WASHINGTON, D.C., July 16, 2018 — The implications of the Trump administration’s immigration policies, sexual harassment in the workplace, ensuring long-term careers for women in law, and social activism in the NFL and other sports are chief among diversity issues that will be explored at the 2018 American Bar Association Annual Meeting Aug. 2-7 in Chicago.
High-profile speakers at the meeting include Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein of the U.S. Department of Justice (Aug. 2, 4:30 p.m.); Tina Tchen, founder of the Time’s Up Legal Defense Fund (Aug. 2, 2:30 p.m.); former U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder Jr. and President Sherrilyn Ifill of the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund (Aug. 4, 8 p.m.); and Executive Director Bryan Stevenson of the Equal Justice Initiative and author of “Just Mercy” (Aug. 4, 5 p.m.).
In addition to the more than 1,000 events at this premier gathering of legal professionals, the ABA House of Delegates — the association’s policymaking body — will meet at 9 a.m. on Aug. 6-7 at the Hyatt Regency Chicago Grand Ballroom (East Tower). For details on the proposals for debate and vote during the two-day session, click here.
Immigration and diversity programs include:
Thursday, Aug. 2
“Model Rule 8.4 – Update, Discussion and Best Practices in a #MeToo World” — As national awareness on workplace sexual harassment grows, a panel will examine the implications of the strengthening in 2016 of Model Rule of Professional Conduct 8.4 on attorney misconduct. Speakers will update on state-by-state adoption of the rule, enforcement, conflicts with implementation and its application to harassing attorneys.
1:15-2:45 p.m., American Bar Association, 321 N. Clark St., 21st Floor, Board Rooms
“#MeToo, Time’s Up – Sexual Harassment in the Workplace” — A panel – including Tina Tchen, founder of the Time’s Up Legal Defense Fund and ABA President Hilarie Bass – will examine the implications of the “MeToo” and “Time’s Up” movements on the entertainment industry, legal profession and corporate America. Topics will include how sexual harassment claims against high-profile executives are being handled, workplace measures that can protect victims and the reaction of the legal community to the new awareness of the problem, such as increased pro bono support, emerging law practice areas that address employer response to harassment and the federal judiciary’s evaluation of its code of conduct and procedures for investigating inappropriate behavior.
2:30-4 p.m., Hyatt Regency Chicago, East Tower, Ballroom Level, Grand Ballroom ABCD
“14th Amendment at 150” — With the 14th Amendment turning 150, two of its preeminent historians, Eric Forner and Michael Vorenberg, along with Baltimore City Solicitor Andre Davis, will discuss the amendment’s origin and its continuing relevance, as both equal protection and due process concerns loom large in the United States.
3:30-5 p.m. Hyatt Regency Chicago, East Tower, Ballroom Level, Columbus Hall GH
“Investigations and Prosecutions Galore: The New Normal in Today’s Communities” — Law enforcement experts will lead a town hall discussion on the increasing nationwide prevalence of criminal investigations, which implicate all manner of public and private behavior – including police misconduct, sexual harassment and corporate misdeeds – and often result in criminal prosecution, civil enforcement actions and employee discipline. The panel will provide insight on the ethics, challenges and best practices of conducting investigations in today's divisive, heated environment.
5:30-6:30 p.m., Hyatt Regency Chicago, East Tower, Ballroom Level, Columbus Hall EF
Friday, Aug. 3
“The Right (or Not) to Take a Knee: Social Activism and Freedom of Speech in Sports” — Representatives of the National Football League and National Labor Relations Board will be among panelists who will examine the organized protests of professional and collegiate athletes. From taking a knee during the playing of the national anthem, to wearing apparel in support of Black Lives Matter, to going on strike from competition, speakers will discuss the conflict between players’ rights and restrictions upon freedom of speech and their organizations’ rights to manage sporting conduct and events.
10-11:30 a.m., Hyatt Regency Chicago, East Tower, Ballroom Level, Columbus Hall IJ
“State Attorneys General and Federalism in the Obama/Trump Eras” — Using examples of major cases brought by state attorneys general – including those involving President Trump’s travel “ban,” the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals policy, the census and the Affordable Care Act – legal experts will provide a “point/counterpoint” to these cases in the context of longstanding academic principles of federalism versus states’ rights.
10-11:30 a.m., American Bar Association, 321 N. Clark St., Board Rooms South/Center
“Blockbuster Supreme Court Decisions in a Partisan Era: Maintaining Public Trust and Institutional Legitimacy” — Legal scholars, including former Solicitor General Donald B. Verrilli Jr., will reflect on recent Supreme Court decisions that implicate deep partisan divisions in the United States (e.g., President Trump’s “travel ban,” and Wisconsin’s gerrymandering practices). The panel will examine whether accepting and deciding these types of cases politicizes the High Court, undermines its credibility and affects decisions in lower courts.
10:30 a.m.-Noon, Hyatt Regency Chicago, West Tower, Concourse Level, Water Tower
“The Delicate Dance: Strategies for Handling Cases Involving Uncooperative Domestic Violence Victims” — Domestic violence experts will explain the various reasons victims may be reluctant to assist in the prosecution of their perpetrators and share strategies to make these survivors more comfortable with the adversarial process to reach the outcome of justice.
1:45-3:15 p.m., Hyatt Regency Chicago, West Tower, Concourse Level, Water Tower
“The Trump Administration and Diverse Committees: A Kaleidoscope of Controversies” — Many are divided on whether the Trump administration has eroded or protected the fundamental ideals of life, liberty, equality and justice embodied in the Declaration of Independence. Panelists on both sides of the debate will critically analyze the impact the administration is having on the country, most notably in the areas of criminal justice and human rights.
2-3:30 p.m., Hyatt Regency Chicago, East Tower, Ballroom Level, Columbus Hall IJ
“Long-Term Careers for Women in Law: What’s Pushing Women Out and What Can We Do to Keep Them in the Profession?” — Why do women leave the legal profession at the height of their careers? With ABA President Hilarie Bass among the speakers, the ABA will reveal the findings from a yearlong study on the disproportionately high rate of attrition among senior women lawyers, and the actions to help stem the tide.
2:30-3:45 p.m., Fairmont Millennium Park, 3rd Level, Crystal Room
“Justice Hack: Reimagining the Relationship Between Law Enforcement & Communities” — A hackathon will bring together multidisciplinary teams of community, legal, law enforcement, criminal justice and technology stakeholders in a collaborative environment to develop technology-based solutions to address tension points between law enforcement and the communities they serve.
8:30 a.m.-6 p.m., John Marshall Law School, 315 S. Plymouth Court, Lobby check-in,
“Families on the Precipice: Navigating the Separation, Detention, and Reunification of Families at the U.S. Border” — Despite President Trump’s June 20 executive order to end the separation of families at the U.S. border, the prospect of prolonged family detention and the lack of an effective system to reunite those families already divided remain. Panelists – including those from the University of Chicago’s Young Center for Immigrant Rights, Tahirih Justice Center, ProBAR and Bluhm Legal Clinic at Northwestern Pritzker School of Law – will discuss what lawyers can do to help, the rights of parents and their children, the immigration court system and the ongoing failure of the government to return separated children to their parents unless they submit to deportation.
9-10 a.m., Hyatt Regency Chicago, West Tower, Concourse Level, Comiskey
“Sexual Harassment in the Workplace” — How should lawyers for employees and employers change their response to sexual harassment in light of growing national awareness of the issue? Panelists – including New York Times reporter Megan Twohey, who broke the Harvey Weinstein scandal, as well as representatives from the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, Ya Basta and the Duane Morris Institute for Human Resources Professionals – will answer the question and explore related topics.
10-11:30 a.m., Hyatt Regency Chicago, East Tower, Ballroom Level, Columbus Hall IJ
“The Trump Immigration Agenda: Redefining a Nation of Immigrants” — Panelists whose organizations stand on the frontline of managing the effects of the Trump administration’s hardline stance on immigrants – including those from the National Immigrant Justice Center, Refugee Council USA and Alianzas Americas – will analyze the impact of the administration’s attempts to restructure immigration law and policy, exploring the impact of these policies on the future of legal migration, refugee resettlement and the creation of a new class of undocumented individuals.
10:30 a.m.-Noon, Hyatt Regency Chicago, West Tower, Concourse Level, Comiskey
Awards Honoring Pro Bono Service — The ABA Pro Bono Publico Award is presented each year to honor individual lawyers, law firms, law schools, government attorney offices, corporate law departments and other institutions in the legal profession that have enhanced the human dignity of others by improving or delivering volunteer legal services to the poor. Honorees: Patrick Arenz, Robins Kaplan LLP, Minneapolis; Deborah Coleman, Coleman Law LLC, Cleveland; Ballard Spahr LLP, Philadelphia; Cooley LLP, Palo Alto, Calif.; Simpson Thacher and Bartlett LLP, New York
Noon-1:30 p.m., Hyatt Regency Chicago, West Tower, Lobby Level, Crystal Ballroom B
“International Human Rights: Law and Policy in the Trump Administration” — Panelists – including President Elisa Massimino of Human Rights First, Executive Director Joel Simon of the Committee to Protect Journalists, former Department of State Legal Advisor John Bellinger and former Legal Director Victoria Neilson of Immigration Justice Corps. – will discuss the legal issues relating to international human rights posed by the Trump administration, including those related to immigration, press freedoms, privacy, gender violence, torture, minority rights, refugees, travel bans, detainees and military affairs.
1:30-3 p.m., Swissotel Chicago, Event Centre, 2nd Floor, Vevey 3 & 4
“The Miranda Warnings Project: You Have the Right to Innovate” — Representatives from the Chicago-based ABA, Illinois Institute of Technology’s Institute of Design and New Orleans police department, will share their mobile tool prototype that provides pre-recorded Miranda Warning translations in Spanish and potentially other languages for police usage. Speakers, including IIT’s Jeremy Alexis, will share how this court-certified, plain-language tool can be implemented nationwide to better ensure that criminal suspects understand their rights.
2-4 p.m., Hyatt Regency Chicago, East Tower, Ballroom Level, Columbus Hall IJ
Award Honoring Former U.S. Attorney General & NAACAP Legal Defense Fund President’s Address — The Thurgood Marshall Award honors the late U.S. Supreme Court justice, who epitomized individual commitment, in word and action, to the cause of civil rights in this country. This year’s honoree is former U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder Jr. The award recognizes similar long-term contributions by other members of the legal profession to the advancement of civil rights, civil liberties, and human rights in the United States. Sherrilyn Ifill, president and director-counsel of the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, will deliver the keynote remarks.
7-8 p.m., Hyatt Regency Chicago, West Tower, Lobby Level, Crystal Ballroom A/Foyer
Sunday, Aug. 5
Awards Honoring Accomplishments of Women Lawyers — The Margaret Brent Awards Luncheon recognizes and celebrates the accomplishments of women lawyers. The award is named for Margaret Brent (1601-71), the first woman lawyer in America. This year’s honorees: Patricia K. Gillette, one of the country’s most-after speakers on gender diversity and equality; Eileen M. Letts, a partner at Zuber, Lawler & del Ducca LLP in Los Angeles; Judge Consuelo B. Marshall, the first woman to serve as chief judge of the Central District of California and the first woman of color to serve as chief judge in any federal district west of the Mississippi; Cynthia E. Nance, director of Pro Bono and Community Engagement at the University of Arkansas School of Law; and Tina M. Tchen, partner at Buckley Sandler in Chicago.
11:30 a.m.-2 p.m., Hyatt Regency Chicago, East Tower, Ballroom Level, Grand Ballroom
Monday, Aug. 6
Address by Former United Nations Deputy High Commissioner for Refugees — Alex Aleinikoff, Zolberg Institute on Migration and Mobility, The New School and the former UN deputy high commissioner for refugees, will keynote this annual event honoring the rule of law efforts of the ABA and other organizations. The luncheon will recognize the 2018 ABA International Human Rights Award recipient Abdelrahman Al Gasim, Darfur Bar Association and 2018 ABA ROLI International Pro Bono Award recipient Genan Zilhka and Caplin & Drysdale, LLP.
Noon-1:30 p.m., Hyatt Regency Chicago, East Tower, Ballroom Level, Columbus Hall GH/IJ/KL
Reporters may pick up their press badges at the meeting registration area Grand Registration North of the Hyatt Regency Chicago (Ballroom level, East Tower). During the Annual Meeting, a press room for accredited journalists will be open at Grand Ballroom C/D North of the Hyatt Regency Chicago (Ballroom level, East Tower), starting at 9 a.m. on Aug. 2. Thereafter the press room will be open daily from 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. and will close one hour after the House of Delegates adjourns on Aug. 7.
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