2017 GALA SPEAKERS & HONOREES





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Keynote Speaker

Ivan Fong

SVP, Legal Affairs and General Counsel

3M


Ivan K. Fong is Senior Vice President, Legal Affairs and General Counsel of the 3M Company.  Prior to joining 3M in October 2012, Ivan was nominated by President Obama and confirmed by the Senate to serve as General Counsel of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.  He was previously Chief Legal Officer and Secretary of Cardinal Health, Inc.; Senior Vice President and General Counsel of GE Vendor Financial Services; and GE’s first Chief Privacy Leader and Senior Counsel, Information Technology.  Ivan also previously served as Deputy Associate Attorney General at the U.S. Department of Justice, an adjunct professor at Georgetown Law, and a partner with the firm of Covington & Burling.  He began his legal career as a law clerk to Judge Abner J. Mikva of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit and Justice Sandra Day O’Connor of the U.S. Supreme Court.


Ivan is active in his community and currently serves on the boards of Equal Justice Works and Minnesota Public Radio.  He has been named one of “America’s 50 Outstanding General Counsel” by the National Law Journal and is a member of the Council of the American Law Institute.  He has received, among other honors, the Trailblazer Award from the National Asian Pacific American Bar Association; the Justice-in-Action Award from the Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund; and the Spirit of Excellence Award from the American Bar Association.


Ivan received a B.C.L. with first class honors from Oxford University, where he was a Fulbright Scholar, a J.D. (with distinction) from Stanford Law School, and an S.B. in chemical engineering and S.M. in chemical engineering practice from MIT.  He is a registered patent attorney.




Women's Leadership Award

Linda Klein, President, American Bar Association

Shareholder

Baker Donelson


Linda Klein is the senior managing shareholder at Baker Donelson Bearman Caldwell & Berkowitz and president of the American Bar Association (ABA)


Klein’s practice, based in Atlanta, includes business dispute resolution -- contract law, employment law and professional liability -- in the construction, higher education and pharmaceutical industries.

 

In June 1997, Klein became the first woman to serve as president of the State Bar of Georgia. During her term, she led efforts to allocate millions of dollars in state funding for Georgia Legal Services and Atlanta Legal Aid to hire lawyers to help indigent victims of domestic violence, efforts that continue to help thousands of Georgians today.

 

Klein was one of the first women to lead a prominent Georgia law firm, serving as managing partner of Gambrell & Stolz in 2001 and leading the merger with Baker Donelson in 2007.

 

She served as chair of the ABA's House of Delegates from 2010−2012. In 2004, the ABA honored Klein with the prestigious Margaret Brent Women Lawyers of Achievement Award.


Klein served on the Board of Directors Network, which seeks to increase diversity on corporate boards and general counsel positions. In June, the Georgia State Bar presented her with its highest honor, the Distinguished Service Award.


Klein earned her J.D. at Washington & Lee Law School and a B.A. at Union College in New York.




Emcee

Elly Yu

Reporter 

WABE 90.1 FM


Elly Yu is a reporter at WABE 90.1.FM, an NPR affiliate station in Atlanta where she covers immigration, state politics and health policy. Her stories can be heard daily on WABE’s Morning Edition and All Things Considered. Her work has also broadcast nationally on NPR and APM’s “Marketplace.”


During her time at WABE, Elly has reported on the disparities in Georgia’s special education system, the court battles involving lethal injection in the state, and how Syrian refugees in Georgia have been affected by both national and local policies. For the past two years, she has also covered the Georgia General Assembly’s 40-day legislative session.


In 2014, Elly was selected as an immigration reporting fellow with the Institute of Justice and Journalism. She is a recipient of the “Rising Star Award” by the Atlanta Press Club, a distinction given to journalists under 30, and her reporting has won awards from the Georgia Associated Press. 




             


Judge Alvin T. Wong Pioneer Award

Lisa E. Chang

Enforcement Director

U.S. Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights


Lisa is an Enforcement Director for the U.S. Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights; she oversees the New York, Seattle and Dallas regional offices.  She joined the Department in 2015, moving to Washington, D.C. after twenty years in Atlanta.

Before leaving Atlanta, Lisa served as the County Attorney and Chief Legal Officer for DeKalb County, where she advised elected officials and county managers, directed the county law department, and oversaw all of the county’s civil legal work.  Lisa’s Atlanta experience includes establishing her own law firm, and, as counsel with Jones Day’s employment section, representing employers in individual, class and collective actions in federal and state courts across the country.

Active in bar and community activities, Lisa is a previous president of the National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA), as well as the Georgia Asian Pacific American Bar Association.  She currently serves on the board of the NAPABA Law Foundation.  She is a graduate of Columbia Law School and Amherst College, clerked for a federal judge in Vermont, and began her legal career in New York City, where she grew up.  Lisa and her husband, William W. Buzbee, a professor at Georgetown University Law Center, are the proud parents of two daughters, one now teaching high school math in New Orleans and the other doing economic consulting in Denver.  When she is not practicing law, Lisa likes to garden, cook and oil paint.





General Counsel Diversity Champion

Audrey Boone Tillman

EVP & General Counsel

AFLAC


Audrey Boone Tillman is executive vice president and general counsel at Aflac Incorporated. She directs Aflac’s legal division and functions related to Corporate Communications, Compliance, Government Relations, Federal Relations, Global Cyber Security, and the office of the Corporate Secretary. She also oversees the offices of General Counsel and Compliance at Aflac Japan, where the company earns more than 70 percent of its revenues.


Tillman previously served as associate professor at North Carolina Central University School of Law. From 1990 to 1993, she was an associate with the Smith, Helms, Mulliss and Moore law firm in Greensboro, N.C., and served as a federal judicial law clerk to Judge Richard C. Erwin, U.S. District Court for the Middle District of North Carolina.


In 2016, Tillman was named to the National Law Journal’s list 50 Outstanding General Counsel and received the Diamond Award, the highest honor given by the Corporate Counsel Women of Color Association. She sits on the executive committee of the Corporate Counsel Section of the Georgia State Bar and is a member of the State Bars of Georgia, North Carolina and the District of Columbia. She is past chair of the corporate law section of the National Bar Association.


Ms. Tillman holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in political science from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a Juris doctor degree from the University of Georgia School Of Law. She is married to Dr. Chip Tillman and they have three children.





Rising Star Award

Hon. Parag Shah

City of Atlanta Municipal Court, Pro Hac Judge

Founding Partner

The Shah Law Firm


Parag Y. Shah is a personal injury and criminal defense attorney in Atlanta, Georgia.  He graduated from Rhodes College in 2003 and went on to receive his law degree from Ohio Northern University in 2006. Shah started his own law firm, The Shah Law Firm, specializing in personal injury and criminal defense. In 2016, he was appointed by Mayor Kasim Reed as a Pro Hac Judge to the City of Atlanta Municipal Court where he presides over traffic offenses and city ordinances. He is also a registered neutral with the Georgia Office of Dispute Resolution and mediates civil litigation cases at Miles Mediation.

 

Shah is an adjunct professor at Ohio Northern University Law School where he teaches jury selection and cross-examination.  He is also a faculty member for the Georgia Trial Skills Clinic and AAJ's Deposition College.  In addition, Shah runs a criminal defense externship program through John Marshall Law School in Atlanta.

Shah has been acknowledged as Georgia’s Top 40 Under 40 by the Daily Report, a "Rising Star" by Super Lawyers Magazine & Georgia Trend Magazine.  In 2011, he was featured as an expert in criminal defense on NPR's "This American Life", Episode 430 - Very Tough Love. In addition, Shah regularly provided legal commentary on CNN's Nancy Grace. He is the author of three Georgia pocketbooks: The Code Criminal, The Code Civil and The Code Evidence. The Code is currently published by the Institute of Continuing Legal Education in Georgia.  Currently, Shah is working on a series of "How To" books that will be published November of 2017.




Rainmakers Forum Speaker

Juliette Pryor

SVP, GC and Secretary

Cox Enterprises


Juliette Pryor serves as senior vice president, general counsel and corporate secretary for Cox Enterprises, a leading communications, media and automotive services company. She is responsible for leading Cox’s legal function, as well as serving as corporate secretary supporting the company’s board of directors. Pryor is also responsible for being a strategic legal advisor to the senior leadership team, focusing on key legal and business strategies and issues facing the organization.


Before joining Cox, Pryor served as executive vice president, general counsel and chief compliance officer for US Foods where she was responsible for all legal, risk management and ethics and compliance functions since 2005. Prior to that, she was in private practice with the law firm Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom. Before joining Skadden, Pryor was general counsel and corporate secretary for e.spire Communications, Inc., a publicly-traded telecommunications company.


Earlier in her career, she served as legal advisor to the vice chairman of the U.S. International Trade Commission and as in-house counsel with IBM Corporation.


Pryor earned a law degree from Georgetown University Law Center and a master’s of science degree from Georgetown University School of Foreign Service. She also holds a bachelor’s of arts degree from Fisk University. Pryor is a member of The Chicago Network and served on Governor Patrick J. Quinn’s Women’s Advisory Council.  


She is a member of the law advisory board of Georgetown University Law Center, and a trustee of Fisk University.  A fluent Portuguese speaker and longtime enthusiast for all things Brazilian, Pryor is a founding board member of Levantamos: The Center for Afro-Brazilian-American Cooperation. She is married to Walter Pryor, and they have two children: Jordan Adjua, 23, and Wade, 19.




Rainmakers Forum Speaker

Cyndie M. Chang, President, NAPABA

Los Angeles Managing Partner

Duane Morris


Cyndie M. Chang is the Los Angeles Managing Partner of Duane Morris LLP handling litigation and counseling involving complex business disputes and torts, real estate, trademarks, class actions, and products liability. Her service has spanned various industries, including fashion, retail and consumer goods, manufacturing, utilities, and telecommunications services. She also handles insurance coverage claims involving large, multimillion dollar environmental, asbestos and toxic tort matters. Cyndie has obtained favorable results as first chair for many kinds of businesses at trial and arbitration.


She currently serves on her firm’s governing Partners Board and as NAPABA’s president for 2016-2017.  She previously served as NAPABA’s VP of Communications, Secretary, Regional Governor, Alternate Regional Governor, and past president of the Southern California Chinese Lawyers Association (SCCLA), one of the oldest APA bar associations in the country. She has been named a 2014 Daily Journal Top 100 Women Lawyer in California, a NAPABA 2010 “Best Lawyers under 40”, a “Super Lawyer” and “Rising Star” by Super Lawyers, and a “2013 Lawyer on the Fast Track” by the Recorder.  Best Lawyers Magazine, Spring Edition 2016, profiled Cyndie as one of 15 women in the legal profession leading the charge for achievements in the practice and policy, on both local and national levels. Cyndie has spoken on substantive and professional issues across the country, which include programs for the ABA, Defense Research Institute (DRI), the California State Bar, Center for Asians United for Self-Empowerment (CAUSE), and the Committee of 100.  She also served on the boards of the Asian Pacific Community Fund (a non-profit generating funding for 29 local affiliate non-profit agencies) and the Asian Pacific American Bar Association of Los Angeles. She was her firm’s office Pro Bono Coordinator, an ABA-TIPS Leadership Academy graduate, and an inaugural Fellow to the Leadership Council on Legal Diversity (LCLD).  She and her firm also received the 2014 annual Pro Bono Service Award from Asian Americans Advancing Justice – LA.  Cyndie graduated with honors from Johns Hopkins University and Loyola Law School, LA.  





Rainmakers Forum Moderator

Sam Matchett

Diversity Partner

King & Spalding


Sam Matchett is a partner with thirty-plus years’ experience.  He currently chairs King & Spalding’s Diversity and Inclusion Committee – an area in which he has over two and a half decades active involvement. 


As a practitioner, Mr. Matchett’s practice has focused on employment law litigation in both state and federal courts, governmental agencies (OFCCP), and arbitration tribunals.  He has significant experience defending employers in litigation involving the various civil rights acts and employment-related state law claims.  Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business recognized Mr. Matchett for his “extensive expertise in civil rights, and discrimination litigation.”  Additionally, Mr. Matchett provides client advice on the avoidance of employee-related problems and presents seminars concerning all aspects of employment law.  He is admitted to practice before the United States Supreme Court and several appellate courts. Sample significant matters in which he has been involved include:

  • Lead defense counsel in a multiple-plaintiff jury trial involving claims of a racially hostile environment (“nooses”).  He obtained a complete defense verdict.
  • Defending a major insurance company in defeating a motion for class certification in a race discrimination case brought by former insurance agents.
  • Winning summary judgments for a large manufacturer, which were both affirmed by the Eleventh Circuit, in cases involving claims of disability discrimination based on (a) alleged perceived disability, and (b) office environment hypersensitivity.

Mr. Matchett is listed as a leading Labor and Employment lawyer in The Best Lawyers in America, 2012 edition.  Additionally, Mr. Matchett was recently selected by Chambers USA as a leading lawyer in his practice area and named to Georgia Trend magazine’s “Legal Elite” — a list of Georgia attorneys chosen by their peers as the leading lawyers in their practice areas.  He is a member of the Gate City Bar Hall of Fame and recipient of the State Bar of Georgia’s 2010 Commitment to Equality Award.


Mr. Matchett graduated from Morehouse College with a B.A. in 1981.  He received his J.D. from the University of Georgia in 1984.  Mr. Matchett has served as a faculty member for the Institute of Applied Management and Law (IAML).  He formerly served as a member of the Board of Trustees for the University of Georgia Foundation and is a member of the Board of Governors for the State Bar of Georgia.

@2014  GAPABA    |    Established 1993    |    Affiliate of the National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA)
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