Welcome to the 43rd Installation Banquet of the Southern California Chinese Lawyers Association (SCCLA). Tonight is a very special night – one that combines tradition with new beginnings. For the first time in recent memory, we are honored to have a female Mistress of Ceremonies, Josie Huang of Southern California Public Radio, preside over our program. In another first, at tonight’s dinner, SCCLA is addressing head-on the serious problem of food waste by working with Food Finders, a non-profit organization that collects unserved food and delivers it immediately to pantries and shelters throughout Los Angeles and Orange Counties.
Please join me in congratulating our honorees and our Keynote Speaker tonight, as each deserves special recognition for their contributions to the Asian Pacific American (APA) community: Hon. Holly Fujie, Superior Court of California, County of Los Angeles, was the first Asian American to serve as President of the State Bar of California. Cyndie Chang, Managing Partner of Duane Morris LLP and Past President of both SCCLA and the National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA), is blazing a trail for the benefit of female APA lawyers. LTL Attorneys LLP is one of the nation’s top APA-owed law firms and is exemplary in its reputation as well as its legal service. Last but certainly not least, our Keynote Speaker, Douglas Chin, Lieutenant Governor of Hawaii, heroically led the first state-filed lawsuit challenging the series of Executive Orders known as the “Travel Bans.” To all our honorees and our Keynote Speaker: Thank you for your service to our community.
From 2011 – when I became a SCCLA board member – to now, I have witnessed the inspired leadership of my predecessors: Hon. Wesley L. Hsu, Ken Chiu, Cyndie Chang, Stacey Wang, Faith Santoso, Felix Woo, and Diana Kwok. With each passing year, my understanding of and connection to SCCLA’s history and significance grew deeper. Now, as I sit at the helm of this tremendous organization, I am humbled to carry on this legacy and to leave my imprint on our organization’s rich history. I will strive to strengthen our organization while adhering to the highest moral and ethical standards. SCCLA’s logo is the Chinese character 義, pronounced [yì], which means “righteousness.” Let us always remember our past and abide by the principle of righteousness as we forge ahead and create new connections, set new goals, and establish new legacies for the future.
I thank my family, especially my two beautiful sons, for being my source of inspiration and for accepting all of the nights that I have had to spend away from them since they were born. And thank you to my “SCCLA family” – the past, present, and future board members – for keeping alive all that SCCLA stands for.