President's Message


Dear KALAGNY Friends:


KALAGNY wishes you a wonderful holiday season, as we close 2016!  It has been a honor to lead the organization as its President over the past year.   And I am very excited by the work accomplished by KALAGNY's leaders in 2016.


I encourage you to celebrate the end of the year with KALAGNY, and join me at our annual Holiday Party next Tuesday, on December 13, 2016 at Ichi Cellar (6:30 - 9:30 PM).  Three hours of friends, open bar and great food, and less than a week away!   Come out for the fun and invite your friends to join us -- I hope to see you there!  Please find the flyer here and rsvp here.  You can become a dues paid member and gain free entry through this link.

As you might have seen in our previous announcements, we held a wonderful Pre-Thanksgiving dinner at the end of November.  It was great fun and we were delighted to host the 200 attendees who shared their holiday spirit.  


In the coming weeks, we'll share our Year in Review for 2016, which will list more of our leaders' and members' accomplishments this year; it was most certainly an exciting year.  Here are just a few of the highlights from 2016:

  • 30th Anniversary Gala.  We celebrated our 30th Anniversary at our annual gala at Le Capitale, with approximately 450 guests in attendance.  Thanks to this year's gala committee co-chairs, Sung Kim and David Sohn, it was a knockout year with a guest list which had almost 150% number of attendees in recent years.  Don't forget to join us at our 31st Anniversary Gala, whose planning committee will be co-chaired by David Sohn and Iris Jun.  
  • NAPABA's Northeast Regional Conference.  For the first time, we hosted NAPABA's Northeast Regional Conference.  It was a highly successful three day conference which we rang in with a cocktail reception at the Permanent Mission of the Republic of Korea at the United Nations. Partnering with NAPABA, we offered a full day of fascinating CLEs over three tracks.  We were delighted to honor the Honorable Randall T. Eng, Presiding Justice, Appellate Division, Second Department, and D. Stephen Mathias, Assistant Secretary-General for Legal Affairs of the United Nations.  Thanks to each of the Northeast region's affiliates, who sent their leaders as delegates, and to NAPABA for its support throughout the planning!  Thanks to the planning committee's co-chairs: Eve Guillergan, James Lee, Judy Kim, Karen Kim, EJ Thorsen, and Rose Yan.
  • Participation in the Elections Cycle.  We participated in the exciting election cycle through various activities, which included supporting judicial candidates such as Judy Kim (to become the first elected Korean American judge in New York State!) and Justice Doris Ling-Cohan (incumbent; see our advocacy page), sending delegates to various judiciary screening panels, co-sponsoring a candidates' forum for NYS Senate District 16, partnering with the Board of Elections and the Campaign Finance Board on advocacy and educational projects, and attending the Manhattan Democrats' Judiciary Convention where delegates voted on judicial candidates to appear on the ballot.
  • Mentoring Program.  This Fall, Julie Cho and John Kim, the mentoring program's co-chairs launched our 2016-2017 KALAGNY Mentorship Program with a reception at Kobre & Kim LLP. This will be the eighth annual edition of this program, which has become a model for several similar programs around the United States.  This year, we have approximately 200 participants in the mentoring program.  KALAGNY subsidizes the mentoring group dinners and lunches.  So, to participants: don't forget to meet and submit your receipts.
  • Pro Bono Clinics.  We also continued our monthly pro bono clinics in Flushing, Queens, and Manhattan, in partnership with the Korean American Association of Greater New York (KAAGNY) and the Korean Community Services of Metropolitan New York, Inc. (KCS).  While KALAGNY officially began providing monthly services through its Flushing clinic in June 2011, and its Manhattan clinic in October 2014, KALAGNY's commitment to providing pro bono services through volunteer clinics had already been a long standing tradition.  Many thanks to Suyon Yi and Yosef Lee, our coordinators, for spearheading this worthwhile program.
  • Outreach to Queens/Long Island, New Jersey, and Law Student Members.  We also continued broadening our outreach to our membership, through the continued development of our Queens/Long Island, New Jersey, and Law Student Outreach Committees (headed by EJ Thorsen, Lawrence Han, Gene Kang, and Brian Yarzab).  Both the Queens/Long Island and New Jersey committees held a variety of events in Queens, Long Island, and Northern New Jersey, enabling a broader cross-section of our members to participate in our activities.  The Law Student Outreach Committee continued its long standing tradition of offering discounted bulk memberships to area law school Asian Pacific American Law Student and Korean American Law Student Associations (several years in the running!).  We had an incredible number of APALSA and KALSA group registrations this year, and are eager to greet and welcome the rising classes of new attorneys into our fold.

Very truly yours, 

Bridgette Y. Ahn

President of KALAGNY


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