Blog : Awards

Lisa Mak Receives Legal Advocate Award from the Center for Workers’ Rights

Lisa Mak Receives Legal Advocate Award from the Center for Workers’ Rights

On June 28, 2017, Associate Lisa P. Mak in our Consumer and Employee Rights Group was honored with the Legal Advocate Award from the Center for Workers’ Rights in Sacramento.

Lisa received the award for her successful representation of four female officers of the Sacramento County Sheriff’s Department, which resulted in a $3.5 million verdict after a five-week jury trial last year.

The Center also commended Lisa for being a vanguard in advocacy on behalf of plaintiffs, for her commitment to workplace justice, and for her efforts to advance diversity in the plaintiffs’ bar.

In her acceptance remarks, Lisa emphasized the importance of courageous advocacy to empower employees to stand up for their rights, and to hold employers accountable for their treatment of workers.

“…[W]e need advocates who have the courage and conviction to stand with workers and fight for them in our legislature, in our court system, and in the court of public opinion,” Lisa said.

“Especially for lawyers – I think that we are in a special position to advocate and to litigate cases that empower not just our clients, but the larger community.  And that’s a gift that we have, and that’s what drives my work everyday.”

The Center for Workers’ Rights strives to improve working conditions, reduce barriers to securing employment, and remedy workplace injustices for low-wage workers and their families in the greater Sacramento area.

Congratulations, Lisa!

Olivia Lee Leads AILA NorCal to Highest Honors in National Organization

Olivia Lee Leads AILA NorCal to Highest Honors in National Organization

PHOTO: AILA NorCal Chair Olivia Lee (second of left) with other chapter leaders accepting the Platinum Chapter Award.​

The Northern California Chapter of the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) received the Platinum Chapter Award, the organization’s highest honor for chapters, at AILA Annual Conference last week in New Orleans, Louisiana.

Olivia Serene Lee, an associate in our Immigration Practice Group, has served as 2016-2017 Chair for AILA NorCal. She has served on the AILA NorCal Executive Board for the past four years.

Under Olivia’s leadership, AILA NorCal has been at the forefront in proactively responding to the institutional assault against immigrants. When the Trump administration attempted to enact a travel ban on Muslims, AILA NorCal was one of the first groups to respond, providing services at aiports, and offering assistance to those impacted.

She has been actively involved in AILA NorCal since 2009, leading and organizing more than 30 Continuing Legal Education programs in all aspects of immigration law, including prosecutorial discretion, export control, PERM, waivers, asylum, and events with immigration judges, USCIS, CBP, DOL and asylum officers. She also served as faculty on local and national AILA CLE panels on topics such as O-1s and H-1Bs.

AILA is the national bar for immigration attorneys, and AILA NorCal is one of its larger chapters, with over 850 members.

Lisa P. Mak Honored at Asian/Pacific Bar of Sacramento Foundation Event

On May 25, 2017, Associate Lisa P. Mak received a legislative resolution presented by the Asian Pacific Islander Legislative Caucus and the Asian Bar Association of Sacramento Law Foundation for her success in the Hagadorn v. Sacramento County Sheriff’s Department case.

In May 2016, a jury awarded our clients a collective total of over $3.5 million in economic and non-economic damages for their claims of employment retaliation.  Earlier this year, the County dropped its appeal of the successful verdict.

Presented by Assemblymember Phil Ting, the congratulatory resolution praised the case as “a stunning victory not only for the plaintiffs, but also for the four Asian American lawyers who had so ably and steadfastly represented them.”

The resolution also commended Minami Tamaki for its “successful legal representation in practice areas inclusive of civil rights and employment discrimination and its leadership role as a preeminent Asian American law firm in California.”

At the same event, Partner Dale Minami presented a keynote address titled “Empowering the Community and Educating the Public through Law.”

Dale spoke about his legal career working on cases with significant national impact, including: the reversal of the convictions of Fred Korematsu, Min Yasui, and Gordon Hirabayashi for challenging the internment order of Japanese Americans during World War II; the unfair denial of tenure to Professor Don Nakanishi at UCLA that highlighted discrimination in academia; and the first employment class action lawsuit in the country brought by Asian Pacific Americans, challenging employment practices at Blue Shield.

Dale emphasized the importance of using legal cases to empower our communities and educate the public, and the need to increase diversity in our leadership and judiciary.  Dale is a founding member of ABAS, the Asian American Bar Association of the Greater Bay Area, and the Asian Law Caucus.


Lisa P. Mak to Receive Legal Advocate Award from Center for Workers’ Rights

Associate Lisa P. Mak in our Consumer and Employee Rights Group will be recognized with a Legal Advocate Award from the Center for Workers’ Rights on June 28, 2017, in Sacramento.

In a letter to Lisa, the Center wrote: “Your victory against the Sacramento County Sheriff’s Department on behalf of four sheriff’s deputies demonstrates your tireless commitment to workplace justice. In addition, your commitment to pro bono legal services sets you apart from others in our field.”

The Center for Workers’ Rights strives to improve working conditions, reduce barriers to securing employment, and remedy workplace injustices for low-wage workers and their families in the greater Sacramento area.

Lisa will receive the award on Wednesday, June 28, 2017, at 5:30 p.m. at the Citizen Hotel in Sacramento.

Congratulations, Lisa!

U.S. News/Best Lawyers ‘Best Law Firms’ 2017 Recognizes Minami Tamaki’s Immigration and Personal Injury Practices

For the third year in a row, Minami Tamaki LLP has received a Tier 1 ranking on the U.S. News – Best Lawyers “Best Law Firms” list under the “Personal Injury Litigation – Plaintiffs” category for our metro area.

“Best Law Firms” also recognized our firm for the second year in the “Immigration” category.

The U.S.News – Best Lawyers “Best Law Firms” rankings are based on a rigorous evaluation process that includes the collection of client and lawyer evaluations, peer review from leading attorneys in their field, and review of additional information provided by law firms as part of the formal submission process.

To be eligible for a U.S.News – Best Lawyers “Best Law Firms” ranking, a law firm must have at least one lawyer who is included in Best Lawyers in that particular practice area and metro. Earlier this year, Partners Dale Minami, Minette A. Kwok, and B. Mark Fong were selected by The Best Lawyers in America, which qualified the firm to be considered for the Best Law Firms list.

The attorneys in Minami Tamaki’s Personal Injury Practice Group fight for the rights of people who are injured or have suffered the loss of loved ones due to the carelessness of others. We use a team approach which brings all of the resources of our practice group to bear on our cases. This has allowed us to recover multi-million dollar settlements and large verdicts for our clients.

The Immigration Practice Group of Minami Tamaki LLP offers expertise in a broad array of immigration services. We routinely assist employers and employees, nation-wide, in obtaining temporary and permanent employment-based visas. And, just as often, we help individual clients to secure family-based immigration status through marriage or other qualifying family relationships.

Suhi Koizumi Receives Unity Award from Minority Bar Coalition

Congratulations to Minami Tamaki attorney Suhi Koizumi on receiving a 2016 Unity Award from the Minority Bar Coalition! The Unity Award is given to members who have best shown a dedication to working in a unified manner to advance the cause of diversity in the legal profession.

Suhi received the award on November 19, 2016, at the Minority Bar Coalition Unity Awards event held at UC Hastings College of the Law. San Francisco Superior Court Judge Teri L. Jackson was the event’s keynote speaker. San Francisco Superior Court Judge Daniel A. Flores served as emcee.

The Minority Bar Coalition is a network of over 25 diverse bar associations dedicated to working in a unified manner to advance the cause of diversity in the legal profession. MBC does this by sharing best practices and resources in bar association programming and advocacy, finding issues of common cause, and building shared platforms.

Suhi recently served as the 2015-2016 President of the Korean American Bar Association of Northern California (KABANC). For three decades, KABANC has served the Korean American community and encouraged the professional growth of Korean American lawyers and law students in Northern California.


‘Best Lawyers’ Selects Three of Our Partners for 2017

Minami Tamaki LLP Partners Dale Minami, Minette Kwok, and B. Mark Fong were recently selected by their peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America© 2017.

Dale and Mark were selected for the list in the practice area of Personal Injury Litigation – Plaintiffs. It is the fourth year in a row that they received this honor.

Minette was selected for inclusion in the practice area of Immigration Law. It is Minette’s third consecutive time on the The Best Lawyers in America list.

Since it was first published in 1983, Best Lawyers® has become a guide to legal excellence. Best Lawyers lists are compiled based on an exhaustive peer-review evaluation. Over 79,000 leading attorneys globally are eligible to vote, and we have received more than 12 million votes to date on the legal abilities of other lawyers based on their specific practice areas around the world.

Attorneys named to The Best Lawyers in America were recognized by their peers in the legal industry for their professional excellence in 142 practice areas. For the 2017 Edition of The Best Lawyers in America, 7.3 million votes were analyzed, which resulted in almost 55,000 leading lawyers being included in the new edition.

Minami Tamaki Attorneys Named to 2016 Super Lawyers

Minami Tamaki Attorneys Named to 2016 Super Lawyers


We’re proud to announce that all of Minami Tamaki LLP’s Partners and more than half of our Associates were selected as Northern California Super Lawyers for 2016. Four of our Partners have been named Northern California Super Lawyers for the last 13 consecutive years. Dale Minami was named to the Top 10 list. Minette Kwok was named to the Top 50 Women list. Mark Fong was named to the Top 100 list.

Congratulations to our attorneys!

  • Dale Minami (Top 10, 10+ Years) – Personal Injury
  • Minette A. Kwok (Top 50 Women, 10+ Years) – Immigration
  • Jack W. Lee (10+ Years) – Consumer and Employee Rights
  • Donald K. Tamaki – (10+ Years) Corporate and Nonprofit Counseling
  • B. Mark Fong (Top 100) – Personal Injury
  • Suhi Koizumi (Rising Stars) – Immigration
  • Sean Tamura-Sato (Rising Stars) – Consumer and Employee Rights
  • Olivia Serene Lee (Rising Stars) – Immigration
  • Lisa P. Mak (Rising Stars) – Consumer and Employee Rights

Super Lawyers selects attorneys using a patented multiphase selection process. Peer nominations and evaluations are combined with independent research. Each candidate is evaluated on 12 indicators of peer recognition and professional achievement. Selections are made on an annual, state-by-state basis.

The objective is to create a credible, comprehensive and diverse listing of outstanding attorneys that can be used as a resource for attorneys and consumers searching for legal counsel. Since Super Lawyers is intended to be used as an aid in selecting a lawyer, we limit the lawyer ratings to those who can be hired and retained by the public, i.e., lawyers in private practice and Legal Aid attorneys.


(L-R): Suhi Koizumi (Rising Stars), Jack W. Lee (10-plus years), Dale Minami (Top 10, 10-plus years), La Verne Ramsay, Minette A. Kwok (Top 50 Women, 10-plus years), Sean Tamura-Sato (Rising Stars), Donald K. Tamaki (10-plus years), B. Mark Fong (Top 100), Seema Bhatt, Aron K. Liang* (Rising Stars), Lisa P. Mak (Rising Stars), Olivia Serene Lee (Rising Stars) *Aron was with us through May 2016.

Dale Minami Named to American Society of Legal Advocates

Minami Tamaki Partner Dale Minami was named as a Top 100 Litigation lawyer in California by the American Society of Legal Advocates (ASLA).

dale-minami-american-society-legal-advocates-200pxASLA is an invitation-only, national organization of lawyers who have been identified by their peers to be the most skilled in practice.   ASLA limits its membership to less than 1.5 percent of all licensed lawyers nationwide.

The organization selects outstanding lawyers in all states, featuring no more than 100 lawyers per state – and 40 lawyers under 40 – in each area of practice or specialty, with specialties varying per state depending on the number of practicing lawyers. ASLA aims to serve as a go-to source of exceptional legal advocacy, and, in turn, to strengthen professional relationships and best practices among member lawyers.

Dale is recognized as one of the top personal injury lawyers in the San Francisco Bay Area. He was selected by Law & Politics Magazine as a Super Lawyer for each year from 2004 through 2015 in the Personal Injury category, one of the Top 100 Super Lawyers for Northern California in 2005 and from 2007 to 2015, and in the Top Ten Super Lawyers in the Personal Injury Category from 2013 through 2015.

He was also named as one of Northern California’s Best Lawyers by Best Lawyers, recognized three times as one of the 500 Best Lawyers in America by Lawdragon Magazine (2005, 2013-2014, 2014-2015), one of Top 100 Litigation lawyers in the State of California by the American Society of Legal Advocates in 2014, and in the top three percent of attorneys in the nation by The Legal News.

Dale’s practice focuses on the areas of Personal Injury and Wrongful Death, involving claims by persons who have suffered injury, or the death of a close relative through the negligence of another party. He has handled these cases for over 40 years, including claims arising from auto accidents, defective products, slips and falls, accidents involving pedestrians and other situations where persons were injured through the negligence of others. A number of these cases have resulted in verdict and settlement results of over $1 million.