Dale Minami Public Interest Fellowship Dinner Honors Nicole Wong, former U.S. Deputy CTO

Dale Minami Fellowship team: (from left to right) Bryan Springmeyer (Program Director), Cindy Dinh, Vina Ha (President), Francis Choi (2014 dinner co-chair), Hong Le (2014 dinner co-chair), Dale Minami, AnVy Nguyen, Fuyuo Nagayama, and Stephen Chang

The Eighth Annual Dale Minami Public Interest Fellowship Dinner was held on January 30, 2015, at Canton Seafood in San Francisco.

This year’s Fellowship Dinner honored Alumna of the Year Nicole Wong (Boalt ‘95), former White House Deputy Chief Technology Officer, and the 2015 Dale Minami Public Interest Fellow, Saira Hussain (‘14), a Staff Attorney with Asian Americans Advancing Justice – Asian Law Caucus.

Since 2008, the Dale Minami Public Interest Fellowship and the Asian Pacific American Law Students Association (APALSA) at the University of California, Berkeley, School of Law, have hosted this event to bring together students, alumni, and friends to celebrate and honor individuals who have made significant contributions to the Asian Pacific Islander community. Vina Ha (‘09), Bryan Springmeyer (‘10), Daniel Kim (‘09) And Eunice Koo (‘09) are the board members whose leadership guides this Fellowship.

Each year, law firms, businesses, and friends of APALSA underwrite the Fellowship Dinner. All proceeds from the dinner go toward the endowment and funding of the Dale Minami Public Interest Fellowship, which provides critical support to individuals who pursue legal careers in the public interest. Minami Fellows are selected for their diverse backgrounds, record of exceptional academic and professional accomplishment, leadership in community service, and commitment to social justice and public interest work.

Alumna of the Year Nicole Wong is the former U.S. Deputy Chief Technology Officer focusing on internet, privacy, and innovation policy. Prior to joining the Obama Administration, Nicole served as the Legal Director for Products at Twitter. From 2004 to 2011, she was Google’s Vice President and Deputy General Counsel, primarily responsible for the company’s product and regulatory matters.

Before joining Google, Nicole was a partner at the law firm of Perkins Coie and advised some of Silicon Valley’s early and notable tech companies, including Yahoo! and Netscape. She also has taught First Amendment, internet law and policy courses as an adjunct professor and lecturer at the University of California at Berkeley, Stanford University and University of San Francisco.

Nicole was one of the founders and the first editor-in-chief of the Asian Law Journal from 1992-1995. She served on the Board of Governors for the National Asian Pacific American Bar Association from 1996-1998 and, in 2005, Nicole was honored as one of NAPABA’s Best Lawyers Under 40. She received her Bachelor of Arts degree from Georgetown University, and a law degree and a Master’s degree in Journalism from UC Berkeley.

2015 Dale Minami Public Interest Fellow Saira Hussain is a Staff Attorney with the Criminal Justice Reform Program at Asian Americans Advancing Justice – Asian Law Caucus in San Francisco, CA. She addresses violations of the California TRUST Act, a state law that places limitations on local law enforcement from holding individuals for immigration purposes. Saira came to the Asian Law Caucus as a Berkeley Law Public Interest Fellow in the Immigrant Rights Program.

At Berkeley Law, Saira was a clinical intern in the International Human Rights Law Clinic where she worked on the Accountability for Sexual Violence in Uganda Project and Cambodia Justice Project. She also served on the California Law Review as a Notes & Comments Editor and on the Berkeley Journal of Employment and Labor Law as an Articles Editor. Saira was a member of the Board of Advocates Moot Court Team and Co-Chair of the Women of Color Collective. She has served as a Volunteer Advocate with the California Asylum Representation Clinic and worked during her summers at the Legal Aid Society – Employment Law Center and Disability Rights Advocates.

Saira is a Double Bear, having attended the University of California, Berkeley as an undergraduate majoring in Public Health with a minor in Spanish. She was also the recipient of the Alumni Leadership Award and served as a Senator with the ASUC. Prior to law school, Saira worked at the Community Services Planning Council in Sacramento, Calif., working as an Earned Income Tax Credit Project Coordinator.

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