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A Judicial Diversity Crisis
Among the policy priorities of our Association, the timely confirmation of diverse judges to the federal bench has been a constant on our list of demands. Proudly, we made significant progress over the past decade in this area, increasing the number of nominated and confirmed Hispanic lawyers exponentially. Indeed, prior administrations referred to the HNBA’s Judicial Endorsements process as the “Gold Standard” for bar associations and looked to the HNBA for objective, non-partisan reviews of both Latino and non-Latino candidates who sought our endorsement. Sadly, we have seen a stark reversal in this area over the past year and this issue has now reached what can fairly be characterized as a crisis in recent months.
You may have noticed the unprecedented pace at which the Senate confirmed dozens of federal judges over the past 18 months. The timely confirmation of judges should be a priority for all members of the bar, particularly where the Judicial College has rated these vacancies as “judicial emergencies.” Nonetheless, we are deeply concerned by the startling dearth of talented Latinx lawyers being nominated for federal judgeships under the current Administration. In fact, of the approximately 109 individuals nominated to Article III Courts by this Administration, over 90% are white (non-Latino), over 70% are male, only four have been Latino, and most are younger (averaging 48 years old) and objectively less qualified than many of the diverse candidates with which the Administration was presented. This is unacceptable.
Along with our sister organization, the National Bar Association, we wrote to the Senate Judiciary leadership about our concerns regarding the current judicial confirmation process, particularly the erosion of Senate traditions that have historically served as the preliminary vetting stages for federal judicial nominees. This departure from tradition and protocols has led to a higher number of nominees with “not qualified” ratings from the American Bar Association, or with controversial views on the constitutional rights of immigrants, voters of color, and LGBTQ Americans. We urged the Senate Judiciary Committee to take up a thorough and transparent discussion about these recent changes and what their ramifications are for the dispensing of fair and impartial justice to all Americans.
While we continue to advocate before the Senate and with our contacts at the White House for the nomination and confirmation of greater (and more demographically representative) numbers of qualified diverse candidates, there is something YOU can do. There are 89 current and future federal court vacancies without a nominee. We need YOU to step up, or encourage your friends to step up. While there may be many reasons one would hesitate to throw their hat in this ring, the reasons for doing so are far greater. The bottom line is that if we do not step up, we cannot continue to complain about our lack of representation or express outrage about the individuals who are confirmed.
The HNBA has and will continue to achieve great things this year, but none may be more important than our advocacy for a diverse judiciary that is reflective of our beautifully diverse and rich society, and who is equipped to consider the viewpoints and experiences of all of its people, especially those who do not look like them. I hope that you will do your part to help.
• Texas ( Eastern, Northern, and Southern Districts)
• Pennsylvania (Eastern District)
• New York (Western, Eastern, Northern, and Southern Districts)
• New Jersey
• Florida (Southern and Northern Districts)
• 2nd Circuit (NY)
• FL (Middle District)
• TX (Northern District )
• PA (Western & Middle Districts )
If you or someone you know could potentially qualify for a federal judgeship in one of the vacancies listed below, please get in contact with the HNBA Judicial Endorsements Committee to learn more about our judicial endorsement process.
Erica V. Mason
HNBA National President
U.S. Immigration Law
HNBA Immigration Section Co-Chairs Christine Hernández & Arnulfo Hernández (also HNBA Region XIII President) recently published in article on U.S. immigration law in Law Week Colorado. Click here to read!
Join Us for the HNBA/Prudential Su Dinero Program
May 31, 2018 | Washington, DC
HNBA/Prudential would like to invite you to the inaugural Su Dinero program on May 31, 2018, in Washington, DC.
- Are you maximizing your resources to take care of you and your loved ones?
- If something happened, would your family be affected without your income?
- How can you safeguard your future and the future of those most important to you?
Take care of your financial health today!
View the agenda and register HERE.
*Registration is complimentary.
2018 Collaborative Bar Leadership Academy (CBLA)
June 24-26, 2018 | Miami, FL
Deadline to Apply: May 25, 2018, by 8:00 PM EST
The Collaborative Bar Leadership Academy (CBLA) is an annual leadership academy for diverse bar leaders from each of the CBLA member organizations: the ABA, HNBA, NAPABA, NBA, LGBT Bar, and NNABA. Through this collaboration, the CBLA aims to strengthen the pipeline of diverse bar association leaders through leadership training and professional development programs. The CBLA benefits current and future bar leaders, the bar association community, and the legal profession overall, and lays the foundation for further collaborative efforts by the sponsoring bar associations to foster diversity and inclusion in the legal profession.
CBLA is intended for:
• Up-and-coming bar leaders who have been in practice for 5-15 years.
• Have served in a leadership role with an HNBA Affiliate or local minority bar association, or who have served as an HNBA Regional President, Deputy Regional President, or chair or co-chair of an HNBA committee, section, division, or task force.
Learn more HERE & submit an application.
2018 HNBA Annual Convention
Early Bird Registration-REGISTER HERE
Deadline: June 4, 2018
HNBA National Awards-NOMINATE SOMEONE TODAY!
Deadline: June 15, 2018
Law Students: Apply HERE for the Travel Stipend
Deadline: July 13, 2018
Career Fair-SIGN UP TODAY
Deadline: August 10, 2018
CLE Submission Deadline Has Passed
Thank you to all that submitted proposals!
Selection of the 2018 Annual Convention CLE proposals will be made by the end of this month, and notices to all those whose proposal was selected will go out by June 4th.
HNBA MEMBER SPOTLIGHT
Cynthia Dianne Mares Appointed to 18th Judicial District Court
Congratulations to HNBA Past President, Cynthia Mares on her new appointment! On Thursday, May 10, 2018, Governor Hickenlooper appointed Cynthia Dianne Mares to the 18th Judicial District Court. Mares will fill a vacancy created by the retirement of Hon. Paul A. King, effective July 2, 2018. Mares is currently an associate judge on the Aurora Municipal Court, where her docket includes criminal matters, traffic infractions, and violations of municipal ordinances. Prior to her work on the Aurora Municipal Court, she was the Arapahoe County Public Trustee. She was Assistant Regulation Counsel at the Colorado Office of Attorney Regulation Counsel from 2005 to 2012, and a Deputy State Public Defender with the Colorado Public Defender’s Office from 1990 to 2005.
HACR Announces the 2018 Class of the Young Hispanic Corporate Achievers™
Congratulations to HNBA National Secretary, Jessica Massey, who was one of the 36 corporate leaders recognized on May 8, 2018, by the Hispanic Association on Corporate Responsibility (HACR), at the 2018 HACR Young Hispanic Corporate Achievers™ (YHCA) Awards Gala, after participating in a four-day leadership development program. Hosted once again by Altria Group, the program was held on May 4 - May 8, at the Four Seasons in Las Vegas.
Now in its 12th year, the HACR YHCA program was created to recognize young executives in Corporate America who have shown leadership qualities at their respective companies along with a proven commitment to the Hispanic community, and are leading the way in establishing a new standard of excellence in Corporate America.
“Building and training a robust pipeline of diverse talent is going to be crucial for the future success of Corporate America,” said HACR President & CEO, Cid Wilson. “The HACR YHCA program not only helps companies identify their high potential talent, but gives them the necessary skills to take their companies to the next level and further elevate the power of Hispanic inclusion.”
View the 2018 HACR Young Hispanic Corporate Achievers™.
Former MetLife General Counsel to Be Top Lawyer at Freddie Mac
Congratulations to former MetLife General Counsel, Ricardo Anzaldua, who will take over the top legal post at Freddie Mac, and to Major, Lindsey & Africa for the executive placement. Beginning in May, Anzaldua will join Freddie Mac as Executive Vice President and Senior Legal Advisor to CEO Donald Layton, and will eventually succeed the company’s current Executive Vice President, General Counsel, and Corporate Secretary, William H. McDavid. Anzaldua graduated from Harvard Law in 1990; later that year he began working at Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton, where he made partner in 1999. He left Cleary in 2007 and worked in senior-level legal positions at the Hartford Financial Services Group. In 2012, Anzaldua became Executive Vice President and General Counsel/Special Counsel to the CEO at MetLife.
HNBA Law Student Division President, Veronica Canton
The HNBA is proud of their Law Student Division President, Veronica Canton, Partner & COO of a new business called Impowerus that was born out of an amazing group effort by law students at Notre Dame University. Impowerus connects juvenile immigrants with attorneys performing pro bono work in immigration services. Impowerus is powered by relationships between legal aid clinics, law firms, and individuals within the community. Says Veronica, "we all want to help undocumented minors so we dedicate as much of our 'free' time to the business."
Impowerus is currently seeking two to five partners with either law firms or in-house legal departments during their initial stage in order to reach out to more children in need. Please contact Veronica Canton at VCanton@Impowerus.com and Katelyn Ringrose at Kringrose@Impowerus.com to set up a time to discuss a partnership.
Learm more about Impowerus.