC; Kathleen Perrin, Equality Case Files, Inc.
Revenge Porn in the LGBTQ Community
Four percent of United States internet users (nearly 10.4 million people) have been threatened with or are victims of the distribution of their explicit images without their consent. The problem is worse among LGBTQ communities. According to the Data & Society Research Institute, 15% of lesbian, gay, and bisexual (LGB) internet users report that someone has threatened to share their explicit images; 7% say someone has actually done it. Evidence on the ground points to a growing problem, particularly among gay and bisexual men who use geosocial dating apps, where much image sharing occurs. And yet, there has been little to no discussion about how this phenomenon is affecting LGBTQ social life, safety online, and our ongoing conversation on equality. This panel will discuss new research and data on revenge porn in the LGBTQ community, the reasons why such nonconsensual image sharing occurs, and how we can work together to stop it.
Speakers: Carrie Goldberg, C. A Goldberg, PLLC; Krista Peterson, Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office; Andrew Santa Ana, Day One; Ari Ezra Waldman, New York Law School
Tips for Succeeding as a Lesbian Attorney in a Big Law Firm or a Big Company
This workshop will address what it is like to be an out lesbian at a large law firm or at a large company and provide tips for succeeding in those environments. Panelists include two Big Law associates and a partner, plus an in-house attorney at a multi-billion dollar company. They will discuss barriers to entry and obstacles facing them in their practices, the importance of finding mentors and like-minded colleagues, and strategies for success even in the most challenging practice groups and corporate environments.
Speakers: Sharon Armstrong, 3M; Lyzzette Bullock, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts; Theodora Lee, Littler Mendelson; Gloria Melunis, PNC; Kelly Padgett, Paul Hastings LLP
Marriage Minefields, Tax Torture & Planning Pitfalls
As we (hopefully continue to) enjoy the nationwide freedom to marry, let’s also think about whether marrying depending on individual circumstances makes sense for our clients and ourselves, and the ethics of advising couples together. Some married intact couples are even finding it advantageous to divorce. A tax lawyer will help sort out the new tax “reform” laws and the ways our practices change as our clients age and the law changes. A family/estate planning lawyer (and the author of Before I Do: A Legal Guide to Marriage, Gay & Otherwise) will explore the impact marriage has on income taxes and government benefits based on household income at death and divorce. We’ll also talk about creative uses of nuptial agreements and discuss specific concerns for our families in the Trumpocalypse. Moderated by a Williams Institute fellow and family formation lawyer, you get a little of everything in this workshop with an ethics credit too.
Speakers: Wendy E. Hartmann, Law Offices of Wendy E. Hartmann; Amira Hasenbush, The Law Office of Amira Hasenbush; Elizabeth Schwartz, Elizabeth F. Schwartz, P.A.
The Future Of Enterprise - How the 4th Industrial Revolution Impacts Business
A multi-disciplinary discussion of how technology is impacting business and hot topics for legal practitioners — a look at the impact of blockchain developments, wearable technology, big data analytics, robotics, the sharing economy, targeted advertising and sales, the demand for individualized and bespoke experiences, mobile device payment, socially conscious consumers, and other trends impacting business in the short term.
Speakers: Cameron Cloar-Zavaleta, American Airlines; Romulo Diaz, PECO Energy Company; Lynn Kappelman, Seyfarth Shaw LLP; Katherine Perrelli, Seyfarth Shaw LLP; Michael Woods, Sol Systems LLC
Making Legal Services Accessible to LGBT Survivors of Interpersonal Violence
This workshop will address the efforts and unique challenges facing attorneys in developing a holistic advocacy model tailored toward the needs of LGBTQ+ survivors of domestic and dating violence, stalking, and sexual assault. We will discuss how legal services programs can ensure that LGBTQ+ survivors, who have been too often made to feel unwelcome by service providers, can have equal access to legal services, particularly those who are also part of other historically disregarded communities such as sex workers, homeless and homeless youth populations, immigrants, people of color, those with mental health disabilities, and those struggling with drug addiction and substance abuse. The workshop will discuss challenges, setbacks, and successes in creating an advocacy model in an urban center, as well as the ongoing challenges of replicating and adapting the model for LGBTQ+ people living rural areas and tribal communities which lack resources generally found in cities.
Speakers: Hon. Christopher Bowen, Superior Court of California, County of Contra Costa; Derek Garcia, New Mexico Legal Aid; Debra Murphy, U.S. Department of Justice; Jean Philips, New Mexico Legal Aid; Terra Slavin, Los Angeles LGBT Center
Pathways to the Judiciary
Each year, members of the judiciary come together to discuss their career trajectory and provide advice to young professionals interested in ascending the bench. Representing a diverse array of judges, panelists will discuss both the appointed and elected processes for judges in different jurisdictions as well as ethical guidelines or standards associated with panelists’ paths to becoming judges or retaining their positions. Additionally, challenges of being an openly LGBT judge, arising especially out of judicial ethics codes, will be a focus as well. Members of the International Association of LGBT Judges will be available during and after the session to talk further with attendees.
Practical Ways for the LGBT Legal Community to Create LGBT Fairness in the Legal System
This workshop will give LGBT lawyer attendees tangible ways to make the legal system more fair for LGBT people. Topics will include how to conduct LGBT inclusive voir dire, how to add a “diversity CLE” requirement in your state, how to eliminate LGBT ‘panic’ legal defenses, how to update court rules to make them more inclusive, and how to start a judicial screening commission in your state or city through a bar association. Other topics will include how attorneys can train judges and court staff to be LGBT competent and how to train prosecutors and defense attorneys on LGBT intimate partner violence. The workshop will include an ethics component.
Speakers: Lousene Hoppe, Fredrikson & Byron; Eric Lesh, LGBT Bar Association and Foundation of Greater New York; Jaclyn Quiles, Kings County District Attorney’s Office; Mariano Reyna, Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office; Ethan Rice, Lambda Legal; Hon. D. Zeke Zeidler, Los Angeles County Superior Court
Workshop Sponsor Thomson Reuters presents: Next Generation LGBTQ+ Global Diversity & Inclusion: What does it mean? Why does it matter?
Whether you are in law school, a law firm, or a corporation, our work and school environments are expected to be diverse in their make-up and inclusive in their culture. The emphasis on diversity and inclusion has changed from just a nice sentiment to a strategy to retain and attract diverse talent and a tool for business development. The panelists represent a diverse group of leaders from Thomson Reuters who will share their D&I insights and experiences specifically around the Transforming Women’s Leadership in the Law initiative which addresses structural barriers and creating cultural change needed at the organizational level for women to succeed and advance in the legal industry. The panel will also discuss the strategic importance of academic/employee/business affinity resource groups and how grassroots efforts can make real and lasting change locally and globally.
Speakers: Helene Haapala, Thomson Reuters; Kelly Miller, Thomson Reuters; and Natalie D. Runyon, Thomson Reuters
Thursday, August 9 | 3:45pm – 5:15pm
The 5 Most Expensive Marketing Blunders Attorneys Make Online (and how to avoid them!)
Creating the right digital presence can be a crucial part of your firm’s marketing strategy. It can also be expensive in both time and cost and if done wrong and can even harm, not elevate, the image of your firm. Learn how to avoid the most common traps and create an online presence that both enhances your firm’s image and supports its growth.
Speakers: Deb L. Kinney, Johnston, Kinney & Zulaica LLP; Mike Wells, Atticus, Inc.
Not for CLE credit.
BiLaw is an informal group of bisexual-identified and bi-allied attorneys, academics, and law students. The BiLaw Caucus is an opportunity to network with other bi-identified lawyers and discuss areas of the law relevant to bisexual people. All bi-identified and bi-allied attorneys, academics, and law students are encouraged to attend. Following a brief meet-and-greet, the organizers will provide a structured discussion based on attendees priorities.
Transgender People in the Military: A Legal Update
Transgender people have long served with honor and distinction in the military, while being forced to remain closeted as to their true selves. On June 30, 2016, that history of honorable service was finally recognized fully by the United States government, as the ban on transgender servicemembers serving openly was lifted. However, 2017 witnessed a complete reversal in policy implemented by the Trump Administration, followed by a slew of lawsuits filed by our movement’s advocacy organizations successfully enjoining implementation of the newly reinstated ban, followed by a restated ban policy, followed by additional – and currently successful – legal action. Our panelists will review the status of the lawsuits addressing transgender servicemembers; explore the reasons why transgender people are disproportionately likely to have served in the military; and open a dialogue about the challenges facing transgender people who wish to serve in the current climate.
Speakers: Shannon Minter, National Center for Lesbian Rights; Peter Perkowski, OutServe-SLDN; Donna Price, JAG Defense; Tobias Barrington Wolff, University of Pennsylvania Law School;
Priorities, Productivity, and Peace: Diverse Perspectives on Mindfulness and Well-Being for Lawyers
The word mindfulness is everywhere these days. What does it mean? How is it relevant for lawyers? In this panel, four diverse professionals will explain why mindfulness and well-being are crucial competence skills for lawyers, how law students and the legal education system can benefit from training in mindfulness, how mindfulness can help us to mitigate implicit bias, and the ways that mindfulness supports productivity and priority-setting. Participants will take away practical tools for mitigating stress and enhancing well-being.
Speakers: Emily Doskow, Law Office of Emily Doskow; Cecilia Loving, New York City Fire Department; Stephanie Phillips, State University of New York; Bjorn Sorenson, King Spoke Advisors
Intersectionality: Challenges of being a Double Minority in Predominately White & Hetero Spaces
This workshop is an opportunity for LGBTQ attorneys who also identify as racial minorities to present and discuss their experiences navigating the legal profession to a diverse audience of attorneys. The workshop will allow for discourse on the challenges LGBTQ attorneys of color face in dealing with clients, working in law firms, feelings of isolation, and dealing with other attorneys, as well as how they have navigated those challenges. This is also an opportunity for attorneys who may not be racial minorities to understand the struggles of their peers who face these unique challenges.
Speakers: Jason Burch, Uber Technologies, Inc; Steve Hanton, Nixon Peabody LLP; Bendita Cynthia Malakia, Hogan Lovells US LLP; Michelle Peak, American Airlines; Seth Pearson, Foley & Lardner LLP
Moving On Up in the Judiciary: Lessons Learned
Over the last two years, openly gay judges were appointed to three of the top positions in the New York State judiciary, including the first openly gay judge nominated and confirmed to the state’s highest court. At a time when openly LGBT judicial nominations have totally stalled for the federal bench, opportunities for progress remain in some state court systems. This panel will address the question of how to have successful openly LGBT judicial candidates been able to stand out and get promoted to appellate courts and leadership posts. The panel will also consider the real challenges to continued progress in the current hyperpartisan political environment that is even now trickling down to state legislatures.
Speakers: Hon. Paul Feinman, New York Court of Appeals; Hon. Elizabeth Garry, Appellate Division, Third Department; Hon. Andrew McDonald, Connecticut Supreme Court; Hon. George Silver, New York City Courts; Matthew Skinner, Richard C. Failla LGBTQ Commission of the New York Courts
Parents' Perspectives: Lawyers Provide Firsthand Insights on LGBTQ Family Building
The path to parenthood for LGBTQ families can be winding and unpredictable. Just choosing among the most common options of adoption, surrogacy, foster care, and donor insemination can be daunting in and of itself. Many lawyers approach the process both as a legal problem and as a prospective parent. This panel assembles lawyers who regularly work with LGBTQ families, and who are parents themselves, to untangle sticky legal issues and provide a firsthand account. This panel is geared toward non-family law attorneys considering becoming parents, lawyers considering a family building practice, and seasoned practitioners.
Speakers: Denise Brogan-Kator; Family Equality Council; Teresa Calabrese, Mediation & Law Office of Teresa D. Calabrese; Brian Esser, Law Office of Brian Esser PLLC; Sharra Greer, Children’s Law Center; Bruce Hale, Modern Family Law
HIV Treatment as Prevention - Risks and Benefits of U=U Messaging
It is now well-established that persons living with HIV who attain and maintain viral suppression have virtually no possibility of transmitting HIV to their sexual partners, even if condoms are not used and the sexual partner is not on PrEP. The Treatment as Prevention message, which has been endorsed by the CDC and by NIH officials, has recently been re-cast by advocates as “Undetectable = Untransmittable” or “U=U.” The good news that patients whose viral load is fully suppressed are noninfectious to their sexual partners has had a profound, positive effect on the self-esteem and well-being of many patients. However, the U=U campaign also has generated controversy. Much of the concern centers on the fact that many persons living with HIV in the U.S. are unable to access healthcare or sustain adherence to the medications necessary to remain consistently virally suppressed. Others are unable to maintain viral suppression for reasons that remain unclear. Moreover, there are disturbing inequities in health outcomes across a spectrum of HIV-related care metrics: Blacks and other People of Color are less likely to be virally suppressed than Whites; and there are significant deficits for women – especially transgender women – and persons living with HIV in the South. This workshop will explore several legal and ethical issues raised by the U=U campaign, including: implications for the provider-patient relationship; reform of laws criminalizing HIV exposure; the employment of HIV-positive health care workers; and the relevance (if any) of an HIV-positive patient’s viral load to a surgeon’s, dentist’s, or other health care provider’s willingness to treat them. Current case law and litigation strategies will also be explored.
Speakers: Sean Bland, Georgetown University Law Center; Dan Bruner, Whitman-Walker Health; Allison Nichol, Center for HIV Law and Policy; Scott Schoettes, Lambda Legal
For a complete list of workshops offered in 2017, please click here.