2018 Speaker Bios

Experts including corporate counsel, members of the judiciary, academics, law firm partners and individuals representing the non-profit sector will be featured at the 30th Annual Lavender Law Conference and Career Fair. The diversity of speakers is reflected in the topics discussed during the workshops and general attendance sessions. Note: Speaker list is subject to change.

Distinguished Speakers

  • Academic

  • Corporate Counsel

  • Government

  • Diversity & Inclusion Specialists

  • Judges

  • Non Profit

  • Other Professionals

  • Private Practice

To see a list of speakers from 2017, please click here.


Ynesse Abdul-MalakYnesse Abdul-Malak, RN, MPH, PhD, is a Sociologist with the requisite expertise in research involved different types of methodology on issues of racial and gender inequality, health disparity, and disability studies. She has a broad research background and experience in several higher institutions in the U.S. and abroad. She works as an Adjunct Professor at the Maxwell School Sociology Department at Syracuse University teaching courses on gender and ethnic inequalities. Her numerous research articles have appeared on peer-reviewed publications and she has presented her work in national and international conferences. She is the Associate Research Director at the Burton Blatt Institute (BBI) and the ABA/BBI survey Project Director.

Carlos Ball – Carlos A. Ball is a Distinguished Professor of Law at Rutgers University. He teaches courses on constitutional law, the First Amendment, and sexuality, gender identity, and the law. He is the author of several books on LGBT rights, including The First Amendment and LGBT Equality: A Contentious History published by Harvard University Press in 2017. He is also the editor of After Marriage Equality: The Future of LGBT Rights published by NYU Press in 2016 and a co-editor of Cases and Materials on Sexuality, Gender Identity, and the Law (West, 2017). Next year, Beacon Press will publish his book The Queering of Corporate America.

Tobias Barrington Wolff -Tobias Barrington Wolff is a professor at the University of Pennsylvania Law School and a civil rights lawyer who writes, teaches and practices in the fields of Civil Procedure, Complex Litigation, Constitutional Law, and LGBTQ equality. He has done extensive work over the years on the anti-gay “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy in the U.S. military and has been counsel or amicus counsel in major litigation around the country seeking equal treatment of LGBTQ people and same-sex couples. In 2007-2008, Professor Wolff served as the chief advisor on LGBT law and policy to the presidential campaign of Barack Obama. After President Obama took office, Professor Wolff continued in an advisory role, a contribution for which the President acknowledged him at a 2014 White House event.

Kevin Barry- Kevin Barry joined Quinnipiac University School of Law in 2008. He teaches administrative law and disability law and is the co-director of the law school’s civil justice clinic, which represents low-income clients through a combination of direct legal services, community education, and policy advocacy. Professor Barry’s research focuses on disability law and employment discrimination, death penalty abolition, transgender rights, and other civil rights issues arising out of his work in the civil justice clinic. In 2015, the Connecticut Supreme Court cited his work in the landmark case of State v. Santiago, which declared Connecticut’s death penalty unconstitutional. Professor Barry has authored amicus briefs in cases before the U.S. Supreme Court, lower federal courts, and Connecticut Supreme Court. He recently filed an amicus brief on behalf of twelve national and state transgender rights and transgender health organizations and provided consultation in a first-of-its kind case challenging the ADA’s exclusion of Gender Identity Disorder under the equal protection clause. Professor Barry is board president of the Connecticut Women’s Education and Legal Fund, a non-profit organization that serves women and girls through a combination of direct services and policy advocacy. He has appeared on national and local news radio programs and has been quoted in the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, Slate, and other national and local news outlets. His articles have been published in the Yale Law Review Forum, Iowa Law Review, Boston College Law Review, Cardozo Law Review, Florida Law Review, Berkeley Journal of Employment and Labor Law, and Northwestern Journal of Criminal Law and Criminology, among others. Professor Barry and his clinic students received the Clinical Legal Education Association (CLEA) Award for Excellence in a Public Interest Project in May of 2012 for their work in support of repealing Connecticut’s death penalty, and they continue to advise officials and advocates in other states regarding death penalty repeal legislation. Before coming to Quinnipiac, Professor Barry was a teaching fellow in Georgetown University Law Center’s Federal Legislation Clinic, where he provided pro bono legal services to the Epilepsy Foundation and the larger disability rights coalition in support of their efforts to amend the Americans with Disabilities Act. He was also a member of the team of disability rights lawyers that successfully negotiated draft legislative language with lawyers from the business community, resulting in passage of the ADA Amendments Act of 2008. Professor Barry received his B.A. from Boston College in 1997 and his J.D. from Boston College Law School in 2000. After law school, he served as an associate at Ropes & Gray, a researcher at Amnesty International USA and Americans United for Separation of Church and State, and a law clerk to Judge William E. Smith of the U.S. District Court for the District of Rhode Island and Judge Kermit V. Lipez of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit.


Peter Blanck – Dr. Blanck is University Professor at Syracuse University, which is the highest faculty rank at the University. He is Chairman of the Burton Blatt Institute (BBI), which advances the civil rights of people with disabilities across the globe. Blanck received a Juris Doctorate from Stanford University, where he was President of the Stanford Law Review, and a Ph.D. in Social Psychology from Harvard University. Prior to teaching, Blanck practiced law at the Washington D.C. firm Covington & Burling, and served as law clerk to the late Honorable Carl McGowan of the United States Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit.

Sean Bland – Sean Bland is a senior associate at the O’Neill Institute for National and Global Health Law at Georgetown University Law Center and works on HIV law and policy initiatives. Sean engages policymakers and stakeholders in support of sustaining and adapting the Ryan White HIV/AIDS Program and implementing the National HIV/AIDS Strategy and high impact HIV prevention. Sean is the lead author of a Blueprint for HIV Biomedical Prevention, examining the status of biomedical HIV prevention modalities for communities of color and assessing policy options that support uptake of these modalities, and he is also the principal investigator of a project examining the impact of laws and policies on sex workers’ access to clinical care and social services. He holds a Juris Doctor from the Georgetown University Law Center and a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and German Studies from Yale University.

Leonore Carpenter – Leonore (Lee) Carpenter teaches Legal Research and Writing, Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity and the Law, Appellate Advocacy, and Introduction to Public Interest Law. Her research interests are LGBT rights, public interest lawyering, and legal education. Prior to joining the Temple Law faculty on a full-time basis, Professor Carpenter served as Legal Director at Equality Advocates Pennsylvania, a public interest agency that provided direct legal services, education, and policy reform advocacy for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) Pennsylvanians. Professor Carpenter also acted as an adjunct clinical instructor to Temple Law students in an LGBT-rights clinical course that she designed. Professor Carpenter began her employment at Equality Advocates Pennsylvania as an Equal Justice Works Fellow, working with victims of hate crime and domestic violence. Professor Carpenter is a graduate of Temple Law, where she received the Beth Cross Award for commitment to underserved populations. Following graduation from law school, Professor Carpenter completed a clerkship with the Honorable Harold B. Wells, III of the New Jersey Superior Court, Appellate Division.

David B. Cruz – David B. Cruz is a Professor of Law at the University of Southern California Gould School of Law, where he teaches a variety of courses in and researches and writes about constitutional law, federal courts, and sex, gender identity, and sexual orientation law.  Before joining the USC law faculty he clerked for the now late Hon. Edward R. Becker, Circuit Judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit, and then served as a Bristow Fellow in the Office of the Solicitor General in the Department of Justice.  He is a member of the board of directors of the American Civil Liberties Union of Southern California and of the Equality California Institute; a co-president of the International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender  and Intersex Law Association (ILGLaw); a member of the faculty advisory committee of the Williams Institute at the UCLA School of Law; a former member of the board of directors and a former General Counsel of the national American Civil Liberties Union; and a past and current Chair of the Association of American Law School’s Section on Sexual Orientation and Gender identity Issues.  He received his J.D. summa cum laude from the NYU School of Law; an M.S. in Mathematics from Stanford University, where he studied logic; and a B.S. in Mathematics, summa cum laude, and a B.S. in Drama, summa cum laude, from the University of California, Irvine.  He occasionally blogs at CruzLines.org and tweets @ProfDavidCruz.

Gary Greener – Gary Greener is the Director of Career Services at the UCLA School of Law, where he counsels students on all aspects of career development and the job search process. He also interacts with employers and engages in outreach to increase job opportunities for UCLA students. Prior to UCLA, Gary served as the Senior Associate Dean at Southwestern Law School, where he worked for 14 years. He also has ten years of experience as a practicing lawyer, and served as the hiring partner for a 50 lawyer law firm. He holds a bachelor’s degree from Brigham Young University, a law degree from Southwestern Law School, and an LL.M. from Georgetown University Law Center.

Nan Hunter – Nan Hunter is Associate Dean and Professor at Georgetown Law, where her work has focused, in part, on the regulation of sexual identities. Prior to teaching, she was a member of the ACLU’s national legal staff.

Doug NeJaime – Douglas NeJaime is Professor of Law at Yale Law School, where he teaches in the areas of family law, legal ethics, law and sexuality, and constitutional law. NeJaime has twice received the Dukeminier Award, which recognizes the best sexual orientation legal scholarship published in the previous year. He recently wrote about complicity claims in Conscience Wars: Complicity-Based Conscience Claims in Religion and Politics, 124 Yale L.J. (2015) (with Reva Siegel).

Allison Nichol – Allison J. Nichol served in the Department of Justice for more than twenty years as Deputy Chief and then Chief of the Disability Rights Section of the Civil Rights Division, which enforces the Americans with Disabilities Act and, most recently, as Special Counsel on Disability Employment to the Deputy Associate Attorney General for Diversity and Inclusion. During her tenure, she served as DOJ’s expert on HIV law and policy, overseeing all HIV litigation and representing the Department on a federal working group on the National HIV/AIDS Strategy. She also was an author of DOJ’s guidance on reforming HIV criminalization laws, and worked on issues of violence against women and gender-related health disparities. Allison co-founded the Civil Rights Division’s LGBTQI working group and was the recipient of the James R. Douglas Award for work on behalf of the HIV community from DOJ Pride. In 2012, she was a member of the group that received the Attorney General’s Award for Equal Employment Opportunity, the Department’s highest award for performance in support of its EEO program. In 2016 she received an Alexander D. Forger Award for achievement on behalf of HIV communities by the American Bar Association’s AIDS Coordinating Committee.

Stephanie L. Philips – Stephanie L. Phillips graduated from Harvard Law School in 1981.  After several years as a practicing attorney, she joined the faculty of the School of Law, State University of New York at Buffalo, where she holds the rank of Professor.  Every fall, Professor Phillips teaches a seminar entitled “Mindfulness and Professional Identity:  Becoming a Lawyer While Keeping Your Values Intact.”  This is a lawyering course that is organized around the proposition that mindfulness has implications for law students and lawyers in personal, interpersonal, and institutional dimensions.  The course includes a required meditation practicum.  In addition to Law and Mindfulness, Professor Phillips currently teaches in the subject areas of Conflict of Laws and African American Legal History.

Elizabeth Platt – Elizabeth Reiner Platt is the Director of the Public Rights/Private Conscience Project at the Center for Gender and Sexuality Law at Columbia Law School, where she engages in academic, legal, and advocacy work to advance a just balance between religious and other fundamental rights. Before joining Columbia, Elizabeth was a Staff Attorney at MFY Legal Services Mental Health Law Project, where she practiced health and benefits law and eviction defense. After graduating from New York University School of Law, she was a Carr Center for Reproductive Justice Fellow at A Better Balance. While attending law school, Elizabeth worked with the Urban Justice Sex Workers Project, New York Civil Liberties Union, and Brennan Center for Justice. She is the author of numerous works including Gangsters to Greyhounds: The Past, Present and Future of Offender Registration, 37 N.Y.U. Rev. L. & Soc. Change 727 (2013).

Nancy Polikoff – Nancy Polikoff is Professor of Law at American University Washington College of Law where she teaches Family Law and a seminar on Children of LGBT Parents. From Fall 2011 through Fall 2012, she was the Visiting McDonald/Wright Chair of Law at UCLA School of Law and Faculty Chair of the Williams Institute, a national think tank on sexual orientation law and public policy at UCLA Law. In 1976, Prof. Polikoff co-authored one of the first law review articles on custody rights of lesbian mothers. For over 40 years, she has been writing about, teaching about, and working on litigation and legislation about LGBT families. Her book, Beyond (Straight and Gay) Marriage: Valuing All Families under the Law, was published by Beacon Press in 2008, the inaugural volume in its Queer Ideas series. She is a former chair of the Association of American Law Schools Section on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Issues and a member of the National Family Law Advisory Council of the National Center for Lesbian Rights. In 2011, Prof. Polikoff received the Dan Bradley award from the National LGBT Bar Association, the organization’s highest honor.

Donna Price – Donna Price served for 25 years on active duty in the United States Navy. In the military justice arena her assignments included positions as a Trial Counsel (Prosecutor), Defense Counsel, Senior Defense Counsel, Instructor at the Naval Justice School, and Criminal Trial Judge for Special and General Courts-Martials. Other assignments included as Editor-in-Chief of the Naval Law Review, Staff Judge Advocate for a Naval Air Station, an Air Wing, and as Deputy Force Judge Advocate for Commander, U.S. Naval Surface Forces Pacific; as a Personnel Officer; in the Office of Legislative Affairs, where she handled all Navy personnel and medical issues before the Senate Armed Service Committee and House National Services Committee, with the Surgeon General of the Navy, Chief of Naval Personnel, and Assistant Secretary of the Navy (Manpower and Reserve Affairs) as principals before Congress; as Deputy Assistant Judge Advocate General (Management and Plans) in the Office of the Judge Advocate General of the Navy; and as Commanding Officer of the largest Legal Office in the Department of the Navy. Her Personal Awards include The Legion of Merit (Two Awards), Meritorious Service Medal (Four Awards), Navy Commendation Medal (Two Awards), Navy Achievement Medal, Navy Expeditionary Medal, Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal, Navy and Marine Corps Overseas Service Medal, and she is qualified expert in the Rifle and Pistol.Subsequent to her military career, Ms. Price served as Senior Vice President, Privacy and Compliance, and Chief Compliance Officer for a healthcare contractor in the military’s TRICARE arena, while she has principally engaged in the private practice of law, as a general criminal attorney in military, state, and Federal Courts; and, over the past number of years specializing in the representation of individuals in the security clearance adjudication field. Ms. Price is also an Adjunct Professor at the University of Richmond Law School, and active in the Virginia State Bar, having served as a Member of the Board of Governors of the Military Law Section, as well as Secretary, Vice-Chair, and Chair of that Board. She has served as a local Election Official in Virginia Beach and now in Albemarle County, where she is currently serving as a Precinct Chief. Ms. Price was honored to be an OUT100 recipient representing transgender service members in 2017; is active in the Equality Virginia Transgender Advocacy Speakers Bureau (TASB), as well as conducting a number of Continuing Legal Education programs on LGBTQ issues in the workplace, and as a speaker at State and National Transgender Conferences. Ms. Price legally, socially, and medically transitioned from male to female in 2014 and currently lives, practices law, and enjoys life on her farm in the country just outside of Charlottesville, VA.

Asa Radix- Dr. Radix is the Senior Director of Research and Education at the Callen-Lorde Community Health Center and a Clinical Associate Professor of Medicine at New York University. Originally from the West Indies, Dr. Radix trained in internal medicine and infectious disease at the University of Connecticut and obtained postgraduate degrees in epidemiology and public health at Cambridge University. Dr. Radix has over 20 years of experience providing HIV care, primary care and hormone therapy to transgender and gender non-binary people and is a recognized expert in transgender medicine.  At Callen-Lorde Dr. Radix is also the clinical director of the center’s Transgender Health Program that provides care to over 4000 transgender and gender non-binary individuals. Dr. Radix has contributed to multiple national and international guidelines in transgender health and is currently Co-Chair of the World Professional Association of Transgender Health (WPATH) Standards of Care version 8 working group. Dr. Radix is member of several boards/committees including the New York State AIDS Institute STI Quality Advisory Committee, the HHS Panel on Antiretroviral Guidelines for Adults and Adolescents, the Pan American Health Organization HIV/STI Technical Advisory Committee, the American Sexual Health Association, USPATH steering committee, and the medical advisory board of the UCSF Center of Excellence in Transgender Health. Dr. Radix is an Associate Editor of Transgender Health and serves on the editorial board for the International Journal of Transgenderism.

Scott Skinner-Thompson – Scott Skinner-Thompson is an associate professor at Colorado Law School, where his scholarship focuses on constitutional law, civil rights, and privacy law, with a particular focus on LGBTQ and HIV issues.

Ari Ezra Waldman – Ari Ezra Waldman is an Associate Professor of Law and Director of the Innovation Center for Law and Technology and the Founder and Director of the Institute for CyberSafety at New York Law School. He is an affiliate scholar at Princeton University’s Center for Information Technology Policy. He is the founder and director of the Institute for CyberSafety, which includes the first and to-date only law school clinic providing free counsel to LGBTQ victims of online harassment. Professor Waldman researches how law and technology mediate social relationships, focusing on privacy, technology design, and cyberharassment. His first book, Privacy As Trust, which develops for a new understanding of privacy based on trust and argues that information shared in contexts of trust should still be considered private, will be published by Cambridge University Press in April. His articles have or will soon be published in leading law reviews, including the Cornell Law Review, the Notre Dame Law Review, the Iowa Law Review, the Indiana Law Journal, and many others. He also writes for Them and Towleroad. He holds a Ph.D. in sociology from Columbia University, a J.D. from Harvard Law School, and a B.A. from Harvard College.

Corporate Counsel

Sharon Armstrong – Sharon is Global Trademark Counsel for 3M, a multinational manufacturing company with over 90,000 employees, and the maker of products such as Post-it® Notes, Scotch® Magic™ Tape, and various adhesives, abrasives, films, and much more. She works with 3M’s Consumer, Electronics & Energy, and Safety & Graphics business groups on selecting, protecting, and enforcing 3M’s trademark assets globally. Before joining 3M, Sharon was an associate in the Trademark & Brand Management Groups at Greenberg Traurig in Las Vegas and Winthrop & Weinstine in Minneapolis. Sharon is an active member of the International Trademark Association’s Committee on Non-Traditional Marks, a board member of LegalCORPS – a nonprofit organization providing pro bono legal advice on business transactions and patent prosecution to diverse entrepreneurs and small nonprofits in Minnesota – and a board member of St. Paul Ballet. Prior to law school, she started her non-legal career at Los Angeles Opera, and is a graduate of Stanford University and the University of Michigan Law School. Sharon is admitted to the bar in California, Minnesota, and Nevada.

Wesley Bizzell – Wesley Bizzell is Senior Assistant General Counsel, External Affairs and Managing Director of Political Law and Ethics Programs for Altria Client Services LLC (“ALCS”) and serves as President-Elect of the National LGBT Bar Association.  Overseeing a comprehensive compliance system covering the regulation of government affairs, Mr. Bizzell provides advice and guidance on political law compliance for more than 75 federal, state, local, and international jurisdictions and also leads the legal team that supports Altria’s public policy activities, providing services related to legislative and regulatory drafting and interpretation. Mr. Bizzell is an authority on political compliance law and is active in the compliance legal community. He is co-chair of the Conference Board’s Committee on Corporate Political Spending, a committee of leading American corporations dedicated to accountability, education, and engagement on issues of corporate political activity and is a long-serving faculty member for the Practicing Law Institute’s annual Corporate Political Activities conference. Mr. Bizzell is also a member of the Altria Law Department’s Diversity Committee, is a co-founder of and serves on the leadership team for Altria’s LGBTQ Employee Resource Group, and is a 2014 fellow for the Leadership Council on Legal Diversity. In 2017, he was named by the Financial Times as one of the 100 OUTstanding Leading LGBT+ Corporate Executives for his work on diversity and inclusion issues.

Jason Burch is regulatory counsel at Uber, where advises on operations and policy matters for the Northeast US. He previously was an associate in Sidley Austin’s Chicago and New York offices. Mr. Burch volunteers as an Attorney Advisor to Upwardly Global, a nonprofit offering training and support for highly skilled immigrants and refugees, and as a mentor at the Jacob Riis Neighborhood Settlement in Queens. Mr. Burch earned his law degree in Chicago, from Northwestern Pritzker School of Law. Before practicing law, Mr. Burch played professional baseball for six seasons, and worked as a legislative strategist in Austin, Texas. He currently lives in New York City, with his partner Drew Raines.

Ryan Buffkin – Ryan Buffkin is currently Corporate Counsel for Alternative Capital and Investments at XL Catlin.  Ryan advises each of XL’s captive insurtech venture fund, XL Innovate, XL’s alternative reinsurance-linked asset manager, New Ocean Capital Management, and XL’s core business on venture capital financings, fund formation and acquisitions.  Prior to XL Catlin, Ryan was an associate at Clifford Chance in New York and Beijing and Kirkland & Ellis in San Francisco.  Ryan graduated summa cum laude with a B.A. in Economics from George Washington University and received his J.D. from the New York University School of Law.  Ryan is admitted to the California and New York bar.

William C. Caccamise-William C. (Bill) Caccamise is General Counsel of Global Banking, Global Markets, and International at Bank of America Merrill Lynch. Caccamise leads a team of approximately 350 attorneys responsible for global legal coverage of corporate and investment banking, commercial banking, business banking, treasury services, fixed income, currencies, and commodities, equities, and research. He is a member of the Bank of America Operating Committee, the Global Banking and Global Markets Leadership Team, the Global Markets Risk Committee, the Global Banking Risk Committee and the chair of the Global Banking and Global Markets Reputation Risk Committee. Caccamise is Vice Chairman and a member of the Board of Directors and the Executive Committee of the Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association. He is also a member of the Board of Directors of the Global Financial Markets Association. Caccamise joined Bank of America in 1999. Prior to assuming his current position in July 2004, he was head of Global Equities Legal and head of Equity Financial Products Legal for the firm. Caccamise received his undergraduate degree from Rice University in 1987 and his juris doctorate from Columbia University School of Law in 1988. Caccamise began his legal career at Sullivan & Cromwell, where he was an associate in New York and London.

Sam Castic – Sam serves as Sr. Director of Privacy & Assistant General Counsel at Nordstrom, Inc. Sam leads the Privacy team, and advises the Nordstrom family of brands on privacy laws and best practices. Sam helps business leaders think strategically about existing and emerging privacy risks when designing new services and experiences, leads a customer-facing team in efforts to preserve brand trust and transparency about privacy practices, negotiates privacy and security terms in vendor and license agreements, and supports data breach response planning and readiness. Sam is recognized as a Fellow of Information Privacy, Certified Information Privacy Manager, and Certified Information Privacy Professional US, by the International Association of Privacy Professionals. Sam started his career at K&L Gates, and has also worked at Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe and T-Mobile. Sam volunteers with Lambda Legal. Sam received a B.A. from the University of Washington, and a J.D. from NYU.

Vincent A. CastiglioneVincent A. Castiglione (“Vince”) has been an inhouse counsel for over 20 years across the medical technology, consumer electronics, and fashion/apparel spaces. He has served private and public companies with diverse legal, business, and innovation creation experience in the US, Europe, Asia and Middle East. Most recently, Vince was Vice President and General Counsel for VF Corporation’s former “Sportswear Coalition” (NAUTICA (WW) and KIPLING (North America) brands), which was dissolved upon VF’s divestiture of NAUTICA to a brand management group in late April 2018. While with VF, Vince managed internal staff and outside counsel to deliver legal services for varied disciplines, including: IP, brand licensing, marketing/advertising, employment/HR, compliance matters, litigation, commercial contracts, sales and credit. Prior to his time with VF, Vince served as General Counsel for Coby Electronics Corporation (2006-2013), where his work largely paralleled what he did with VF, and he also spent over a decade practicing IP, brand and technology licensing, and M&A related work with Becton, Dickinson and Company and C. R. Bard, Inc. Professionally, Vince has been a proud volunteer with the Association of Corporation Counsel (“ACC”), at both the Chapter and Global (parent) levels, where he served as President of New York City Chapter as well Chaired the Global Litigation Committee. In recognition of his service, Vince was awarded ACC’s Robert I. Townsend, Jr. Member of the Year Award in 2013. He is admitted to the New York and Connecticut state bars as well as registered to practice before the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.

Nick Clements – Bio to come. 

Cameron Cloar-ZavaletaBio to come. 

William Crosby – William (Bill) Crosby, Jr. is Vice President, Associate General Counsel and Managing Attorney at Interpublic Group, a New York based advertising and marketing company with over 50,000 employees worldwide. At Interpublic, where he has been since 2002, Bill oversees global litigation and manages the Latin American practice. He was an associate at Davis Polk & Wardwell from 1993 until 1995 and at Kay, Collyer & Boose (now defunct) from 1995 until 2002. Since 2009, Bill has served as a member of the commercial panel of arbitrators for the American Arbitration Association. He has served as arbitrator (either alone or as part of a three member panel) in more than 130 AAA, ICDR and ICC matters, involving such areas as franchising, intellectual property, hotel and restaurant management, and general commercial disputes, both domestic and international. Bill is a frequent speaker on arbitration related issues, as well as litigation and compliance issues. Bill is a member of the board of the LGBT Bar Association of Greater New York (LeGaL). Bill is a 1990 graduate of Yale College and a 1993 graduate of Stanford Law School.

Luis J. Diaz – Luis J. Diaz (“Lou”) has more than 30 years of legal experience in the technology sector. He oversees all legal matters at Vision-e. He is also guiding the development of the company’s Global Artificial Business Intelligence (“gabi”) platform that relies on edge-based sensors, artificial intelligence, and big data analytics to help prevent cyberattacks at the source. LoujoinedV ision-e fromGibbonsP.C.,whereheservedasa Director in the Intellectual Property Group, focusing his practice on cloud-computing and cybersecurity matters. He has published extensively and is a frequent speaker on cybersecurity matters. He was a founding member of the firm’s Data Privacy and Cybersecurity Practice Group. He also founded and continues to lead the New Jersey State Bar’s annual cybersecurity conference. He serves as a Trustee to the State Bar and was recently appointed to serve on the newly formed Cybersecurity Task Force. Prior to Gibbons, P.C., Lou served as an Executive Vice President and Senior Counsel with IDT Corporation, where he managed all intellectual property matters worldwide for the company. Before that, Lou was General Counsel to Omni Solutions International, a Phoenix-based software company serving Fortune 100 insurance companies. Aside from his technology and cybersecurity work for clients, Lou also proudly served as Gibbons P.C.’s first Chief Diversity Officer. He is widely published and recognized as a thought leader in the field. During his tenure, the firm received many awards for its diversity work, including the coveted Innovation in Diversity award. In 2016, Lou was also named Professional Lawyer of the Year by the New Jersey State Bar Association and New Jersey Commission on Professionalism. And in 2015, he was selected as Diverse Attorney of the Year by New Jersey Law Journal. Lou also received the Humanitarian Award from the American Conference on Diversity.

Romulo Diaz – Diaz serves as the chief legal officer of the company and oversees its team of attorneys responsible for all aspects of PECO’s legal affairs in Pennsylvania. He also serves on PECO’s Political Action Committee. Based in Philadelphia, PECO is Pennsylvania’s largest electric and natural gas utility. The company employs about 2,500 people, owns $10 billion in assets, and generates approximately $3 billion in annual revenues. A subsidiary of Exelon Corporation, the nation’s largest competitive energy provider, PECO serves 1.6 million electric and more than 500,000 gas customers in southeastern Pennsylvania. Exelon is headquartered in Chicago and trades on the NYSE under the ticker EXC. Prior to his current position, Diaz was responsible for the company’s governmental and external affairs, including development of the company’s award-winning suite of energy efficiency programs to help customers save energy and money. Diaz joined PECO as Associate General Counsel in 2008 and managed the regulatory law practice group in Philadelphia, PA. From 2005 until 2008, Diaz served as the City Solicitor of Philadelphia after joining the City of Philadelphia Law Department in 2002. For most of his career, he lived in Washington, DC, where he held numerous legal and management positions at the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission and the U.S. Department of Energy. Following unanimous confirmation by the United States Senate, he was appointed by President William J. Clinton to serve as assistant administrator at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Diaz serves on numerous civic and nonprofit boards, including the Pennsylvania Energy Development Authority, Philadelphia Museum of Art, Philadelphia Convention and Visitors Bureau, Center City District, Central Philadelphia Development Corporation, StreetSoccer USA and leads the Pan American Association of Philadelphia. He has been honored for his professional and community leadership by the Delaware Valley’s Most Influential Latinos Foundation, Asociación Puertorriqueños en Marcha, Community College of Philadelphia, Urban Affairs Coalition, American Jewish Committee of Philadelphia/Southern New Jersey, Nationalities Service Center, The Legal Intelligencer, AL DÍA News Media and Pepper Hamilton LLP.

Rob Doefler – Rob services as Corporate Counsel for Mars, where he handles intellectual property and licensing matters. He offers comprehensive experience in trademarks, technology, anti-counterfeiting, licensing, litigation, software and commercial agreements. Rob has demonstrated success identifying and achieving strategic goals, optimizing budgets and relationships with internal stakeholders, business partners and outside counsel. He is an effective communicator managing and developing both individuals and teams across numerous countries with varying legal and cultural requirements.

Christian Dowell – Christian serves as Associate General Counsel for WhatsApp, part of the Facebook family of companies. More than 1.5 billion people in over 180 countries use WhatsApp to stay in touch with friends and family around the world. Christian is responsible for WhatsApp’s global privacy and regulatory compliance program. Prior to his position at WhatsApp, Christian served as Associate General Counsel of Intellectual Property at Facebook, where he managed the Facebook brand and global brand litigation for the Facebook family of companies, including Facebook, Instagram, and Oculus. Prior to that, Christian served as Senior Legal Director at Yahoo and Vice President of the Board of Directors of the Yahoo Employee Foundation. Christian has been recognized by the National LGBT Bar Association with its “40 Best LGBT Lawyers Under 40” award and its “Out & Proud Corporate Counsel” award.

Cristhian Escobar-Cristhian Escobar is a bilingual transactional lawyer with substantial experience negotiating and advising on complex commercial transactions, advising and fundraising for charitable organizations (non-profits and foundations), providing counsel and insights to seed and early stage entrepreneurial ventures. Mr. Escobar is also an Adjunct Professor and lectures, moderates panels, and presents on legal, policy, and commercial issues (including, blockchain, cryptocurrencies, smart contracts, intellectual property, and finance issues). His awards include American Bar Association (ABA) Presidential Appointment as Commissioner (2011-2014), leading fundraising and development efforts, Wesleyan University Alumni Association 2015 Service Award, and being selected for “OutNEXT: LGBT Emerging Leader Summit 2015.

Cameron Faber – Cameron Faber is an accomplished General Counsel with over thirty-five years’ experience in litigation and corporate work, both in-house and in law firms. His experience includes leading the law department of a major nonprofit corporation, managing claims and litigation, corporate governance, privacy and HIPAA law, risk management, compliance in highly-regulated industries, and corporate and real estate transactions.

Mike Jackson – Mike Jackson serves as Director & Employee Relations Counsel at Target’s headquarters in Minneapolis, Minnesota. In his role, Mike is the lead employment counsel for and leads a team that supports all of Target’s stores in the Central U.S. (over 23 states and over 500 stores). Mike is also the lead employment counsel for Target’s asset protection/loss prevention team, and is actively involved in Target’s Legal Affairs Diversity Action Committee where he serves on both the external engagement and pipeline pillars. Prior to Target, Mike held in-house roles at two other Fortune 500 companies, McDonald’s and The J.M. Smucker Company (“Smucker’s”). Mike is also actively involved in local and national bar associations and social justice volunteer work. Mike and his husband reside in Minneapolis.

Brogiin Keeton – Brogiin joined Evercore Inc. in 2015 and serves as the firm’s Head of Litigation, managing disputes and investigations globally. Brogiin is a graduate of Dartmouth College and received her law degree from Stanford University. She also earned a master’s degree from the London School of Economics and Political Science. Prior to joining Evercore, Brogiin practiced law with Sidley Austin LLP in New York, where she focused on U.S. financial services litigation as well as cross-border disputes and investigations. Brogiin is frequently asked to speak on panels relating to, among other topics, cross-border litigation, employment and other HR issues, and diversity in the legal and financial services professions. Brogiin is active in the pro-bono legal community and volunteers with organizations that provide legal services to women in underserved communities, including victims of domestic violence. She also has extensive experience in international legal matters, including in a Lawyers Without Borders mission to Kenya, where she worked with members of the federal judiciary, the State Department, and the Kenyan judiciary on the development of in-country trial skills.eton

Erin Law – Erin is an Executive Director and the Managing Attorney for the Global Litigation Group in the Legal and Compliance Division at Morgan Stanley. Erin also serves as the Coordinator of the Firm’s Franchise Risk Committee for the Americas and as Pro Bono Lead Counsel, with responsibility for Morgan Stanley’s pro bono legal program, which utilizes strategic partnerships among Morgan Stanley attorneys, outside law firms and legal service providers. A litigator by training, Erin was previously associated with Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP, where her practice focused on securities and derivative litigation, bankruptcy litigation and general corporate counseling of boards of directors. Before joining Weil, Erin clerked for a United States District Court Judge in Louisiana. She is a graduate of Bard College and Tulane Law School. In addition to her service on AFC’s Board, Erin is a member of the Pro Bono Advisory Council for New York Lawyers for the Public Interest and the New York City Bar Committee on Pro Bono and Legal Services, where she co-chairs the In-House Subcommittee. She also maintains an active pro bono practice, including representation of victims of domestic violence in family law matters and unaccompanied minors in immigration matters.

Paul Marchegiani – Paul serves as VP, Business Affairs at Warner Bros., where he negotiates scripted and unscripted talent and rights deals for the Warner Horizon television studio, and advises senior executives on deal making, rights, talent relations, financial strategy, and risk management.  He has deep experience with above-the-line talent deals for scripted/unscripted television, film, digital content, and live stage projects at all stages of development and production.  Prior to joining Warner Bros., Paul served as VP, Business Affairs at Miramax, Director of Business Affairs and Sr. Counsel, Legal Affairs at NBCUniversal, and as a litigation associate at Morrison & Foerster and Orrick in San Francisco.  Paul holds a J.D. from U.C. Berkeley, and a B.A. and B.Mus. from Northwestern University, and has taught entertainment law courses at U.C. Berkeley and Chapman University.  In addition to his behind-the-scenes entertainment experience, Paul has performed in several productions with the LA Opera, SF Symphony, Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Cabrillo Music Theatre, and Glendale Center Theatre, and has trained for 8 years as an improviser with Studio ACT, Upright Citizens Brigade, Groundlings, and Impro Theatre.

Joann Mazur Kielblock – Joann Mazur Kielblock is a Vice President and Corporate Counsel supporting Prudential’s Group Insurance business unit.  In this role, she is responsible for advising the Group Life Insurance operations, including the Office of Servicemember’s Group Life Insurance (OSGLI), and PruBenefit Funding (Prudential’s corporate-, bank- and trust-owned life insurance business) relating to the delivery of products, services and benefits to group customers and their covered employees or members. Joann’s career with Prudential began in 2001 as a Law Clerk in the Individual Insurance Law unit while attending law school as an evening student.  Upon graduation in 2003, Joann engaged in private practice in New York and New Jersey.  Joann rejoined Prudential in 2007, as a Director and Corporate Counsel in the Group Insurance Law unit, and was promoted to Vice President and Corporate Counsel in 2010.  From 2015 to 2017, Joann performed a two-year rotational assignment within the Federal Regulatory Law unit to work on the firm’s Resolution and Recovery Plans pursuant to the firm’s non-bank systemically important financial institution (SIFI) designation under Dodd-Frank.  Immediately following her rotation, Joann worked in the Individual Life and Annuities law unit, advising the Individual Life and Annuities operations relating to the acquired blocks of business in individual life and variable annuities.  In September 2017, Joann rejoined Group Insurance law.  Joann is actively involved in Prudential’s diversity and inclusion efforts, including serving as Co-Chair of the Law, Compliance, Business Ethics and External Affairs (LCBE) Diversity and Inclusion Council from October 2012 to March 2015.  Joann also participates in several pro bono clinics.  For the past two years, Joann serves as Prudential’s liaison to the National LGBT Bar Association.  Joann earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology from New York University and has a law degree from Seton Hall University School of Law.

Gloria Melunis – Gloria is staff counsel at PNC. Gloria is a member of the Asset Management Group and focuses on investment management and securities matters for the wealth and institutional lines of business. During her 2L summer, Gloria was an LGBT Bar intern in the PNC legal department. Prior to joining PNC, Gloria had a one-year term clerkship with the Honorable Andrew B. Altenburg, Jr., U.S. Bankruptcy Judge for the District of New Jersey. Gloria is an active member of PNC Proud, the LGBTA Employee Business Resource Group at PNC. Gloria received her B.A. from Rowan University and her J.D. from Rutgers Law School in May, 2015.  She is a member of the New Jersey and Pennsylvania state bars.

Marge Milam – Margie Milam currently serves as the Domain Name Strategy & Management Lead for Facebook, a role she has held since 2017. Prior to joining Facebook, Margie worked for the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) for 8 years. Margie worked for the Strategic Initiatives Department at ICANN. She worked on key domain name initiatives for ICANN, including the WHOIS program, and other initiatives that relate to intellectual property, competition, consumer protection, cyber-crime and privacy laws, ultimately holding a position as the Vice President, Multistakeholder Strategy & Strategic Initiatives. In addition, Margie previously held positions as the General Counsel of MarkMonitor, a brand protection firm, and in private practice at the law firm of Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman. Margie earned her B.A. from UCLA and her J.D. from the University of Southern California Law School.

Asha Muldro – Asha Muldro is Deputy General Counsel & Senior Managing Director of Guidepost Solutions.  Asha co-leads the Los Angeles office. As Deputy General Counsel, she assists with legal matters for the firm’s worldwide offices. As a Senior Managing Director, Asha directs an array of investigative, incident response, compliance, and monitoring matters for corporations and individuals. Previously, Asha was a partner at an elite litigation boutique, Willenken Wilson Loh & Delgado LLP where she led white collar investigations, defense matters, and complex civil litigation cases. Her clients included Microsoft, GoPro, KeyBank, Southern California Gas & Electric, and individuals under investigation by the U.S. Department of Justice and the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. Asha returned to private practice after serving as an Assistant U.S. Attorney in the Central District of California for seven years. As a federal prosecutor in the criminal division, she directed federal law enforcement agencies in more than 100 criminal investigations, presented numerous cases to the grand jury, served as lead trial counsel on multiple bench and jury trials, and briefed and argued several appeals before the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. Prior to joining the U.S. Department of Justice, Asha spent five years practicing law at Latham & Watkins LLP in its White Collar Defense and Investigations group. Asha was also certified as a volunteer prosecutor for the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office and was the sole trial attorney on several state jury trials. Asha clerked for U.S. District Judge Robert P. Patterson, Jr. in the Southern District of New York. She is a graduate of Yale University, BA, and Columbia Law School, JD. Asha is licensed to practice in California and New York.

Lauren Mutti – Lauren oversees a team dedicated to providing practical, solution-oriented legal advice regarding traditional labor and employee relations matters for Southern Glazer’s 22,000 employees in 45 states and Canada. Her group provides day-to-day advice regarding matters relating to employment discrimination/harassment/retaliation, wage and hour issues, whistleblower claims, trade secret protection and other employee relations matters. The group represents the company in charges before federal and state administrative agencies, and we manage litigation brought by employees, as well as traditional labor matters relating to the Company’s 27 collective bargaining agreements. Lauren is also co-chair of the Dallas corporate office’s diversity council.

Patricia O’Prey – Patricia (Trish) O’Prey has experience in a wide range of civil and criminal/regulatory cases. Trish is currently Investigations Leader for the General Electric Company’s Alstom Integration team. Previously, Trish was Executive Counsel for GE Corporate’s and GE Capital’s Investigations Centers of Excellence. She joined GE after spending more than fifteen years in private practice, including six years as a partner at Richards Kibbe & Orbe LLP in New York. She graduated with honors from the University of California, Santa Cruz and from the University of California Hastings College of the Law, cum laude. After graduating from law school, Trish clerked for the Honorable Melvin T. Brunetti on the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. Trish, her husband Paul, and their two daughters, live in New York. They enjoy hiking, museum-going and travel. Trish is an active supporter of Diversity and Inclusion efforts. Trish is a co-chair of GE’s Legal Diversity & Inclusion Committee’s Outside Counsel subcommittee and is a co-chair for the ABA Litigation Section’s Corporate Counsel

Isaac Osaki-Isaac (Ike) Osaki is general counsel for the Latin America region of Bank of America Merrill Lynch. In addition, Mr. Osaki is head of the legal team supporting the Global Rates and Currencies businesses, the regulatory reform and resolution planning efforts of Global Banking and Markets (GBAM), and the GBAM traded products Agreements and Documentation Group. Before assuming his current role, Mr. Osaki was the chief compliance officer of Global Wealth and Investment Management, composed of Merrill Lynch and U.S. Trust, co-chief compliance officer of Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith Incorporated, and the head of Registration and Licensing. Mr. Osaki was formerly the general counsel of Merrill Lynch Wealth Management and prior to that, the head of the legal team supporting the fixed income origination businesses at Banc of America Securities, including debt capital markets, leveraged finance, structured finance, credit derivatives, principal finance, leasing, and asset-based lending. Mr. Osaki joined Banc of America Securities as assistant general counsel for Global Corporate and Investment Banking covering M&A advisory services and debt and equity capital markets. Prior to joining Banc of America Securities, Mr. Osaki was an associate at Cadwalader, Wickersham & Taft in its corporate group and before that, the corporate group of Locke Lord. Mr. Osaki is a graduate of Rice University and Columbia Law School. He is a member of the New York and Texas bars and is FINRA Series 7, 14, and 24 registered.

Michelle Peak – Michelle is Director & Sr. Attorney at American Airlines in Ft. Worth, Texas. At American, Michelle provides daily advice to senior airline leadership, the human resources team and operations personnel on all aspects of labor law and labor relations matters. Michelle manages active labor-related litigation, represents the company in grievance arbitration, and manages legal issues related to the Railway Labor Act, Canada Labour Code, and International Labor Laws. She has had documented success managing some of the most complex labor issues during her 17 year career at American. Michelle currently serves on the Board of Association of Corporate Counsel –DFW Chapter, Lambda Legal National Leadership Council, American Airlines Education Foundation Board, and American Airlines Diversity Partner Council.

Darshini Reddivari – Darshini Reddivari is Vice President and Legal Counsel at T. Rowe Price Associates, focusing on legal matters relating to global capital markets, financial regulation, and derivatives trading. Darshini earned a J.D. from Georgetown University Law Center and a Bachelor of Arts in Economics from University of Michigan. Prior to her current position, Darshini was in the Legal departments at CME Group and INTL FCStone Markets. During law school, Darshini completed internships with the US Securities and Exchange Commission, the US Department of Treasury, and the Managed Funds Association.

Jason Prussman – Jason works as Senior Counsel for ADP, LLC, a leading provider of human resources management software and services, supporting the Screening and Selection and I-9 Services business units.  Prior to joining ADP, Jason worked as Senior Corporate Counsel for Level 3 Communications, LLC (now CenturyLink) as employment counsel.   Jason was a founding member of Level 3’s LGBT Employee Resource Group. Prior to Level 3, Jason worked as a litigation associate in Denver at Husch Blackwell and Holme Roberts & Owen (now Bryan Cave). He also enjoyed a stint as a Research Analyst at the Institute for the Advancement of the American Legal System at the University of Denver. Jason served on the board of directors for the Colorado LGBT Bar Association, from 2006 through 2013, including as President in 2007. He graduated from law school at the University of Colorado in 2003 and received his B.A. from Colorado State University in 1996, with a minor in French. Jason has trained as an improviser since 2013 with the Bovine Metropolis Theater in Denver and the Denver Center for the Performing Arts.

Ariel Ruiz – Ariel is a Senior Litigation Counsel at Uber, where he works on cutting edge matters that will shape the future of the “gig economy.” At Uber, Ariel focuses on class action, accessibility, digital advertising, and regulatory litigation matters, among others. Prior to joining Uber, he was a Senior Associate at Morrison & Foerster in both New York City and San Francisco.

Andrew Sachs – Andy is in-house counsel for Getty Images in Seattle, where he manages global claims and litigation for the company. In that role, his practice focuses largely on copyright, trademark, and right of publicity cases in jurisdictions around the world, as well as advising the business on risk management. Prior to that, he spent 11 years in private practice, during which time he had a national practice in complex commercial litigation and handled “bet the company” litigation for clients in multiple jurisdictions throughout the country. Andy is also active in his community. He was appointed by the Washington Supreme Court to serve on the Access to Justice Board and recently began a two-year term as chair of the Equal Justice Coalition, the organization in Washington State that lobbies for public funding for civil legal aid on the local, state, and federal levels. He was also chair of the board of directors of Washington State CASA, a nonprofit that recruits and trains volunteer advocates on behalf of abused and neglected children. Andy has also served as president of QLaw, the GLBT Bar Association for the state of Washington, and on the board of directors for Equal Rights Washington.

Thomas Salatte – Thomas (Tom) Salatte is a Managing Director in Nomura Securities’ legal department in New York. Mr. Salatte began his career at Nomura Securities in 1995, after previously being employed at the law firm of Burlingham, Underwood & Lord and then UBS. Mr. Salatte is also the Co-Chair of Nomura’s LGBTA employee network in the Americas.

Mr. Salatte received his BA from Hamilton College in 1989 and his JD from the University of Buffalo School of Law in 1993. He is a guest lecturer at the University of Buffalo School of Law, New York Law School and the International Swaps and Derivatives Association. Mr. Salatte has been the Vice Chair of SIFMA’s Global Documentation Advisory Committee and a Director on the Board of Directors of the Columbian American Lawyers Association, First Judicial Department.

Mr. Salatte is very active in the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgendered and allied community. He is a former board member of the New York City Anti-Violence Project (or “AVP”). AVP empowers lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and HIV-affected communities and allies to end all forms of violence through organizing and education, and supports survivors through counselling and advocacy.

Cass Sanford-Cass Sanford is a securities attorney committed to democratizing investing and supporting innovative ways for emerging companies to raise capital. As Associate General Counsel at OTC Markets Group, Cass furthers the company’s regulatory and policy making initiatives related to Regulation A+, focuses on legal issues concerning crypto assets, and supports the overall mission to create better informed, more efficient marketplaces.


Bradley Silver – Bradley Silver is Head of the IP practice at Time Warner Inc., where he is responsible for: (i) clearing, protecting and enforcing IP assets owned and used by Time Warner Inc.; (ii) providing IP transactional support to colleagues at Time Warner as well as its divisions (Turner, Warner Bros. and HBO); (iii) advising Time Warner and its divisions on a broad range of copyright issues relevant to Time Warner’s digital strategy; and (iv) advising and representing Time Warner and its divisions on trade, legislative and policy matters in the US and globally, including on issues before intergovernmental organizations such as WIPO; and (v) representing Time Warner and its divisions on IP-related internet governance and enforcement matters at ICANN.

Blake Sorensen – Blake Sorensen has been a practicing attorney since 2008 and is currently an IP Counsel for HP Inc. as well as the chair of HP’s Outside Counsel Diversity Committee. His role as chair of the Committee is to assist in on-boarding and collecting demographic data from all of HP’s outside counsel firms to ensure compliance with the diversity requirements of our service agreement.

Bryan Tallevi – Bryan is VP, NBCUniversal, where he focuses on the intersection of news, entertainment and popular culture. He works closely with journalists, executives, and reporters across the entire news portfolio on the development and production of content in all media. Bryan advises on wide ranging issues from newsgathering, access, defamation, privacy, FCC and FTC regulation, intellectual property, and production issues. Bryan also has deep experience negotiating and managing a wide array of entertainment related deals. Current favorite projects range from the TODAY show and Live From The Red Carpet to advising MSNBC and NBC stations across the country. When not making TV, Bryan is active in the music and theatre communities. He is a member of the Queer Urban Orchestra, served as Vice Chair of the New York Musical Theatre Festival for 4 four years, and regularly performs with friends. Bryan is a frequent speaker on free speech related topics and has taught courses for aspiring producers at NYU. He is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania Law School and Brown University. He lives in New York with his husband Brad and daughter Sawyer.

Roberta Tassinari – Roberta Tassinari currently serves as Managing Counsel of Intel Corporation, where she manages patent transactions. Prior to joining Intel, Roberta served as Senior Intellectual Property Law Counsel for IBM, where she worked for over 20 years. In this role, she was the leader of global patent licensing and assignment legal team; negotiated patent and technology license and assignment agreements; collaborated with business leaders to develop new patent monetization models; served as the lead IP attorney on major M&A transactions, including recent divestiture deals with Lenovo and GlobalFoundries; developed and maintained model agreements for patent transactions, adapting them for changes in the law and emerging business models; and mentored IBM IP attorneys on transactional practice. Roberta is a graduate of Boston University, and earned her J.D. from Cornell Law School.

Greg Todd – Gregory (Greg) A. Todd is an attorney in the Legal Department in New York with responsibility for global regulatory reform coverage in addition to his role supporting global rates and currencies sales and trading activity. Greg currently leads the Legal Department’s implementation efforts for global derivatives regulatory reform as well as heads legal coverage of BofAML’s global currencies and Americas interest rates derivatives businesses. Greg joined the bank in 2005 to cover structured products and credit derivatives businesses in the Americas. He assumed responsibility for regulatory reform coverage in 2010, Americas interest rates derivatives coverage in 2012 and global currencies coverage in 2015. He was promoted to managing director in 2015. After receiving a B.Sc. from the University of Toronto and a J.D. from the University of Pennsylvania Law School, Greg joined Vinson & Elkins LLP as an associate in 2000 and King & Spalding LLP as an associate in 2002 before joining the bank in 2005. Greg and his husband currently live in Brooklyn, New York. Greg is a member of his parish’s finance committee as well as a fundraiser for the New York Founding. He is also an active member of the LGTB Bar Association and BofAML’s representative on SIFMA’s Swap Dealer Committee.

Travis Torrence – Travis Torrence is Vice President – Legal of Jiffy Lube International, Inc., a wholly owned, indirect subsidiary of Shell Oil Company, where he also serves as Senior Legal Counsel.  Travis graduated from Yale Law School in 2005 and received his undergraduate degree, summa cum laude, in Communication and Political Science from Tulane University. Prior to joining Shell, Travis was a Senior Associate at Fulbright & Jaworski LLP (now known as Norton Rose Fulbright), where he chaired the Houston office’s Recruiting Committee and served as a founding member of the firm’s Diversity Advisory Council.  Before working at Fulbright, Travis served as a law clerk for the Honorable Edward C. Prado of the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit. Travis has been honored by, among others, (i) Texas SuperLawyers as a Rising Star in the area of Bankruptcy & Creditor/Debtor Rights, (ii) the Houston Business Journal in that publication’s Best Corporate Counsel Awards, which recognizes the best and brightest in-house attorneys in Houston, and (iii) Outsmart Magazine for being one of the faces of Black LGBTQ Leadership in Houston. Travis currently serves on the Board of Directors of the State Bar of Texas (representing District 4), AIDS Foundation Houston, and as President of the Board of Directors of Bo’s Place, a grief support center for children and families that have lost a loved one.  He is a member of the Dean’s Advisory Council for Tulane University’s School of Liberal Arts and is currently the President of The Arthur L. Moller/David B. Foltz, Jr. American Inn of Court.  He has served as Co-Chair of the Texas Minority Counsel Program and the Houston Bar Association’s Campaign for the Homeless, AIDS Outreach, and Professionalism Committees.  He is an inaugural member of the HBA’s Ambassador Program and has chaired the Minority Opportunities in the Legal Profession Committee, for which he was honored with the HBA’s President’s Award.  Travis is a former Co-Chair of the Texas Minority Counsel Program and a former champion of Dancing With The Houston Stars.  He has chaired or served as honorary chair of numerous philanthropic events, including the World AIDS Day Luncheon and the Victory Fund Champagne Brunch in Houston.  Travis previously worked as an on-air personality for B-97 FM; New Orleans’ #1 Hit Music Station.

Praju Tuladhar – Praju Tuladhar is Senior Corporate Counsel at Amazon, in Seattle, WA. Since joining the company in 2012, Praju has held a number of roles within the legal department. He currently supports the world wide Prime business, and his previous roles included advising the AWS and the Global Payments businesses. Prior to working at Amazon, Praju was a Global Finance Associate at Sidley Austin LLP in Chicago, IL.  He is a member of the board of directors for the QLaw Foundation and the Washington Ensemble Theatre, and an adjunct professor at the Seattle University School of Law.

Joseph Vardner – Joseph P. Vardner is a Director and Compliance Manager for Wells Fargo Bank, N.A. in Wholesale Banking. He focuses on the Wholesale division’s antitrust, anti-competitive, and anti-tying compliance programs. Prior to joining Wells Fargo, Mr. Vardner worked at a top global law firm and the U.S. Department of Justice’s Antitrust Division. He has experience navigating FTC and Department of Justice investigations and litigations. At the DOJ, Mr. Vardner represented the United States at trial in its challenge of a provision in agreements between a credit card network and merchants. He was also on the litigation team for its challenge to the merger between AT&T and T-Mobile. Additionally, he investigated civil merger and non-merger matters in the wood products, media, and financial industries. He was awarded the Attorney General’s Distinguished Service Award and twice awarded the Antitrust Division’s Award of Distinction.

Michelle Waites – Michelle Waites is Senior Patent Counsel for Xerox Corporation, actively involved in enforcing and obtaining the company’s patent and other intellectual property rights. Her primary responsibility is patent litigation, and typically includes managing outside counsel, leading internal fact investigations attending depositions and court hearings and participating in settlement and case strategy discussions. Her practice also includes reviewing technology transfer agreements, supporting product design and development programs and working with business and technical staff to develop and implement effective legal strategies. She is a registered patent attorney and has extensive experience preparing and prosecuting patent applications. She also manages employment litigation matters before the EEOC, state and federal courts. Ms. Waites has maintained her own law practice, has been associated with law firms in New York City and spent several years as an engineer in the aerospace/military defense industry. She received a Juris Doctor degree from the University of California at Berkeley and a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from Syracuse University. She is admitted to the Bar in California and New York and is registered to practice before the US Patent and Trademark Office. Ms. Waites is a member of the American Bar Association, Lambda Legal and the National LGBT Bar Association.

Edward Willey- Edward Willey is Senior Director and IT Counsel in Katy, Texas, at Academy, Ltd., d/b/a Academy Sports + Outdoors, a Texas-based private company with more than 245 retail stores in 16 states throughout the South, Southeast, and Midwest, and online sales in the contiguous 48 states.  Founded by the Gochman family in San Antonio, Texas, in 1938 as a tire shop, Academy was acquired by KKR & Co. in 2011 and today is one of the largest sporting goods retailers in the US. Edward is responsible for all IT and data-related legal matters for Academy, including cyber security and data privacy.  Previously, Edward was Senior Counsel covering commercial contracts and data privacy and cyber security at Hewlett Packard Enterprise (formerly the Hewlett-Packard Company) in Plano, Texas. Edward is an IAPP member and is a 2004 graduate of The University of Texas School of Law (licensed in Texas in 2004).

Joseph White – Joseph White joined Office Depot in 2009 and is Vice President, Associate General Counsel in transactions. Joseph received his undergraduate degree (BS), summa cum laude, from the College of Charleston in 1996 and his JD degree, magna cum laude, from the University of South Carolina in 1999, where he served on the South Carolina Law Review. Prior to joining Office Depot, Joseph was an attorney with the law firms of Dewey Ballantine, LLP, Kilpatrick Stockton LLP, and Squire, Sanders & Dempsey, LLP and served as in-house counsel for Compass Group, The Americas Division, where his practice concentrated in mergers & acquisitions and general corporate and contract law. Joseph is licensed to practice law in New York and Florida (Authorized House Counsel). He is a member of the Association of Corporate Counsel and serves on the National Legal Industry Council of the National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce.

Donna Wilson-Donna Wilson is the Managing Partner-Elect of Manatt, Phelps & Phillips. As chair of Manatt’s privacy and data security practice and co-chair of its financial services litigation and enforcement practice, Donna is nationally recognized for her high-profile, bet-the-company work on behalf of companies facing litigation and government enforcement actions, with a focus on the privacy and data security and consumer financial services spaces. Donna’s extensive crisis and risk management experience, coupled with her broad subject matter knowledge and precedent-setting litigation experience, makes her highly valued by in-house counsel, the C-level suite and boards in pre-emptively mitigating risk, and navigating those risks that become full-blown exposure. She has successfully represented her client base, which includes banks, mortgage servicers, auto finance companies, retailers and other financial services providers, as well as clients in other regulated industries, in a range of matters, from advice and counseling, to class and individual litigation, to government enforcement and regulatory actions.  Distinguished by professional publications for her leadership, Donna was recently selected as one of the Top 20 Cyber/Artificial Intelligence Lawyers and one of the Top 100 Women Lawyers in California by the Daily Journal, and one of the Most Influential Women Lawyers in Los Angeles by the Los Angeles Business Journal.

Michael Woods – Michael Woods is the General Counsel of Sol Systems, a solar project finance and development firm based on Washington, DC.  In this capacity, he oversees all significant legal areas for Sol Systems, and serves as a strategic advisor to the CEO, Executive Team and Board of Directors of the company.  Prior to joining Sol Systems in 2014, he was a partner in the Energy and Corporate practice groups in the Washington, D.C. office of Kirkland & Ellis, where his practice focused on M&A transactions, equity investments, joint ventures, restructurings, and commercial transactions in the energy industry.

Diversity & Inclusion

Guillaume Bagal – Guillaume Bagal is Lead Diversity and Inclusion Consultant at Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Rhode Island. In addition to promoting an environment of inclusiveness and equity throughout the organization, he works with interdisciplinary partners in the community to address health-related disparities affecting Rhode Islanders. Previously he was Assistant Director of Policy at Whitman-Walker Health, a federally qualified health center serving Washington, DC’s diverse community with special focus on people living with HIV and the LGBTQ community. Prior to joining Whitman-Walker, Guillaume consulted for various healthcare stakeholders at Avalere Health, and served as Director of Policy at the Center of Global Health and Diplomacy in Washington, DC. Guillaume also served as President of the DC-based Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance (GLAA), the nation’s oldest continuously active gay and lesbian civil rights organization. He was a member of the LGBT Data Working Group assembled by the District of Columbia Department of Health, and chaired the Research and Evaluation Committee of the Sex Workers Advocacy Coalition in DC. He holds a Master’s degree in Sociology from East Carolina University, and a Master’s in Health Administration and Policy from George Mason University.

Gretchen Bellamy –  Gretchen C. Bellamy is currently the President & Consulting Director for Bellamy Management Consulting LLC. She is parlaying her world-class legal and business background into providing expert organizational evaluations and advisory services globally to transform organizational culture, operations, and talent development & management through the creation, refinement, and implementation of diversity and inclusion strategies to positively drive business resilience. Ms. Bellamy previously worked for Walmart Stores, Inc. where, in addition to serving as an Assistant General Counsel, she served as a Senior Strategist analyzing human resources trends to devise leadership and inclusion programs for associates from store-level to C-suite through innovative measurements and data collection methodologies. She developed and supported global culture, diversity, and inclusion strategies (communications, external relations, programs, culture, and policy) to transform and drive company’s culture and embed diversity & inclusion as integral components for supporting company’s 2,200,000 employees and business operations. She has won several awards for her innovative, replicable, and sustainable approach to diversity, inclusion, and equity including the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Visionary Award by Walmart, Architect of Meritocracy by the Apollo Project & Financial Times of London, and Outstanding Corporate Counsel by the American Bar Association Section of International Law. She serves on several advisory board including the Institute for Inclusion in the Legal Profession, University of Arkansas Walton College of Business, and Single Parent Scholarship Fund. Finally, she is a Commissioner for the American Bar Association’s Commission on Racial and Ethnic Diversity in the Profession where she is the Chair of the Corporate Counsel Committee as well as liaison to the Commission on Women and co-chair of the Task Force on Sexual Harassment & Gender-based Bullying. Ms. Bellamy received a J.D. and LL.M. in international and comparative law from Duke University School of Law and is admitted to the Maryland bar. She is a Returned Peace Corps Volunteer (Cameroon 2001). 

Bendita Cynthia Malakia – Bendita Cynthia Malakia is Inclusion Manager – Americas at Hogan Lovells in Washington, D.C. In her role, Bendita focuses on integrating diversity and inclusion into the architecture, processes and programs at the firm, investing in high potential diverse attorneys, creating a culture of inclusion, and prosecuting the business case for diversity by advising leadership on leveraging diversity as a business asset. Prior to joining Hogan Lovells in August 2017, Bendita was a diversity and inclusion consultant serving Fortune 500 organizations, AmLaw 100 law firms & national non-profits by developing and executing national diversity & inclusion strategy and supporting initiatives spanning recruiting, retention, development, supplier initiatives, culture, community and evaluation. In addition to consulting, Bendita is a certified professional coach that has worked with general counsel and other in-house attorneys, partners and other practitioners, and law students spanning industries and practice settings. Bendita spent many years practicing finance law at Norton Rose Fulbright (formerly Fulbright & Jaworski LLP), International Finance Corporation (World Bank Group).and Goldman Sachs. She has received accolades for her legal acumen, including being named a 2015 Rising Star by Super Lawyers, to Who’s Who Legal – Project Finance in Washington, DC for 2015, and to Who’s Who in Black Dallas in 2016 and 2017. Bendita invests in increasing inclusivity in the legal profession through service as a member of the Board of Directors of the National LGBT Bar, as a member of the Institute for Inclusion in Legal Profession’s Social Impact Incubator, and on the executive committee of the N.E.W. Roundtable, a networking organization for Black women lawyers in North Texas. She previously spent nearly a decade as a member of the Board of Directors of the Harvard Real Estate Academic Initiative. Bendita is a graduate of Barnard College and Harvard Law School. She enjoys connection, the idea of spiritual dance, international spacations, Toni Morrison, real estate development and breakfast parties.


Mary Boney Denison – Mary Boney Denison is the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) Commissioner for Trademarks. Ms. Denison oversees all aspects of the Trademarks organization, including policy, operations and budget relating to trademark examination, registration, and maintenance. Ms. Denison joined the USPTO in 2011 as Deputy Commissioner for Trademark Operations where she was responsible for USPTO trademark application, legal examination, and registration processes. She has led outreach to the trademark legal community, small businesses, and applicants without legal counsel, and has been an active participant in meetings with the world’s largest trademark offices, promoting projects aimed at harmonizing trademark practices and procedures. While at the USPTO she has initiated several projects to enhance and expand internal and external communications as well as employee career development. Before joining the USPTO, Ms. Denison practiced law in the area of trademark prosecution and litigation, as a founding partner of Manelli Denison & Selter PLLC in Washington, D.C., from 1996 to 2011, and as a partner of Graham & James LLP, where she practiced for 10 years. She served as a member of the Board of Directors of the International Trademark Association (INTA) for three years, and also served a three-year term on the USPTO’s Trademark Public Advisory Committee (TPAC). Ms. Denison holds degrees from Duke University and the University of North Carolina School of Law from which she received the UNC School of Law Distinguished Alumni Award in 2016.

Jess Braverman – Jess Braverman is a lawyer on the felony property and drug team, with the Hennepin County Public Defender’s Office in Minneapolis, Minnesota. In 2009 Jess graduated from New York University School of Law, where she was an Arthur Garfield Hays Civil Liberties Fellow. While at NYU, she interned with the Sylvia Rivera Law Project, Transgender Legal Defense and Education Fund, and South Brooklyn Legal Services HIV Unit. After graduating, Jess became a Staff Attorney with the Legal Aid Society’s Juvenile Rights Project in Brooklyn, New York. Jess is a board member with the Minnesota Lavender Bar Association. Jess is originally from the Bronx, but she is learning to enjoy all the snow, lakes, and hot dishes Minnesota has to offer.

Ezra Cukor- Ezra Cukor is a Staff Attorney at the New York City Commission on Human Rights (CCHR). Ezra has successfully investigated and litigated civil rights cases, often obtaining significant compensatory damages, civil penalties, and widespread affirmative relief. Ezra takes a leadership role in agency enforcement and policy initiatives that expand civil rights protections for LGBT people. He has secured settlements remedying discrimination against LGBT people including damages for survivors of harassment and agreements expanding access to healthcare for trans people and LGB families. Previously, as a Staff Attorney in the LGBTQ Law Project at New York Legal Assistance Group, Ezra represented low-income LGBTQ people in employment, housing, and name change matters. Ezra is a founding board member of the National Transgender Bar Association and is active in the New York City Bar Association. Ezra has a JD from Harvard Law School and BA from Wesleyan University.

Matthew Jannusch – Matthew W. Jannusch is an Assistant State’s Attorney with the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office, the second largest prosecutor’s office in the nation with more than 700 attorneys. Matthew is in his 17th year in the office and is currently assigned to the Felony Trial Division and has previously held assignments within the State’s Attorney’s Office in Domestic Violence, Community Justice, Mortgage Fraud, Public Corruption, Financial Crimes, and was a supervisor in the Child Support Enforcement Division. Matthew holds the office of President of the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office LGBT+ Employee Resource Group which is part of the larger Diversity and Inclusion Initiative of the office. Matthew is a member of the Board of Directors of the Lesbian and Gay Bar Association of Chicago (LAGBAC) and currently Chairs both the Diversity and Nominations Committees. He recently stepped down from the LAGBAC Judicial Evaluation Committee after 12 years of service and is currently involved in the LAGBAC mentoring program. Matthew is an active member of the Chicago Bar Association LGBT Committee, the Hispanic Lawyers Association of Illinois LGBT Civil Rights Committee and the Cook County Bar Association’s LGBTQ Section. Along with his bar activities, Matthew is active in other community organizations including the Junior Board for the Chicago Lighthouse for the Blind, one of Chicago’s oldest charitable organizations, which raises awareness and funds for visually impaired and blind children ages 0-3. He also participates as a member of his local neighborhood Park Advisory Council. Matthew has been a member of the National LGBT Bar Association since 2007 and has been an enthusiastic recruiter at the Lavender Law Conference and Career Fair for his employer over these many years. Matthew graduated cum laude from Northern Illinois University College of Law in 2001 and was an Assistant Editor of the Law Review.

Jane Jarcho-In February 2016, Jane E. Jarcho was named as the Deputy Director of the Securities and Exchange Commission’s Office of Compliance Inspection and Examinations (OCIE). In her role, she oversees approximately 1000 lawyers, accountants, and examiners. Previously, beginning in March 2013, she served as the National Associate Director of OCIE’s Investment Adviser/Investment Company (IA/IC) examination program, a role she continues to hold. Under Ms. Jarcho’s leadership, the IA/IC program has shown significant increases in year-over-year examinations and targeted areas such as cybersecurity, never before examined investment advisers and investment companies, alternative mutual funds, fixed income funds, and retirement accounts. Before being named National Director of the IA/IC examination program, Ms. Jarcho was an Associate Director of the IA/IC examination program in the SEC’s Chicago regional office. She began her SEC career in 1990 in the Division of Enforcement and held several positions, including Branch Chief, Senior Trial Counsel, and Assistant Regional Director, before joining OCIE in 2008. Ms. Jarcho has a bachelor’s degree from Middlebury College and a law degree from the University of Wisconsin Law School.

Eduardo Juarez – Eduardo Juarez is a Supervisory Trial Attorney with the San Antonio Field Office of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission where he litigates individual, class and systemic lawsuits under the federal civil rights statutes prohibiting employment discrimination. In August 2011, he worked on detail as Special Assistant to EEOC Commissioner Chai Feldblum, the first out lesbian EEOC Commissioner. Before his employment with the EEOC, Mr. Juarez was a Trial Attorney with the Public Defender Service for the District of Columbia and began his legal career as an Associate with the law firm of Sidley & Austin in Chicago, Illinois. Eduardo received his B.A. from the University of Notre Dame and his law degree from the University of Michigan. He is active in various LGBT political and professional organizations and is a past Chair of the LGBT Law Section for the State Bar of Texas.

Rage Kidvai – Rage is a public defender in Brooklyn Criminal Defense practice of the Legal Aid Society. They also work with 5 Boro Defenders focusing on prosecutor accountability work. Prior to this, Rage was an Equal Justice Works Fellow in the Sylvia Rivera Law Project’s Immigrant Defense Project where they represented trans and gender nonconforming people with criminal records on their immigration cases. Rage is a graduate of the CUNY Law School where they were a part of the Defender Clinic and interned with the Bronx Defenders, Brooklyn Defender Services and the Orleans Public Defenders Office.

Adrien Leavitt – For the past 5 years, Adrien has served as a trial attorney at the King County Department of public defense. Prior to joining King County PD’s office, Adrien was associated counsel for the Accused. In addition, to being a public defender. Adrien is an accomplished photographer.

Cecilia B. Loving – Cecilia B. Loving is Deputy Commissioner and Chief of Diversity and Inclusion at the New York City Fire Department. Previously, she was Director of six of FDNY’s legal units. She served in the Law Enforcement Bureau and as EEO Counselor for the New York City Commission on Human Rights. She provided vision, leadership and initiatives for the Practicing Attorneys for Law Students, Inc., an organization committed to establishing best practices for diversity and inclusion in law. She practiced as a litigator at Patterson Belknap Webb & Tyler LLP for 20 years and founded the Patterson Attorneys of Color, and previously worked at Kramer Levin and the Legal Aid Society. She is a member of the City Bar Committee to Enhance Diversity and the Committee on Minorities in the Legal Profession. Commissioner Loving holds a JD from NYU School of Law, BFA from Howard University, MFA from UCLA, and Master of Divinity from New York Theological Seminary. She has received numerous awards for her innovative work in mindfulness, restoration and positive initiatives for workplace self-empowerment. She is founder of the Mindfulness Group at FDNY and Co-Chair of the Bar Association of the City of New York’s first Mindfulness and Well-Being Committee.

Carmelyn Malalis- Carmelyn P. Malalis is the Chair and Commissioner of the New York City Commission on Human Rights. Prior to her appointment, Commissioner Malalis was a partner at Outten & Golden LLP where she co-founded and co-chaired its Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Workplace Rights Practice Group and its Disability and Family Responsibilities Discrimination Practice Group; and successfully represented employees in negotiations, agency proceedings, and litigation involving claims of sexual harassment, retaliation, and discrimination based on race, national origin, sex, gender identity, gender expression, sexual orientation, age, pregnancy, disability, and religion.

Throughout her career, Ms. Malalis has demonstrated a fierce commitment to promoting diversity and inclusion and preventing and prosecuting discrimination and intolerance. Since she assumed her role as Chair and Commissioner at the Commission in February 2015, Commissioner Malalis has revitalized the agency, making it a recognized venue for justice for all New Yorkers through increased enforcement and robust public education and outreach to prevent discrimination in New York City.

She has previously served on the New York City Bar Association’s Executive Committee, Human Rights Watch’s Advisory Committee of the LGBT Rights Project, the American Bar Association’s Section on Labor and Employment Law Committee on Diversity in the Legal Profession, the New York City Bar’s Committee on LGBT Rights, and the board of Queers for Economic Justice. Commissioner Malalis earned her J.D. from the Northeastern University School of Law and received a B.A. in Women’s Studies from Yale University. She and her wife live in Brooklyn with their two children.

Ashe McGovern- Ashe McGovern is Senior Policy Advisor and Director of the LGBTQ Initiatives in the NYC Mayor’s Office. Ashe was formerly the Legislative and Policy Director of the Public Rights/Private Conscience Project, a legal and policy think tank housed in the Center for Gender and Sexuality Law at Columbia Law School. Before joining Columbia, Ashe was a Policy Analyst at the Center for American Progress (CAP) in Washington, DC, where they engaged in federal policy research and advocacy, with a particular focus on LGBTQ poverty and the criminalization of LGBTQ communities of color. Prior to CAP, Ashe worked as an Equal Justice Works Fellow at New York Legal Assistance Group, where they launched the LGBTQ Health and Economic Justice Initiative to provide direct legal services to low-income LGBTQ communities in New York.

Debra Murphy – Debra Murphy is an attorney in the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), Office of Justice Programs (OJP), Office for Civil Rights (OCR). The OCR reviews recipients of DOJ’s financial assistance to ensure that they are complying with applicable civil rights laws, and investigates complaints of discrimination from individual program beneficiaries and employees. One of the civil rights provisions that the OCR enforces is the nondiscrimination grant condition in the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act of 2013 (VAWA), which prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, disability, sex, sexual orientation, and gender identity. Ms. Murphy chaired DOJ’s intra-agency working group that developed its Frequently Asked Questions about the VAWA nondiscrimination grant condition, and routinely conducts civil rights training for recipients of federal financial assistance from OJP and DOJ’s Office on Violence Against Women. Ms. Murphy worked at a domestic violence and sexual assault program in Illinois for approximately 10 years, and was the Coordinator of Sexual Assault Programs at the University of Illinois. She has a bachelors degree in social work and a masters degree in education from the University of Illinois, and a law degree from Duke University.

Krista Peterson – Krista Peterson is an Assistant State’s Attorney at the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office in Chicago, Illinois, a position she has held for 16 years. Ms. Peterson is currently assigned to the Sexual Assault and Domestic Violence Unit of the Felony Trial Division, and has been for the past six years. Ms. Peterson was hired by the State’s Attorney’s Office in 2002 upon graduating from DePaul University College of Law and has held positions in Criminal Appeals, Misdemeanors, Felony Review and Preliminary Hearings. Ms. Peterson has devoted over half of her career to the prosecution of domestic violence cases. Ms. Peterson is a member of the National Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Bar Association and the Lesbian and Gay Bar Association of Chicago. Ms. Peterson is a founding member of WISE (Women’s Insight and Support through Education), an Employee Resource Group at the State’s Attorney’s Office and leads their Mentorship Committee. Ms. Peterson holds the office of Vice President of the State’s Attorney’s Office’s LGBT+ Employee Resource Group. Prior to law school, Ms. Peterson attended Ball State University in Muncie, Indiana where she earned a Bachelor of Arts in English and a Minor in Creative Writing and was Co-Captain of their Division I Softball Team. Ms. Peterson lives just outside of Chicago with her wife of twelve years and their two

Mariano Reyna – Mariano Reyna is an Assistant State’s Attorney at the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office in Chicago, Illinois, a position he has held for 15 years. Mr. Reyna is currently assigned to the Felony Trial Division and has been for the past 8.5 years, the last 2 years as a First Chair. Mr. Reyna was hired by the State’s Attorney’s Office in 2003 upon graduating from University of Illinois, Urbana- Champaign, College of Law and has held positions in Traffic, Misdemeanors, Felony Review, the Chicago Children’s Advocacy Center and Preliminary Hearings. Mr. Reyna is a member of the National Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Bar Association and the Lesbian and Gay Bar Association of Chicago. Mr. Reyna holds a Chair position in the State’s Attorney’s Office’s LGBT+ Employee Resource Group. Prior to law school, Mr. Reyna attended Boston University where he earned a Bachelor of Arts in Pyschology and a Minor in English. Mr. Reyna lives in Chicago.

Matthew Skinner – Matthew Skinner is the Executive Director of The Richard C. Failla LGBTQ Commission of the New York State Courts, where he works closely with senior court system leadership in efforts to promote equal participation in and access to the courts and legal profession by all persons regardless of sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression. Prior to assuming his current position with the state court system, Matt led The LGBT Bar Association and Foundation of Greater New York (LeGaL) for four years, litigated at Proskauer Rose LLP, and clerked for the Honorable Richard K. Eaton at the U.S. Court of International Trade. He graduated magna cum laude from Albany Law School and the University of Notre Dame.

Jaclyn Quiles – Jaclyn Quiles is an Assistant District Attorney at the Kings County District Attorney’s Office, Domestic Violence Unit where she prosecutes misdemeanor and felony cases involving intimate partner violence. While in the Domestic Violence Bureau, Jaclyn has created a specialty in prosecuting LGBTQ intimate partner violence cases and helped create an office-wide policy for prosecuting cases involving LGBTQ Defendants and/or victims. Jaclyn now trains the office on LGBTQ cultural competency, the relationship between law enforcement and the LGBTQ community, and challenges for prosecution. Jaclyn Quiles received her Juris Doctor from the Maurice A. Deane School of Law at Hofstra University and received her B.A. with Honors in Government and Law at Lafayette College. During law school, Jaclyn was a clinical student for Hofstra Law’s Occupy Wall Street Clinic and interned with the New York Civil Liberties Union. While at Hofstra Law, Jaclyn also served as the President of Hofstra LaLSA, served as Secretary and a Delegate for MetroLALSA, Inc., and as a Regional Director for the National Latino/a Law Student Association. Jaclyn was also the inaugural recipient of the Justice Sallie Manzanet-Daniels “Dare to Dream” scholarship and a “Rising Star” Flor de Maga Award Recipient from the Puerto Rican Bar Association Women’s Committee. Jaclyn is also currently a Co-Chair of the LGBTQ+ Committee of the Puerto Rican Bar Association and is a member of the NYC Bar Association’s LGBT Committee.

Jorge Tenreiro Jorge is currently a Senior Trial Counsel in the Division of Enforcement of the United States Securities & Exchange Commission, where he has been the recipient of three Awards from the Director of the Division of Enforcement, as well as a nominee for the SEC’s Exceptional Service and Ellen Ross Awards. Prior to joining the SEC in December 2013, he was a law clerk for the Honorable Julio M. Fuentes for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit. He alos served as a law clerk from August 2007 to August 2008 for the Honorable Allyne R. Ross of the Eastern District of New York. From October 2006 to August 2007 and from September 2008 to August 2012, Jorge was an associate in the litigation department of Cleary, Gottlieb, Steen & Hamilton LLP. He is a 2006 graduate of Yale Law School where he was awarded the William K.S. Wang and Harlan Stone Prizes for excellence in corporate law courses and moot court competition,and was a Senior Editor of the Yale Law & Policy Review. In May 2003, he obtained a B.A., magna cum laude with distinction in Economics and Mathematics from Yale University. He was Phi Beta Kappa and also received the Henry M. Nodelman Scholarship for Excellence in Sciences.


Hon. Gary Cohen – Judge Cohen came out in 1974 when he started his undergraduate studies. He joined and eventually became president of the gay students’ group at Simon Fraser University. He then attended law school at the University of British Colombia where he was again president of the university-wide gay students’ group and where he also started the Gay/Lesbian Students Association. After graduation, he started his own law firm, taught continuing legal educational courses, published course material, co-wrote a book on self-help divorces and was active in the bar association. He was appointed Queen’s Counsel in 1997 and he was appointed to the bench in 1999. Since his judicial appointment, he has been the president of the BC Provincial Court Judges Association, the Judges Forum of the Canadian Bar Association and he was the first and only Canadian to be the president of the International Association of LGBT Judges. He has taught the ‘Career Paths to the Judiciary” course every year (but for two) since 1999.

Hon. Christopher Bowen – Christopher R. Bowen has been a Judge of the Superior Court of California, County of Contra Costa since December 2010.  He is currently in a criminal calendar assignment, and previously served as supervising judge of his court’s Family Law Division.  Judge Bowen is a member of Bay Area Lawyers for Individual Freedom (BALIF), the National LGBT Bar Association, and the International Association of LGBT Judges.  He presents frequently on topics related to restraining orders in both the family law and criminal contexts.

Hon. Mary Celeste – Judge Mary A. Celeste (ret.) sat on the Denver County Court bench where she was the Presiding Judge 2009 and 2010; the first woman and LGBT to hold that position in the history of that Court. She was also the first out LGBT Judge in Colorado and founder of the Denver Sobriety Court. She sat on the Colorado Advisory Committee for the United States Civil Rights Commission and was the education chair for the International Association of LGBT Judges (IALGBT). She is the immediate past chair of ABA National Conference of Specialized Court Judges and is currently a member of the Judicial Advisory Board for the Foundation for the Advancement of Alcohol Responsibility (FAAR); Faculty for the National Center for DWI Courts (NCDC) and the National Judicial College (NJC) and member of the IALGBT Judges. She has served as the President of the American Judge’s Association and the Colorado Women’s Bar Association Foundation, and, as a National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) Judicial Outreach Liaison. She has also served as a board member of the LGBT Victory Fund where she served as the Political Committee Chair; the LGBT Community Center; Colorado Bar Association’s Board of Governors, the Denver Bar Association’s Conciliation Panel and the Colorado Women’s Bar Association Board of Governors. She is the co-founder of the Colorado Legal Initiatives Project, the non-profit organization that spearheaded Colorado’s Amendment 2 which resulted in the U.S. Supreme Court case of Romer v. Evans; the founder of the Colorado LGBT Bar Association and the Colorado LGBT Chamber of Commerce. She has written many articles and is a national speaker on the topics of marijuana; marijuana and drug impaired driving, and specialty courts. She has presented to NADCP, APPA, AJA, ABA, DATIA, NHTSA, Lifesavers, Pennsylvania DUI Association, Michigan and Louisiana Association of Drug Court Professionals and to Judges, Specialty Court Conferences, and Safety Highway Offices in the States of Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Kansas, Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, Michigan, Nebraska, Nevada, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Texas, Utah, Washington, Wyoming and in Canada.

Hon. Paul Feinman – Judge Feinman began his legal career as a Staff Attorney for the Appeals Bureau of the Legal Aid Society of Nassau County and then worked for the Legal Aid Society, Criminal Defense Division in Manhattan. From 1989 to 1996, he clerked for Justice Angela M. Mazzarelli in Supreme Court, Criminal and Civil Branches, and in the Appellate Division, First Department. In November 1996, Judge Feinman was elected to the Civil Court of the City of New York; he was re-elected in 2006. From 1997 to 2001, he was assigned to the Criminal Court. He was designated an Acting Supreme Court Justice in Manhattan in 2004 and elected a Justice of the Supreme Court in 2007. Governor Andrew M. Cuomo appointed him to the Appellate Division, First Department in October 2012. Governor Cuomo then nominated Judge Feinman to the Court of Appeals on June 15, 2017. The State Senate unanimously confirmed his nomination on June 21, 2017, making him the first openly gay judge on the state’s highest court.

Hon. Alexander Fernández – Since his appointment in September 2008, Alexander Fernández has served as a federal Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) at the Office of Hearings and Appeals in the Department of Housing and Urban Development (“HUD”). (www.hud.gov/oha)  Immediately prior to his service at HUD, Judge Fernández served as an ALJ at the Social Security Administration in Mayagüez, Puerto Rico.

Judge Fernández began his federal service in 1991 as an Attorney at the United States Department of Labor’s Office of the Solicitor, where he litigated, at both the appellate and trial levels, as a member of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (“ERISA”) Division. While in the ERISA Division, he represented DOL and Plan Participants/Beneficiaries in national litigation usually involving systemic breaches of fiduciary duties, cutting edge regulatory matters and/or Multiemployer Welfare arrangements.  For his work in that Division, he earned 6 Secretary of Labor Exceptional Achievement Awards.

Still at DOL, in 2003, Judge Fernández later became Deputy Associate Solicitor for Occupational Safety and Health, a position he enjoyed greatly.  In the “OSH” Division, the Division responsible for legal work arising out of the Department’s administration and enforcement of the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, he directly supervised litigation, over-all training, budget and workflow management.

From 2005 to 2008, Judge Fernández served as General Counsel to the Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission (“OSHRC”), an independent federal agency providing administrative trial and appellate review, and created to decide contests of citations or penalties resulting from OSHA inspections of American work places. At OSHRC, Judge Fernández reorganized the Office of the General Counsel, converting it from a specialized OSHA-law boutique into a one-stop shop able to service the Agency’s various legal demands.

Away from government practice, Judge Fernández has taught Remedies, and Evidence at the George Mason University School of Law, where he was also Assistant Director of the Legal Research, Writing and Analysis Program. He enjoys singing, directing, and very, very occasionally acting in local professional theatre productions.  Right now, he, along with his husband, primarily concentrate on chasing their two-year-old toddler.

Hon. Phyllis Frye – Judge Frye is an Eagle Scout, a former member of the Texas A&M Corps of Cadets, a US Army veteran (1LT-RA 1970-72), a licensed engineer, a licensed attorney, a father, a grandmother and a lesbian wife. She is the first, out, transgender judge in the nation. Now having lived almost sixty percent of her life as the woman she always felt herself to be, Phyllis remains on the cutting edge of LGBTI and especially transgender legal and political issues. When the “gay” community was still ignoring or marginalizing the transgender community in the early 1990’s, Phyllis began the national transgender legal and political movement (thus she is known as being the TG movement’s “Grandmother”) with the six annual transgender law conferences (ICTLEP) and their grassroots training. Attorney Frye is one of the Task Force’s 1995 “Creator of Change” award winners. In 1999 she was given the International Foundation for Gender Education’s “Virginia Prince Lifetime Achievement” award. In 2001 she was given the National LGBT Bar Association’s (a.k.a. Lavender Law’s) highest honor, the “Dan Bradley Award.” She was honored beginning in 2009 by Texas A&M University with an annual “Advocacy Award” given in her name. In 2013 the Houston Transgender Unity Committee gave her its “Lifetime Achievement Award.” In 2015 she was given the National Center for Transgender Equality’s “Julie Johnson Founders Award.” That same year, Phyllis was featured on the front page (above the fold) of the Sunday Edition, August 30, New York Times, and she also became a Life Member of the National Eagle Scout Association. In 2010 Phyllis was sworn-in as the first, out, transgender judge in the nation, as a City of Houston Associate Municipal Judge. She retains her senior partnership with Frye, Oaks and Benavidez, PLLC, which is an out LGBTI-and-straight-allies law firm. While the members of the firm practice law in a variety of areas, Phyllis devotes her practice exclusively to taking transgender clients — both adults and minors — through the Texas courts to change the clients’ names and genders on their legal documents.

Hon. Elizabeth Garry – The Honorable Elizabeth A. Garry was appointed by Governor Andrew Cuomo as the 16th Presiding Justice of the Appellate Division, Third Department on January 1, 2018, also making her the first openly gay Presiding Justice in state history. She was elected Supreme Court Justice for the Sixth Judicial District in 2006 and appointed to the Third Department effective March 19, 2009. Presiding Justice Garry graduated from Alfred University and Albany Law School, with honors. She began her legal career as Confidential Law Clerk to the Honorable Irad S. Ingraham, Justice of the Supreme Court, from 1990 to 1994. Presiding Justice Garry subsequently engaged in private practice with the Joyce Law Firm in Central New York and served on the Planning Board for the Town of New Berlin in Chenango County. She was elected as Town Justice in the Town of New Berlin in 2001 and reelected to a second term in 2005. Presiding Justice Garry is a past Co-Chair and current Commissioner of the Richard C. Failla LGBTQ Commission of the New York Courts. She has served on various boards and professional associations, including the International Association of LGBTQ Judges, the New York State Bar Association (NYSBA) Committee on Courts of Appellate Jurisdiction, the NYSBA Special Committee on LGBT People and the Law, Albany Law School’s National Alumni Association Board, the New York State Continuing Legal Education Board, the Third Department CLE Committee and the Association of Justices of Supreme Court of New York State. Presiding Justice Garry is a founding member of the Del-Chen-O Chapter of the Women’s Bar Association of the State of New York.

A graduate of McGill University (B.A., Economics, 1974) and

New England School of Law (J.D., cum laude, 1977), where she served as Case Comment Editor of the Law Review, Judge Giles was engaged in the private practice of law, specializing in trial practice, before joining the bench.  In 1991, she was appointed as the first openly lesbian judge in Massachusetts to be an Associate Justice of the Boston Municipal Court by Governor William F. Weld; and, in 1998, she was elevated to the Superior Court by Governor Argeo Paul Cellucci.  

Hon. Linda Giles– Judge Giles has served as chair of the Massachusetts Trial Court’s Gender Equality Advisory Board and president of the International Association of LGBT Judges.  She has participated in many educational programs on a variety of topics, such as gender equality, the enhancement of the judicial system, and access to justice. She teaches “Trial Advocacy” at Suffolk University Law School and is a member of the Board of Editors of the Boston Bar Journal.  Judge Giles is a recipient of the Massachusetts Judges Conference’s Judicial Excellence Award (President’s Award), the Massachusetts Bar Association’s Public Service Award, and Boston College Law School’s Lambda Student Association’s “Courage in Coming Out” Award.

Hon. Mike Jacobs – Mike Jacobs has served as a judge on the State Court of DeKalb County, Georgia, since June 4, 2015.  He was appointed to the bench by Governor Nathan Deal and ran for re-election without opposition in 2016.  Prior to his judicial service, Judge Jacobs served ten and a half years in the Georgia House of Representatives.  In the Georgia General Assembly, Judge Jacobs was chairman of Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Oversight Committee (MARTOC), the joint House and Senate committee that oversees the management, budget, and fiscal affairs of Metro Atlanta’s transit system.  He also served as chairman of one of the two subcommittees of the House Judiciary Committee.  Judge Jacobs received his law degree in 2003, magna cum laude, from the University of Georgia School of Law, where he was the executive articles editor of the Georgia Law Review.  He received his bachelor’s degree in 1997 from Georgetown University.  Judge Jacobs is the first openly bisexual judge in the United States.  He is a proud member of the International Association of LGBT Judges, National LGBT Bar Association, and Stonewall Bar Association of Georgia.  He is married and has three children.

Hon. Barbara McDermott – Judge, Pennsylvania Court of Common Pleas (First Judicial District), assigned to the homicide program. Serves on various committees of the First Judicial District, chairs the Jury Committee, co-chairs the Women Judges Initiative, and has developed an educational/training program in Trans-competency for the FJD.  Also represents the FJD at the PA Conference of State Trial Judges (executive committee) and is co-chair of the Criminal Law Section of the PSCTJ. Currently serves as the National Association of Women Judges’ District Director for Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Delaware. Criminal defense trial attorney (1990-2011); law clerk, Court of Common Pleas (1990-2001); Assistant District Attorney in Philadelphia (1984-1990); Assistant Counsel and Special Deputy Attorney General, Department of Environmental Resources (1980-1984). Judge McDermott is a graduate of Georgetown University Law Center and Seton Hill University. Judge McDermott lectures frequently for the Pennsylvania Bar Institute, judges moot court competitions, and has taught at Arcadia University. She is a member of the executive committee of the Philadelphia Criminal Law Inn of Court and is a Board Member of the Urban Resources Development Corporation (a housing non-profit organization) in Philadelphia. Judge McDermott guest lectures at numerous college criminal justice courses.

Hon. Andrew J. McDonald– Justice Andrew J. McDonald is an Associate Justice of the Connecticut Supreme Court. After graduating from Cornell University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in 1988, he earned a Juris Doctor degree, with honors, from the University of Connecticut School of Law in 1991. In January of 2013, Governor Dannel P. Malloy nominated Justice McDonald to be an associate justice of the Connecticut Supreme Court, and he was confirmed by the Connecticut General Assembly later that month. He was sworn into office on January 24, 2013 as the first openly gay justice on the Connecticut Supreme Court by Governor Malloy. Prior to his appointment to the Supreme Court, Justice McDonald served as the General Counsel to the Office of the Governor for the State of Connecticut from 2011 to 2013. Justice McDonald was also a State Senator from 2003 to 2011. Justice McDonald and his husband, Charles, live in Stamford.

Hon. Richard Montelione– Judge Richard Montelione was born and raised in East New York Brooklyn. His father, the Hon. Louis Montelione, an Administrative Law Judge for the Workers’ Compensation Board, and his mother Mildred, raised him and his seven siblings with a strong sense of ethics and social responsibility. Judge Montelione attended C.U.N.Y. at Queens College graduating with a B.A. and the Antioch School of Law graduating with a J.D. Prior to going to law school, he was a Volunteer in Service to America (VISTA) working as a credit and housing counselor for DOVE, Inc. located in Decatur, IL., where he worked closely with legal services attorneys and sat on an emergency housing board. He testified at state hearings involving the success of the food stamp program. Upon his return to New York after graduating law school, he worked for two years at Nassau/Suffolk Law Services Committee, Inc., a legal services office, and specialized in issues involving the elderly. He then worked for The Legal Aid Society for three years and then went on the take a position as Court Attorney for the Hon. Louis B. York (New York County, deceased) for two years. After leaving his position as a Court Attorney, he engaged in private practice for 21 years focusing on litigating a variety of issues involving fraud perpetrated on the elderly, contested estates where there were allegations of undue influence, wire transfer fraud, bankruptcy fraud, breach of contract, violation of civil rights, cooperative shareholder rights, landlord-tenant law, and Guardianships under the Mental Hygiene Law, to mention a few. He was a principal and responsible for all litigation in Lopez Romero & Montelione, P.C. Judge Montelione argued cases in the New York State Court of Appeals, the highest Court in the State, the Federal Circuit Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, the highest Federal Court except for the U.S. Supreme Court, and virtually every other forum within the state.Prior to elevation to the bench, Judge Montelione’s community and volunteer work included sitting as Vice Chair on the Board of Directors of South Brooklyn Legal Services, a legal services office that serves the greater part of the low income communities of Brooklyn, and on its Executive Committee. He was previously Vice- Chair of the McBurney YMCA where he also sat on its Executive Committee. He has volunteered as a Small Claims Arbitrator for more than ten years; he was a participating attorney in the Lesbian and Gay Bar Association of Greater New York’s (“LeGal’s”) Legal Clinic. He has received acknowledgements for his pro bono work. Judge Montelione is married to Jack Esterson, an architect, and they have been together for thirty-three years and live in Clinton Hill, Brooklyn. They are active in the local community and the City at large. Judge Montelione was elected as a Civil Court Judge in 2012 and was designated an Acting Justice of the Supreme Court in 2015 and presides over civil matters and felony arraignments.

Hon. Kristin Rosi -Administrative Law Judge at The State of California Department of Insurance, Adjunct Professor at Golden Gate University

Bio to come. 

Hon. George Silver – Justice George J. Silver was named the next Deputy Chief Administrative Judge for the New York City Courts, with the responsibility to oversee the day-to-day management of the trial courts in New York City’s five boroughs, by Chief Administrative Judge Lawrence K. Marks in March 2017. He began his judicial career in January 2005, following his election to New York City’s Civil Court. He served on the Civil Court’s Kings County bench until April 2009 and was subsequently assigned to New York City Family Court in the Bronx. He was designated an acting Supreme Court Justice in January 2010, assigned to State Supreme Court in New York County, where he reduced the burgeoning inventory of cases in the Court’s Motor Vehicle Part. He was elected to the State Supreme Court bench in November 2013, continuing his service in New York County, most recently handling matrimonial cases, supervising an inventory of medical malpractice cases tagged for early settlement and presiding over a newly created mediation part, in addition to other responsibilities. Prior to becoming a judge, Judge Silver was a partner in Silver & Santo LLP, a law firm specializing in personal injury, maritime and commercial matters. A Hofstra Law School alumnus, he also received an M.B.A. in finance from New York University. Among his extrajudicial activities, he is co-chair of the Ethics and Professional Committee of the New York State Bar Association’s Torts, Insurance Compensation Law Section and a member of the Association’s Committee on Diversity and Inclusion.

Hon. Michael Sonberg – Hon. Michael R. Sonberg served as an Acting Justice of the Supreme Court of the State of New York and a Judge of the Criminal Court of the City of New York until his retirement at the end of 2017, sitting in the Criminal Term of Supreme Court in New York County (Manhattan) from 2009 to 2017 and in the Criminal Division of Supreme Court in Bronx County from 2003 to 2009. He was first appointed to the bench in August 1991 by Mayor David N. Dinkins to fill an interim vacancy on the NYC Civil Court.  After receiving a number of interim appointments, he was appointed to the Criminal Court by Mayor Rudolph W. Giuliani in 1995; he was the first of Giuliani=s two openly gay judicial appointees.  He was reappointed to the Criminal Court on January 1, 2002, and January 1, 2012, by Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg, for full ten-year terms, which ended with his retirement. He served as president of the International Association of LGBT Judges from 1999 to 2002, as well as president of New York=s Association of Lesbian & Gay Judges from 1996 to 2018.  He currently serves as a member of the Richard C. Failla LGBTQ Commission of the New York Courts.  Among other activities, he was secretary of the 24,000-member New York City Bar Association from 1997 to 2000, a member of the New York State Bar Association=s House of Delegates from 2004 to 2018 and a member of the executive committee of the Harvard Law School Association from 1996 to 1999.  Prior to his appointment, he was a corporate/commercial litigator in Manhattan for twenty years.

Hon. D. Zeke Zeidler – Judge Zeidler was elected to the bench of the Los Angeles County Superior Court in 2004. Prior to that, he served as a Superior Court Referee for over six years, presiding over cases that involved child abuse and neglect. Judge Zeidler has chaired the committee that creates anti-bias curriculum for judicial officers and court staff throughout California, and teaches new judge orientation and juvenile law courses for judicial officers in California. He has also presented nationally on diversity, child welfare, and LGBT domestic violence issues. Before taking the bench, Judge Zeidler was an attorney representing abused and neglected children. He has served as an officer in NLGLA (now the National LGBT Bar Association), was the co-chair of the NLGLA’s law student arm, and served three terms as President of the International Association of LGBT Judges. In addition to his legal involvements, Judge Zeidler has been very active on education issues. He was first elected to the Redondo Beach School Board in 1995, becoming only the tenth openly Gay or Lesbian school board member in the country, and he was overwhelmingly re-elected in 1999. Judge Zeidler resides in Los Angeles with his husband, attorney Jay Kohorn.

Non Profit

Luc Athayde-Rizzaro- Luc Athayde-Rizzaro is Policy Counsel at the National Center for  Transgender Equality. Luc advocates to ensure transgender people can access life-affirming, nondiscriminatory health care at the federal and state level. Prior to joining NCTE, Luc worked as a grant maker at the Open Society Foundations, and as a human rights specialist at the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights. He currently volunteers as a Steering Committee member of TransLAW, an organization supporting transgender people in the DC metro region to update their identification documents. A Brazilian native, Luc now calls Maryland home and is a proud human husband and cat parent.

Toby Adams – Toby Adams is the Executive Director of Intersex & Genderqueer Recognition Project (IGRP), the first, and leading, organization in the United States to address the rights of people to identify as non-binary on government-issued documents. Toby has practiced family law with a focus on nontraditional families and has clerked for NCLR, TLC, interACT, among others and has been a leader in nonbinary & intersex rights, bisexual visibility, and marriage equality for over a decade. Toby was one of the principal authors of BiLaw’s amicus brief filed in the Obergefell Supreme Court marriage case in 2015 and received the BALIF 2018 Legal Services Award for her work with IGRP. Toby received her J.D. with Distinction from University of Pacific, McGeorge School of Law and her M.B.A. from San Jose State University. Toby lives in the California Bay Area with her spouse, Jean, and their teenage daughter, Kalen, and is blessed to have three genderqueer family members.

Olivier André – Olivier André is CPR’s Vice President, International and Dispute Resolution Services. In this capacity, Mr. André is responsible for CPR’s international activities, as well as international arbitration and mediation matters which are brought before CPR pursuant to its rules. He is involved in all aspects of the proceedings, including neutral selection, challenges, clause drafting assistance and procedural questions. Olivier is also responsible for Y-ADR – a program for young international dispute resolution practitioners – and the CPR International Mediation Competition. Olivier recently contributed to the drafting of the CPR European Mediation and ADR Practical Guide for Corporates, the CPR Administered Arbitration Rules and the CPR International Mediation Procedure. He is a member of CPR’s Arbitration Committee, a member of the International Arbitration Club of New York, a member of the International Commercial Disputes Committee – and of its cybersecurity working group – a member of the ADR Committee and an affiliate member of the Arbitration Committee of the New York City Bar Association. Olivier is also a member of the ICCA/CPR/New York City Bar Association Working Group on cybersecurity in international arbitration. He started his legal career at Shearman & Sterling L.L.P. and at the ICC Court of International Arbitration in Paris. He is a CPR and CEDR trained mediator and studied law in France, Germany and in the U.S., where he obtained his Juris Doctor and where he is admitted to practice law in New York and Massachusetts. Prior to his legal career, Olivier led global projects at CA Technologies and Parametric Technology Corporation (PTC). He is a dual citizen of the United States and of the European Union (France).

David Bell – David is an attorney with Children’s Law Center of California (CLC) where he works with youth in foster care, including Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer and Questioning (LGBTQ) youth and Commercially Sexually Exploited Children (CSEC). Having worked in the dependency system for nearly 4 years, he began his dependency career as parent’s counsel before joining CLC. He has been heavily involved with CSEC issues throughout Los Angeles County and has recently been working closely with the Recognize, Intervene, Support, and. Empower (RISE) team at the Los Angeles LGBT Center. As an adjunct professor of Political Science at East Los Angeles College, Mr. Bell advises student organizations such as the Gay Straight Alliance and the Pathways to Law School program. He also helps to mentor and encourage students to graduate and attend four year universities. At the University of LaVerne’s College of Law Mr. Bell teaches Trial Advocacy to second year law students as part of their specialized Evidence curriculum. David Bell earned two Bachelor of Arts degrees from Pennsylvania State University, one in Liberal Arts and the other in Political Science. After a career in the publishing industry, he went on to earn his Juris Doctorate from Whittier Law School.

Flor Bermudez- Flor Bermudez is the Legal Director of the Transgender Law Center. Prior to joining Transgender Law Center, Flor served as the Director of the Mental Health and Advocacy Project at Lawyers for Children, where she worked to ensure that children in foster care receive appropriate and necessary mental health services. At Lambda Legal, Flor served as the Youth in Out-of-Home Care Attorney and engaged in litigation to ensure adequate treatment and competent, sensitive, and informed services for LGBTQ youth involved with the child welfare, juvenile justice, and homeless services systems. Flor also spent four years as founding executive director and staff attorney at Esperanza del Barrio, representing immigrant street vendor women in criminal proceedings, and served as a board member of Streetwise and Safe in New York City.

From 2001-2003 Bermudez was a Skadden Public Interest Fellow staff attorney at Mothers on the Move and the Urban Justice Center where she brought affirmative litigation to improve housing conditions, defended group rent strikes and conducted education workshops on tenants’ rights, civil rights and immigration. She also worked as a union organizer for the United Farm Workers and as an ESL Teacher for UNITE. Prior to law school, Bermudez actively participated in several LGBT organizations such as LLEGO, Colectivo Mexicano, Mano a Mano and the Audre Lorde Project.

Flor’s work has been recognized with several awards, including Northeastern University School of Law’s prestigious Daynard Public Interest Fellowship for her role as a “public interest leader,” and two “Best Attorney Under 40” awards from the National Hispanic Bar Association and the National LGBT Bar Association.


Sasha Buchert – Sasha Buchert is a Staff Attorney at Lambda Legal working in their Washington D.C. office where she works to defeat judicial nominations who are unfit to serve on the federal bench. Sasha is also working alongside her amazing Lambda Legal colleagues in a challenge to the ban on open transgender military service. Before joining Lambda Legal, Sasha served as Staff Attorney and Policy Counsel at Transgender Law Center.

Mary Blatch – Mary Blatch is the Association of Corporate Counsel’s director of advocacy and public policy. She directs ACC’s advocacy efforts on attorney-client privilege, attorney ethics and mobility, corporate compliance and other issues of importance to in-house counsel. Prior to joining ACC, Mary was a senior manager at Deloitte, working on regulatory advocacy and compliance issues for the tax practice. Before joining Deloitte, she was a litigation associate at McKee Nelson LLP and Hogan & Hartson LLP (now Hogan Lovells LLP). She also served as a federal judicial clerk in the Eastern District of Virginia.  Mary holds a JD from the Columbus School of Law at The Catholic University of America and a BA from Spelman College.

Gabriel Blau – Gabriel Blau is an activist for LGBTQI people and a strategic advisor to social justice organizations. As a co-founder of Equality New York and Co-Chair of that organization, Gabriel works with organizers, political leaders, and volunteers from across the state to advance policies and programs that support the wide range of experiences and identities that LGBTQI people have. Other organizations Gabriel has worked with include the Hetrick-Martin Institute, PFLAG NYC, The Riverside Church, American Jewish World Service, the LGBT Bar Association, and the Urban Justice Center. He is the former Executive Director of the Family Equality Council. Gabriel has appeared on MSNBC, Fox, WNYC, and in The Advocate, Gay City News, Washington Blade, The New York Times, and more. He was named one of The Advocate’s 40 Under 40 and honored by the Stonewall Democrats of New York. He is author of multiple Op-Eds and essays in books about the LGBTQI experience. He lives in New York City with his husband and their child.

Kate Boulton – Kate is a Staff Attorney at the Center for HIV Law and Policy, where she focuses on HIV criminal law reform and the overrepresentation of people living with HIV in the criminal legal system. She has particular interest in the intersection between HIV criminalization and the criminalization of sex work, and recently spearheaded the creation of an advocacy toolkit addressing this issue. From 2007 to 2012, Kate served with the Centers for Disease Control, where her work centered on migrant health and infectious disease. She earned her JD from Harvard Law School and her MPH from the University of Michigan.

Denise Brogan-Kator – Denise Brogan-Kator joined Family Equality Council in August 2012 as Director of State Policy, and in July 2017 took on leadership of the Public Policy team as Chief Policy Officer. She is responsible for supporting our efforts to advance equality for all families at the states level. A US Submarine Service veteran, she graduated from the University of Michigan Law school (matriculating as the first openly transgender law student and later returning as the first openly transgender law professor) and earned her MBA from the University of Colorado. Denise has a 20+ year history of public and private advocacy on behalf of the LGBTQ community, coming to us as a former Executive Director of a statewide LGBT advocacy organization. She lives in Florida with her spouse, Mary, her other-in-law, Kitty, and 6 cats. She has three grown daughters and two grandchildren who are, collectively, the lights of her life.

Taylor Brown – Taylor Brown is the 2017-2019 Tyron Garner Memorial Fellow at the Southern Regional Office of Lambda Legal. Her fellowship is geared towards addressing inequities in law and policy for African-American LGBTQ people and African-American PLWH. Taylor received her B.A. from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and her J.D. from the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law. At UNC-Chapel Hill, Taylor was a Carolina Covenant Scholar. At Cardozo, Taylor was a Nathaniel E. Gates Scholar. She served as Vice President of Cardozo OUTLaw and she was involved with the Minority Law Students Alliance and Black Law Students Association. During law school, Taylor worked on death penalty appellate litigation at the Georgia Resource Center, served as a legal intern in the Transgender Rights Project at Lambda Legal’s National Headquarters and was a 2016 Holley Law Fellow at the National LGBTQ Task Force. Taylor also serves on the Board of Directors for the National Trans Bar Association.

Daniel Bruner – Daniel Bruner is Senior Director of Policy at Whitman-Walker Health in Washington, DC. He joined Whitman-Walker in 1995 and served as Director of Legal Services from 2004 through 2014. Prior to joining Whitman-Walker, Dan was a partner at a Washington, DC law firm, and volunteered with HIV and LGBT organizations. Between 2000 and 2005, he taught HIV law and public health law at American University’s Washington College of Law. Dan is rated “AV-Preeminent” for legal ability and ethical standards (the highest rating possible) by Martindale-Hubbell’s nationally recognized peer review rating system. He has received awards from the LGBT Bar Association of DC, the Washington Council of Lawyers, and the ABA’s AIDS Coordinating Committee, and is a past Co-Chair of the DC Consortium of Legal Services Providers. Dan received his law degree (magna cum laude) and master’s degree in public policy from the University of Michigan. He is the author of the “Forward” in David W. Webber et al., AIDS AND THE LAW (4th ed. 2007), and (with the law firm Sidley Austin) of the revised chapter on “HIV and Public Health Law” in the 5th Edition of that treatise (forthcoming). He has given numerous presentations on HIV and LGBT law.

Sunu P. Chandy– Sunu P. Chandy is currently the Legal Director of the National Women’s Law Center. She oversees the Center’s litigation efforts, providing strategy and guidance to staff across NWLC to create better legal outcomes for women and girls at school, the workplace, and the health care sector. Immediately prior to joining the Center, Sunu served as the Deputy Director for the Civil Rights Division with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Sunu has also served as the General Counsel of the DC Office of Human Rights (OHR) and in that role oversaw agency decisions following investigations of discrimination in employment, education, housing and public accommodation matters.  Before that, from 1999-2014, Sunu served as a federal attorney with the U.S. Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), where she litigated class civil rights employment matters including based on sex, race, national origin, disability, age and religion based discrimination. Sunu was also a member of the White House Initiative on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (WHIAPPI) Regional Working Group and helped to organize conferences and civil rights panels alongside federal partners in New York City. Sunu earned her B.A. in Peace and Global Studies/Women’s Studies from Earlham College in Richmond, Indiana, her law degree from Northeastern University School of Law in Boston and her MFA in Creative Writing (Poetry) from Queens College/The City University of New York.

Carl S. Charles – Carl S. Charles is a multi-state licensed attorney currently serving as the Transgender Rights Project Fellow at Lambda Legal. His work focuses on advocacy for transgender, gender non-conforming and non-binary people experiencing discrimination. He has also served as a staff attorney at the New York City Commission on Human Rights and as a Skadden Fellow at the ACLU LGBT & HIV Project.

Jerry Chasen – Jerry Chasen is the Director of Legacy Planning at SAGE. Jerry is the former principal of Miami based Chasen & Associates, PA, a pioneering LGBT Estate Planning law firm. In 2010, he left his practice and became vice-president (and later chief operating officer) of the Alliance for Global Good, responsible for the organization’s program and communications. Trained and certified as a life coach, Jerry’s coaching practice focused on the challenges of reinvention and productivity for older adults looking at “the next third” of life. Through his law firm, Chasen & Associates, P.A., Jerry created The Advisors Project, an ongoing CLE credentialed educational program designed to encourage and support various professional advisors in creating client relationships that are both satisfying and productive for philanthropy. Jerry was a Visiting Adjunct Professor at the University of Miami Law School Graduate Programs in both Tax and Estate Planning, from which he also received an LL.M. degree in Estate Planning. His J.D. degree with honors was granted by New York University School of Law in 1976, where he was an editor of the Law Review. Past President of the Miami-Dade County Planned Giving Council and longtime member of the Council’s Board of Directors, Jerry served as a member of the national Boards of Directors of Lambda Legal and SAGE (before joining SAGE’s staff). He sat on the Professional Advisory Committees of the Foundation of Jewish Philanthropies, the United Way of Miami-Dade County, and the Miami Foundation, and was the founder and chair of the Miami Foundation’s LGBT Community Projects Fund Committee for 10 years.

Arli Christian – As State Policy Counsel at the National Center for Transgender Equality, Arli partners with state and local advocates on a variety of policy goals, with a focus on efforts to modernize ID document gender change policies and remove insurance exclusions for coverage of transition-related care. Arli is dedicated to improving and expanding access to legal services for trans communities through NCTE’s Trans Legal Services Network. Arli is an attorney admitted to practice in New York and D.C. and received a J.D. from American University Washington College of Law in 2013 and a B.A. from Wesleyan University in 2004. Prior to law school Arli worked at an immigration law firm in San Francisco and a socially responsible investment organization in Maryland. Arli speaks English and Spanish and grew up in New York City.

Lisa Cisneros – Lisa Cisneros is the Director of California Rural Legal Assistance’s LGBT Program, dedicated to providing direct legal services and advocacy on behalf of rural, low-income LGBT communities in California. After graduating from UC Berkeley in 2007, Lisa led the launch of CRLA’s LGBT program when it began as a fellowship project with assistance from the National Center for Lesbian Rights and the Pride Law Fund. In 2010, Lisa became a judicial law clerk in the Northern District of California, and later became an associate at Lieff, Cabraser, Heimann & Bernstein, LLP. Lisa returned to CRLA in September 2014. Lisa’s past accomplishments include representing employees and injured consumers in individual discrimination cases, as well as large scale class actions and mass tort litigation, and representing civil and constitutional law professors as part of an amicus brief filed in connection with Hollingsworth v. Perry, as it was appealed before the Supreme Court. In 2010, Lisa co-authored with Cathy Sakimura, “Recognizing and Responding to the Needs of Low-Income Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Clients,” in the Clearinghouse Review Journal of Poverty Law and Policy. Lisa has presented at numerous conferences on the topic of legal services and civil rights for low-income LGBT people.

Currey Cook – Currey Cook is the Director of the Youth in Out-of-Home Care Project and Counsel with Lambda Legal, the oldest and largest national legal organization committed to achieving full recognition of the civil rights of lesbians, gay men, bisexuals, transgender people and everyone living with HIV. Cook advocates across the country for LGBTQ youth and youth living with HIV in child welfare and juvenile justice settings and  youth experiencing homelessness via impact litigation, policy advocacy and education. Before joining Lambda Legal in 2013, Cook was the Co-Director of the Bronx office of  The Children’s Law Center New York  (CLCNY), a non-profit law firm representing children in custody, visitation, guardianship, domestic violence, paternity, and related child abuse and neglect proceedings in New York City Family Court. Prior to his work at CLCNY, Cook served as a consultant to The National Juvenile Defender Center in Washington, D.C and worked in Burundi on an American Bar Association’s Rule of Law Initiative to assist with reintegrate former child soldiers into the community. In 2009, he served as a visiting professor for the Child Advocacy Clinic at Rutgers Law School Newark. Before relocating to the New York City in 2009, Cook lived in Anchorage, Alaska and was an attorney with the Office of Public Advocacy (OPA) for twelve years. Cook worked as a juvenile defense attorney and guardian ad litem and later as supervising attorney of OPA’s Child Advocacy Section. In addition to his work at OPA, he has provided pro bono immigration legal services for more than half of his career. Mr. Cook helped create and lead the Special Immigrant Juvenile Project devoted to providing pro bono representation to undocumented immigrant children involved in state court proceedings and successfully represented two gay men seeing political asylum. Cook was the recipient of the Alaska Bar Association Pro Bono Service Award for a Public Sector Attorney in 2006 and a Light of Hope Award for his advocacy on behalf of abused and neglected children in Alaska. Cook has served as chair of the New York City’ Bar Associations Family Court and Family Law Committee and currently serves as a board member of the National Association of Counsel for Children.  

Abigail Coursolle – Abbi is a senior attorney in the Los Angeles office of the National Health Law Program (NHeLP). She provides technical assistance, training, and litigation support on a range of issues, with a special focus on access to care for LGBTQ individuals, Medicaid managed care, prescription drugs, behavioral health, and children’s health. In this role, Abbi has litigated numerous cases involving health rights, including J.E.M. v. Corsi (involving access to Hepatitis C treatment in Missouri), Sam H. v. Patrick (involving access to orthodontic care for children in Massachusetts), and Fisher v. Reynolds (involving access to home and community-based services for people with disabilities in Iowa). She has also done significant work with several state Medicaid programs to ensure that they provide full coverage of gender affirming services for transgender people. Before joining NHeLP, Abbi was the Greenberg Traurig Equal Justice Works staff attorney at the Western Center on Law & Poverty. At Western Center, she led a 58-county project to enforce safety net laws for low income Californians. Abbi holds a J.D. and an M.P.P. from UCLA, and a B.A. in Chinese Language and Literature from Yale University. She sits on the Board of the LGBT Bar Association of Los Angeles.

Jon W. Davidson -Jon W. Davidson became Chief Counsel at Freedom for All Americans Education Fund in July 2018. Davidson has been one of the nation’s leading lawyers fighting for LGBTQ civil rights for more than 30 years. He has worked on a broad range of LGBT and HIV-related legal and policy matters throughout his career, including being co-counsel in the cases that brought marriage equality to California, Nevada, Virginia, and then the entire nation and that increased anti-discrimination protections for employees, students, consumers, families, prisoners, and immigrants. He was honored with the National LGBT Bar Association’s Dan Bradley Award in 2010. A graduate of Stanford University and Yale Law School, Davidson previously was the national Legal Director of Lambda Legal for 12 years, Senior Staff Attorney and Supervising Attorney there for 10 years before that, a senior staff attorney at the ACLU Foundation of Southern California prior to that, and a partner in the Los Angeles law firm of Irell & Manella before that. He also has taught courses on LGBT rights, constitutional law, youth law, and pretrial civil litigation at UCLA Law School, the USC Law Center, Loyola Law School, and the former Whittier Law School.

Breanna Diaz – Breanna Diaz serves as legislative counsel at HRC, focusing on federal and state advocacy. She also handles issues concerning LGBTQ youth, criminal justice and immigration. Breanna received her bachelor’s degree in political science from Southern Methodist University and her law degree from American University, Washington College of Law.

Mat Dos Santos – Mat dos Santos is the legal director of the ACLU of Oregon. He currently oversees the legal program which includes impact litigation, amicus filings, and thousands of requests for legal assistance per year. Prior to the ACLU, he worked with numerous organizations on issues relating to LGBT rights, immigration, and criminal justice reform.

Roger Doughty – Roger Doughty has been an activist and leader in the LGBT movement for more than 25 years, and he has led Horizons Foundation as President since 2002. Prior to joining the foundation, he served as the Executive Director of Horizons Community Services in Chicago, the Midwest’s largest LGBT social service and advocacy organization. During Roger’s tenure at Horizons, the foundation has dramatically increased its grantmaking, capacity, and overall asset base. He oversaw creation of the LGBT Community Endowment Fund for the community’s future; helped bring millions of dollars in funds from mainstream foundations to our community, and has been a national and local leader in multi-year efforts to increase philanthropic giving to LGBTQ causes. In Chicago, Roger led that organization’s expansion into the Chicago LGBT Community Center, known as the Center on Halsted. Before moving to Chicago, he was the Director of Programs for the Los Angeles LGBT Center, where he oversaw the Center’s 40-plus programs and services. Roger’s San Francisco background includes his tenure in the law firm of Heller Ehrman, where he specialized in refugee, immigration, and asylum cases involving people fleeing from gender and sexual orientation-related discrimination. Roger also has served as president of the Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance in Washington, D.C., and was Associate Director of the Coro Foundation. He serves on the boards of Northern California Grantmakers and as Board Chair of OutRight Action International, the world’s leading LGBTIQ human rights organization. Roger holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Williams College, a master’s degree from the Goldman School of Public Policy at the University of California, Berkeley, and a J.D. from the UC Berkeley School of Law.

Iván Espinoza-Madrigal – Iván Espinoza-Madrigal is the Executive Director of Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights and Economic Justice, an organization that filed the first lawsuits in the country against the Trump Administration to protect sanctuary cities; to save TPS on behalf of Honduran and Salvadoran immigrants; and to block immigration arrests in courthouses. With more than a decade of experience as a public interest lawyer, Iván has worked on a wide range of civil rights issues, including racial justice, immigrants’ rights, and LGBT/HIV equality. Previously, he worked at Lambda Legal, MALDEF, and Fried Frank LLP. Iván clerked in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, and the U.S. District Court, SDNY. The Boston Globe has recognized Iván as one of Boston’s 100 Most Influential People of Color, and El Planeta’s “Powermeter” list featured him among the 100 Most Influential People in Massachusetts. The National LGBT Bar Association has recognized him as one of the Best LGBT Lawyers Under 40. A summa cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa graduate of the University of Pennsylvania, he received a Juris Doctor from NYU School of Law, where he was a Root-Tilden-Kern Scholar. NYU recently named him “LGBT Alumnus of the Year.” In November, he received the Boston Bar Association highest honor, the Beacon Award.

Rev. Brett Figlewski – The Rev. Brett M. Figlewski, Esq., joined the LGBT Bar Association of New York (LeGaL) as its first Legal Director in 2015. A graduate of Vanderbilt Law School and Middlebury College, Brett worked for a decade with Sanctuary for Families as a family law litigator for LGBT victims of domestic violence and sex trafficking, including advocacy for Fair Access to Family Court and co-authorship of the article, “Trafficking and the Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Young Men and Boys,” for the Lawyer’s Manual on Human Trafficking. Brett oversees LeGaL’s vital Helpline and network of drop-in clinics, which assist over 1000 members of the community each year; an attorney referral system and placement of pro bono cases; and education and outreach for the organization’s members and the wider community. Brett was part of the legal team which represented Brooke B. in her landmark 2016 Court of Appeals case recognizing the rights of LGBT parents, and he continues to focus on litigation and advocacy for the full legal protection of LGBT families. Brett was ordained a deacon in the Episcopal Church in 2018.

Diana Flynn – Diana Flynn is the Director of Litigation at Lambda Legal, the country’s largest and oldest legal organization committed to achieving full recognition of the civil rights of all lesbians, gay men, bisexuals, transgender people and everyone living with HIV. Flynn comes to Lambda Legal after lengthy service as Chief of the Appellate Section of the United States Department of Justice’s Civil Rights Division.  There she led the Civil Rights Division’s litigation program in the United States Courts of Appeals and, under supervision of the Solicitor General, in the Supreme Court.  Her section also handled some of the most important constitutional cases litigated by the division in the trial courts. Under her direction, the section filed more than 2,500 briefs in federal courts, and maintained a success rate of more than 80 percent. Flynn personally led the legal counsel project that laid the groundwork for the Holder Justice Department’s application of sex discrimination laws to prohibit discrimination based on transgender status.  She also managed the Civil Rights Division’s efforts in connection with the Defense of Marriage Act litigation, and worked with the Office of the Solicitor General and the Civil Division on the Windsor, Proposition 8 and Obergefell cases in the Supreme Court. Among the awards she has received are the Attorney General’s Distinguished Service Award; Attorney General’s John Marshall Award for Legal Counsel; the Assistant Attorney General’s Award for Distinguished Service; the DOJ Pride’s James R. Douglas Award for contributions to the work life environment of LGBT employees of the U.S. Department of Justice; and the American Bar Association’s prestigious Stonewall Award. Flynn chaired the Civil Rights Division’s LGBTI Working Group for several years.  She was the keynote speaker at Lavender Law’s 2012 Trans Law Institute and has been a frequent speaker or presenter at other events addressing legal protections for LGBT people.  At the request of the Obama White House, she represented the Department of Justice at a number of White House briefings, panels, and events involving the Supreme Court, civil rights law, and LGBT rights. Flynn currently serves by appointment of the President of the ABA as a Commissioner of the organization’s Commission on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity. She is a graduate of the Yale Law School and a summa cum laude graduate of the University of Rochester.

Kimberly Forte – Kimberly Forte is the Supervising Attorney for The Legal Aid Society’s LGBTQ+ Law and Policy Initiative. The goals of the Initiative are to increase Legal Aid’s cultural competency to better represent LGBTQ clients and the Society’s litigation, public policy and legislative efforts on behalf of low-income LGBTQ New Yorkers. Kim’s work focuses on all three of the Society’s Practices – Civil, Juvenile Rights and Criminal Defense. She is proud to partner with many of NYC’s queer justice organizations and is confident these relationships will continue to bring about progressive change. She has been with the Society for over 15 years, where she has held various positions in the Juvenile Rights Practice (JRP), representing youth in NYC Family Courts. She was a staff attorney with JRP’s Law Reform Unit which investigates and files impact litigation cases and comments on proposed legislation and policies affecting youth in the foster care and juvenile justice systems. Kim regularly presents at local, state and national conferences on issues related to her current position. She received a B.A. in Political Science from the University of Florida and a J.D. from SUNY Buffalo. Kim shares her life with her spouse Tina, their twins, Kyle and Luca, and their beloved dog Rufus.

Sally Friedman – Sally Friedman is the Legal Director of the Legal Action Center, a non-profit law and policy organization that fights discrimination against people with criminal records, substance use disorders, and HIV/AIDS. Since joining the Center in 1993, Ms. Friedman has prosecuted cutting edge cases, including Beckett v. Aetna, a national class action lawsuit challenging Aetna’s violation of over 13,000 members’ HIV privacy rights, Doe v. Deer Mountain Day Camp, which held that a camp’s exclusion of a 10-year old with AIDS violated the Americans with Disabilities Act, and Innovative Health Systems v. City of White Plains, the first federal appellate decision to establish that the Americans with Disabilities Act prohibits zoning discrimination. She also has trained and advised hundreds of organizations about health privacy and anti-discrimination laws and written extensively on these topics. Her publications include Legality of Denying Access to Medication-Assisted Treatment in the Criminal Justice System and HIV/AIDS Testing, Confidentiality & Discrimination: What You Need to Know About New York Law. Prior to joining the Legal Action Center, Ms. Friedman worked as a litigation associate at Kramer, Levin, Naftalis & Frankel. She received her J.D. from NYU School of Law and is a graduate of Brown University.

Derek Garcia – Derek Garcia has practiced law for seven years as a solo attorney, primarily in plaintiff’s’ civil rights, family law, and criminal defense. For three years he has been representing survivors of DV, interpersonal violence, and sexual assault to obtain protection orders, as a contract attorney for New Mexico Legal Aid and as a legal advocate for Community Justice for Survivors of Sexual Assault. In 2018, he started as a full time staff attorney with Safe to Be You!, New Mexico Legal Aid’s brand new LGBTQ+ legal access project.

Cecilia Gentili- Originally from Argentina, Cecilia Gentili worked at the LGBT Center, Apicha CHC and currently serves as the Managing Director of Policy and Public Affairs at GMHC, the world’s first and leading provider of HIV/AIDS prevention, care and advocacy. She was a contributor to Trans Bodies, Trans Selves: A Resource for the Transgender Community and is a board member at Translatina Network and Transcend Legal. For fun, she acts and loves doing storytelling events where she talks about her life experiences. She is very passionate about advocating for her community, especially transgender women with a Latino background and a history of sex work, drug use and incarceration.

Alison Gill – Alison Gill is American Atheists’ National Legal and Policy Director. Alison is an accomplished attorney and a nationally recognized expert on LGBTQ law. Before joining American Atheists, Alison worked as a consultant to foundations and nonprofits focusing on advocacy strategy and systemic change. Prior her consultancy work, Alison served as Senior Legislative Counsel at the Human Rights Campaign where she managed state-level advocacy on issues such as conversion therapy, bullying prevention, education discrimination, LGBTQ health and wellness, youth homelessness, and LGBTQ data collection. Alison also worked as Government Affairs Director with The Trevor Project and as State Policy Manager with GLSEN, the Gay, Lesbian & Straight Education Network.

Michael Gibbons-Michael Gibbons is a staff attorney in the Manhattan office of the Legal Aid Society’s Criminal Defense Practice where he represents indigent defendants in criminal court proceedings. Prior to that, Michael was a staff attorney with the Parole Revocation Defense Unit, where he represented parolee defendants in state parole revocation proceedings at the Rikers Island Judicial Center. Michael is a graduate of New England Law Boston and UMASS Amherst.

Virginia Goggin – Virginia Goggin is the Director of Legal Services at the NYC Anti-Violence Project. Previously, she launched and coordinated NYLAG’s LGBT Law Project, serving low-income LGBT New Yorkers.

Omar Gonzalez-Pagan – Omar Gonzalez-Pagan is a Senior Attorney at Lambda Legal, the oldest and largest national legal organization committed to achieving full recognition of the civil rights of LGBT people and everyone living with HIV. His work spans all aspects of Lambda Legal’s impact litigation, policy advocacy, and public education efforts.  As a member of the legal team in Obergefell v. Hodges, Omar helped secure the freedom to marry for same-sex couples across the United States. Omar has also played an instrumental role in advancing the rights of LGBT people under federal civil rights laws in education, employment, health care, and housing. was co-counsel for Lambda Legal in the landmark decisions in Hively v. Ivy Tech Community College and Zarda v. Altitude Express, Inc., the first and second appellate rulings in the country holding that Title VII covers sexual orientation discrimination. Prior to joining Lambda Legal, Omar worked for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts as an Assistant Attorney General, a Special Assistant District Attorney, and an Associate General Counsel to the Commonwealth’s Inspector General. Originally from Puerto Rico, Omar is a graduate from Cornell University and the University of Pennsylvania Law School.

Sharra Greer – Sharra joined Children’s Law Center as its first policy director in 2008, shaping a program that takes lessons we learn from representing individual clients to advocate for city-wide changes that better serve the District’s vulnerable children. She brings with her extensive policy experience. Previously, Sharra developed the policy department at Servicemembers Legal Defense Network, where she created and supervised that department, and supervised the group’s successful legal services and impact litigation efforts. She also was a staff attorney with the National Veterans Legal Services Program, where she worked on cases before the Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims and represented plaintiffs’ in two class action suits through NVLSP’s Agent Orange Resource Center. Sharra began her legal services work while at Rutgers Law School, when she worked at Camden Regional Legal Services, and was an associate with the firm of Weissman & Mintz.

Justin Guzman – A foster youth during his formative teenage years, Justin Guzman has been attending Pasadena City College and working toward an undergraduate degree. Mr. Guzman worked in retail for a number of years including as manager position at Oakley, before he began his career with Children’s Law Center of California as a file clerk i the Los Angeles office. He was recently promoted to Secretary and works closely with the lawyers in his firm. During his time in foster care, he struggled with not being able to freely express his sexual orientation and major depressive disorder.

Malcom ‘Skip’ Harsch – Skip is the Director of the American Bar Association’s Commission on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity. As director of the Commission, Skip oversees and is involved in the planning and implementation of many of the ABA’s LGBT initiatives including; LGBT advocacy, ABA policy work, and legal educational programming. In his role at the ABA Skip helped created and implement the ABA’s ‘How to Be an Ally’ Toolkit and has presented both nationally and internationally on LGBT Allyship in the workplace. Skip is also a contributor to the publication, Out and About: The LGBT Experience in the Workplace. Skip is a native of Illinois with strong ties to the Midwest. He received his bachelor of science from the University of Iowa and his JD from DePaul University College of law. While at DePaul, Skip began his association and non-profit crusade as a summer intern for lambda Legal. Skip is currently the Chair of the Chicago Bar Association (CBA) LGBT Committee and sits on the board of the Lesbian and Gay Bar Association of Chicago (LAGBAC).

Chris Hartman – Chris Hartman is the first director of Kentucky’s Fairness Campaign and a steering committee member of the Fairness Coalition. In the past several years, he has helped triple the number of Kentucky cities with anti-discrimination LGBTQ Fairness Ordinances, including the state capital Frankfort and Appalachian town of Vicco. Chris previously served as Congressman John Yarmuth’s campaign press secretary, an AmeriCorps VISTA in St. Louis, and Philadelphia director of the Democratic National Committee’s open-air Grassroots Campaigns in the 2004 presidential election. He holds an M.A. in Drama from Washington University in St. Louis and currently serves on the board of Kentuckiana AIDS Alliance and the national Equality Federation, and is a commissioner of the Louisville Metro Landmarks Commission.

Ana Hernandez – Ana is Policy and Advocacy Associate at Equality Federation. In this role, she tracks and analyzes bills in the states on a broad range of issues affecting LGBTQ people, so that Equality Federation can provide critical resources to and develop the advocacy capacity of our partners on the ground. Ana also supports the development and implementation of comprehensive HIV policy change initiatives in an innovative project in partnership with three state coalitions of people advocating for the rights of people living with HIV and/or those who are LGBTQ. Ana brings extensive skills in capacity- and movement-building and critical analysis developed over twenty years in social change efforts to build the leadership of and advocate for people of color, lesbians, gay, bisexual, and transgender people, people with disabilities, women, and victims and survivors of sexual and domestic violence. Her experience includes having served as the Director of Public Policy and Government Affairs for New York City’s LGBT Community Center, as consultant researcher and writer for the Astraea Lesbian Foundation for Justice and, while leading training and resource development initiatives at the National Resource Center on Domestic Violence, building movement collaborations with the National Coalition of Anti-Violence Projects.

Kara Ingelhart – Kara Ingelhart is a Law Fellow in the Midwest Regional Office of Lambda Legal, the oldest and largest organization dedicated to advancing the civil rights of lesbians, gay men, bisexuals, transgender people and individuals living with HIV. Ingelhart was formerly a Skadden Fellow with Lambda Legal. Through Skadden Fellowship Program fellows create their own projects at public interest organizations. Ingelhart’s project addressed the barriers to housing, employment, and education for low-income LGBTQ youth, with an emphasis on youth who are juvenile or criminal system involved. Ingelhart has played an instrumental role in advancing the rights of LGBT people under federal civil rights laws through impact litigation. In addition to her work as a litigator, Ingelhart has contributed to federal legislative and policy efforts concerning the inclusion of protections for LGBT people and people living with HIV who are involved in the federal criminal legal system.

Alesdair H. Ittelson – Alesdair H. Ittelson is interACT’s Law & Policy Director. Alesdair pushes boundaries to combat oppression on behalf of underserved communities and has worked nation-wide on novel legal projects, such as the first consumer fraud lawsuit against a “conversion therapy” business, policy campaigns to protect the bodily integrity of intersex youth, and direct legal representation of individuals who expand our conceptions of sex and gender and who have experienced discrimination in institutional settings such as schools, hospitals, and juvenile justice facilities. Alesdair has worked with a wide variety of entities including governments, universities, and health care organizations on reducing liability and ensuring the well being of all youth populations. Alesdair received their JD from the University of California, Berkeley School of Law and their undergraduate degree from Brandeis University.

Eden Jequinto – Eden Silva Jequinto learned the power of education, organizing, and cultural work from her/their/zir migrant Pilipinx family and the predominantly Third World communities that raised her/them/zir. eden graduated from UC, Santa Cruz with a BA in American Studies in 2004 and moved to Oakland, CA where she/they/ze worked as a core member of EastSide Arts Alliance (ESAA). At ESAA, eden founded the Guerilla Youth Theatre Project and the Leadership Program, training youth into lead teachers. eden worked with intergenerational Third World grassroots groups and nonprofits, supporting campaigns through guerilla theatre, healing work, and systemic analyses, before returning to Los Angeles in 2011.After earning her/their/zir MA in Urban Planning at UCLA in 2013, eden graduated from UCLA School of Law in 2016 as a student in both the Critical Race Studies program and the Epstein Public Interest Law and Policy program. In Los Angeles, eden organized with grassroots movements centering the leadership of indigenous, black, queer, trans, house-less, youth, migrant folx sin papeles y sin miedo (no papers, no fear) against state surveillance/violence/settlements and for community self-determination. Since graduating from law school, eden worked at the Eviction Defense Center in Oakland defending tenants facing eviction throughout Alameda County. eden looks forward to meeting the urgent need for legal services for transgender and gender nonconforming migrants through TLC’s Trans Immigrant Defense Effort (TIDE).

Barbara Jones – Barbara Jones is a member of the State Bar of California and the U.S. Supreme Court Bar. She has been a Senior Attorney with AARP Foundation Litigation’s unit since 2004 where she has worked on a broad spectrum of cases impacting low income adults. She has filed amicus curiae (friend of the court) briefs on behalf of AARP in a variety of cases in the Supreme Court including multiple patent cases impacting low-income adults’ access to health care. While at AARP Foundation, Ms. Jones served as co-counsel in 23 age discrimination class action cases. She has also worked on Social Security, investor fraud, housing, government benefit and arbitration cases. Prior to working for the AARP Foundation, Ms. Jones worked as a Research Attorney for the San Mateo County Superior Court, taught legal research and appellate brief writing at Santa Clara University, School of Law and worked as an attorney for the California Rural Legal Assistance where she served as the state wide employment/labor coordinator. Among the government benefit cases Ms. Jones has argued are: Rosales v. Thompson, 321 F.3d 835 (9th Cir. 2003) (a foster care case described by one commentator as “the most significant Title IV- E event since passage of the Child Welfare Act of 1980”); California v. Shalala, 166 F.3d 1019 (9th Cir. 1999) Anderson v. Superior Court, 68 Cal.App.4th 1240 (1998) Land v. Anderson, 55 Cal.App.4th 69 (1997).

Jay Kaplan – Jay Kaplan has been the staff attorney for the ACLU of Michigan’s LGBT Project since its founding in 2001. He has worked on cases including challenging undercover sting operations targeting gay men, fighting Michigan’s constitutional amendment prohibiting same-sex couples from marrying, defending the validity of second parent adoptions granted in Michigan, and recently advocating for a transgender high school student to be able to run for prom court. Jay was honored with the 2006 Unsung Hero Award from the Michigan State Bar and the 2010 Virginia Uribe Civil Rights Award from the National Education Association (NEA). Jay is a graduate of Wayne State Law School. For 13 years he worked for Michigan Protection and Advocacy Service (MPAS), a disability rights agency, where he founded a legal advocacy program for persons living with HIV/AIDS. He also worked for several legal services programs specializing in housing and family law issues.

D’Arcy Kemnitz – D’Arcy brings more than two decades of non-profit and social justice experience to her role as The LGBT Bar’s executive director. Under her leadership, The Bar has become the largest and most recognized organization of LGBT legal professionals in the country. In addition to orchestrating a coalition of more than 25 local, state, and regional LGBT bar associations, and dozens of LGBT law student associations, D’Arcy has overseen the annual “Lavender Law” Conference and Career Fair with thousands of attendees each year. D’Arcy is a frequently quoted expert on LGBT legal issues, appearing in media outlets including The ABA Journal, ABC News, Time Magazine, and others. She is a distinguished graduate of the University of Wisconsin and the Hamline University School of Law. She has experience speaking on a number of issues related to LGBT rights and the law and is available to speak at future events.

Danielle King – Danielle King is a Staff Attorney in the Legal Aid Society’s Juvenile Rights Practice. Danielle has a J.D. from Seton Hall University School of Law (2016), a M.A. in Urban Affairs from CUNY-Queens College (2012) and a B.A. in English from Michigan State University (2009). While in law school, Danielle was president of Seton Hall Law’s LGBTQ student group, Lambda Law Alliance, served on the law school’s Diversity Council advocating on behalf of LGBTQ students and assisted in a published 2016 NJ Immigration report entitled “Deportation Without Representation: The Access-to-Justice Crisis Facing New Jersey’s Immigrant Families.” Danielle also has interned at Lambda Legal, drafting an educational packet on the School to Prison Pipeline and how it impacts LGBTQ youth, co-compiling a 50 state survey on state statutes regulating homeless youth shelters which impact Transgender and Gender nonconforming youth, drafting an advocacy letter to encourage the Pennsylvania Attorney General and Philadelphia District Attorney to reopen the investigation into the 2002 homicide of Nizah Morris, a Black Trans woman and entertainer, and responding to help desk inquires and prison legal assistance letters on a variety of LGBTQ related issues. At the Legal Aid Society, Danielle has represented youth between the ages of 0-21 years of age in abuse and neglect proceedings in Manhattan and Queens Family Courts in New York City. Danielle as a former New York City foster youth is passionate about providing better outcomes for youth involved in the child welfare system, especially LGBTQ youth, youth with disabilities and youth of color.”

Mik Kinkead– Mik Kinkead is director of the Prisoner Justice Project at the Sylvia Rivera Law Project. He has been around the Sylvia Rivera Law Project (SRLP) volunteering, interning, and serving on the Collective since 2008. In 2015, he joined SRLP staff as a staff attorney and the Director of the Prisoner Justice Project. He graduated CUNY Law School in 2013, where he participated in clinics focusing on the rights of youth in adult prisons and benefits access for low-income New Yorkers. Mik has previously worked as a staff attorney at Prisoners’ Legal Services of New York, a case manager at the Ali Forney Center, and a lifeline volunteer for the Trevor Project.

John Knight – John Knight is a Senior Staff Attorney for the ACLU’s national LGBT & HIV Project, based in Chicago. He has represented a number of transgender people in seeking the right to transition-related medical care–through public and private employer-sponsored health insurance plans and while in prison. He has also been counsel in cases involving transgender persons’ ability to obtain accurate driver licenses and birth certificates and has assisted with the ACLU’s lobbying efforts to overcome barriers to securing accurate identity documents in a number of states. He is a graduate of the University of Chicago Law School.

Priya Lane – Priya Lane is the Director of the Economic Justice Project of the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights. The Economic Justice Project provides minority, immigrant, and women entrepreneurs with free legal assistance, technical support, and education. Daily, Priya works with aspiring or current business owners with big dreams but limited resources. Priya helps close this opportunity gap. She provides them with the legal tools they need to succeed, helping them develop sustainable businesses and achieve economic self-sufficiency. Under her leadership, the Economic Justice Project has grown exponentially and is now serving over 400 small businesses annually (90% people of color; 60% women). Priya actively conducts legal clinics and workshops, provides one-on-one legal consultations, and matches businesses with pro bono attorneys. In response to the current climate, Priya launched innovative culturally and linguistically accessible programming to help business owners navigate the specter of federal immigration enforcement. She also successfully created an annual small business conference, BizGrow, which connects hundreds of entrepreneurs to free legal and technical support in a single day. Priya’s work is regularly featured in publications such as the Boston Business Journal. Priya is a graduate of Northeastern University School of Law.

Eric Lesh – Eric Lesh is the Executive Director of The LGBT Bar Association and Foundation of Greater New York (LeGaL). Prior to joining LeGaL, Eric was the Fair Courts Project Director for Lambda Legal, the oldest and largest national legal organization committed to achieving full recognition of the civil rights of lesbians, gay men, bisexuals, transgender people and individuals living with HIV. In his role, Eric focused his efforts on eliminating bias in the legal system, increasing diversity of the judicial bench, and expanding access to justice for LGBT people and those with HIV. He has trained attorneys and judges across the country, briefed federal courts on issues ranging from juror discrimination to judicial misconduct, and assisted court users through Lambda Legal’s help desk and educational resources. Eric has written and presented educational programs for legal professionals on topics like: “Addressing Racial, Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Bias in Jury Selection” and “Emerging Transgender Legal Issues for Family Court Judges.” In 2017, his publication, “Justice Out of Balance: How Judicial Elections and a Stunning Lack of Diversity on State Courts Threatens LGBT Rights” was featured by Adam Liptak in the New York Times. Eric’s articles have been published in the Family Court Review and Artificial Intelligence and Law, the Washington Post, The L.A. Times, and The Advocate. He has spoken on panels with state supreme court justices and federal judges. In 2017, he was recognized as one of the Best LGBT Lawyers Under 40 by the National LGBT Bar Association.

Yvette Letelier – Yvette Letelier is a Foster Care and Adoptions Social Worker at Families Uniting Families Foster Family Agency where she provides direct services to foster children in Los Angeles and Orange Counties. Through this work she has certified numerous foster/adoptive homes for children and youth in need. Additionally, she has worked as an Intern Supervisor with Project Fatherhood through her current foster family agency. Her responsibilities include intake and placement of foster children, home studies for new resource families and group facilitation fo the significant others involved with Project Fatherhood. She is certified in Seeking Safety, Domestic Violence and Structured Analysis and Family Evaluation (SAFE). Ms. Letelier has experience with program management case management, in-home counseling and medical social work. Yvette Letelier has been an adjunct instructor at East Los Angeles College in the Social Sciences Department since Spring 2015. She was nominated as a mentor for transferring students in 2017. Additionally, she has participated in various committees including SafeZone which focuses on LGBTQ and undocumented student experiences, Sexual Assault Awareness Violence Education (SAAVE) and Behavior Intervention Team (BIT) which focuses on mental health on campus. Yvette Letelier received her Bachelor of Arts degree from California State University, Northridge in Sociology and Women’s Studies with a minor in Chicano Studies and a Master of Social Work from the University of Southern California.

Noah E. Lewis – Noah E. Lewis, Esq. is the founder and executive director of Transcend Legal, a national, New York City-based organization focused on eliminating barriers to insurance coverage for transgender-related health care. Noah is the Chair of the NYC Bar Association’s LGBT Rights Committee and is a past recipient of the Committee’s Arthur S. Leonard Award recognizing compelling commitment to LGBT equality through the law. Noah previously worked for the Transgender Law Center, the National LGBTQ Task Force, and served as the staff attorney at Transgender Legal Defense & Education Fund for five years. A native of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Noah is a graduate of the University of Pittsburgh and was the first openly transgender student to graduate from Harvard Law School.

Karen L. Loewy – Karen L. Loewy is Senior Counsel and Seniors Strategist for Lambda Legal, the oldest and largest national legal organization committed to achieving full recognition of the civil rights of lesbians, gay men, bisexuals, transgender people and those with HIV. Ms. Loewy is involved in all aspects of Lambda Legal’s impact litigation, policy advocacy and public education, with particular emphasis on issues affecting LGBT and HIV-positive seniors. Ms. Loewy joined the Lambda Legal team in 2013 after over a decade as an attorney for GLBTQ Legal Advocates & Defenders (GLAD), where she engaged in LGBT impact litigation and policy work throughout New England.

Johanna Margeson – Johanna Margeson is the Policy and Advocacy Fellow at HIPS (funded by the Ford Foundation) through the Women’s Law and Public Policy Fellowship Program at Georgetown Law. She is a 2017 graduate of Emory Law School, where she was the recipient of the Debra Cohen de Rothschild Scholarship and the Wayne Cardon Scholarship. She also received the Dean’s Service Award and was recognized for her pro bono work. While attending Emory Law, Johanna was selected for the Barton Child Law and Policy Center Policy Clinic, where she developed a guide for mental health practitioners around legal issues concerning forensic interviewing and counseling. She also participated in the Barton Center’s Legislative Advocacy Clinic where she worked on drafting bills and evaluating legislative proposal addressed the welfare of children in Georgia. She recently interned with the CDC’s Public Health Law Program. Johanna also interned with Prevent Child Abuse Georgia and spent time as a victim witness advocate. She received her Master of Public Health from Tufts University School of Medicine in 2017 and received her B.A. in History from Boston College in 2013.

Meagan Maury – Meghan Maury is Policy Director at the National LGBTQ Task Force, and their work spans a broad range of issue areas, but focuses heavily on economic justice, criminal justice, and data collection. Meghan uses their personal and professional experience to inform their work, and is particularly focused on how economic systems and the criminal legal system impact people who live at the intersections of multiple marginalized identities. Through that frame, they have advocated to end the criminalization of homelessness, poverty, drug use, and HIV, and to provide services and supports for the communities most deeply impacted by these systems.

Matthew McMorrow – Matthew is currently a senior adviser to New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio and serves as liaison to the LGBT community. He was formerly the Director of Government Affairs of Empire State Pride Agenda.

Shawn Thomas Meerkamper – Shawn Thomas Meerkamper is a staff attorney at Transgender Law Center and identifies as a genderqueer, anti-racist, social justice lawyer. They re-joined TLC after a stint at the ACLU of Nevada, where they worked on issues ranging from LGBT prisoners’ rights to civil asset forfeiture. Previously, Shawn spent two years as a legal fellow at TLC where they were part of the team in Norsworthy v. Beard and Quine v. Beard—two cases that forced the California prison system to radically revise its policies regarding incarcerated transgender people—as well as In Re Change of Birth Certificate, which reduced barriers to gender-appropriate identity documents for rural transgender Indianans. Shawn is a graduate of George Washington University and UCLA School of Law’s Critical Race Studies program. In law school, they fought for formerly incarcerated people at A New Way of Life Reentry Project, undocumented workers at the National Day Laborers’ Organizing Network, and homeless newspaper vendors at the ACLU of Tennessee. They are the author of Contesting Sex Classification: The Need for Genderqueers as a Cognizable Class, which was published in the 2012 edition of the Dukeminier Awards Journal. Shawn enjoys dancing and vegetarian cooking and lives in Oakland with their cat Little One.

Louise Melling – Bio to come. 

Shannon Minter – Shannon is the Legal Director at the National Center for Lesbian Rights. He has litigated a wide range of cases that have significantly impacted the LGBT community, including in the areas of family law, healthcare, marriage equality, transgender rights, First Amendment, employment, and efforts to ban conversion therapy. Minter is a nationally and internationally-recognized expert on LGBT legal issues. In 2009, he was named a California Lawyer of the Year by California Lawyer. In 2008, he was named among six Lawyers of the Year by Lawyers USA and among California’s Top 100 Lawyers by the legal publication The Daily Journal. He also received the 2008 Dan Bradley Award from the National Gay and Lesbian Bar Association for outstanding work in marriage cases and was the recipient of the Cornell Law School Exemplary Public Service Award. In 2005, Minter was one of 18 people to receive the Ford Foundation’s “Leadership for a Changing World” award. He currently serves on President Obama’s Commission on White House Fellows. Minter has traveled to El Salvador and Russia to work with LGBT advocates in those countries.

Kerene Moore – Kerene Moore is currently a supervising attorney for Legal Services of South Central Michigan, a division of the Michigan Advocacy Program. She has represented underserved Michigan residents in civil legal matters for the past ten years. Kerene graduated with honors from the University of Michigan where she earned a Bachelor of Arts and Juris Doctor degree, and was honored as a Deans Public Service Fellow. Throughout her career, Kerene continues to advocate for members of marginalized groups, including undocumented immigrants, disabled persons, survivors of domestic violence, and LGBTQ community members. Due to her strong advocacy on LGBT issues, she was honored as one of the Best LGBT Attorneys Under 40 by the LGBT Bar Association (2016), awarded an Honorary Lavender Degree by the University of Michigan (2017), and granted the Kevin E. Kennedy Pro Bono Award by the Outlaws at Michigan Law School (2017). Kerene serves as a board member for Equality Michigan, on the Executive Committee of the Jim Toy Community Center, and Co-Chair of the Washtenaw County Bar Association’s LGBT Rights section. She also serves as supervising attorney of the LGBTQ Know Your Rights Project, a law student-driven pro bono project that targets LGBT community members in southeastern Michigan.

Elie Mystal – Bio to come. 

Amy Nelson – Amy Nelson is the Director of Legal Services at Whitman-Walker Health in Washington, DC, a holistic community health center offering transgender, primary, and HIV healthcare; mental health and addiction services; dental care; medical case management; and free legal services. As the nation’s oldest medical-legal partnership, WWH specializes in serving DC’s queer and HIV communities by addressing health-harming legal needs to improve health outcomes. In 2017, WWH Legal Services assisted more than 3,000 legal clients on immigration, discrimination, name and gender changes, insurance, disability, medical privacy, elder law, and public benefits cases. Amy managed the creation of DC’s first name and gender change legal clinic in 2012 which has served more than 900 clients to date. She teaches Public Interest Lawyering: Access to Health Care at Georgetown University Law Center. In 2014, Amy was recognized as a “Shero of the Movement” by the DC Mayor’s Office of LGBTQ Affairs and honored with Capital TransPride’s Engendered Spirit award. Like most Texans, she is proud to be a native, but is even prouder to call DC home for 20 years and to recognize DC’s national leadership in health care reform and LGBTQ inclusivity.

Oren Nimni – Oren Nimni joined the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights and Economic Justice as a Civil Rights Fellow in 2017.  Oren’s legal practice focuses on cutting-edge constitutional litigation on behalf of people of color and immigrants. Oren is currently litigating the first lawsuit filed in the country against the Trump Administration to save TPS on behalf of Haitian, Honduran and Salvadoran immigrants. He is also litigating the first lawsuit filed in the country to block federal officials from conducting immigration arrests in state courthouses. His work in these groundbreaking cases has received significant national attention. Oren employs a community lawyering model. He is deeply embedded in the community, and regularly advises grassroots organizations on policy and legal matters. Prior to joining the organization, Oren was a partner at the Community Law Office, a Boston-based firm. At the Community Law Office, Oren provided holistic representation to low-income clients and community organizations in criminal and civil matters. Previously, Oren worked with the Prison Litigation Assistance Project helping to protect prisoners’ rights. Oren served as a Steering Committee member of Law for Black Lives and on the Board of the National Lawyers Guild. He is currently the legal editor of Current Affairs magazine. He is a graduate of Northeastern University School of Law where he helped co-author an employment rights manual for domestic workers in collaboration with the Brazilian Workers’ Center.

Judi O’Kelley – Judi joined the LGBT Bar’s team in 2017, and works on a broad range of programmatic initiatives including building the Bar’s law school affiliate program and supporting the work of the Family Law Institute. Judi brings over twenty years of legal and political experience working for equality within the LGBT community. While in law school, she worked against anti-gay ballot initiatives in Oregon; after graduating and entering private practice, she moved to Georgia and worked on behalf of local and national LGBT groups as a pro bono attorney, drafting and lobbying for successful non-discrimination protections and domestic partnership benefit programs for several Georgia municipalities, including Atlanta and Athens. In 2004, she served as President and Campaign Chair for the campaign for the Athens, Georgia area in opposition to Georgia’s constitutional amendment banning same-sex unions, and continued grass-roots organizing and local political work after the campaign. Judi also was the lead plaintiff from 2004-2006 in the case of O’Kelley v. Perdue, in which Lambda Legal, the Georgia ACLU, and the law firm of Alston & Bird sought to strike down Georgia’s anti-marriage amendment. Judi then spent over eleven years on the staff and in senior management of Lambda Legal in roles ranging from Southern Regional Director, to Director of Life Planning, to Deputy Director of Development, to Director of Leadership. Along the way she moved to Seattle, Washington, where she is involved with a number of local LGBT groups as the Bar’s West Coast outpost. Judi received her B.A. from the Colorado College in 1990. After receiving her J.D. from the University of Oregon School of Law in 1996, she served as a law clerk for Judge James L. Oakes of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit and practiced appellate and employment law in Atlanta for Jones Day and two boutique law firms, before joining Lambda Legal in 2006. Judi has roots in the Washington, D.C. metro area as well as Juneau, Alaska, and is admitted to practice in DC, Alaska, and Georgia.

Eric Paulk – Eric Paulk is a lawyer and advocate working on issues impacting the lives of people living with HIV.  He currently leads HIV policy and strategy at Georgia Equality, managing all statewide and local HIV advocacy and policy efforts. Prior to joining Georgia Equality, Eric served as the Tyron Garner Fellow at Lambda Legal, the oldest and largest organization dedicated to advancing the civil rights of lesbians, gay men, bisexuals, transgender people and individuals living with HIV. There, Paulk’s work focused on HIV and the law with a strong emphasis on legal issues disproportionately impacting Black LGBTQ communities. Eric has spoken at law schools and national advocacy conferences on HIV criminal reform, the impact of the school-to-prison pipeline on black queer youth, and the intersections of race, poverty, HIV, and LGBTQ issues. He has published in HIV Plus Magazine, the Huffington Post, the Atlanta Voice, the Georgia Voice and Project Q Magazine. He serves on the Board of the Atlanta Harm Reduction Coalition and is the former board chair of GLSEN New York City. Eric is a former Victory Empowerment Fellow and is a graduate of Pace University Law School and Morehouse College.

Kathleen Perrin – Kathleen Perrin is founder and President of Equality Case Files (EQCF), a nonprofit organization that provides information on legislation and litigation impacting the lives of LGBTQ people. In addition to tracking and reporting on court cases from around the country, EQCF provides free public access to court filings and publishes an email newsletter. Kathleen received her B.S in mathematics from the University of California at Santa Barbara and her J.D. from UCLA School of Law. Kathleen is also a journeyman carpenter and former member of Carpenter’s Local 1062.

Xavier Persad – Xavier Persad serves as legislative counsel at the Human Rights Campaign, his focus includes state and municipal advocacy as well as conversion therapy related legislation. Xavier serves HRC’s Project One America as well as the legal department’s annual Municipal Equality Index publication. Xavier earned a Bachelor of Social Work from the University of Central Florida. He obtained his law degree from Florida A&M University College of Law. Xavier also holds a Master of Laws degree in Human Rights Law from the London School of Economics and Political Science. Before joining HRC, Xavier obtained legal and policy experience on a wide range of issues during his tenures at the U.S. House of Representatives, the Caribbean Court of Justice, and the Center for International Law and Justice at Florida A&M University College of Law. Xavier is admitted to the Florida Bar .

Jean Philips – Jean Phillips has practiced law for fifteen years, including seven years practicing in a rural community in which about 75% of the population belongs to the Navajo Nation or Pueblo of Zuni. She has developed expertise in representing people living in rural and indigenous communities in state, federal and tribal courts, and has led and developed the statewide implementation of Safe to Be You!, New Mexico Legal Aid’s LGBTQ+ legal access project.

Jenny Pizer – Jenny Pizer is Director of Law and Policy for Lambda Legal, the country’s oldest and largest legal organization advancing and securing full civil rights for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people and people living with HIV.  She litigates to obtain fair conditions for LGBT people in health care, employment and education, and to challenge the use of religion to license discrimination. She also drafts legislation, advises policymakers, and works with community advocates to advance nondiscrimination protections and to oppose overbroad religious exemptions. Jenny long has been a leading voice for family equality for LGBT people and previously directed Lambda Legal’s Marriage Project. She has received many professional achievement and community service awards, including being named among California’s top women litigators seven times.  From 2011 to 2012, Jenny served as Legal Director of the Williams Institute, a public policy research center at UCLA School of Law. Before that, she was an adjunct professor at USC School of Law, Loyola Law School, and the former Whittier Law School. Jenny is a graduate of NYU School of Law and Harvard/Radcliffe College.

Christina Remlin – Since joining Children’s Rights in 2011, Christina Wilson Remlin has represented classes of children in foster care in suits challenging violence, inadequate medical care, inappropriate conditions and over-institutionalization. Her clients include those at risk of discrimination associated with their LGBTQ identity, gender, race, immigration status and class. Previously, Ms. Remlin was a litigation associate at Baker & McKenzie LLP, where she represented clients in complex commercial disputes and regulatory investigations. She developed an active pro bono docket and represented children and adults in political asylum hearings, Violence Against Women Act petitions, and Special Juvenile Immigration Status and green card applications. Before that, Ms. Remlin was a member of Shearman & Sterling’s litigation group. Ms. Remlin received her J.D. from Fordham University in 2004 where she participated in The Crowley Program on International Human Rights’ Annual Mission to Bolivia and interned for the Center for Legal and Social Studies in Argentina. She received her B.A. in Political Science from Furman University in 1999 (cum laude). She has a variety of publications focusing on issues of the adequate treatment of LGBTQ youth in out of home care, corporate responsibility, investment disputes, environmental protection and human rights reparations.

Carolyn Reyes – Carolyn was born in Miami and raised there primarily by her monolingual Cuban grandmother with a fifth-grade education, who read the newspaper cover to cover and watched “The Price is Right” daily. She fell in love with San Francisco during the semester of college she spent in the City in an Urban Studies program, and moved to the East Bay upon graduation. She has now been in the Bay Area over half her life and doesn’t think she’ll live anywhere else (although she imagines ending up in Barcelona if ever exiled from the U.S.). Carolyn joins NCLR as Youth Policy Counsel to work on the #BornPerfect campaign to end conversion therapy for children and youth, as well as other youth-related projects. She is a national expert on issues related to LGBT youth in out-of-home care who has spent over two decades working on behalf of marginalized children, youth and families in various capacities, including child welfare worker, children’s attorney, children and family therapist, and school counselor. Prior to joining NCLR, Carolyn served as Director of getREAL California, a collaboration between NCLR, the Center for the Study of Social Policy, and Family Builders aimed at integrating sexual orientation and gender identity/expression-informed policy and practice into California’s child welfare system. Prior to that, Carolyn spent 9 years at Legal Services for Children, where in addition to representing children and youth in dependency, guardianship, immigration, and education matters, she coordinated two projects—both collaborations with NCLR—focused on improving services to and outcomes for LGBT youth in child welfare and juvenile justice systems. She has co-authored numerous publications related to LGBT youth in out-of-home care, including Hidden Injustice: Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Youth in Juvenile Courts. Carolyn received her J.D. from UC Hastings College of the Law, her M.S.W. from San Francisco State University, her M.A. in Theology (Religion & Society) from Pacific School of Religion, and her B.A. from Wheaton College (IL). When not at work, she can be found reading with her daughter, Kairos, eating yummy meals prepared by her wife, Yvonne, or cheering on her son, Sanjay, at a high school sporting event.

Ethan Rice – Ethan Rice is the Fair Courts Project Attorney for Lambda Legal, the oldest and largest national legal organization committed to achieving full recognition of the rights of LGBT people and people affected by HIV. The Fair Courts Project focuses its work on issues of judicial independence, judicial diversity, access to justice, and combating bias in the legal system. Prior to coming to Lambda Legal, Ethan served as a staff attorney at the Transgender Legal Defense and Education Fund (TLDEF). Before joining TLDEF, he was a child welfare attorney in Florida for four years. As a graduate fellow at FSU College of Law, Ethan researched and co-authored, Juvenile Life without Parole for Non-Homicide Offenses: Florida Compared to the Nation. The article was cited by the U.S. Supreme Court in Graham v. Florida in its decision finding sentences of life without parole for juveniles unconstitutional when imposed for non-homicide crimes. Ethan received a B.A. in International Relations from Florida International University and his J.D. from Florida State University College of Law. He is licensed to practice law in New York.

Richard Saenz – Richard Saenz is a Staff Attorney and the Criminal Justice and Police Misconduct strategist at Lambda Legal, the oldest and largest national organization committed to the civil rights of lesbians, gay men, bisexuals, transgender people and everyone living with HIV. Prior to Lambda Legal, Richard founded the HIV/LGBT Advocacy Project at Queens Legal Services in New York City. Richard coordinates Lambda Legal’s litigation and policy work on behalf of incarcerated people and those engaged with the criminal justice system. His legal advocacy has included challenging discriminatory treatment and policies of state departments of corrections, the New York City welfare agency, and representing victims of domestic violence and people with disabilities in court and administrative hearings. He has trained hundreds of advocates on providing services to marginalized communities, and the intersections of poverty, racism, and LGBT rights. Richard is the recipient of the Hispanic National Bar Association’s Top Lawyers Under 40 Award and the National LGBT Bar Association’s Best LGBT Lawyers Under 40 award. Richard received his law degree from Fordham School of Law, where he was a Stein Scholar for Public Interest Law and Ethics, and his B.A. from Georgetown University.

Cathy Sakimura – Cathy Sakimura is the Deputy Director and Family Law Director at the National Center for Lesbian Rights. Cathy also founded and oversees NCLR’s Family Protection Project, which improves access to family law services for low-income LGBT parents and their children, with a focus on families of color. She received her J.D. from UC Hastings College of the Law and her B.A. from Stanford University. In 2012, she was named one of the Best LGBT Lawyers under 40 by the National LGBT Bar Association. She is a co-author of the book Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Family Law.

Andrew Santa Ana – As the Director of Legal Services, Andrew coordinates Day One’s direct legal services program. Through advocacy and direct representation in cases concerning family law, immigration, and criminal justice, Andrew works to protect the rights of young survivors. His practice emphasizes community partnership, cultural competency, and an analysis that centers the experiences of youth and survivors of intimate partner violence. At Day One, Andrew provides trainings on dating violence, the rights of young people within the legal system, and the use technology intimate partner violence. Andrew attended the State University of New York at Binghamton where he graduated with a degree in English. He is a proud graduate of the City University of New York School of Law, where he received the school’s Twentieth Anniversary Scholarship. Throughout his career, he advocated for the rights of low wage workers, Asian American and Pacific Islander communities, transgender people of color, immigrants, and survivors of intimate partner violence. In 2007, Andrew was the recipient of an Equal Justice Works Fellowship to confront intimate partner violence in NYC’s Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT) communities. As a staff attorney at Sanctuary for Families, Andrew implemented the LGBT Initiative, a program to safeguard the rights of LGBT survivors through a combination of direct services, outreach, education, and policy advocacy. Through the LGBT Initiative, he litigated cases for survivors throughout the five boroughs. Andrew utilized these experiences to enrich the work of advocates around the country by training thousands on legal remedies for survivors of intimate partner violence, LGBT rights, and cultural competency. In September 2011, he was awarded a Courage award from the NYC City Anti-Violence project for his work to set up and administer a free legal clinic for LGBTQ survivors of intimate partner violence. He serves on the advisory board of the Pride Center of Staten Island and is a native of New York City.

Rose Saxe – Rose Saxe is a senior staff attorney at the American Civil Liberties Union’s Lesbian Gay Bisexual & Transgender and AIDS Projects, where her work focuses on ensuring equal treatment of lesbians, gay men, bisexuals, transgender people, and people living with HIV. Issues she has worked on include employment and public accommodation discrimination, the denial of emergency medical care based on perceived HIV status and sexual orientation, family law issues, the intersection of civil rights for LGBT people, and religious freedom and expression. She has also worked extensively on HIV policy at the state and federal levels. Previously, Saxe worked for Rosen Preminger & Bloom in New York, where she specialized in employee benefits law. Saxe clerked for Judge Sonia Sotomayor of the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals and Judge Janet Bond Arterton of the U.S. District Court for the District of Connecticut.

Murray Scheel – Murray Scheel is a senior staff attorney at Whitman-Walker Health in Washington, DC, the nation’s oldest medical-legal partnership, dedicated to queer and HIV health. He focuses on legal services and policy initiatives to address the needs of elderly individuals who are trans, lesbian, gay, bi-sexual, or genderqueer or living with HIV/AIDS. He came to Whitman-Walker Legal Services in 2013 from the firm of Karp, Wigodsky, Norwind, and Gold, where he served as a senior associate in civil litigation. Before private practice, he clerked for the Honorable Noël A. Kramer on the DC Superior Court and the Honorable Vanessa Ruiz on the DC Court of Appeals. During law school, he spent a summer internship with the National Lawyers Guild and the San Francisco Human Rights Commission developing draft protocols for the proper treatment of transgender prisoners in the local jails. Murray graduated with honors from George Washington University Law School in 2003. He is a member of the Maryland and District of Columbia Bars.

Scott A. Schoettes – Scott A. Schoettes, who lives openly with HIV, is Counsel and the HIV Project Director at Lambda Legal, the oldest and largest national legal organization dedicated to making the case for equality on behalf of LGBT people and people living with HIV, through impact litigation, education and policy work. Schoettes litigates impact cases involving discriminatory denial of employment and services based on a person’s HIV status, as well as on HIV criminalization and access to care. He also does a significant amount of amicus work on issues of import to people living with HIV, notably twice co-authoring amicus briefs in the U.S. Supreme Court’s review of the Affordable Care Act. On the policy side, Schoettes was the point-person for Lambda Legal’s work on the repeal of the HIV travel ban, is committed to ending the ban on blood donations from gay and bisexual men, and works on the legislative reform of laws criminalizing conduct based on HIV status. Schoettes was appointed to the Presidential Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS (PACHA) by President Barack Obama, co-chairing the Disparities Committee, and served until leading a group resignation protesting the Trump Administration’s apathy with respect to the on-going epidemic in the U.S.

Sirine Shebaya – Sirine Shebaya is a senior staff attorney for Muslim Advocates. Prior to joining Muslim Advocates, Ms. Shebaya spent several years advocating for the civil rights of immigrants and other communities of color. Her work focuses on the Muslim Ban, border searches, immigrants’ rights, and various civil rights matters affecting Muslim, Arab, and South Asian communities. In her previous role as Program Director of the Virginia Justice Program at the Capital Area Immigrant’s Rights Coalition, she supervised and litigated criminal-immigration cases before the immigration court and federal courts and advised criminal defense attorneys on various immigration-related matters. Before that, Ms. Shebaya initiated and directed the American Civil Liberties Union of Maryland’s Immigrants’ Rights Program, where she developed a full portfolio of immigrants’ rights litigation, advocacy, and public education on immigration detention, enforcement, and criminal-immigration matters, and played a leading role in a campaign that resulted in a wave of county policies prohibiting the detention of immigrants for ICE at local jails. Ms. Shebaya has published several reports on immigrants’ rights, and has written op-eds, blogs, and scholarly articles on a range of civil rights, immigrants’ rights, and human rights subjects. She has argued cases in federal and state courts, and has conducted trainings for lawyers on civil rights issues as well as community Know Your Rights presentations in DC, Maryland, and Virginia. Muslim Advocates recently wrote an amicus brief in the Masterpiece Cakeshop case, and two op-eds for Huffington Post and the American  Constitution Society also on the Masterpiece Cakeshop case.

Matthew Shurka – Mathew Shurka is a survivor of conversion therapy and full-time advocate in the fight to end these dangerous and discredited practices. Born and raised in Great Neck, New York, he was 16 years old when he came out to his father about being gay. From that time until he was 21, he endured seeing four conversion therapists in four different states. Today, the 27-year-old is out and proud, a dedicated LGBTQ advocate, and a member of the #BornPerfect Advisory Committee.

Ames Simmons- Ames Simmons is Equality NC’s Director of Transgender Policy. Ames identifies, advises staff about, and advocates for public policy on priority issues affecting the transgender community. Ames serves as a resource to connect trans and gender non-conforming people in North Carolina with resources via community engagement and public education and outreach. He joins Equality NC after more than a decade of in-house counsel practice at a healthcare consulting company based in Atlanta.

Ames serves on the Board of Directors of Human Rights Campaign and the HRC Foundation, and previously was elected national Board of Governors Co-Chair in 2010, where his priorities included successfully reenergizing a fundraising and development campaign, and service on the Healthcare Equality Index National Advisory Council. His policy activism emphasizes diversity and inclusion with focus on transgender justice.

Terra Slavin – Terra is the Deputy Director of the Policy and Community Building at the Los Angeles LGBT Center where she is developing a leading LGBTQ policy department at the largest LGBTQ organization. In this capacity, Slavin oversees and works closely with the policy team on a range of issues advancing LGBTQ civil and human rights, which includes advocating on health, international, youth, seniors, and anti-violence related policy matters pertaining to the LGBTQ community. Prior to this position, Slavin was the Center’s Lead Staff Attorney where she was responsible for overseeing the delivery of comprehensive and holistic legal services for LGBTQ survivors of domestic and sexual violence. Slavin was a leader in the efforts to obtain the first ever non-discrimination provisions in federal law on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity in 2013 as part of the re-authorization of the Violence Against Women Act, and she is co-chairing the LGBTQ sub-committee for the 2018 re-authorization efforts. In 2015, Slavin received the Los Angeles County Betty Fisher Award for phenomenal leadership in the field of domestic violence. Slavin graduated from Northeastern University School of Law.

Chase Strangio- Chase Strangio is a Staff Attorney with the ACLU’s LGBT & AIDS Project. Chase’s work includes impact litigation, as well as legislative and administrative advocacy, on behalf of LGBTQ people and people living with HIV across the United States. Chase has particular expertise on the treatment of transgender and gender non-conforming people in police custody, jails, prisons and other forms of detention.

Prior to joining the ACLU, Chase was an Equal Justice Works fellow and the Director of Prisoner Justice Initiatives at the Sylvia Rivera Law Project, where he represented transgender and gender non-conforming individuals in confinement settings. In 2012, Chase founded the Lorena Borjas Community Fund, an organization that provides direct bail/bond assistance to LGBTQ immigrants in criminal and immigration cases. Chase is a graduate of Northeastern University School of Law and Grinnell College.

Krisztina Szabo – Krisztina Szabo is a Staff Attorney at Whitman-Walker Health, a holistic health center that specializes in HIV and LGBTQ health care and offers wrap-around legal services to achieve optimal health outcomes. Krisztina represents clients on a variety of legal issues, including access to healthcare and public benefits, such as SSI/SSDI, Medicaid, Medicare, TANF, Food Stamps, IDA, and other public assistance programs. Krisztina also facilitates transgender clients’ access to gender-affirming care through appealing insurance coverage denials, filing administrative complaints, and challenging discriminatory employee health benefits. In addition, Krisztina helps transgender clients with name and gender on their ID documents, and also offers representation in employment or public accommodation discrimination cases. Prior to joining WWH, Krisztina worked at Ayuda and at the National Immigrant Women’s Advocacy Project, where she assisted and advocated for immigrant survivors of violence. Krisztina received her law degree from Charleston School of Law and graduated with distinction from the American University Washington College of Law’s and Government LLM Program. She is a member of the Virginia and District of Columbia Bars.

Ria Tabacco Mar – Ria Tabacco Mar is a senior staff attorney with the national ACLU’s Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender & HIV Project. Her litigation docket covers a wide range of issues affecting the equal rights of LGBT people, including employment discrimination and the use of religion to discriminate. In 2016, Ria was named one of the “Best LGBT Lawyers Under 40” by the National LGBT Bar Association. Prior to joining the ACLU, Ria served as Assistant Counsel at the NAACP Legal Defense & Educational Fund (LDF), where she participated regularly as amicus curiae on cases involving marriage equality and was a member of the Board of Directors of the New York Civil Liberties Union. Ria served as a law clerk to Judge Victor Marrero of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York and to Judge Julia Smith Gibbons of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit. She also worked as a litigation associate at Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP. Ria graduated from New York University School of Law and Harvard College.

Aaron Tax – Aaron Tax is the Director of Advocacy for SAGE. He advocates for LGBT-inclusive federal aging policies that account for the unique needs of LGBT older adults. Until June 2011, Aaron served as the Legal Director at Servicemembers Legal Defense Network (SLDN), the leading organization challenging “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” (DADT) in Congress and in the courts. He started there as a staff attorney in 2006, and for nearly five years at SLDN, he took part in a multifaceted approach to advancing the civil rights of LGBT servicemembers through law, policy, outreach, and education. As the Legal Director, Aaron was responsible for running the legal services program at SLDN, the only organization providing free legal services to service members impacted by DADT and related forms of discrimination, including those who are HIV positive and/or transgender. Prior to joining SLDN, Aaron spent three years working for the Department of the Army in the Office of EEO and Civil Rights, the first two years as a Presidential Management Fellow (PMF). As a PMF, he worked for the Office of the Staff Judge Advocate, V Corps, Heidelberg, Germany, and served as a Special Assistant United States Attorney in the US Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia, where he tried more than two dozen cases. A graduate of Cornell University with honors and distinction and the George Washington University Law School with honors, he currently resides in Washington, DC.

Liza Thantranon – Liza Thantranon is a Managing Attorney and the Regional Counsel for Health at Legal Services of Northern California, a non-profit legal aid organization providing free civil legal services to poor and underserved communities in 23 northern California counties. She began her legal career in LSNC’s Butte Regional office advocating for low-income people in the areas of public benefits, housing, employment, clean slate, and education law. In 2012, Liza joined LSNC’s Health team. Liza’s work includes direct legal services to health consumers in 32 northern California counties, community education, impact litigation, and policy advocacy on health care issues such as health reform implementation, provider network adequacy in rural areas, and access to health care services for transgender individuals. Liza oversees LSNC’s medical-legal partnership with the Gender Health Center, which works to expand access to health care and improve health outcomes for transgender and gender non-conforming individuals.

Fred ThrasherFred Thrasher has been the Deputy Director of NALP since 2004 having previously worked for twelve years in legal career services at The George Washington University Law School, William and Mary School of Law, and Brooklyn Law School. Mr.Thrasher received a J.D. from The George Washington University School of Law in 1993 where he was a member of the Moot Court Board and served as a Dean’s Fellow in the first-year legal research and writing program. He also holds a Masters in Education in Counseling Psychology from the University of Southern California and a B.S. from Tufts University where he majored in geology.

Jared Trujillo – Jared Trujillo was a staff attorney at The Legal Aid Society’s Juvenile Rights Practice from 2014 until 2017. While there, he represented youth in juvenile delinquency and child protective proceedings, including high-level felonies and severe abuse proceedings. Jared began working in Legal Aid’s Criminal Defense Practice in 2017. Additionally, Jared serves as the Association of Legal Aid Attorneys LGBTQ Representative, where he works to advance initiatives for Legal Aid’s LGBTQ clients, particularly LGBTQ people of color. Jared also teaches Foundational Lawyering Skills at Hofstra Law School.

Wayne Turner – Wayne Turner is a senior attorney in the National Health Law Program’s (NHeLP) Washington, DC office. His has conducted numerous trainings for legal aid attorneys and advocates on the complex rules used to determine financial eligibility for Medicaid and premium tax credits. Wayne also works to implement the ACA’s non-discrimination provision Section 1557. He prepared the groundbreaking HIV discrimination complaint exposing “adverse tiering” in prescription drug coverage that led to new regulations prohibiting discriminatory health plan benefit design and marketing. Before transitioning to a legal career, Wayne spent more than a decade as a leader in the Washington, DC chapter of ACT UP (AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power). He organized numerous demonstrations and protests to draw attention to AIDS pandemic and successfully lobbied to add consumer participation and accountability measures in the Ryan White Program. Wayne also led the campaign for DC’s medical marijuana Initiative 59, which was approved by 69% of District voters in 1998. Wayne is featured in the 2011 PBS documentary, Out in America, in which he describes the impact of the AIDS pandemic on the LGBT community through his personal account of serving as a caregiver and ultimately losing his life-partner Steve Michael, to the disease.

Jackie Vimo – Jackie Vimo is Policy Analyst for the National Immigration Law Center (NILC), a national organization that engages in policy analysis, litigation, education, and advocacy to defend and advance the rights and opportunities of low-income immigrants and their families. Jackie has been working for almost two decades on a broad range of public policy issues in California, New York, and Argentina, where her family is from and still lives. Prior to working at NILC, Jackie was the Director of Advocacy at the New York Immigration Coalition, a statewide umbrella organization for organizations working with immigrants in New York State. Jackie has taught in the Political Science departments of the City College of New York and the New School University and teaches graduate courses in immigration policy at Hunter College. Jackie has B.A.in Political Science from Barnard College, Columbia University, a M.A. in Political Science from the University of California, Berkeley, and. Ph.D. in Politics New School for Social Research.

Kim Welter – Kim Welter is CEO of KLW Consulting, LLC which supports LGBTQ and affiliated advocacy organizations with HR, finance, board and policy expertise. Her primary client is Equality Ohio where she holds the responsibilities of Director of Finance and Policy after previously serving as Deputy Director and Director of Programs and Outreach while on staff. She also briefly served as interim Executive Director; with over ten years of experience with the organization, she is Equality Ohio’s most seasoned consultant. She joined the organization as staff in 2008 after serving as the Executive Director of Equality Toledo for over 2 years. A graduate of University of Michigan, she got her secondary teaching certificate through the University of Findlay and her Master of Arts and Education from the University of Toledo where she taught composition for 3 years. Kim is a 2009/2010 graduate of the Center for Progressive Leadership and serves on the boards of Lesbians Benefiting the Arts and the Diversity Chamber of Central Ohio. In 2010, Kim took a leave of absence from Equality Ohio to serve as Campaign Manager for the ONE Bowling Green Campaign in Bowling Green, Ohio which successfully defended two local non-discrimination ordinances from a ballot initiative to repeal. Kim vlogs about LGBTQ issues as kimperfect. She lives in Columbus, Ohio with her wife and pets.

Ming Wong – Ming Wong is the Supervising Helpline Attorney at the National Center for Lesbian Rights where he also coordinates their Poverty Law work. He obtained his JD at U.C. Hastings in 2007, with a focus on Public Interest law. He serves on the board of the Pride Law Fund, which funds projects – a number of which have been housed at legal aid organizations – that serve and advocate for LGBTQ people and those living with HIV and AIDS. He previously served on the Executive Committee of the San Francisco Bay Area chapter of the National Lawyers Guild, an organization committed to protecting human rights over property rights, and providing legal support to communities and mass movements for change. Ming is an immigrant to the U.S. and lives in Oakland, California.

Sandra S. Yamate – Sandra S. Yamate is the CEO of the Institute for Inclusion in the Legal Profession (“IILP”). IILP is a 501(c)3 organization dedicated to creating a more diverse and inclusive legal profession in the US and around the world through its research and educational programming. Sandra spent ten years as Director of the American Bar Association’s Commission on Racial and Ethnic Diversity in the Profession. She was the first Executive Director of the Chicago Committee on Minorities in Large Law Firms. Prior to that, she was a litigator in Chicago for ten years. Sandra is the Chair-Elect of the National Judicial College and a member of the board of the National Association of Women Lawyers. She has helped found and served on the boards and as an officer of numerous bar associations and civic and community organizations. A Sansei, Sandra earned her JD from Harvard Law School as well as an AB in Political Science (cum laude) and History (magna cum laude) from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign where she was elected to Phi Beta Kappa.

Jeffrey T. Zaino – Jeffrey T. Zaino, Esq. is the Vice President of the Commercial Division of the American Arbitration Association in New York. He oversees administration of the large, complex commercial caseload, user outreach, and panel of commercial neutrals in New York. He joined the Association in 1990. Mr. Zaino is dedicated to promoting ADR methods and services. His professional affiliations include the American Bar Association, Connecticut Bar Association, District of Columbia Bar Association, New York State Bar Association (NYSBA), New York City Bar Association, New York Law School ADR Skills Program Advisory Committee, Scheinman Institute Board of Advisors, and Westchester County Bar Association. He serves on the Executive Committee of the Dispute Resolution Section of NYSBA, oversees the section’s Resolution Roundtable blog, and is the co-chair of the Arbitration and ADR Committee of NYSBA’s Commercial and Federal Litigation Section. He has also written and published extensively on the topics of election reform and ADR and has appeared on CNN, MSNBC, and Bloomberg to discuss national election reform efforts and the Help America Vote Act.

Keren Zwick – Keren Zwick is NIJC’s associate director of litigation and oversees the LGBT Immigrant Rights Initiative. Keren co-chairs the committee of the American Immigration Lawyers’ Association (AILA) that acts as the liaison between government enforcement officials and private attorneys. She is also a key contributor to the Chicago LGBTQ Immigrant Rights Coalition. Keren has led or participated in federal litigation in seven different Circuit Courts and before the United States Supreme Court.

Other Professionals 

Jeffrey Bajorek – Jeffrey Bajorek is a Senior Manager in KPMG’s Economic and Valuation Services group in New York City. He provides valuation advisory services related to mergers and acquisitions, corporate restructuring, internal planning, and litigation matters. Since joining KPMG in 2011, he has advised on numerous high profile acquisitions, government mandated divestitures, legal entity consolidations, and joint-venture formations for tax and financial reporting purposes. Mr. Bajorek has significant experience performing valuations of intangible assets including but not limited to customer relationships, internally developed technology, trade names, patents, non-competition agreements, and licenses. In addition, he has extensive experience performing valuations of businesses and partial business interests as well as valuation analyses substantiating goodwill and know-how. His advisory matters included analyses within the financial service, technology, retail, industrial, healthcare, and consumer discretionary industries. He earned his M.S. in Finance from Villanova University and B.S.B.A. in Finance and Economics from Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania. He is a member of the American Society of Appraisers, is a member of the National Training Committee for KPMG’s Economic and Valuation Services group, and is an affiliate in KPMG’s Valuation Services Technical Committee.

Michael Barba – Michael Barba leads BDO Consulting’s National Security Compliance practice. In his role as practice lead, Mr. Barba’s responsibilities contribute to the National Security and economic stability of the United States of America. Mr. Barba has lead numerous engagements in varying critical infrastructure sectors ensuring that National Security requirements are being met during transactions that involve foreign direct investments. He has been appointed as an independent and neutral third-party Monitor reporting directly to the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) Monitoring Agencies.  He also continues to server as the independent and neutral third-party auditor of a Tier-1 telecommunications company to assess compliance with CFIUS National Security Agreement mitigation requirements.  Mr. Barba’s responsibilities include assessing and analyzing National Security Agreements, Interim Orders and Letters of Assurance while developing customized work plans that are approved by the United States Government. He frequently reports to the United States Government on the status of the work being performed along with responding to any inquiries. As a Government-approved auditor, Mr. Barba advises clients and their counsel on a variety of CFIUS matters including assisting clients with pre-filing evaluation and impact studies and enhanced corporate security governance in order to meet the agreed upon requirements while also developing mitigation, implementation, and assessment models. His extensive experience in technology, network security and physical security provide essential perspective for identifying solutions through the review of network and physical infrastructures. Mr. Barba’s responsibilities also extend into BDO Consulting’s Forensic Technology Services group where he has more than 20 years of experience managing complex and high-profile investigations involving high-tech crime, misconduct and network security incident response. Mr. Barba has lead BDO’s Digital Forensics and Incident Response practices in conducting domestic and international investigations affecting the computer networks, resources and intellectual property of numerous Fortune 500 organizations. He received the prestigious High Technology Crime Investigation Association Award for “The Most Significant High Technology Case” involving public and private sector cooperation. Mr. Barba continues to assist clients in responding to litigation or an investigation by conducting digital forensics to identify relevant information involving the preservation, collection, analysis and reporting of electronic evidence. He has provided testimony before a federal grand jury regarding industrial espionage and theft of trade secrets involving $80 million and has been deposed as an FRCP Rule 30(b)(6) e-discovery witness. He has provided consulting services to the United Nations Office of Internal Oversight Services, leading a team of digital forensic professionals to assist in uncovering more than $600 million in international fraudulent activities. He often works closely with federal, state and local law enforcement agencies on matters, and has worked with the Federal Bureau of Investigations, Secret Service and Alcohol, Tobacco & Firearms.

Praveen Fernandes –  Praveen is the Vice President for Public Engagement at the Constitutional Accountability Center (CAC).  Before joining CAC, Praveen was a Principal at The Raben Group, where he was co-chair of the firm’s LGBTQ Strategies practice.  Prior to the Raben Group, Praveen served as a political appointee within the Obama Administration, where he was Senior Counsel and Advisor to the General Counsel at the U.S. Office of Personnel Management (OPM). At OPM, he focused on LGBTQ issues, particularly the federal government’s implementation of U.S. v Windsor, the Supreme Court case that struck down Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), and the federal government’s policies relating to transgender employees. Additionally, he worked on issues relating to workforce diversity, parental leave, contracting, national security, and workplace discrimination. Praveen has also worked at the American Constitution Society, Justice at Stake, Ropes & Gray, and Patton Boggs.  He began his career on Capitol Hill, where he served on Senator Edward M. Kennedy’s Labor Committee staff.  Praveen is a graduate of the University of North Carolina (Chapel Hill) School of Law, has a master’s degree in public health from the University of North Carolina (Chapel Hill) School of Public Health, and graduated with honors from Brown University, where his undergraduate concentration was in Biomedical Ethics. In 2010, the National LGBT Bar Association named Praveen to its 2010 “Top 40 Under 40” list, which recognizes LGBT lawyers under the age of 40 who have distinguished themselves through their work for LGBT equality.

Nadir Joshua-Nadir joined Facebook in 2014 and is the Business Lead for the Ads team.  In that role, he supports the teams that build Facebook’s ads products.  Prior to that, Nadir was an Associate General Counsel on the Labor and Employment team, leading the team that supported employees in technical functions.  Before joining Facebook, Nadir served as the Ethics and Employment Counsel at the New York City Council.  Nadir has been recognized by the San Francisco Business Times as an OUTstanding Leader and is currently serving on the Board of Directors of Frameline, the oldest and largest LGBT film festival in the country.

Aaron Katersky– Correspondent, ABC News, Bio to come 

Win Martin– Win Martin is an associate in the firm’s Trademark, Copyright, Media & Brand Protection practice. He represents clients ranging from FORTUNE 500 companies to individuals across a wide variety of industries, including aviation, food and beverage, manufacturing, and retail and consumer products. Win’s practice focuses on trademark selection, prosecution and enforcement, as well as counseling clients on a diverse range of issues related to trademarks, copyrights, domain name registrations, and advertising and consumer protection. He also represents clients before the U.S. Trademark Trial and Appeal Board and helps clients acquire infringing domain registrations through Uniform Domain-Name Dispute Resolution (UDRP) proceedings. In addition to managing large, international trademark portfolios, Win has experience securing trademark protection for non-traditional marks such as product configuration and packaging, sounds and others. He also helps clients combat intellectual property infringement online through Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) and online marketplace takedown procedures, and conducts intellectual property due diligence for mergers and acquisitions.

Marian Porges – Bio to come.

Jack Saul – Jack Saul Ph.D, is the founding director of the International Trauma Studies Program (ITSP).  As a psychologist and family therapist, he has created numerous programs for populations that have endured war, torture and political violence, including the Bellevue/NYU Program for Survivors of Torture, the FEMA funded Post 9/11 Downtown Community Resource Center in Lower Manhattan, REFUGE: Refugee Resource Center, and Theater Arts Against Political Violence.  He has written about this work in his book, Collective Trauma, Collective Healing: Promoting Community Resilience in the Aftermath of Disaster (Routledge, 2013).  Dr. Saul is the recipient of the American Family Therapy Academy Award for Distinguished Contribution to Social Justice, and the Marion Langer Award for Human Rights and Social Change of the American Association for Orthopsychiatry.  He has a private practice in Manhattan and consults to humanitarian, human rights, judicial, and media organizations on staff stress management and trauma informed care.

Richard Smith – Richard A. Smith is a founding member of Benton+Bradford Consulting, where he brings an extensive background in human resources and talent acquisition, executive coaching, and the ability to translate customer needs into value added solutions. His industry experience includes consumer products, retail, diverse manufacturing, financial services, hotel and leisure, quick service restaurants, healthcare, technology, communications, non-profit and energy. Mr. Smith’s clients value his perceptive listening skills and creative solutions. Mr. Smith’s experience before founding Benton+Bradford Consulting includes: Director of Global Diversity and Inclusion for Terex Corporation, a $9 billion heavy equipment manufacturer with over 16,000 employees in 22 countries; Senior Manager for Talent Acquisition for the South Business Unit of Wal-Mart, including nearly 1,200 stores in eight states representing $85 billion and 450,000 associates. Mr. Smith has been a frequent speaker on issues diversity and related issues. Smith a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from the University of North Florida and a Master’s degree in Human Resources Development from Webster University, St. Louis, MO.

Kate Spelman- Senior Copyright Counsel, Microsoft. Bio to come. 

Lam Vo- Lam Thuy Vo is a senior data reporter at BuzzFeed News with a special focus on data from social media platforms. Previously, she’s led teams and reported for The Wall Street Journal, Al Jazeera America and NPR’s Planet Money and told economic stories across the U.S. and throughout Asia through articles, videos and graphics. She has also worked as an educator for close to a decade, developing newsroom-wide training programs, workshops of varying lengths for journalists in the U.S., Asia and Europe and semester-long courses. She’s taught for ICFJ, Open Society, ONA, NICAR, CUNY and Columbia University, and has given talks, spoken on panels, and told on-stage stories for Pop-Up Magazine, the Tribeca Film Festival’s Interactive Day, TedxNYC and other larger events and conferences.

Ezra Young- Ezra Young is a nationally recognized civil rights attorney based in New York City. Ezra’s work centers on trans rights, with a focus on rights of recognition,employment protections, and health care and insurance coverage issues. Ezra received his BA in Philosophy from Cornell University and his JD from Columbia Law School. While a law student, Ezra served as Executive Managing Editor of the Columbia Journal
of Gender and Law and Online & Consulting Editor of the Columbia Journal of Race and Law.
From 2012 to 2014, Ezra was a Post Doctoral Scholar at Columbia Law School, focusing on trans rights, Critical Race Theory, and intersectionality. Ezra’s studies were supervised by
renowned scholar Kimberlé Crenshaw. Concurrently, Ezra served as research director of the Columbia Center for Intersectionality and Social Policy Studies and legal director of the African American Policy Forum. From 2014 to 2016, Ezra served as an associate at the Law Firm of Jillian T.  Weiss, P.C. From mid-2016 through mid-2017, Ezra served as Director of Impact Litigation at the Transgender Legal Defense and Education Fund, Inc.

Keith Watts – Keith Watts is a founding shareholder of the firm’s Orange County office.  Keith practices exclusively labor and employment law and has handled a wide variety of matters, including sexual harassment, age discrimination, disability and wrongful termination claims. Keith’s employment law practice focuses heavily on the “prevention side” of employment claims and positioning problem employment situations for the best possible defense, including complicated reductions-in-force terminations.  He regularly advises employers regarding methods to avoid employment-related claims, including the use of effective employment contracts and severance agreements, implementation of up-to-date company policies and procedures, providing manager training on “best practices,” and giving day-to-day, practical advice on pressing employment issues, such as wage-hour compliance and the management and termination of “problem employees.”

Private Practice

Diana Adams – Diana Adams is Owner of Diana Adams Law & Mediation, PLLC, a boutique LGBTQIA family law and mediation firm based in New York City and Frankfurt, Germany, serving primarily same-sex couples, platonic co-parents, polyamorous families and non-nuclear families. Diana is Director of the Euro LGBT Family Law Institute, sponsored by the National LGBT Bar and National Center for Lesbian Rights, connecting top lawyers in LGBTQIA family law in Europe with leaders in the US and worldwide, in an effort to create a worldwide legal support movement for these families. For over a decade, Diana has represented survivors of domestic violence, sexual assault, and bias-motivated violence with holistic trauma-informed legal support.

Jodi Argentino – Jodi Argentino is the Managing Partner of Argentino Family Law & Child Advocacy, LLC. She is licensed to practice law in New Jersey and New York. Jo has offices in Glen Rock and Montclair NJ. Prior to the establishment of this firm, Jo was a Partner with Guston & Guston, LLP, and the Managing Partner of the firm’s Custody and Dissolution Team, which has now transitioned into Argentino Family Law. Jo’s own practice is focused on work involving LGBTQ families and children, non-nuclear family structures, families with special needs, and complex parentage situations. Jo is also qualified by the State of NJ as a Family Law Mediator. Jo received her JD from Syracuse University College of Law in 2002, where she also received a Certification of Specialization in Family Law and Social Policy and was a Teaching Assistant for The Children’s Rights and Family Law Clinical Program. She was also an Editor of The Digest (Journal of the Italian-American Bar Association). Jo then began her legal practice as a Judicial Law Clerk to the Honorable Deanne M. Wilson, J.S.C. and has since nearly exclusively focused her career on the practice of family law.

Cindy Barrett – Cynthia L. Barrett practiced law for forty years in Portland, Oregon. A past president and Fellow of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys, she limited her practice to estate planning, special needs planning and elder law. After 2013, as the Windsor decision expanded federal rights to LGBT spouses and families, she made many presentations highlighting these developments for lawyers and community groups. She is active in the Family Law Institute, and received the LGBT Bar Association Leading Practitioner award in 2016.

Megan Bell – Megan Bell is a partner in Patterson Belknap’s Tax-Exempt Organizations department. Ms. Bell represents tax-exempt organizations in a wide range of matters, including formation and restructuring, tax compliance, governance, fundraising and gifts, and investment activities. Her clients consist of private foundations and public charities, including donor-advised funds, supporting organizations, and company foundations with both domestic and international operations, as well as social welfare organizations, business leagues and trade associations, and agricultural organizations. Ms. Bell also represents individuals and for-profit entities in structuring and managing their relationships and affiliations with tax-exempt organizations. Ms. Bell’s practice includes advising on governance and tax matters, complex gifts and collaborative funding structures, lobbying and political campaign activities, joint ventures and other affiliations with for-profit and noncharitable tax exempt organizations, program related investments, unrelated business income taxes, compensation matters, and internal reviews. In addition, Ms. Bell represents a variety of tax-exempt organizations in connection with Internal Revenue Service audits and Attorney General inquiries and investigations. Ms. Bell speaks at conferences for and about non-profit organizations on a range of topics. Most recently, Ms. Bell has spoken about investment governance, nonprofit matters, and complex public support issues. From 2004 to 2005, Ms. Bell served as a Law Clerk to the Hon. Richard C. Tallman of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. Before joining the Firm, Ms. Bell practiced tax law at a New York-based law firm.

Robert Bernstein – Robert Bernstein practices at Kirkland & Ellis LLP, where he focuses on Supreme Court, appellate, and complex litigation. Robert is also an adjunct professor at Georgetown University Law Center, where he teaches first-year constitutional law. His appellate matters have addressed a wide range of subjects including administrative law, bankruptcy, civil procedure, class actions, election law, energy, federal criminal law, federalism, the First Amendment, jurisdiction, qualified immunity, religious liberty, trusts and estates, and telecommunications. He has drafted merits briefs, amicus briefs, and certiorari-stage briefs before the U.S. Supreme Court, the federal courts of appeals, state appellate courts, and federal and state trial courts. Robert’s clients have ranged from Fortune 500 companies to religious orders and from state governments to incarcerated persons. He has argued in the Fourth, Tenth Circuits, and Eleventh Circuits. He served as a law clerk to Judge Danny J. Boggs, of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit.

Carol L. Buell – Carol L. Buell has a holistic practice in the City of New York, specializing in estate planning, real estate matters, and family law including adoptions, domestic partnership agreements for unmarried couples, prenuptial agreements, and family relationship agreements including donor agreements and multiple parent agreements, with a special expertise in LGBTQ family law. A trained mediator and collaborative attorney, Carol exclusively represents individuals who are using alternative dispute methods to reach agreements regarding parenting and child support arrangements, and dissolution or divorce agreements. Carol has over thirty years experience serving the LGBTQ community as an advocate on LGBTQ family law policy issues, educating the community through speaking engagements and workshops, training fellow attorneys and judges as faculty for over a dozen CLEs on LGBTQ family law matters, and through service on various boards of LGBTQ organizations, including Lambda Legal Defense and Education Fund, Inc. She is a member of the LGBTQI Family Professionals of New York, and is honored to serve on the Family Law Advisory Council for the San Francisco-based, National Center for Lesbian Rights.

Lyzzette Bullock – Lyzzette is a senior litigation associate at Mintz Levin in Boston. She represents clients in a variety of complex civil and commercial disputes in courts, mediations and arbitrations. She has experience in matters involving product liability, government investigations and commercial contract disputes. In addition, Lyzzette has defended clients in a number of professional negligence actions before administrative agencies and licensing boards. She has significant interest in legal and regulatory developments that impact the food and consumer products industry. Lyzzette is committed to professional and community involvement and has held positions as a board member on the boards of several organizations across the country, including in Arizona, California and New York. She has an active pro bono practice where she routinely represents indigent clients and local non-profit organizations. Lyzzette is a chair of Mintz Levin’s LGBT affinity group and the Massachusetts LGBTQ Bar Association’s Attorneys and Law Students of Color Committee. Lyzzette is a graduate of Wellesley College and The University of Michigan Law School.

Joan Burda – Joan M. Burda is a lawyer with a solo practice in Lakewood, Ohio. She limits her practice to estate planning & probate. She writes on a variety of topics. Joan is nationally recognized for her work in addressing legal issues affecting the LGBT community. See her website: www.lgbtlaw.com. She is active in the Family Law Institute, a joint venture of the LGBT Bar Association and the National Center for Lesbian Rights. She has served on the FLI executive committee and as FLI Education Director for many years. Her book, Estate Planning for Same Sex Couples, is published by the ABA. Joan is an Adjunct Professor of Law at Case Western Reserve University School of Law where she teaches Sexual Orientation and the Law. She also teaches Civil Procedure, Contracts and Administrative Law in the Legal Studies Program at Ursuline College in Pepper Pike, OH.

Paul Burke – Paul is a partner, director, and general counsel of Salt Lake City-based Ray Quinney & Nebeker, one of the oldest and largest law firms in the Intermountain West.  His clients became the first same-sex couple to marry legally in Utah and he officiated Utah’s first wedding of a lesbian couple.  Mr. Burke has been recognized as a “Utah Hero” by the Utah Pride Center for his public advocacy for LGBT rights.  Mr. Burke also received the Utah State Bar’s Pro Bono Attorney of the Year award.

Marla Butler – Marla R. Butler is a Partner in the Minneapolis office of Robins Kaplan LLP.   She is a trial lawyer and commercial and technology litigator. Throughout her career, she has been the lead lawyer in matters that have been resolved by trial, mediation and arbitration. She has litigated medical, semiconductor, LCD, networking and other electronics technologies. With results and client service as her primary objectives, she has helped technology clients monetize their patent assets and/or defend against lawsuits that threaten their business. In addition to her litigation practice, Ms. Butler has sought out opportunities throughout her career to contribute to various aspects of firm culture and management. In this regard, Ms. Butler served as Chair of the Robins, Kaplan, Miller & Ciresi L.L.P. Diversity Committee for six years, was Assistant Managing Partner and Hiring Partner of the New York office, and has served on the firm’s Executive Board.  In addition, she has formal and informal mentoring relationships with many associates in the firm.

Teresa Calabrese – Teresa Calabrese is a mediator and collaborative lawyer concentrating her practice on serving the Queer community. Teresa assists individuals, couples and families in creating agreements relating to relationship formation, family building, and separation and divorce. Teresa also handles second parent adoption matters and provides basic estate planning services. Teresa has facilitated legal informational workshops for the LGBT Community Services Center, Queens Public Library and the Brooklyn Arts Exchange. Teresa has presented LGBTQ CLE programs for the New York Association of Collaborative Professionals, the Family and Divorce Mediation Council of Greater New York, the New York State Council on Divorce Mediation, the International Academy of Collaborative Professionals, and CUNY School of Law Community Legal Resource Network. Teresa is a founding member of the LGBTQI Family Professionals of NYC. She is also a member of the Family and Divorce Mediation Council of Greater New York, the International Academy of Collaborative Professionals, The LGBT Bar Association of Greater New York and the New York State Council on Divorce Mediation.

William Candelaria-William Candelaria has more than 20 years of experience advising on cross-border financings in emerging markets, with particular focus on Latin America and Spain. He advises corporations, commercial and investment banks, private issuers, underwriters and family offices on bank and trade financings, debt and equity placements, restructurings and mergers and acquisitions in many sectors, including financial services and investment management, media and communications, food and beverages, hospitality, real estate and tourism, infrastructure and transportation and oil and gas. He counsels US institutional investors regarding investments in emerging market companies that are publicly traded abroad. Bill has significant board experience and he advises clients on corporate governance and compliance matters from time to time. Clients commend Bill for being “highly responsive” as well as a “problem solver and solution presenter,” who provides top-flight “professional service” built upon “excellent market knowledge and understanding” in the 2017 edition of Legal 500 Latin America. Legal 500 USA also recognized him as a leading US practitioner for mergers and acquisitions (middle-market) in 2017. A frequent speaker on legal and financing issues, Bill has for several years chaired the Mexico panel at the Institute of the Americas’ annual La Jolla Conference, the Western Hemisphere’s most highly regarded energy policy forum. He has also chaired corporate governance panels at the New York State Bar Association International Meetings in Lisbon and Panama. In addition to those engagements, Bill participated in the White House Business Council’s Inaugural Hispanic Business Leaders Forum. He currently serves as a trustee of the Union Theological Seminary in the City of New York and on the boards of directors of the New York City Economic Development Corporation and the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund.

Alana Chazan – Alana Chazan, Esq. is a family law attorney and mediator who focuses on the needs of LGBT families in Los Angeles, at her law firm, Chazan Family Law, P.C. Prior to entering private practice, Ms. Chazan was an Equal Justice Works Fellow, who spent three years developing family law, domestic violence and immigration legal services for low-income gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender survivors of domestic violence at the Los Angeles LGBT Center and Bay Area Legal Aid. Ms. Chazan is a California certified domestic violence advocate. Ms. Chazan’s writings on sexuality and the law have been published in the Texas Journal of Women and the Law and in the New York City Law Review. Ms. Chazan is also a Professor of Law at the People’s College of Law in Los Angeles, California.

Elisa D’Amico – Elisa D’Amico is a litigation partner with a unique legal practice: helping businesses and individuals fight invasion of privacy, defamation, internet-based abuse, and other First Amendment violations. She counsels clients about myriad internet privacy, technology, and cyber harassment issues, including internet-based fraud, unfair and deceptive acts and practices, and internet marketing. Ms. D’Amico is the co-founder of the Cyber Civil Rights Legal Project (CCRLP), a global K&L Gates pro bono project providing legal services to victims of nonconsensual pornography (i.e., “revenge porn”) when their sexually explicit images are distributed and displayed online without consent. The CCRLP utilizes the firm’s elite cybersecurity and cyber forensics practices, allowing volunteers to deliver quality pro bono services to victims across the globe. Since its inception in late 2014, the CCRLP already has removed thousands of offending images and videos from the internet, helping hundreds of victims fight back and reclaim their online identities.

Don Davis -Don Davis is an Employment, Labor & Benefits Associate in the Washington, DC office of Mintz Levin and co-author of LexisNexis’ LGBTQ Employment Law Practice Guide. His practice involves representing employers in a wide variety of workplace-related matters. Before joining Mintz Levin, Don was Senior Litigation Associate at Ackerman Brown, an LGBT-owned law firm in Washington, DC, and previously practiced at an employment litigation boutique in North Carolina. Don is a loyal and proud alumnus of both North Carolina State University and The Ohio State University’s Moritz College of Law. Don was recognized as one of the nation’s Top LGBT Lawyers Under 40 by the National LGBT Bar Association in the summer of 2015 and has been named a Super Lawyers Washington, DC Rising Star in 2017 and 2018. Don now serves as President of the LGBT Bar Association of the District of Columbia and is an active member of the Board of Directors of SMYAL, a regional organization focused on mentoring and supporting LGBTQ youth.

Elizabeth Davis – Elizabeth B. Davis is a Partner in the Atlanta office of Burr & Forman, LLP  where she has a regulatory practice that encompasses environmental, consumer product safety, and food, drug and medical device law. A former Assistant Regional Counsel with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in Region 4, Ms. Davis’s environmental practice includes regulatory compliance, permitting, enforcement defense, and litigation in all substantive areas of environmental law. She also handles the environmental aspects of corporate and real estate transactions, as well as occupational safety and health compliance and zoning and land use issues. She focuses her product liability practice on counseling clients regarding compliance with consumer product safety and food, drug and medical device regulatory requirements, including designing and managing recalls and defending related product liability claims. She has counseled numerous manufacturers, importers and retailers regarding compliance with consumer product and food, drug  and medical device safety requirements. In addition to her practice, Ms. Davis is active in her community and her firm. She is a frequent speaker on legal and diversity issues and serves on several boards, the National LGBT Bar Association.

Aisha Davis – Aisha graduated from Columbia Law School and the University of London’s School of Oriental and African Studies in 2013 with a JD and LLM in Human Rights, Conflict, and Justice. During law school, Aisha was an editor for the Columbia Journal of Race and Law and the Columbia Journal of European Law as well as a coach for the Frederick Douglass Moot Court Team. She also interned and completed clinics focusing on human and civil rights in New York, London, and Accra. She has published an article in the Harvard Journal on intersectionality and international human rights. Following law school, Aisha served as a law clerk to the Honorable Chief Judge Chandlee Johnson Kuhn of the Delaware Family Court. She has also worked with the African American Policy Forum, the Landesa Center on Women’s Land Rights, and Lambda Legal. Most Recently, Aisha joined Loevy & Loevy as a Justice Fellow in September 2016.

Zoe Dolan-Zoe Dolan is an attorney based in New York and Los Angeles. She runs a general practice encompassing a variety of areas, with an emphasis on crypto/blockchain projects and federal criminal defense. Her work has been profiled by the New York Times, Al Jazeera and TheAdvocate.com, among other media platforms, and she has won dismissals and trial acquittals for clients on both coasts. As a complement to practicing law, Zoe has written several books and created advocacy projects ranging from personal identity, sex and love to challenging the United States indigent defense system nationwide. She is an outdoors activities enthusiast and licensed skydiver.

Peter Y. Malyshev-Peter Y. Malyshev is a partner in Reed Smith’s Washington D.C. office with a practice that focuses on regulatory, compliance and transactional issues related to commodities, securities and derivatives products. Peter is widely regarded as a market leader in the CFTC and SEC regulatory space. For over 20 years Peter has assisted clients in the United States and overseas on numerous transactions involving over-the-counter and exchange-traded derivatives products in almost every asset class and market. Peter represents every type of market participant in this practice, including FCMs, SDs, IBs, CPOs and CTAs, SEFs, DCMs, DCOs and various end users both in the US and overseas. Peter was a key advisor to market participants on proposed derivatives legislation in U.S. Congress, which subsequently became the Dodd-Frank Act in 2010. After the passage of the Dodd-Frank Act, Peter has continued assisting clients with advocacy and compliance relating to the CFTC and SEC rulemakings under the Dodd- Frank Act. As part of this effort, Peter is actively engaged with the National Futures Association (NFA), the Financial Industry National Regulatory Association (FINRA) and other self-regulatory organizations’ (SROs) with implementation efforts under the Dodd- Frank Act and the CFTC and SEC regulations thereunder. Prior to joining Reed Smith, Peter worked at other leading international law firms in Washington, D.C., as well as in Moscow, London, and San Francisco. He was also formerly a lawyer at the CFTC’s Division of Economic Analysis and the Office of International Affairs, where he focused on exempt energy derivatives markets and interpretations of the Commodity Futures Modernization Act of 2000.

Dario de Martino-Dario de Martino is an M&A and Private Equity Attorney in the Corporate Department of Morrison & Foerster’s New York office, and serves as the Co-Chair of MoFo’s Blockchain Group. Mr. de Martino represents a broad array of U.S.-based and international clients, ranging from global corporations to closely held companies, most of which are active in the following industries: technology including blockchain and cryptocurrencies, financial services, and healthcare. His practice focuses on domestic and cross-border corporate transactions, principally in connection with public and private mergers and acquisitions, joint ventures and corporate governance matters. Select examples of his experience include the following:

  • Represented Ducera Securities as financial advisor to Monsanto Company in its $66 billion sale to Bayer AG.
  • Represented Inovalon, a leading technology company providing advanced, cloud- based analytics and data-driven intervention platforms to the healthcare industry, in its $105m acquisition of Creehan & Company, an independent provider of specialty pharmacy and medications management software-as-a-service platforms.
  • Represented FUJIFILM Holdings, a leading provider of imaging, information and document solutions, in its acquisition via tender offer of Cellular Dynamics International, a developer and manufacturer of fully functioning human cells in industrial quantities.

Emily Doskow – Emily Doskow has been practicing family law in the Bay Area since 1989. She specializes in family matters including adoptions, surrogacy agreements, prenuptial agreements, parentage, and mediated and collaborative divorce. She is the author or co-author of numerous books, including Nolo’s Essential Guide to Divorce; Nolo’s Essential Guide to Child Custody & Support, and The Legal Guide for Lesbian & Gay Couples, and is a frequent speaker on LGBTQI family issues. Emily is a member of Boards of Directors of Women Lawyers of Alameda County, the Center for Understanding in Conflict, and the National Center for Lesbian Rights, where she is past co-chair and sits on the National Family Law Advisory Council. Emily has been practicing mindfulness meditation for 20 years and is the founder of Mindfulness Over Matters, which offers mindfulness training and coaching for attorneys. Emily has taught mindfulness to law students at JFK University Law School as well as to Certified Family Law Specialists in Sacramento and Alameda counties and attorneys at the American Bar Association, the Alameda County Bar Association, the Family Violence Law Center, Root and Rebound, the National Lawyers’ Guild, Continuing Education of the Bar, and Spirit Rock Meditation Center.

Cormac Early – Cormac Early focuses on appellate advocacy and motions practice at Jones Day. Prior to joining Jones Day, Cormac served as a law clerk with the U.S. Court of Appeals and the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia.

Ilana EisensteinBio to come. 

Brian Esser – Brian Esser is a solo practitioner whose practice focuses on building families through adoption, surrogacy, and assisted reproductive technology, and protecting families through proper estate planning. He regularly works with clients pursuing private placement adoption, as well as families securing the parental rights of a non-biological parent through a second-parent adoption. He counsels families on sperm, egg, and embryo donor agreements, and all aspects of surrogacy. He has a particular interest in helping LGBT people build their families. Brian started his career at Arnold & Porter in Washington, DC before moving to Baker & Hostetler’s New York office. He is a former member of the board of directors of the National LGBT Bar Foundation, and is a member of the ABA’s Family Law Section Committees on Adoption and Assisted Reproductive Technology. He has been recognized by his peers as a Super Lawyer and one of the Top LGBT Lawyers under 40 by the National LGBT Bar Association. He and his husband Kevin live in Park Slope, Brooklyn and have two sons through open adoption.

Celeste Fiore-Celeste Fiore is an Owner of Argentino Family Law & Child Advocacy. They are licensed in New Jersey and Pennsylvania and their practice consists of family law, special education and anti-bullying work, legal assistance for the transgender and non-binary identified community and advancement of LGBTQ rights in general. Celeste is a long-time LGBTQ educator, activist, and advocate, starting at American University in Washington, DC by leading its LGBTQ undergraduate organization. While at Rutgers School of Law (Camden), Celeste also led Outlaws, the LGBTQ law student group. Celeste presents regularly on LGBTQ cultural competency and legal issues specific to the LGBTQ community. Prior to law school, Celeste completed a volunteer year with City Year-Greater Philadelphia (Americorps). Celeste participates in LGBTQ cultural competency and gender-education related presentations for various organizations including NJ Administrative Offices of the Courts, NJ County Bar Associations and Courts, NJ ICLE, school board associations, and for conferences/events such as those run by Gender Conference East, PFLAG, and the New Jersey Bar Foundation’s Speakers Bureau (as well as for private entities). Celeste currently serves as the Chair of the LGBT Rights Section of the New Jersey State Bar Association and they are also a member of the Section’s Legislative Committee. Celeste has been appointed to the NJSBA’s Pro Bono Committee and is a member of the NJSBA Family Law Section and NJSBA Young Lawyer’s Division. Celeste was named a New Jersey Super Lawyers “Rising Star,” 2017 and 2018. Most recently, Celeste was recognized as one of the Best LGBT Lawyers Under 40!

Ellen Fischer – Ellen Fischer has throughout her 25 year career been an ally in the LGBTQ community and has been a practicing collaborative law attorney for almost that long. Ellen is a family lawyer in Southeastern Pennsylvania and handles all areas of family law including divorce, dissolution, custody, support, name changes, private, same sex and step parent adoptions, pre and post nuptial agreements, cohabitation agreements and abuse matters. Ellen’s very first custody case in 1993 involved a transgender parent, which was rather outrageous at the time since only the year before, the Pennsylvania court held that it was in a child’s best interest to have periods of custody with her lesbian mother.

Inez Friedman-Boyce – Inez Friedman-Boyce, a partner in the Securities Litigation + White Collar Defense Group at Goodwin Procter LLP, has spent more than two decades defending securities class action and shareholder litigation matters in federal and state courts against financial institutions and both publicly traded and privately held operating companies. Ms. Friedman-Boyce has also represented numerous clients in regulatory proceedings brought by the SEC, FINRA, and other federal and state regulatory bodies. Ms. Friedman-Boyce’s litigation and regulatory matters have involved allegations relating to the accuracy and completeness of corporate disclosures to investors (including financial guidance), possible accounting irregularities, and securities trading by corporate officers and directors, among other issues. Her practice is national in scope, and she has represented both U.S. and foreign-based issuers and their directors and officers in securities and corporate governance matters across the country. Ms. Friedman-Boyce also has significant experience in mediating and arbitrating securities and financial fraud-related matters.  In addition to defending securities and shareholder litigation matters across the country, Ms. Friedman-Boyce advises senior management and boards of directors on how to minimize securities liability risks, and how best to manage such crises when they occur. Her clients have included banks, financial services companies, mutual funds, hedge funds, venture capital firms, manufacturers of computer hardware and software, pharmaceutical, biotechnology and life sciences companies, and other high technology companies. A graduate of Amherst College and Georgetown University Law Center, Ms. Friedman-Boyce writes and speaks nationally to the legal and business communities on securities and shareholder litigation, risk management, corporate governance, and compliance matters.  She is the president and co-chair of the board of directors of the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights and Economic Justice, a two-term director of the ACLU of Massachusetts, an alumna of the LeadBoston program, and a past co-chair of the Class Actions Committee of the Litigation Section of the Boston Bar Association.

Andrew Furlow – Andrew Furlow is a health care lawyer and trusted adviser to providers, drug and device manufacturers, and other key players in the healthcare industry. He works with healthcare companies to shape and respond to new and strategically important legislation and administrative rules, including the Open Payments disclosure law and innovative Medicare value-based payment programs. Andrew also works on a wide variety of pro bono matters, from assisting DC Medicaid beneficiaries in restoring benefits to drafting amicus briefs in Perry (Prop 8 challenge), GG v Gloucester County (trans student’s access to school restrooms) (LGBT Bar joined), and several contraceptive mandate challenges (Hobby Lobby cases). Andrew clerked for the Honorable David F. Hamilton on the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit and the United States District Court for the Southern District of Indiana. During law school, Andrew was an executive editor of the Harvard Law Review.

Susan Gault-Brown- Susan Gault-Brown is a partner in the Financial Services Group of Morrison & Foerster’s Washington, D.C. office. Ms. Gault-Brown advises participants in the investment management, FinTech, and financial services industries—including cryptocurrency and blockchain companies—on regulatory, transactional, and counseling matters involving the securities and derivatives laws. Ms. Gault-Brown regularly counsels clients in the cryptocurrency and blockchain space, including with respect to tokens, token economics and structuring, and secondary trading. She assists these clients with respect to the application of securities, derivatives, money services business, money transmitter, and virtual currency laws to the evolving areas of cryptocurrency and blockchain. Clients include cryptocurrency exchanges and companies developing blockchain-based products. Prior to joining the firm, Ms. Gault-Brown was a partner at two other major U.S. law firms. Previously, she was a senior counsel in the Division of Investment Management’s Office of Chief Counsel at the Securities and Exchange Commission. Earlier in her career, she was an associate at a leading ERISA law firm, where she focused on ERISA fiduciary duty and prohibited transaction issues. She began her legal career as a judicial clerk to Judge Constance Baker Motley in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York.Robyn Gigl – Robyn is a partner at Gluck Walrath, LLP in Trenton, New Jersey. Her practice involves handling complex litigation including employment law and commercial litigation. She is a member of the New Jersey Supreme Court’s Committee on Minority Concerns and the Co-chair of the New Jersey State Bar Association’s Judicial and Prosecutorial Appoints Committee. Robyn is also is a Past Chair of the LGBT Rights Section of the Bar Association as well as a member of Diversity Committee.  She is the Co-author of the Chapter “Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964” published in Gender Identity and Sexual Orientation in the Workplace (BNA – 2014); and articles that have appeared in the American Bar Association’s GPSolo Magazine, New Jersey Lawyer Magazine, the Diversity Committee’s Newsletter and the LGBT Rights Section’s Newsletter. Robyn has been honored by the ACLU-NJ and the Pride Network for her work on behalf of the LGBTQ community. She is AV® Rated by Martindale-Hubbell and has been selected since 2010 as a New Jersey Super Lawyer. Robyn is a graduate of Stonehill College, and Villanova University School of Law where she was a Member of the Villanova Law Review.  

Heron Greenesmith – Heron Greenesmith is a policy attorney for LGBT people, specializing in advocacy for bisexual and pansexual communities. Heron has worked with the Movement Advancement Project, Family Equality Council, and the National LGBTQ Task Force. Heron is a graduate of the University of New Hampshire and American University, Washington College of Law. They are a board member of the Massachusetts LGBTQ Bar Association, a former board member of the National LGBT Bar Association, a former Rockwood Leadership Institute Fellow, and a returned Peace Corps Volunteer.

Helene Haapala – Helene Haapala’s current role is as a Sr. Attorney Editor at Thomson Reuters. She has worked in a variety of content related teams during her 17 year tenure at Thomson Reuters. She also serves as co-chair of the Pride@Work Business Resource Group on the Eagan Campus and as a member of the Pride@Work Global Leadership Team. She is a former board member of the Minnesota Lavender Bar Association. Helene received her JD from William Mitchell College of Law, and her BA (history) from Carthage College.

Bruce Hale – Bruce became a parent through gestational surrogacy prior to earning his law degree at Northeastern University School of Law, and this experience has shaped his legal career. Prior to starting his own practice, Bruce worked with a large surrogacy agency and was able to help many people from all over the world to achieve their dream of parenthood. Bruce is a member of the American Bar Association’s committee on Assisted Reproductive Technology. He is also a member of the National LGBT Bar Association’s Family Law Institute, and has been named a Rising Star by Super Lawyers Magazine every year since 2014. He is admitted to the MA bar. Bruce is an adjunct professor of law at Northeastern University School of Law and Suffolk University Law School, teaching Assisted Reproductive Technology law.

Steven Hanton – Steven is an associate in the Banking & Finance department and Corporate Trust group. He often works with banks in their roles as trustees in structured financial transactions and securitizations. His recent experience has been working with fiduciaries in asset-backed securitizations, collateralized loan obligations, collateralized debt obligations, corporate and municipal debt transactions, custodial arrangements and warehouse facilities. He also has experience serving other financial institutions in corporate financings and other commercial loan transactions. What do you focus on? I work with fiduciaries on every aspect of securitization and structured financings. At the origination of the deals, I help our clients negotiate potential issues related to new securities issuances. I also work with our clients towards the winding up of these same deals by helping them complete optional redemptions and liquidations. Throughout the lives of these deals there may be issues that arise, and I also work with our clients in resolving these issues and minimizing their potential risk exposure. What do you see on the horizon? I increasingly see resistance from other deal parties in giving full protection to fiduciaries in certain aspects of securitization deals. With that, I work with our clients to navigate potentially murky issues and minimize potential risk in serving in fiduciary roles in transactions.

Wendy E. Hartmann – Wendy E. Hartmann is a frequent lecturer in the areas of taxation and the evolving laws affecting the LGBT community and has presented programs to community and professional groups in California as well as at conferences around the country. She received her B.S. in Accounting and Business Administration from the SUNY Oswego, her Juris Doctor degree from the University of LaVerne, College of Law and her LL.M. (Masters) in Taxation from Golden Gate University School of Law. Ms. Hartmann is admitted to practice before the California Courts, as well as the United States Supreme Court and the United States Tax Court, and is certified by the State Bar of California, as a Certified Specialist in Estate Planning, Trust and Probate Law, and has received recognition as a Southern California Super Lawyer in 2011-2013 and 2015-2018. Prior to receiving her J.D. and LL.M, she practiced for more than twenty years as an accountant and now, in her law firm, specializes in the areas of estate planning, trust administration, probate, taxation, business formation and development; with a significant portion of her practice devoted to advising same-sex couples and the LGBT community regarding estate planning, family formation, adoption and taxation matters.

Amira Hasenbush – Amira Hasenbush is the Jim Kepner Law and Policy Fellow at the Williams Institute. She works on a broad range of research topics, including discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity, family law issues for transgender parents and children, and the legal needs of people living with HIV. Amira holds a J.D. and an M.P.H. from UCLA, and she is admitted to the California State Bar. She also runs her own private family formation law practice, where she helps people with sperm donor agreements, surrogacy, adoptions and name and gender changes.

Danielle Joy Healey – Ms. Healey is one of three women globally ranked by Chambers at a top patent litigation attorney, and only one of thirty total attorneys listed in this elite category. She is senior principal at Fish & Richardson P.C., where she is a nationally known patent and antitrust attorney representing clients in litigation and licensing. She is has been listed in Best Lawyers in America, Super Lawyers, IAM 1000, and has represented numerous Fortune 500 as well as start up companies. She is a frequent speaker at industry events.

Elizabeth J. Hecht – Elizabeth J. Hecht is an Assistant General Counsel in the Global Patents department of GlaxoSmithKline where she has practiced patent law for over 20 years. Before her current position, Elizabeth was an associate at the Washington, DC office of Finnegan, Henderson, Farabow, Garrett & Dunner, an intellectual property firm. Before that, Elizabeth served as a law clerk to the Honorable Claude M. Hilton in the Eastern District of Virginia, Alexandria Division. Elizabeth earned her J.D. in 1993 from The American University, Washington College of Law, and her B.A. in biology from the University of Colorado/Boulder in 1990. Elizabeth is admitted to the bar of Pennsylvania, and she is a registered attorney with the United States Patent & Trademark Office.

Sherman Helenese – Sherman is a member of the firm’s Intellectual Property and Internet, E-Commerce & Social Media practice groups in our Seattle office. His practice focuses on: (1) complex intellectual property technology transactions; (2) privacy and data security (including GDPR); as it relates to E-Commerce, cloud/hybrid cloud and other solutions and (3) the acquisition, development, marketing, licensing, protection, enforcement and distribution of mobile applications, devices, VR, gaming, patents, software, enterprise solutions, content and emerging technologies. He was nationally recognized as a Rising Star in 2014 and 2015 by Super Lawyers Magazine in the area of intellectual property law and represents clients ranging from emerging growth to Fortune 100 corporations.

John Hendricks – Following years of litigation practice representing Fortune 500 companies and their management, John T. Hendricks founded Hendricks Law, P.C. to provide businesses with the highest level of legal expertise and services, complemented by an unparalleled commitment to leverage the latest technology — all to give his clients the best possible representation. Mr. Hendricks’ practice focuses on the areas of business, real estate and employment law, and is well-suited for clients requiring outside general counsel services. He advocates on behalf of clients in both traditional and “new economy” industries. Mr. Hendricks is a recognized expert in advising local businesses about San Francisco’s unique laws, speaks publicly on relevant topics and has been quoted in leading legal publications. He practices in state and federal courts in California, prosecuting commercial claims and defending employment claims. His skills in trial advocacy were recognized with the NITA Advocate designation by the National Institute for Trial Advocacy in 2007. Further, he has been named a Rising Star by Super Lawyers Magazine. Mr. Hendricks participates in numerous professional and civic organizations and has held leadership roles with several, notably serving in the House of Delegates of the American Bar Association, as a director of Bay Area Lawyers for Individual Freedom (BALIF) and as president of the National LGBT Bar Foundation. Mr. Hendricks is admitted to the State Bar of California and to the Supreme Court of the United States, and is listed on the Roll of Solicitors of England and Wales.

Lousene Hoppe – Lousene is a litigator and criminal defense attorney who represents corporations and individuals accused of health care fraud, financial or tax crimes, and criminal felony and misdemeanor cases at both the state and federal levels. She also focuses on foreign corruption practices act (FCPA) investigations and due diligence, false claims act (FCA) litigation, investigations of alleged regulatory or licensing violations, and related commercial litigation matters. Lousene is experienced in dealing with representatives/agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Department of Justice (DOJ), the Office of the Inspector General (OIG), the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the Department of Labor (DoL), and other government agencies on behalf of clients under investigation for civil or criminal penalties. She assists companies and individuals with responding to grand jury or administrative subpoenas and civil investigative demands (CIDs). Lousene offers practical guidance for those who face exclusion from state and federal programs, including Medicare/Medicaid. Her commercial litigation practice focuses on shareholder disputes, civil fraud and misrepresentation, and the healthcare industry.

Andy Izenson – Andy Izenson is an attorney with Diana Adams Law & Mediation, PLLC, and is a collaborative practitioner, mediator, and passionate advocate, working to reframe conflict through a compassionate and transformative lens. As a member of the National LGBT Bar Association’s Family Law Institute and Vice President of National Lawyers Guild NYC Chapter, Andy is tirelessly committed to support for queer community and families as well as to a radical, anti-assimilationist politic. Andy is also a passionate educator and organizer around gender, de-escalation and communication, and alternative justice systems, including at Columbia University, New York University, Harvard Law School, the Rebellious Lawyering Conference at Yale Law School, Cooper Union Academy, the National LBGT Task Force, the Woodhull Sexual Freedom Summit, and past years of Lavender Law. Andy has received extensive training in alternative justice systems and dispute resolution, including as a mediator through the New York Center for Interpersonal Development, as a collaborative attorney through the New York Association of Collaborative Professionals, in facilitating Newburgh Model Restorative Justice circles through the Restorative Center, and in Transformative Justice work by Dr. Mimi Kim.

Linda Kagan – Linda Kagan is a Managing Partner at The Kagan Law Group, P.C. in New York and handles the firm’s business transactional and corporate law practice areas, with a special focus on M&A transactions and launching domestic and international companies opening U.S. satellite offices. With 25 years of experience, she provides a range of legal and business advice to market leaders and well-funded emerging businesses and start-ups. She assists clients who are proactively expanding their businesses through asset acquisitions or merging with complementary businesses in similar or competing markets, entering into joint venture agreements and negotiating licenses for revenue growth. A growth area of her practice is representing domestic and international clients, including private equity funds and family offices, in expanding their investment portfolios in real estate and businesses, as well as forming new corporations with the necessary shareholder, partnership or operating agreements, as well as cross-border transactions for domestic and international investors focused on leveraging their assets to break into and expand their U.S. holdings and international business options. Her representation of start-ups focuses on ensuring their corporate structure is built with growth in mind, and assessing the proper use of sweat equity and investments from third parties. Ms. Kagan is a graduate of the University of California at Berkeley, and Yeshiva University Cardozo School of Law, where she was a Member of the Law Review and as an Alexander Fellow clerked for Judge Pierre N. Leval in the Southern District of New York, who now sits on the Second Circuit. Her legal experience began at LeBoeuf, Lamb, Greene & MacRae and later at Jones Day, which lead to her launching her current practice in 2004. She is a Member in good standing of the New York Bar, an Arbitrator in the Commercial Section of the American Arbitration Association (New York) and an Arbitrator for FINRA.

Lynn Kappelman – Ms. Kappelman is a partner in Seyfarth Shaw LLP’s Boston office. Her practice focuses in the area of labor and employment litigation, and she is Co-chair of the firm’s national trial practice group. She has successfully litigated many trials to verdict, negotiated hundreds of cases to settlement, briefed and argued appeals to the First, Second and Third Circuits and state appellate courts. She handles complex discrimination litigation including class action gender discrimination, race discrimination and gender equity cases, as well as EEOC pattern and practice charges. Ms. Kappelman also counsels companies on various employment issues including executive compensation agreements, protecting confidential business information, severance agreements and progressive discipline of employees. Ms. Kappelman’s practice also focuses on trial work and counseling in the areas of trade secrets, restrictive covenants, and unfair competition. She also has extensive experience in drafting and negotiating employment contracts, including non-competition, non-solicitation, non-disclosure and separation agreements. Ms. Kappelman leads the firm’s national service group for retail industry clients. Ms. Kappelman has repeatedly been selected as one of the state’s “Super Lawyers” in a joint survey conducted by the publishers of Law and Politics magazine and Boston magazine, as part of a special publication entitled “The Top Attorneys in the Northeast.” She has also been chosen by a panel as one of the “Top Women Lawyers in the Northeast” by a panel for 8 years in a row.

Deb Kinney – Deb L. Kinney is a partner at Johnston, Kinney & Zulaica LLP, a law firm providing comprehensive estate planning, trust and probate services, and family law. The practice covers a broad spectrum of families and does foundational estate planning, charitable planned giving, and non-citizen and international planning. The firm has an extensive probate and trust administration practice representing both beneficiaries and trustees and assists families with formation and dissolution issues. Deb has a B.A. from University of California at Berkeley, a J.D. from New College School of Law, is a member of the California State Bar Trusts and Estates Section, the Bar Association of San Francisco and the American Bar Association, and BALIF among other organizations. Deb served as co-chair of the planned giving committee at Horizons Foundation, the oldest LGBT community foundation in the country and helped to develop the gift acceptance program and works extensively with clients doing charitable giving through DAFs, charitable remainder trusts and charitable lead trusts. Deb sits on the board of The Tides Advocacy Fund, is on the board of the National LGBT Bar Association, and is on the Advisory Board of Horizons Foundation and was on the Equality California Candidate PAC for many years. Deb has also been extensively involved and remains committed to obtaining equality for all LGBT people, and has worked tirelessly on behalf of the LGBT community regarding income, property, and estate tax issues. Deb lives in San Francisco and has two daughters, age 19 and 30.

Rudy Kleysteuber – Rudy Kleysteuber is special counsel in Sullivan & Cromwell’s Litigation Group. His practice includes litigation and arbitration concerning intellectual property, securities and general commercial claims. In addition to practicing in both state and federal trial and appellate courts, Mr. Kleysteuber has also represented clients before the International Trade Commission, the Federal Trade Commission and the U.S. Department of Justice, and he has litigated against several states’ attorneys general. Mr. Kleysteuber has represented clients ranging from large financial institutions to small manufacturing companies, as well as individual pro bono clients. In the patent space, Mr. Kleysteuber has successfully represented both patent holders and companies facing allegations of infringement, with technologies including biomedical devices and numerous audio compression technologies and standards, such as MP3 and AAC. His cases often involve questions of whether patents are standards-essential, whether patents have been licensed on fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory terms, and allegations of anticompetitive behavior or unfair competition. In the securities space, Mr. Kleysteuber has represented large financial institutions, including defending Goldman Sachs against multi-billion-dollar claims following the collapse in the market for residential mortgage-backed securities. He has also assisted in defeating civil securities fraud claims against a smaller company accused of misleading investors, and helped achieve a favorable outcome for Goldman Sachs in connection with the initial public offering of a failed technology start-up. Mr. Kleysteuber has also worked on several pro bono matters, including successful litigation to secure marriage and adoption rights for gay and lesbian families in two states.

Linda Kornfeld – Linda Kornfeld is one of the nation’s most prominent insurance recovery attorneys, representing corporate policyholders in high-stakes litigation for more than 25 years. Using strategic, creative approaches in her trial and appellate practice, Linda assists her clients in the recovery of hundreds of millions of dollars in insurance assets. She is a strategic adviser to senior executives and in-house counsel on mitigating risk and maximizing insurance recoveries.

Noah Kressler – Noah is an experienced corporate finance and transactional attorney at Baker Donelson whose practice covers a wide range of capital markets, securities law and general corporate matters. Currently based in New Orleans, Noah previously spent nearly a decade in New York and London with Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP. His clients have included the world’s leading private equity firms, public companies and investment banks. He has been very involved in LGBT recruiting and retention issues during his career, and currently serves on his firm’s recruiting committee. Since 2014, he has also been an adjunct professor of law at Tulane Law School.

Kelly Largey – Kelly Largey managed Fish & Richardson’s action plan in dealing with the transition of Senior Principal DJ Healey, including the firm’s interaction with Ms. Healey, her colleagues throughout the firm, clients, and others in the Houston office and the firm as a whole. Ms. Largey also managed the public relations and media issues that arose from a prominent Houston lawyer’s very public transition during the high profile fight over the anti-trans “bathroom bill” in the Texas legislature that became part of Ms. Healey’s transition story.

Zachary Launer – Zachary Launer focuses primarily on natural gas and liquids pipeline regulatory work before the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission and state public utilities commissions. He handles both certificate and rate case proceedings, as well as transactional, compliance, and general regulatory counseling. Prior to joining Hogan Lovells, Zack worked at International Bridges to Justice where he helped run the JusticeMakers program. He then worked at the Human Rights Campaign as staff counsel involved in campaign finance issues, lobbying efforts, and day-to-day legal matters. While in law school, Zack was a managing editor of the Minnesota Law Review and a legal writing instructor.

Theodora R. Lee – Theodora R. Lee, a senior shareholder/partner and trial lawyer in the San Francisco and Walnut Creek offices of Littler Mendelson, defends employers in complex wage and hour class actions, discrimination class action lawsuits and general employment litigation. Ms. Lee has extensive courtroom experience, and specializes in aspects of employment and labor relations law, including wrongful termination litigation; National Labor Relations Board matters, including representation cases, unfair labor practice proceedings, grievance arbitrations; Title VII and FEHA proceedings, including race, sex, religious and age harassment and discrimination; and unfair competition proceedings. She also counsels employers on day to day employment issues such as covenants not to compete, hiring and termination of employees, the Equal Pay Act, the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Uniform Trade Secrets Act, the California Business and Professions Code, the Family and Medical Leave Act, federal and state wage and hour issues, pre-employment screening, litigation avoidance, reductions in force, the development of personnel policies and procedures, workplace violence, employee terminations, employment agreements, drug and alcohol testing, and risk management protocols. Ms. Lee’s energy and enthusiasm for labor and employment law translates into an intense focus on providing value clients through innovative and superior quality work with exceptional client service.

Rebecca Levin – Rebecca is a partner with Jerner & Palmer, P.C. whose practice is devoted to family law. Rebecca educates attorneys, judges and community members on family law issues affecting the LGBT community and has presented at the Pennsylvania Bar Institute, New Jersey Institute for Continuing Legal Education, New Jersey Judicial Education Program, Equality Forum, and other community organizations. Rebecca is a member of the National LGBT Bar Association’s Family Law Institute, an organization that allows experienced LGBT family law practitioners to discuss cutting-edge legal strategies for representing members of the LGBT community. She is the past chair of the LGBT Rights Committee of the Philadelphia Bar Association. Rebecca serves on the Editorial Board of the New Jersey Lawyer Magazine and has been nationally recognized as one of the top 40 LGBT attorneys under 40.

Blake Liggio – Blake Liggio, a partner in the firm’s Real Estate Industry Group, focuses on mergers and acquisitions involving public and private entities, including the representation of buyers, sellers and financial advisers. He also advises public companies on a range of matters, including corporate governance, federal securities law compliance and securities offerings. He joined Goodwin in 2010.

David Lopez – Bio to come. 

Chris Lueking Partner-Christopher Lueking is in his thirtieth year of practice with Latham & Watkins. Mr. Lueking’s practice focuses on corporate finance, securities, and public and private company representation, including initial public, secondary, high yield bond, and private securities offerings, and counseling companies on securities and corporate governance matters. He is Chair of the Industrials & Manufacturing Industry Group. Mr. Lueking’s practice includes representation of issuers and investment banks in public offerings of equity and high yield debt as well as investors and issuers in venture capital transactions.

David Lucking-David is Head of Allen & Overy’s U.S. based International Capital Markets group. He has particular expertise in derivatives and structured finance transactions, as well as the regulatory framework that underpins the derivatives market. David advises financial institutions on a wide range of derivatives products and asset classes (including credit, rates, FX, longevity) in both funded and unfunded form. He has drafted a number of market standard document templates for the International Swaps and Derivatives Association, Inc. (ISDA) and other derivatives industry bodies, including the 2014 ISDA Credit Derivatives Definitions and documentation for confirming trades referencing the iTraxx and CDX indices. David is the U.S. adviser to ISDA’s Credit Derivatives Determinations Committee which determines Credit Events and other matters for the credit derivatives market as a whole. David has advised on various aspects of the transition of the over-the-counter derivatives market to regulated trading platforms and central clearing houses, as well the registration of a number of swap dealers under the Dodd-Frank Act. Technological innovation has caused David to be closely involved in the structuring of a number of fledgling initial coin offerings (ICOs) and the establishment of crypto- exchanges where he brings both a transactional and regulatory focus to the table, as well as regulatory advice to blockchain and cryptocurrency projects more generally. David is a frequent speaker on the topic of OTC derivatives and derivatives regulation. David was ranked in Band 2 by Chambers USA, 2018. Chambers says “David Lucking has a ‘deep knowledge of the regulatory structure underlying derivatives and the market practice surrounding them.’” and “the ‘extremely bright and responsive’ David Lucking is highly valued as a business partner in addition to his skill as a legal adviser”.

Scott Luftglass – Scott B. Luftglass is a partner at Fried Frank who focuses on representing corporations, boards of directors, senior management, investment banks, and private equity funds in connection with corporate governance matters, significant corporate transactions, shareholder and derivative litigation, and crisis management.  Mr. Luftglass also represents clients in complex civil litigation, internal investigations, and regulatory matters.  Mr. Luftglass has represented clients in more than 120 public company mergers and acquisitions transactions (and related litigation) across a wide range of industries, including representing H.J. Heinz Company, Roche, Shire, AstraZeneca,  PepsiCo, Comcast, Knight Transportation, Sinclair Broadcast Group, Coach, ConAgra, Tyson Foods, TE Connectivity, SS&C Technologies, Aetna, ExxonMobil, and Warner Chilcott.   Mr. Luftglass also regularly counsels global investment banks.  Mr. Luftglass is a frequent speaker and participant at conferences and panels focused on corporate governance. He has been a repeat panelist at the Tulane University Law School Annual Corporate Law Institute and a guest lecturer at Yale Law School, the University of Pennsylvania Law School, and Boston College.  Mr. Luftglass serves on the Board of Advisors for the NYU Law Institute for Corporate Governance and Finance.  In addition, he often authors articles concerning significant corporate developments.

Maryellen Madden -Maryellen is a 1972 graduate of Duke Law School with honors. She was on the Law Review and the National Moot Court Team. Maryellen practiced at Rawle &. Henderson and Saul Ewing before her present position as Counsel at Buchanan Ingersoll & Rooney. At her previous firms Maryellen headed the hiring committee. At Buchanan, Maryellen engages in a wide variety of commercial litigation activity, from first amendment issues to patent litigation. She had served on the board of the Transgender Legal Defense and Education Fund and currently, the William Way LGBT Support Center in Philadelphia.

Laura Maechtlen – Laura J. Maechtlen is the National Chair of the Labor & Employment Department and Co-Chair of the Firm’s Diversity and Inclusion Action Team. Her practice is focused on employment litigation and includes the defense of class, collective and multi-plaintiff actions. Ms. Maechtlen also has experience litigating against the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH) in systemic actions, both at the early charge stage and in large-scale EEOC pattern-and-practice litigation. Ms. Maechtlen has California state court trial experience. She has been a member of multiple trial teams that have secured defense verdicts in the California Superior Courts in the counties of San Francisco, Alameda and Santa Clara. She also routinely handles arbitrations, often securing favorable rulings from arbitrators. In addition to her litigation practice, Ms. Maechtlen also provides day-to-day counseling and advice to clients about the various laws affecting the employment relationship. She also regularly reviews employer policies for compliance under state and federal law. Ms. Maechtlen is a member of Seyfarth Shaw’s Retail and Hospitality Industry Practice Groups. She also handles litigation for, and provides counseling to clients, in a variety of other industries, including logistics and transportation, airline transportation, construction, financial and professional services, restaurant, temporary staffing and technology.

Robert A. Major, Jr. – Bob Major is the founding partner of Major, Lindsey & Africa, the largest legal recruiting firm in the world, with 26 offices on four continents. Bob grew up in Texas and Oklahoma. He did his undergraduate work at Stanford, where he double-majored and was “masculine” enough to be elected as president of his fraternity. He returned to his home state of Texas for law school at The University of Texas at Austin, where he continued to prove his non-wimpishness by becoming an Editor of the Texas Law Review. This stamina proved invaluable as an associate at Wilmer, Cutler & Pickering (now WilmerHale), where his first assignment was working on the Constitution of the Northern Mariana Islands. His toughest assignment at the firm, lasting 18 months, was investigating the top officers and directors of Playboy Enterprises. Few will fail to notice the great irony that Bob was given the responsibility for the Big Bunny himself, Hugh Hefner. After a year as in-house counsel, Bob founded the predecessor firm to Major, Lindsey & Africa in 1982. He has placed untold numbers of lawyers in his career, including associates, partners, groups, and the General Counsels of companies such as Facebook, Uber, Tesla, Orbitz, Salesforce, Clorox, PayPal, and eBay.

Angie Martell – Angie Martell is the founder and managing partner of Iglesia Martell Law Firm, PLLC in Ann Arbor, Michigan, and she has practiced law for over 26 years and is licensed in New York, Massachusetts, and Michigan. In her holistic law practice, she works in a variety of areas, including family, criminal, and business law, and also advocates for the LGBT, Spanish-speaking, and Deaf communities. In 2014, she was the recipient of The Washtenaw County Bar Association’s Martin Luther King “I Have a Dream” Award for her work building trust between the community and the legal system, and for tireless devotion to securing fair and equal treatment for all individuals under the law. She also serves as Co-Chair of Washtenaw County’s LGBTQ Rights section. She is a past Cooperating Attorney with LAMBDA Legal Defense and Education Fund, Volunteer Attorney with the National Center for Lesbian Rights, and Contributing Attorney for the Institute of Continuing Legal Education. Angie co-wrote the amicus brief, In the Matter of Sharon Kowalski, Court of Appeals for the State of Minnesota. Angie has worked extensively in the areas civil rights, family law, LGBT issues, employee rights, criminal defense, mediation, and arbitration. Angie graduated with a Masters of Law from Harvard Law School and a Juris Doctor from the City University of New York Law School.

Elizabeth McNamara – Elizabeth McNamara has more than 30 years of litigation and counseling experience in media and intellectual property law, representing publishers (books, magazines, newspapers, and websites), television and radio broadcasters, cable companies, and motion picture producers and distributors. Her litigation practice includes all areas of sophisticated IP, media and entertainment litigation at the trial and appellate level of federal and state courts, in such areas as libel, privacy, copyright, trademark, prior restraint, and reporter’s shield laws. Liz’s clients include: Associated Press, Bauer Publishing, Cablevision, CBS, CNN, Conde Nast, Financial Times, Hachette Book Group, Macmillan, MTV Networks, NBC, Random House, Sesame Workshop, Showtime, Simon & Schuster, Time Inc., and Wenner Media.

Shireen B. Meistrich – Shireen B. Meistrich, LCSW, is currently serving on the Board of Directors of the International Academy of Collaborative Professionals (IACP). She is a collaborative divorce coach with the Collaborative Divorce Association of North Jersey. She has been a member of this practice group since 2007 serving as the Past President and past Vice-President. Shireen is a founding member of the New Jersey State Council for Collaborative Practice Groups and has served in this capacity since 2008. Currently, Shireen is the President of the New Jersey Council. Shireen has trained in the collaborative process and has given multiple presentations in the United States and in Europe to help practice groups grow into integrated interdisciplinary communities and to support the interdisciplinary team in collaborative practice to maximize benefits for families.

Concepcion Montoya – Connie Montoya brings nearly two decades of class action experience to her trial and litigation practice in employment law and consumer protection defense. She is widely recognized for successful strategies that resolve litigation disputes and governmental investigations, and ensure compliance with various regulatory requirements. Her clients benefit from her risk management programs and counseling on all aspects of employment regulations and consumer defense. Connie has litigated in the federal, state and administrative courts of New York and New Jersey in countless class action lawsuits involving claims brought under various federal and state employment and consumer laws. She has represented publicly and privately held companies; not-for-profit organizations; banking, finance and financial services firms; governmental entities; law firms; tech companies and startups; health care providers; and restaurant, insurance, manufacturing, pharmaceutical and retail businesses. In the field of labor and employment, Connie counsels her clients on a variety of employment issues, focusing on discrimination and harassment matters, including claims relating to discrimination on the basis of ethnicity, gender, age, pregnancy and disability. She has defended employment claims before the federal and state courts, as well as administrative and governmental agencies, including the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), in connection with claims brought pursuant to Title VII, as well as those arising from the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) and the Trafficking Victims Protection Act (TVPA). She also defends claims involving the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) arising from alleged public accommodation and website accommodation violations. She routinely deals with claims involving state and local employment laws, and compliance with the same. As for consumer class action litigation, Connie frequently defends leading financial services organizations against claims arising from various federal regulatory statutes, including the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA), the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA), and the Truth-in-Lending Act (TILA). Her clients include banks, credit card companies, creditors, loan servicers, debt buyers and third-party debt collectors. She also counsels clients in the financial and consumer industries regarding compliance with federal and state regulatory standards. Whether for employment matters or consumer protection, Connie has a proven track record of effectively handling governmental investigations and achieving successful outcomes for claims brought by governmental agencies. Connie is a member of Hinshaw’s Diversity Committee.

Kevin O’Keefe – Kevin O’Keefe is an associate in the Complex Trial and Appellate Litigation practice at Choate, Hall & Stewart LLP. Mr. O’Keefe has participated in a wide variety of sophisticated financial and commercial litigation matters in federal and state jurisdictions across the country. During law school, Mr. O’Keefe worked with the American Civil Liberties Union of Illinois to monitor juvenile detention practices in Cook County and was a member of the Bluhm Legal Clinic, representing criminal defendants before the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals. Currently, he is co-counsel with the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights and Economic Justice in a lawsuit seeking to rescind the Administration’s termination of Temporary Protected Status for immigrants from El Salvador, Haiti, and Honduras. He is a graduate of Harvard College and the Northwestern Pritzker School of Law.

John Owen – John practices in the areas of capital markets and general corporate law and has represented domestic and international underwriters, issuers, and investors in public and private offerings of debt, equity, convertible, and equity-linked securities; exchange offers; bond and other tender offers; restructurings; and other complex capital markets transactions. His practice has particular emphasis on advising issuers and underwriters in cross-border offerings, and he has worked on transactions involving issuers and offerings in a number of jurisdictions, including China, France, India, Indonesia, Israel, and the United Kingdom. John serves on the board of directors of the Ali Forney Center, an organization that provides services to homeless LGBTQ youth in New York City and is active in coordinating affinity group efforts at his firm.

Kelly Padgett – Kelly L. Padgett is an associate in the Houston office of Paul Hastings, where she is a Co-Chair of the LGBTA Affinity Network and a Co-Chair of the Houston Women’s Affinity Network. She practices in the areas of private equity transactions, mergers and acquisitions, corporate finance, joint ventures and general corporate governance matters. She has represented public and private companies and private equity funds in a variety of transactions, including mergers, stock and asset acquisitions, carve-out acquisitions, corporate restructurings and cross-border transactions in the oil and gas, technology, healthcare and distribution and manufacturing industries. Ms. Padgett received her law degree from Vanderbilt University Law School in 2011, where she served as Executive Managing Editor of the Vanderbilt Journal of Transnational Law. She earned a Bachelor of Arts with distinction from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 2007. Ms. Padgett is admitted to practice law in Texas, North Carolina and Tennessee.

Seth Pearson – Seth Pearson is an associate and business lawyer with Foley & Lardner LLP. He is a member of the firm’s Private Equity & Venture Capital Practice. Mr. Pearson was a summer associate with Foley in 2015. Prior to joining Foley, he worked as a graduate research assistant for a Duke Law associate professor, where he conducted research regarding the racialized background of private equity markets in the U.S. Before entering law school, Mr. Pearson was a financial professional with a broad range of experience in quantitative and statistical analysis, budgeting, accounting, and forecasting. He held various positions that include working as a business analyst for AkzoNobel, interning as a sector analyst with Decatur Capital, and interning with Crawford & Company in their finance department. Mr. Pearson also interned with the Executive Office of the President at the White House as an operations intern, where he assisted staff in overseeing presidential appointments, assisted with system audits, training, and reporting. Mr. Pearson earned his law degree from Duke University School of Law (J.D., 2016), where he was a research assistant for Duke Nicholas Institute for Environmental Policy Solutions. During his time at Duke, he served as president of the Black Graduate and Professional Student Association, president of OUTLaw (an LGBTQ law students association), and treasurer of the Duke University Hurston-James Society. He completed his undergraduate degree at Georgia State University (B.B.A., 2011) with major in finance.

Peter Perkowski – Peter Perkowski (he/him) is Legal Director for OutServe-SLDN, which assists  the LGBT military community—including active-duty servicemembers, veterans, and Department of Defense civilians—and those living with HIV primarily with legal needs pertaining to equal access, equal treatment, and equal service. Peter is responsible for setting and implementing the strategic direction of OutServe-SLDN’s legal work and supervising its staff, as well as managing partnerships with numerous pro-bono law firms and other civil rights organizations. As part of his role, Peter also undertakes direct representation of some of OutServe-SLDN’s neediest clients, appearing as counsel in an administrative separation board and court-martial proceedings to defend servicemembers living with HIV. He represents OutServe-SLDN itself as counsel in impact litigation and as amicus curiae. In addition to his work for OutServe-SLDN, he currently serves as Chair of the Board of Directors of AIDS Project Los Angeles and APLA Health & Wellness and is also a Director of The Global Forum on MSM & HIV. In his private practice, Peter is the founder of Perkowski Legal, PC, which serves the legal needs of businesses and individuals in the creative-cultural industries including sports, entertainment, music, arts, publishing, research and development, tech and biotech, advertising, fashion and design, toys and games, medicine, and education. A former partner at an international law firm, Peter has nearly 20 years of experience in intellectual property, business litigation, and immigration matters. For his work, Managing Intellectual Property has named him an “IP Star” (2013-2016), and Intellectual Asset Management has given him a Bronze rating in its IAM Patent 1000 (2012-2015). In 2010, the National LGBT Bar Association included Peter on its inaugural Best LGBT Lawyers Under 40 list.

Kate Perrelli – Ms. Perrelli is a partner in Seyfarth’s Boston office and Chair of  Seyfarth’s national Litigation Department. She is a trial lawyer with over 25 years of experience representing regional, national, and international corporations in the financial services, transportation, manufacturing, technology, pharmaceutical, and staffing industries. Her commercial practice focuses on trial work and counseling in the areas of trade secrets and restrictive covenants, unfair competition and complex commercial disputes. Her experience spans all forms of dispute resolution, including mediation and arbitration, as well as litigation in federal and state courts and before administrative agencies across the country. On the employment side, Ms. Perrelli’s practice focuses on trial work and counseling regarding employer compliance with the ADA, ADEA, Title VII and all other state and governmental laws affecting employers. Ms. Perrelli is a certified Six Sigma Green Belt. Using Lean Six Sigma and project management methodologies, our SeyfarthLean approach delivers increased value to our clients at a time of increased market pressures and competitive demands. Seyfarth’s commitment to delivering legal services in a new way with an emphasis on value and continuous improvement has been praised by the Association of Corporate Counsel as being “five years ahead of every other AmLaw 200 firm.” Ms. Perrelli is a member of the ABA Intellectual Property Law Section and chair of the “Interaction with Employment Law” topical subcommittee of the Trade Secrets Committee. Ms. Perrelli has been selected regularly as one of the state’s “Super Lawyers” and “Top Women Lawyers” in a joint survey conducted by the publishers of Law and Politics magazine and Boston magazine, as part of a special publication entitled “The Top Attorneys in the Northeast.”

Crystal Monique Richardson – Attorney Crystal M. Richardson is accustomed to working with diverse, underserved communities. In 2013, she served as Equality North Carolina’s first ever, Moral Freedom Summer Organizer and continued on to serve as Director of Advocacy from 2014-2017. In this capacity, she was a strong leader and advocate for state and local nondiscrimination policies to include gender identity and sexual orientation. Attorney Richardson led several media campaigns across North Carolina to illustrate the impact of a harmful state law called “House Bill 2” (HB2), which negatively impacted the lives of many transgender and gender non-conforming people in this state. Attorney Richardson served to organize, dismantle, and shift public policy towards a more lived-equality for all. Attorney Richardson works with diverse LGBTQ clients including those from marginalized communities, such as people of color (POCs), women, and gender non-conforming individuals. In serving these clients, she has learned a great deal about dealing with implicit bias; creating her own “lane” in practicing law, where she can advocate and counsel zealously for her clients; and teaching others how to be greater allies to these communities. She currently lives in Durham, North Carolina where she practices law at the Law Office of Crystal M. Richardson, PLLC.

Natalie D. Runyon – Natalie Runyon has 20 years of experience working and volunteering for multinational corporations, non profits, and the US Government–Thomson Reuters, Goldman Sachs, and Central Intelligence Agency. Currently, she heads up the strategy for the ‘talent platform’ for the Legal Executive Institute, the external thought leadership brand for the Legal business. Before her current role, she ran the strategy and operations team supporting key account programs within the Legal business, and before that, she ran global security in the Americas for 3 years. As a volunteer leader, she has led strategic leadership and change initiatives on the global and local levels for business resource groups at Thomson Reuters. Natalie is a conference speaker and an author of articles for the Legal Executive Institute, The Glass Hammer , Security magazine, and CSO Online. Natalie was named one of top 20 under 40 in Security Director News in 2013. She also serves on the board of She Should Run, a non partisan nonprofit focused on building the pipeline of women to run for elected public office in the US and the board of Middle Church, a faith institution in the East Village dedicated to nurturing souls, advocating for social justice, and standing up for those within marginalized communities. She earned her M.B.A from The George Washington University and her B.S. in International Trade and Finance from Louisiana State University. She completed an Organization Development & Leadership certificate from NYU in April 2016 and is a Certified Leadership Coach and Certified Protection Professional. She resides in New York City with her husband and two sons.

Kenneth Sanchez – Business Development Manager, Entertainment & Media Industry Group, Reed Smith LLP. Ken is the Business Development Manager for the Entertainment & Media Group at Reed Smith LLP. Ken role is to support the business development efforts of the partners and associates in his practice group globally. Ken is a seasoned attorney and counselor who has spent his career focused on improving the way that attorneys interact with their clients, advocating for increased efficiencies and encouraging attorneys to become more well versed in their clients’ industries. Ken has also been involved in driving the concept of diversity as a business development tool and worked to create and revitalize LGBT business resource groups at his employers. Before joining Reed Smith, Ken was with Thomson Reuters and Bloomberg LP. Prior to moving to Los Angeles, Ken served on the Board and as Vice-President of the LGBT Bar Association of Greater New York. He is the immediate past Co-President of the LGBT Bar Association of Los Angeles and serves as chapter leader for the Boston College Law School Alumni Association of Los Angeles and on the National Board of the Boston College Law School Alumni Association.

Sara Schnorr – Sara Schnorr, a 1970 Harvard graduate in German Literature and a Fulbright Fellow in Munich in 1970-71, obtained a Wesleyan M.A.T. in 1972 and taught high school German and English in Massachusetts and Connecticut before earning her J.D. in 1979 at the University of Virginia Law School, where she was Editor-in-Chief of the Virginia Journal of International Law, winning the Hardy Cross Dillard Award for her Student Note “Trust-Busting with a German Accent: The Control of Merger and Acquisition Activity Under Increasingly Aggressive West German Law,” 19 Virginia Journal of International Law 595 (1979). From law school, Sara joined the Boston law firm Palmer & Dodge (now Locke Lord LLP) where her commercial real estate financing, permitting, and development practice specializes today in affordable housing. Sara became partner in 1987 and currently is Of Counsel. She’s a former member of the firm’s hiring committee and legal opinion review committee, and a current member of the diversity committee and pro bono committee. While senior partner, Sara publicly transitioned in 2009 as a transwoman with the full support of her firm and major clients. In April of 2016, Governor Charlie Baker appointed Sara to the Massachusetts Commission on the Status of Women, the first transwoman ever so appointed, where she now serves as Co-Chair of the Commission’s Legislative and Public Policy Committee. Sara was a member of the Founders Circle of GLAD’s Transgender Rights Project, a former member of the Board of Visitors of Fenway Community Health, and since shortly after her transition, she has been an active member of SpeakOUT Boston, the nation’s oldest LGBTQIA speakers bureau. As a SpeakOUT member, Sara regularly shares her personal transition story at high schools, colleges, businesses, government agencies, faith communities, youth groups, and community service organizations of all kinds.

Elizabeth Schwartz – Since 1997, Elizabeth Schwartz, author of Before I Do: A Legal Guide to Marriage, Gay & Otherwise (The New Press, 2016) has been practicing law and advocating for the legal rights of the LGBTQ community. She is Florida Bar board certified in Adoption Law. While her Miami-based firm works with straight and gay clients in matters of family formation (adoption and surrogacy) and dissolution, estate planning and probate, she has been on the forefront of providing crucial legal protections for our families before and since nationwide marriage equality. Elizabeth served as counsel on cases challenging Florida’s marriage ban and Florida’s ban forbidding gays and lesbians from adopting children. Elizabeth is a fellow of the Academy of Adoption & Assisted Reproduction Attorneys and the Florida Adoption Council, and serves as an adoption intermediary helping make forever families of all kinds. She is the author of “LGBT Issues in Surrogacy” in the Handbook of Gestational Surrogacy, ed. E. Scott Sills (Cambridge University Press, 2016). She is the co-chair of the national board of SAGE (Services & Advocacy for GLBT Elders) and a longtime member of the Collaborative Family Law Institute. Elizabeth lives with her wife, writer Lydia Martín, in downtown Miami.

Bjorn Sorenson – Bjorn Sorenson is Principal of King Spoke Advisors, a boutique firm that serves as counsel, consultant, and coach to mission-driven organizations. The king spoke is the long spoke on a ship’s wheel signaling a centered rudder—and a straight course. King Spoke Advisors helps social entrepreneurs, businesses, and leaders find their values and hold their direction—even in stormy seas. With a focus on coaching attorneys for leadership and impact, Bjorn has coached law students, law firms, and judges to emerge as healthy agents for social change. Bjorn is a Certified Practitioner of the Leadership Circle Profile, a Qualified Teacher of Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction, and the Co-Chair of the Mindfulness and Well-Being Committee of the NYC Bar Association. He holds a BA from Western Michigan University, an MTS from Harvard Divinity School, and a JD from American University Washington College of Law. Bjorn was the first General Counsel to the US affiliate of Grameen Bank’s Nobel Prize-winning microfinance program, and previously served as a senior associate at the law firm of Skadden Arps. He is Treasurer of IMA World Health, an international NGO catalyzing over $100 million in annual revenue to promote health, healing, and well-being for all.

Michael Stevens – Michael W. Stevens is a Senior Associate in Seyfarth Shaw LLP’s San Francisco office and a member of the Labor & Employment department. Mr. Stevens has extensive experience litigating in a variety of subject matters, including employment disputes, health care, and trade secrets. His practice focuses on employee benefits litigation, where he represents employers, plan sponsors, and benefits plans in disputes with providers and beneficiaries. Mr. Stevens is experienced in litigating single-claimant benefits cases, as well as cases where tens or hundreds of millions of dollars in claims are at issue. Mr. Stevens received his J.D. from Georgetown University Law center, cum laude, where he was Executive Articles Editor for The Georgetown Law Journal. He was recent named one of the 40 Best LGBT Attorneys Under 40 by the National LGBT Bar Association.

Anne Tamar-Mattis – Anne Tamar-Mattis, J.D., is the Executive Director of the International Academy of Collaborative Professionals, the largest Collaborative Practice organization in the world. Founded in 1999, the IACP is active in 23 countries around the world. Anne was also the Founder of interACT, the first organization in the country focusing on legal advocacy for the civil and human rights of intersex children. She served for many years as an organizer in the LGBTQI communities, and as an adjunct professor at UC Berkeley School of Law teaching Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity, and the Law. She has presented around the country and around the world as a speaker on topics relating to legal and ethical issues affecting intersex children.

Virginia Tent – Virginia Tent is a counsel in the New York office of Latham & Watkins, whose practice focuses primarily on white collar defense and investigations, antitrust matters, and complex commercial litigation. Ms. Tent is also active in pro bono representations, including LGBT family-related work on behalf of amici curiae: first in the New York Court of Appeals’ groundbreaking 2016 case Brooke S.B., which extended parental standing in custody and visitation matters beyond biology, adoption, and marriage; and currently with respect to the pending appeal in Gunn v. Hamilton, which draws extensively on Brooke S.B. She serves on the firm’s Recruiting Committee, and has also previously served on the firm’s Associates Committee, Training and Career Enhancement Committee, and WEB Committee. She received the New York City Bar Justice Center’s Jeremy G. Eptstein Award for Outstanding Pro Bono Service (2016) and was recognized as one of the Best LGBT Lawyers Under 40 by the National LGBT Bar Association (2012).

David Tsai – David is a Partner in Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP’s San Francisco office and Co-Managing Partner of Pillsbury’s Taiwan Office. David’s practice focuses on patent, trade secret, complex breach of contract, and product defect litigation for companies innovating biotechnology, medical devices, software, and hardware. His legal experience includes defending clients in international arbitration cases, litigating in the areas of copyrights and trademarks, preparing and prosecuting U.S. electrical engineering patent applications, drafting patentability, freedom-to-operate and non-infringement opinions, as well as inter partes review petitions. He also represents clients in patent negotiations, licensing and overall intellectual property strategy. David has been quoted regarding his work in various business and technology publications including The New York Times. He is President of the Asian American Bar Association of the Greater Bay Area, Past President of the Silicon Valley Intellectual Property Law Association (SVIPLA), and past Co-Chair of Bay Area Lawyers for Individual Freedom (BALIF). He currently serves on the Boards of the Bar Association of San Francisco (BASF), Equality California, and Lambda Legal. David has been recognized as a top 50 California Lawyer on the Fast Track by The Recorder, Super Lawyer in IP Litigation, Best Lawyer Under 40 by the National LGBT Bar and National Asian Pacific American Bar, and by the California State Legislature for his work in civil rights. David is committed to pro bono work and has successfully represented a number of LGBT and HIV+ clients. He also led the drafting of amicus briefs filed in the California same-sex marriage/Prop 8 cases for which more than 100 organizations signed. David is a graduate of Harvard, Stanford, and Santa Clara University.

Connie J. Vetter – Attorney Connie J. Vetter opened her law office in Charlotte, North Carolina in 1994. Her practice areas include adoption, surrogacy, name Changes, birth certificate amendments, estate planning, and mediation, In addition to practicing law, Connie is an experienced mediator and is available to help people resolve disputes without going to court. Connie currently serves on the Board of Directors for Time Out Youth and sits on the Diversity and Inclusion Committee for the Mecklenburg County Bar Association. Connie has been awarded the Julius Chambers Diversity Champion Award by the Mecklenburg County Bar Association. She was also honored as one of “25 in Twenty-Five” by the Charlotte LGBT Chamber of Commerce. In addition, the ACLU of North Carolina recognized Connie for her ”extraordinary efforts toward advancing equal rights for LGBT persons in North Carolina.” Educating people about the law is important to Connie and to that end she speaks frequently on LGBT legal issues to organizations, college classes and professional forums. She accepts speaking opportunities throughout North Carolina and can be contacted through this website. Connie is a member of the North Carolina State Bar, the Mecklenburg County Bar, the National LGBT Bar Association, and the LGBT Bar Family Law Institute.

Angela Vicari – Angela R. Vicari is a partner in the New York office of Arnold & Porter and has considerable experience in product liability and mass tort defense and complex litigation. Her work and growing presence in the industry has been widely recognized. In her product liability and mass tort practice, Ms. Vicari has defended product manufacturers in lawsuits in state and federal courts, including the coordination of the nationwide defense and multidistrict litigation proceedings of hundreds of cases involving medical devices, pharmaceutical products and consumer products, among others. In her commercial litigation practice, Ms. Vicari has represented global financial institutions, pharmaceutical companies and hedge funds in disputes in state and federal court, as well as in adversary proceedings in the bankruptcy courts. Her experience is varied and has included breach of contract, fraud and securities matters.

Denise Visconti – Denise M. Visconti currently serves as the Office Managing Shareholder of the San Diego Office of Littler Mendelson, the largest law firm in the world exclusively devoted to representing management in employment, employee benefits and labor law matters. In addition to running Littler’s San Diego office, Denise maintains an active law practice. She handles a broad variety of employment litigation matters, which includes defending clients in class action litigation, representative actions, private attorney general matters, as well as single-plaintiff actions. Denise also regularly provides advice and counseling to both large and small organizations and their human resources teams in all aspects of the employment relationship, including wage and hour issues, reductions in force, policies and procedures, performance management issues, and termination decisions. Denise regularly provides advice and counseling to clients regarding gender identity and gender expression-related issues, gender transitions in the workplace, and various issues relating to domestic partnerships and same-sex couples. Denise also has extensive experience conducting pay equity audits for all types of employers, from start-ups to Fortune 50 companies, and helped develop the Littler Pay Equity Assessment™, including counseling employers on a broad range of state and federal issues related to pay equity, from compliance, to updating policies and job descriptions, to training managers and recruiters, and more. Denise received her J.D. from Seton Hall University School of Law. She also has a B.S. and M.S. in Applied History and Political Science from Carnegie Mellon University.

Michelle Waites -Michelle Waites is Senior Patent Counsel for Xerox Corporation, actively involved in enforcing and obtaining the company’s patent and other intellectual property rights. Her primary responsibility is patent litigation, and typically includes managing outside counsel, leading internal fact investigations attending depositions and court hearings and participating in settlement and case strategy discussions. Her practice also includes reviewing technology transfer agreements, supporting product design and development programs and working with business and technical staff to develop and implement effective legal strategies. She is a registered patent attorney and has extensive experience preparing and prosecuting patent applications. She also manages employment litigation matters before the EEOC, state and federal courts. Ms. Waites has maintained her own law practice, has been associated with law firms in New York City and spent several years as an engineer in the aerospace/military defense industry. She received a Juris Doctor degree from the University of California at Berkeley and a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from Syracuse University. She is admitted to the Bar in California and New York and is registered to practice before the US Patent and Trademark Office. Ms. Waites is a member of the American Bar Association, Lambda Legal and the National LGBT Bar Association. 

William Weinberger – William joined Parker Milliken as a shareholder in 2004, joined its Board of Directors in 2006, and became the firm’s CFO and chair of its Litigation Practice Group in 2018. He has represented businesses and entrepreneurs in a variety of industries, including real estate development, investment and management, accounting, aerospace parts manufacturing, pharmaceutical manufacturing, medical services, entertainment and high-tech. Mr. Weinberger has represented clients in the trial courts of the State of California and all districts of the U.S. District Court in California, the California Courts of Appeal, the U.S. Ninth and Sixth Circuits Courts of Appeals, and the Ninth Circuit Bankruptcy Appellate Panel. He was one of the founders of the National LGBT Bar Association, a result of a meeting of LGBT attorneys during the 1987 March on Washington.

Brian Winterfeldt – Brian J. Winterfeldt, the Founder and Principal of Winterfeldt IP Group, has practiced trademark and Internet law for nearly 20 years. Building on his years of experience in large, global law firms, Brian has brought his vision to life, creating a firm dedicated exclusively to providing organizations and individuals with to the highest caliber trademark and Internet-related legal and policy services. Brian has assembled a team of top talent that provides a personalized, concierge-style client service experience at an exceptional value. Brian advises clients on the creation of global trademark and branding strategies. He also develops programs to register and enforce clients’ intellectual property rights and protect against infringement of their trademarks and other branding elements in the US and internationally, including domestic and international trademark counseling, clearance, prosecution and enforcement. In addition, Brian advises clients on trade dress, copyright, Internet governance and domain name issues, including domain name disputes such as Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (UDRP) and Uniform Rapid Suspension System (URS) complaints, and other similar processes for country code top-level domains (ccTLDs), to disable or recover infringing domain names. He regularly counsels global leaders across a broad variety of industries. Brian dedicates substantial time to support of diversity-related clients and causes, particularly in connection with the LGBT community. He has been an active member of the LGBT Bar for many years, and has chaired the IP Law Institute at the Lavender Law conference for the past several years. Brian also serves on the Board of Directors for The Trevor Project, the nation’s leading provider of suicide prevention and crisis intervention services for LGBTQ youth.

Daniel Winterfeldt – Daniel is a partner in Reed Smith’s Global Capital Markets practice in their London office, and is a Senior Diversity Consultant to the firm. Daniel’s practice focuses on representing US, UK, European and Asian investment banks and corporate issuers in a wide range of securities transactions, including Rule 144A and Regulation S equity and debt offerings; Category 3, Regulation S transactions for US companies listing in the United Kingdom; rights offerings; exchange offers; equity-linked securities offerings; initial public offerings and secondary and follow-on offerings of equity securities, including SEC-registered transactions.  He also provides ongoing US securities advice to the London Stock Exchange through the Forum for US Securities Lawyers in London, of which Daniel is the founder and co-chair. Daniel is the founder and chair of the InterLaw Diversity Forum (now in its 10th year), which seeks to promote diversity and inclusion in the legal sector. The InterLaw Diversity Forum currently has more than 4,000 members and supporters from over 215 law firms and chambers, and 285 corporates and financial institutions. Since its founding the InterLaw Diversity Forum has expanded its scope beyond LGBT+ to encompass all strands of diversity and inclusion (including social mobility), with a particular focus on cultural change in the workplace and ‘multiple identities’/intersectionality. Daniel was a member of the Equality & Diversity Committee at the Law Society of England & Wales for six years and served for six years as a member of the Judicial Diversity Forum organized by the Judicial Appointments Commission. Daniel was admitted to the Bar of the Supreme Court of the United States in 2013.