Date: Tuesday, January 28, 2020

Meeting Program: 9:00 a.m. - 5:30 p.m. | Beekman, 2nd Floor | 6.0 MCLE Credits 

Sixteenth Annual Edith I. Spivack Symposium 

Staring Down Implicit Bias in the Legal Workplace 

     [This program is transitional and is suitable for all attorneys including those newly admitted.] 

9:00 a.m. - 9:15 a.m.  Welcome and Introduction

Section Chair: Terri A. Mazur

Program Chairs: Sheryl B. Galler, Esq., Law Office of Sheryl B. Galler, New York, NY; Laura Sulem, Esq., Practical Law at Thomson Reuters, New York, NY 

9:15 a.m. - 9:45 a.m.  Keynote Presentation: Amplifying Our Voices-Speaking Out and Stepping Up (0.5 Credit in Diversity, Inclusion & the Elimination of Bias) 

Implicit bias impacts everyday interactions in the legal workplace, as well as hiring, promotion and compensation. Despite decades of working to combat biases, we still  have not achieved equality for all in the legal profession. In this powerful keynote, Michele Coleman Mayes, Vice President, General Counsel and Secretary of the New York Public Library, will share with us her own experiences, insights into the pervasive nature and negative effects of implicit bias in the legal workplace, why it is important not to suffer in silence, how to interrupt bias in our own workplaces and steps to bring about systemic change. Ms. Mayes has been a trailblazer in her own career and, through her leadership, has amplified the voices of those who seek to break down the barriers to diversity and inclusion in the legal profession.

Speaker: Michele Coleman Mayes, Esq., New York Public Library, New York, NY 

9:45 a.m. - 11:00 a.m.  Taking Charge: Strategies to Combat Implicit Bias (1.5 Credits in Diversity, Inclusion & the Elimination of Bias) 

Trailblazing women attorneys from the FDNY, private practice, and the judiciary, together with a professor of sociology who has directed a groundbreaking study on reducing bias in the legal profession will explore how implicit bias impacts the advancement of women in law; strategies to empower women attorneys to combat and interrupt implicit bias and to improve fairness and inclusion in the legal profession; and ways all attorneys can engage colleagues and clients to mitigate implicit and explicit bias and counteract its effects.

Speakers: Ynesse Abdul-Malak, RN, MPH, Ph.D., Colgate University, Hamilton, NY; Captain Brenda Berkman, Esq., Retired FDNY Firefighter and Attorney, New York, NY; Caitlin Halligan, Esq., Selendy & Gay PLLC, New York, NY; Hon. Karla Moskowitz (Ret.), Hearing Officer, NAM, New York, NY; Leona A. Krasner, Esq., Krasner Law, PLLC, New York, NY; Laura Sulem, Esq., Women in Law Section Program Co-Chair, Practical Law at Thomson Reuters, New York, NY 

11:00 a.m. - 11:20 a.m.  Break 

11:20 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.  Legislating Diversity & Inclusion: Where do We Stand? (2.0 Credits in Areas of Professional Practice) 

States and cities across the country have enacted new legislation on pay equity, family leave, sexual harassment and related issues, in efforts to address workplace fairness, inclusion and implicit bias.  Do they work? Some studies claim they benefit all workers, while others claim they reduce earning potential and breed resentment.  Our panelists, with experience in law firms, academia, corporate legal departments and the public sector, will explore the practical effects of such laws in the workplace, both positive and negative, and steps we can take as part of the ongoing process of improving workplace culture and diversity.

Speakers: Alnisa Bell, Esq., Seyfarth Shaw, LLP, New York, NY; Karen DeMeola, Esq., University of Connecticut School of Law, Hartford, CT; Sheryl B. Galler, Esq., Women in Law Section Program Co-Chair, Law Office of Sheryl B. Galler, New York, NY; John W. Hamlin, Esq., Marsh & McLennan Companies, Inc., New York, NY; Renata Neeser, Esq., Littler Mendelson, P.C., New York, NY

Luncheon: 1:00 p.m. - 2:15 p.m. | Murray Hill East, 2nd Floor

Presentation of Kay Crawford Murray Memorial Award to Tiffany H. Lee, Chief, Appellate Division, United States Attorney's Office for the Western District of New York

2:15 p.m. - 3:55 p.m.  I'm Not Biased: The Ethical Ramifications of Implicit Bias (2.0 Credits in Ethics) 

Everyone is susceptible to implicit or unconscious bias. Such bias can impact critical ethical elements in the representation of clients and in the handling of employment and related issues in the legal workplace. This panel will present live enactments of situations involving implicit bias in the legal workplace and during depositions. An ethics expert and the panelists will discuss the ethical rules that are implicated by implicit bias in each scenario and identify which conduct is ethically acceptable and which crosses the line.

Speakers:  Laurie A. Kamaiko, Esq.  Saul Ewing Arnstein & Lehr, LLP New York, NY; Rachel H. Kim, Esq. Sompo International Holding Ltd., New York, NY; Pery D. Krinsky, Esq. Krinsky PLLC, New York, NY; Kathleen Lyons, Esq., AXIS Reinsurance, New York, NY; Rosary Morelli, Esq., Raskin Morelli LLP, Brooklyn, NY; Loren L. Pani, Esq., Aaronson Rappaport Feinstein & Deutsch, LLP, New York, NY;   Elliott J. Zucker, Esq., Aaronson Rappaport Feinstein & Deutsch, LLP, New York, NY

Business Meeting and Election of Officers: 3:55 p.m. - 4:10 p.m.

Closing Remarks:  4:10 p.m. - 4:15 p.m.

Networking Reception: 4:15 p.m. - 5:30 p.m. | Nassau East, 2nd Floor

Sponsored by Labaton Sucharow LLP 

Section Chair: Terri A. Mazur 

Program Chairs: Sheryl B. Galler, Esq., Law Office of Sheryl B. Galler, New York, NY; Laura Sulem, Esq., Practical Law at Thomson Reuters, New York, NY 


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