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BALIF Board Elections 2022-2023

Your Voice Matters

Vote IN THE 2022 ELECTIONS FOR THE BALIF BOARD

It's almost time to vote! Your voice matters in selecting the people who will lead BALIF as members of the Board. Voting will be open from Friday, April 15, 2022 until Tuesday, April 26, 2022 to elect the BALIF Board of Directors for 2022-2023. We have a fabulous and diverse group of candidates this year! We will announce election results online on Tuesday, April 26, 2022 online.  

Consistent with our bylaws, the NomCom was appointed by our board and included four current BALIF board members. The NomCom managed advertising and recruitment for the board and evaluated candidates based on their qualifications and diversity they would bring to the board. The committee sought diversity with respect to race and ethnicity, gender, practice area and years in practice, and geographic location within the Bay Area. NomCom has formally nominated a group of candidates, and we are delighted to announce their endorsed candidates below. If you have any questions, contact nominations@balif.org.

NomCom endorsements:

NomCom solicited candidate statements by April 10, 2022. Of the candidates reviewed, NomCom endorsed 7 candidates indicated below based on the majority of votes by the committee’s members. The endorsements are indicated below. Candidates who submitted statements after the deadline were not reviewed. The symbols below provide more information about the candidates.

 * = board incumbent or previous board member 
+ = endorsed by NomCom

Women (4 open positions)

  • Lindsey Kincaid
  • Nas Yasin

Men (3 open positions)

  • Ernest Hammond III
  • Jeff Kosbie*+
  • Jon Lucchese*+

TGNC/Other Genders (3 open positions)

  • J Abello Tharp+
  • Rafael Langer-Osuna*+

Law Student Women (1 open position)

  • Alyssa Aguilar*+

Law Student Men (1 open position)

  • Jordan Montgomery+

Law Student TGNC/Other Genders (1 open position)

  • Diana Jimenez*+

Candidate Statements and Candidate Forum Event

Please click here to read all candidate statements! We truly appreciate everyone who submitted their candidate statements and expressed interest in running for the board. 


Election Information

Elections voting will be online from Friday, April 15, 2022 until 4 pm on Tuesday, April 26, 2022.

We will announce election results online on Tuesday, April 26, 2022. 

Check your inbox (and spam folder) for your personalized e-ballot. If you don't receive your e-ballot on April 15th by 5pm, please email balif@balif.org.

You must be a current member of BALIF in order to vote. Please make sure your membership is current!


BOARD CANDIDATES

Women: 2 Candidates for 4 Positions

Name Statement
Lindsey Kincaid

My name is Lindsey Kincaid, I currently work alongside legal professionals as a Legal Secretary for a plaintiff’s side law firm that seeks to protect individuals and class members from corporate misconduct.  I’m also a member of the firm’s Equity, Diversity and Inclusion task force, promoting diversity and inclusion in and outside the firm through employee engagement, training, and community outreach.

As a supporter of BALIF, I was recently encouraged to apply to be part of the board and am excited at the opportunity to be involved with an organization whose mission is to further DE&I efforts holistically within the legal industry.  As a non-licensed legal professional, I’ve long sought opportunities to find my “place at the table”, hoping to combine my interest in the law while volunteering for an organization that supports my community at large.  BALIF’s Galas provided me with an entry point of where my personal and professional goals could potentially intertwine, and I hope to further develop this connection by being a part of the board.

On a personal note, I like to spend my free time in the outdoors, hiking, camping, and backpacking.  You’ll often find me on the trails with my trusty camera seeking a digital memento to commemorate the day.  When I’m not outdoors, I’m in my home studio, editing photos or painting.  My current body of work focuses on identify formation, and was featured in a gallery that promotes creating creative spaces for BIPOC, folks in the LGBTQI+ community and women identifying artists.

I’m best reached at my work email, but can also be reached on my personal address which is copied.

Thanks for providing opportunities like this and supporting for our community.

Nas Yasin

Hello, my name is Nahzaneen “Nas” Yasin. I am a graduate of Santa Clara University School of Law, Class of December 2020, and I am a Deputy Public Defender at the Santa Clara County Office of the Public Defender. As a queer first-gengeration Afghan woman, I have noticed throughout my time as a law student and a lawyer that representation for people like me has been lacking. This applies to the legal world, the LGBTQ+ world, but also most aspects of my everyday life. This stems from the fact that Queer Middle Eastern representation is fairly limited. As a result, I know it is crucial to have representation and mentorship in the legal profession and I want to be part of that representation. I come from a family of Refugees, so I am not only the first Attorney in my family, but the first one in the community that I come from and I know how important that representation is.

Throughout my professional and academic career, I have always put social justice at the forefront of everything I do. During my time in law school I focused on various leadership activities and social justice areas of emphasis. I ended law school with certificates in Public Interest and Social Justice with an Emphasis in Criminal Justice and Immigration, respectively, as well as a certificate in International Public Interest Law. I have been a community organizer for as long as I can remember and have hosted events ranging from community know your rights clinics, civic engagement clinics, rallies revolving around community and human/civil rights issues, etc. I served on the board of Santa Clara University’s Student Bar Association, Social Justice Coalition, American Constitution Society, La Raza Student Association, First-Gen Law Student Association. I have really tried to incorporate my belief of service above self in the work that I have done, and I really enjoy working with marginalized communities. Additionally, 7 years ago, I founded my own 501(c)(3), the Arzo Foundation, where we work to provide access to relief and assistance to children, women, and victims of war in Kabul, Afghanistan.

 I am interested in joining the BALIF Board, because I want to be a voice and mentor for those who I know would benefit from seeing someone like them. I want continue to advance BALIF’s goal of intersectionality, and bring in my experience in social justice to better serve the legal, queer, and marginazlied communities. BALIF was initially founded to help promote queer judicial candidates to the bench. I really resonate with this mission as someone who is interested in one day becoming a judge. Better representation on the bench, better reflects the community that judges are to serve, so I would love to continue to work with BALIF on this endeavor. As a recent graduate, I know the challenges first-generation students face and want to ensure that students have the resources and access they need to be successful, and I know that this is another platform in which I can continue to do that.

I look forward to working with BALIF.


MEn: 3 Candidates for 3 Positions

Name Statement
 
Ernest Hammond III
                   

Having been a BALIF member over the past few years, I have had the privilege of being involved in the Membership and Nominations Committees and believe that I can make a meaningful contribution as a board member now that I have moved on from other high engagement boards. 

Throughout my career, I have remained steadfast in my dedication to championing causes of equity, inclusion, and belonging and I bring the experiences of serving in leadership roles dedicated to those causes both within and outside of the legal profession. Most recently, I served as a board member of the Barristers Board of the Bar Association of San Francisco with two terms as Co-Diversity Director during which time I developed Barristers’ Annual Diversity Conference. I also served as a Co-Chair of the Minority Bar Coalition for the past two years where I advocated for and hosted events focused on holding space for our bar association membership to have substantive dialogue around the issues facing attorneys of historically excluded backgrounds. 

On the BALIF Board, it is my hope to use my voice to continue to hold our profession accountable in ensuring that the legal community more accurately reflects and understands the people it serves. As a Black gay man, I believe that there is still much work to be done, especially in the Bay Area, and hope that I can use my voice to help amplify the perspective of those who are often left out of the conversation, particularly amongst our community. BALIF has a longstanding history of being a voice for change and I hope to help continue that charge during this renewed focus on equality and justice. Thank you for your consideration.

  
Jeff Kosbie*+
 

Hello BALIF!

I am currently Treasurer and formerly co-chair of BALIF. I am also Treasurer of the BALIF Foundation, a member of the Executive Committee of the Litigation Section of the California Lawyers Association, and a founding member of my firm’s Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Task Force.

I’m proud of the work we’ve done on the BALIF board during my tenure over the past four years. I have helped organize numerous CLEs and other events, increased our outreach to our members, and collaborated with other minority bar associations. We’ve also done substantial work to build better governance structures—including this past year adopting amended bylaws which have been in the works for many years! Over the past year, I have also been co-chair of BALIF’s judiciary committee. This has given me an opportunity to work more on one of BALIF’s original purposes: to support putting LGBTQ+ people on the bench. We have more work to do here, and over the year ahead, I intend to work on promoting better bench-bar relationships and improving mentorship opportunities for future LGBTQ+ judges.

I look forward to building our membership base as we emerge from the pandemic, and I remain committed to doing the work of promoting diversity and inclusion on behalf of all LGBTQ+ people.

On a personal note, I am a queer, cisgender man, an associate at a plaintiff-side law firm, and an avid trail runner (often on the trails before the sun rises!). I would be honored for your vote.

Jon Lucchese*+

It has been a pleasure serving on the BALIF Board this year as Membership Chair and I hope to continue my service to see our important bar association reach higher levels of membership.  We have recently completed a membership drive and helped to recruit back some members who lapsed during the pandemic and the change of our membership term dates (which caused those on legacy autorewal to fall off).   

As we return to more in-person programming, while also providing some virtual events so we increase attendance in both formats, I will continue making efforts to encourage past members to renew their commitment to BALIF, as well as recruit many new members to the organization.  Specifically, my goal would be to get active membership to 400 members following SF Pride and ideally past 500 members in 2023.  

This is realistic as there is a lot of interest to return to in-person professional networking and we have a lot of important legal and social advocacy goals for our LGBTQI community, and specifically the underrepresented transgender community.  I hope to have your vote to continue to grow BALIF and advance individual rights and freedoms!



TGNC/OTHER GENDERS:  2 CANDIDATES FOR 3 POSITIONS

Name Statement
J Abello Tharp+

As President of OutLaw at UCI Law, I worked to realize my vision of making UCI Law the most welcoming law school for LGBTQIA+ students by fostering a strong, supportive queer community. Consistently over the past two years, roughly 1/3 of UCI Law's incoming J.D. classes identify as LGBTQIA+. I believe this is due, at least in part, to OutLaw's efforts to fight for inclusive policies on campus (including multi-stall, gender-neutral restrooms in the law library) and our outreach to admitted students. This year, I organized an event entitled "Dress to Transgress" - a day where all students were encouraged to dress as they would if the concept of "professionalism" fully embraced their identities and communities. The event included a panel of legal professionals and scholars discussing issues related to professional dress and the expression of identity. There was also a photo booth available where students documented their definition of "dressing for success." I am currently in communication with NALP to hopefully transform this into a national event next year with law schools across the country holding their own "Dress to Transgress" on a single day. I also currently work as a Research Assistant to Professor Swethaa Ballakrishnen (they/them), who is currently conducting a study on the law school experiences of trans and nonbinary law students. 

At the moment, issues related to diversity and inclusion in the legal profession are being elevated. These conversations often focus on efforts to increase the number of LGBTQIA-identifying associates and partners at big firms. This is a worthy goal. However, I find that these discussions often obscure the fact that this profession was not built with non-normative individuals in mind, and many of its structures and norms are inherently harmful to those from traditionally marginalized communities. As a member of the BALIF Board, I hope my interest and passion for illuminating the more opaque issues related to diversity and inclusion would be helpful. In any case, you can count on me to be a committed and dependable advocate for a more inclusive legal profession.

 
Rafael Langer-Osuna*+
                   

Hi Fellow BALIF Members,

I’m looking to serve you again for another two years as a BALIF board member. I am currently co-chair of the Community Activism and Programming Committees at BALIF. I have also worked with BALIF’s Governance, Diversity, and Amicus Committees. I’m proud of the work we’ve done on the BALIF board over the last two years. We’ve accomplished a lot, despite the pandemic. For the past two years, I have helped organize and host our Halloween Community Fundraiser. This year, I co-hosted the BALIF Gala. I have also helped organize numerous CLEs and other events. I’m most proud of updating BALIF’s demographics questions, helping to reform BALIF’s personal data collection, and in helping to update BALIF’s bylaws.

Professionally, outside of BALIF, I am a litigation partner in the San Francisco office of Squire Patton Boggs (US) LLP where I work on internet and data privacy matters as well as matters involving foreign sovereigns. I maintain an active pro bono practice where I am presently, among other things, seeking asylum for a trans woman, advising a conservation organization and a non-profit seeking gender equity in the sciences, suing for government records on discriminatory policing practices, as well as representing amici in LGBTQ+ impact litigation. I am a member of my firm’s Advancing Black and Other Diverse Professionals Task Force and I serve on the advisory committee of the Squire Patton Boggs Foundation. I also serve as a board member of the National Trans Bar Association, a facilitator at the Pacific Center for Human Growth, and as a Director and Vice President of the Western Cave Conservancy. Finally, over the past couple of years, I’ve advised the National Association for Law Placement (NALP) Task Force on Supporting Gender Non-Binary Individuals in the Legal Profession. 

Personally, when I’m not parenting my two teenagers, I’m off diving, caving, cooking vegan food, enjoying tennis, reading sci-fi, practicing Daoism, or working on art with my friends. I also delight in being an openly transfeminine and genderfluid non-binary person.

I would be honored if you would vote for me to continue serving on BALIF’s board.




LAw Student WomEn: 1 Candidates for 1 Position

Name Statement
Alyssa Aguilar*+

Hello everyone! I am Alyssa Aguilar and I am a 2L at Santa Clara Law, studying intellectual property, Internet and privacy law. It has been an absolute pleasure to serve as a Law Student Representative for the 2021-2022 Board. As a queer woman of color, I look forward to continuing to further BALIF’s committment of representing intersectionality in the legal profession and supporting my fellow LGBTQIA+ law students.

At Santa Clara Law, I am the External Vice President for our school’s LGBTQIA+ organization, Equality at Santa Clara (EQSCU). There, I have organized and promoted events, and worked to grow the organization, our outreach, and our impact on and off-campus. As a BALIF Board Member, I have been Co-Chair of the Law Student Committee and Co-Chair of our Communications Committee. I, along with my Co-Chairs, have managed our social media, helped organize events, and promoted queer-focused events, scholarships, job opportunities, the newsletter, and more for our law students.

Making sure my fellow law students have the resources they need to succeed is my priority. Mentorship is absolutely critical in this profession and especially in law school. I would love for us to continue to improve upon what is already an incredible mentorship program and bring back our in-person resume and mock interview workshops. Most importantly, I want to reinforce our sense of community by re-starting law student focused events so we can all get to know each other better and know there is always a support network here for us.


Law Student MEn: 1 CANDIDATEs FOR 1 POSITION

Name Statement
Jordan Montgomery+

I had the opportunity to meet with Alyssa Aguilar, one of BALIF’s Board Members, earlier this week. She encouraged me to submit a Candidate Statement to BALIF to be a considered as a Board Member for BALIF. Considering BALIF’s bylaws require gender parity, I would be applying for the Male Identifying position that I understand will be vacated at the end of the current term. I would also like to pursue an endorsement from the Nominating Committee. Any additional information that the Nominating Committee requires in regard to pursuing an endorsement, I can certainly provide.

To provide a brief summary of myself, I am currently a 2L law student at Santa Clara University School of Law pursuing my Juris Doctorate and eventual admission to the California State Bar. I obtained my undergraduate Bachelors of Science Degree in Political Science from Arizona State University in 2020. I came out as gay in 2012 to my orthodox Mormon family. I’m grateful to enjoy support from my immediately family, though it was a long road to get there. My family and I have engaged in LGBTQ+ advocacy since my coming out. Even serving in leadership and Board positions at these organizations in pursuit of equality and justice for gender and sexual minorities, particularly within the context of conservative religion. I am happy to be running for this position at one of the premier LGBTQ+ law organizations in the Bay Area and I’m excited to be involved.



LAW STUDENT TGNC/OTHER GENDERS 1 CANDIDATES FOR 1 POSITION

Name Statement
Diana Jimenez*+

My name is Diana Jimenez (she/they), and I am currently a Law Student Representative for BALIF and a 1L at USF School of Law. If elected for the upcoming year, I will make it a goal to continue the efforts of connecting Bay Area law school students with each other and with current LGBTQIA+ legal professionals. Now that I am more than halfway through my first year of law school, I have a better understanding of what a law student representative position with BALIF can do to help current law school students in the advancement of their legal careers and finding a community in the legal community, such as hosting resume workshops and networking events. I would make sure that there is equitable access for law students to enjoy the amazing opportunities that BALIF has to offer.

In addition to my current position as a Law Student Representative, I have also been a 1L Representative at USF for the Latinx Law Student Association as well as the Pride Student Association. I am well versed with the requirements of communicating effectively and actively to bring light to the events and activities that the student associations are hosting. It would be an honor to continue a role as a Law Student Representative for BALIF and helping connect LGBTQIA+ Law Students with BALIF and its members.


 

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