Letter From The Chair Of The In-House Counsel Committee Of The National Asian Pacific American Bar Association

2004-03-01 01:00

To The Readers Of The Metropolitan Corporate Counsel:

With over 1,000 members, NAPABA's In-House Counsel Committee is a group that is quickly growing in numbers and expanding into different areas of law such as non-profit and government law departments. We enjoy regular ongoing communications and activities throughout the year - mostly professional and some social. It is a wonderful organization that I have had the pleasure of leading for the past two years.

One example of the popularity of our activities is our March 22 gathering at the Madison Square Garden for a Knicks game, which is being sponsored by White & Case LLP. All available seats for the event filled within two hours of our announcing the event. Networking opportunities at this and other NAPABA events present an opportunity to find support outside of your immediate environment. These external sources can provide you with new ideas about how to meet the challenges of your current practice and your company. You can also benefit from the perspectives of someone with a similar background who has already been along the career path you'd like to follow.

We support our members in a number of ways to enhance their careers. We help Asian Pacific American in-house attorneys to gain professional visibility through participating on panels and serving in leadership roles for ABA, ACC, state and other bar association programs. We also recommend them to recruiters and others looking to fill open positions. Because mentoring can often be the key to success, the In-House Committee introduced a new mentoring program last summer, which has received great reviews to date.

The goal of our mentoring program is to foster relationships between NAPABA members who are experienced in-house counsel and NAPABA members who are either (i) new to the in-house position and in need of guidance including advice on professional development, career goals and transitioning into the in-house position, or (ii) in-house practitioners who are at a critical juncture of their career and in need of guidance on how to move forward or position themselves to take advantage of future opportunities.

My own career has benefited greatly from wonderful relationships that I have with my CEO, CFO and other managers at all levels throughout the company. One boss early in my career advised me "Don, don't rely just on me to support you.Make sure that you have multi-pronged support in the company."

In my view, this advice is just as applicable to support available outside the company. There are always attorneys outside of your employment who can provide advice and support to your career.

I have also benefited greatly from the support that my colleagues in NAPABA have freely shared with me. I encourage other Asian Pacific American attorneys to enjoy the benefits of NAPABA and its In-House Counsel Committee. To learn more about the activities of NAPABA, please visit our web site at www.napaba.org.


Don H. Liu