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" 2008

nasaba award recipients

INDIVIDUAL ACHIEVEMENT AWARDS Corporate Counsel Achievement Award

Rohit H. Kirpalani

Public Interest Individual Achievement Award

Smita Narula

Pioneer Award

Vivek Hansraj Maru

Vanguard Award

Premal Shah

NASABA Cornerstone Awards (5) Navjeet K. Bal, Navneet Chugh, Steven Mayo, Emilie Ninan, The Honorable Rena Marie Van Tine

Enterprise Award

General Electric Company (GE)

Law Firm Achievement Award

Schiff Hardin, L.L.P.

Public Interest Organizational Achievement Award

Hate Free Zone

GUTS Outstanding Chapter Award

South Asian Bar Association of New York (SABANY)

Outstanding Program Award

South Asian Bar Association – Northern California’s Voter Registration Project

Outstanding Board Member Award

Sanjana Chopra

award recipients


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INDIVIDUAL ACHIEVEMENT AWARDS NASABA Corporate Counsel Achievement Award: Rohit H. Kirpalani Rohit H. Kirpalani is General Counsel for CompuCredit Corporation, a billion dollar corporation. He earned his law degree from Georgetown University and a B.S. in Economics from Rutgers University. Prior to joining CompuCredit, he was an Associate Attorney with the law firms of Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe L.L.P..,and Tweed, Hadley & McCloy. He has been instrumental as a member of NASABA’s Advisory Council in providing guidance and advice to the organization. He has promoted greater racial diversity within CompuCredit by ensuring that the company actively recruits and hires minority employees.

NASABA Public Interest Individual Achievement Award: Smita Narula Smita Narula is the Faculty Director of the Center for Human Rights and Global Justice (CHRGJ) at NYU School of Law, and Associate Professor of Clinical Law of the International Human Rights Clinic. She graduated from Harvard Law School in 1997, where she was Editor-in-chief of the Harvard Human Rights Journal. Before attending law school, she earned a Masters in International Development from Brown University and worked on HIV and public health at UNICEF and the United Nations Development Fund. She also taught human rights advocacy and documentation at Columbia University’s Center for the Study of Human Rights. She has campaigned tirelessly on behalf of key human rights issues and has been extensively published on topics including: discrimination on the basis of caste, race, religion, and gender; human rights violations in the “war on terror”; economic and social rights; and the accountability of corporations and international financial institutions for human rights abuses. She was recently appointed legal advisor to the U.N. Special Rapporteur on the Right to Food.

NASABA Pioneer Award: Vivek Hansraj Maru Vivek Hansraj Maru is the founder and Co-Director of Timap for Justice, an organization dedicated to ensuring justice for the people of Sierra Leone. He is a 2001 graduate of Yale Law School and earned his A.B., magna cum laude, from Harvard in 1997 in Social Studies. He is a former Consultant for the World Bank, a Finberg Fellow for the Human Rights Watch and a Clerk for The Honorable Judge Marsha Berzon of the 9th Federal Circuit Court of Appeals. He has been extensively published for his articles explaining the plight of the people of Sierra Leone and advocating justice to those without access to adequate legal representation. His commitment to justice for all members of society has been recognized and applauded worldwide.

NASABA Vanguard Award: Premal Shah Premal Shah is the President of, an innovative person-to-person micro-lending site, which empowers individuals to lend directly to entrepreneurs in developing nations. He is a graduate of Stanford University with a B.A. in economics. Prior to founding, he was a Principal Product Manager at PayPal, an eBay company, and before that was a strategy consultant at Mercer Management Consulting in New York. Recently he has co-founded the Silicon Valley Microfinance Network and has spent time in India further refining Kiva’s business model. His work demonstrates a commitment to corporate responsibility and betterment of the community by assisting the underprivileged, disenfranchised, and under-represented minorities worldwide.

NASABA Cornerstone Awards: Navjeet K. Bal, Navneet Chugh, Steven Mayo, Emilie Ninan, The Honorable Rena Marie Van Tine 1. Navjeet K. Bal was appointed Commissioner of the Massachusetts Department of Revenue earlier this year and is the first South Asian to hold this position. As Commissioner, she is one of the two highest ranking South Asians in the Massachusetts State Government. She is a graduate of Williams College and received her law degree from Northeastern University in 1989. Formerly she was an Associate with the law firm of Mintz, Levin, Cohn, Ferris, Glovsky & Popeo and has extensive experience in public finance, state disclosure issues, state and federal tax law and structured financial transactions. While at Mintz, she founded the firm’s Domestic Violence Project and engaged in various pro bono projects. Even now she remains committed to providing access to the legal system by indigent clients by being involved with the Legal Advocacy and Resource Center in Boston, a legal services hotline center.

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2. Navneet Chugh is the Managing Partner of The Chugh Firm, which has offices in Los Angeles, Santa Clara, Iselin (NJ), and Bangalore, India. A graduate of Nagpur University, India in 1985, he received his Master’s in Business Administration from the University of Southern California in 1985, and his J.D. from Western State University in 1992 under a President’s Scholarship. He is an Attorney, a Certified Public Accountant and a Certified Financial Planner. He also holds the distinction of being NASABA’s first President from 2003–2004. Additionally, he is the co-founder of The Indus Entrepreneurs, Southern California in 1997, founder President of South Asian Bar Association of Southern California in 1995, and founder president of the Indian Professionals Toastmasters Club in 1986. He is a trustee of the American India Foundation, and is the founder President of the International Indian Bar Association. Through his efforts in helping to create these various organizations, he has helped to greatly advance the South Asian community and more particularly the South Asian legal community in North America.

4. Emilie R. Ninan is a Partner in the Public Finance Department of Ballard Spahr Andrew & Ingersoll, L.L.P.. Her practice includes representing government and private entities in complex structured financing deals. She received her J.D./ M.B.A. from Georgetown University Law Center and her B.B.A., summa cum laude, from Temple University. She was the first female South Asian Partner at a large law firm in the State of Delaware. She also co-founded the South Asian Women Attorney’s Network and remains faithful to promoting diversity in the legal profession. She is the current President of the South Asian Bar Association of Delaware, a NASABA chapter, and is an ongoing contributor to programming at various NASABA events. She is also active with the Delaware State Bar Association, a former ambassador of the American Bar Association’s Section of Business Law and a past recipient of the Leadership Award of the Multicultural Judges & Lawyers Section of the Delaware State Bar Association. 5. The Honorable Judge Rena Marie Van Tine, Associate Judge, Circuit Court of Cook County, Illinois, was, in 2001, the first Indian American woman to be appointed to the judiciary in the U.S. She is a graduate of New York Law School and received her undergraduate degree from Oakland University. Prior to her appointment to the bench, she was Special Counsel to the Illinois State Comptroller and an Assistant State’s Attorney, where as a prosecutor in the Complex Litigation Section of the civil division of the State’s Attorney’s Office, she litigated many high profile cases. She is currently assigned to the Child Protection Division of the court, one of the most challenging courts within Cook County, Illinois, and enjoys a reputation of being a conscientious, hard working and compassionate jurist. Her commitment to the efficient and fair administration of justice was recently acknowledged by the Illinois Supreme Court, which appointed her to its Planning and Oversight Committee for Judicial Performance Evaluations. She is a founding member of the Indian American Bar Association of Chicago, a NASABA chapter, and remains actively involved with organizations benefitting the South Asian Community and South Asian lawyers.

award recipients

3. Steven Mayo is the Executive Director of the Institute for the Study and Development of Legal Systems (ISDLS). He graduated from Louisiana State University in 1968 with a B.S. in Electrical Engineering and in 1971 with a J.D. in Civil Law. Since then he has practiced law as an Assistant U.S. Attorney and in private practice in California, Louisiana, Alaska, and Hawaii. He has taught at numerous law schools including Harvard University, Stanford University, Hastings School of Law, Louisiana State University and The University of Hawaii. While at ISDLS, he has worked extensively to initiate major legal reform in India. He is a former member and a current consultant to the Indian Supreme Court’s Mediation and Conciliation Project Committee and is primarily responsible for the implementation of Mediation programs in Courts in Delhi and Karnataka, both of which serve as models for national mediation programs. He is credited with bringing about the most significant legal process change experienced in India in decades, which hopes to ease the back log of Indian courts by providing an expeditious alternate.

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ORGANIZATIONAL ACHIEVEMENT AWARDS NASABA Enterprise Award: General Electric Company (GE)

GE has remained committed to philanthropy and support of the community, including the South Asian community both in their home countries and here in North America. It has donated Two Million Dollars to help educate children in the slums of India, and over Six Million Dollars to assist earthquake victims in Pakistan. Following the Tsunami in 2006, which devastated parts of India, GE donated Twenty Million Dollars in cash and products to assist the victims with water purification systems, power generators and medical equipment. Here in North America, GE has continued to support various Asian organizations over the years, including NASABA, via financial sponsorships. Through its generous donations, GE has continued to prove its commitment to the principles of Global Citizenship.

NASABA Law Firm Achievement Award: Schiff Hardin L.L.P.

Schiff Hardin L.L.P., is a General Practice law firm with over 400 attorneys in its offices located in Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Lake Forest, New York, San Francisco and Washington and represents clients across the U.S. and worldwide, including clients involved in the Bombay Stock Exchange with Securities and Futures' market regulations. Schiff Hardin L.L.P. has demonstrated an ongoing commitment to diversity in the legal field by supporting minority organizations, such as NASABA and the Indian American Bar Association of Chicago, in their activities and has continued to actively hire minority attorneys. Indeed, it was recognized as one of Top 100 Law Firms for Diversity in both 2006 and 2007 by Multicultural Law. It has also provided extensive pro bono services to a variety of legal service organizations. Overall, Schiff Hardin L.L.P. has proven itself to be dedicated to the community including that of South Asians.

NASABA Public Interest Organizational Achievement Award: Hate Free Zone

Hate Free Zone was founded by Pramila Jayapal following September 11, 2001, in response to the hate crimes and discrimination aimed at many minority groups including South Asians. Its stated mission is to advance the fundamental principles of democracy and justice at the local, state and national levels by building power within immigrant communities, in collaboration with key allies. Its work focuses on five primary areas: (1) empowering families and communities; (2) increasing participation in the democratic process; (3) sharing messages of equality and justice; (4) building unusual coalitions; and (5) influencing local, state and national policies. Its goal is to restore and protect civil liberties and human rights, regardless of citizenship status. During the last year, it has continued to encourage attorneys to engage in pro bono programs benefitting public interest goals and to educate individuals and groups about their legal rights.

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GUTS AWARDS NASABA Outstanding Chapter Award: South Asian Bar Association of New York (SABANY) SABANY is an organization of South Asian attorneys practicing in the New York Metropolitan region. Over the last year, SABANY has undergone a tremendous increase in the number of social and educational programs offered to its members, in part due to its revised committee structure to better organize and leverage the resources of its members. It has demonstrated a renewed focus on public interest programming and engaged in exceptional fund raising, which in turn has lead to an increase in the number of fellowships offered to law students working in the public interest field. SABANY has updated its image by revamping its website to provide even more information to its members, including upcoming events and job listings. It continues to attract and recruit new members by providing them with opportunities to participate in decision-making roles within the organization.

NASABA Outstanding Program Award: South Northern California’s Voter Registration Project




NASABA Outstanding Board Member Award: Sanjana Chopra Sanjana Chopra is an Associate in the Intellectual Property Group in the New York office of Winston & Strawn, L.L.P.. Her areas of practice encompass all aspects of protection, management and enforcement of trademarks and copyrights. She received her J.D. from Rutgers University School of Law in 2002, where she was a member of the Order of the Coif and a staff editor for the Rutgers Law Review. She received a B.A. in History and Communication, magna cum laude, from Rutgers University — Douglass College in 1999, where she was a member of Phi Beta Kappa and the Mabel Smith Douglass Honors Program. During the last year, she took the lead to redesign NASABA’s website resulting in a site which is informative, user-friendly and sophisticated. She also updated the image of NASABA by creating a new logo for the organization. Her efforts greatly exceeded those required of a NASABA Board Member.

award recipients

SABA-NC’s Voter Registration Project was launched in April of 2008 and experienced tremendous success in registering a significant number of South Asian voters in the area. It has also educated the community about the services available through SABA. By educating and registering South Asian voters in the area, SABA-NC’s Voter Registration Project ensures that the needs of the South Asian community will be acknowledged and addressed by elected officials. This project has also been instrumental in raising the local South Asian community’s awareness of its own political strength and methods to use that strength to achieve its goals.

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" your

kind of town, chicago is


Taste of Chicago • The big daddy of Chicago summer festivals, the Taste of Chicago attracts millions of visitors every year with its vast amount of good eats and Taste of Chicago entertainment.

Magnificent Mile Shopping • The Mag Mile is world known for its shopping. Lined with everything from some of Chicago’s best restaurants to the trendiest fashion, the Magnificent Mile is a shopper’s delight. Be sure to visit the Water Tower Mall on Michigan Avenue, the State Street Shopping District and the designer boutiques on Oak Street.

Wrigley Field • A cold beverage, a hot dog, a seat in the bleachers at Chicago’s historic Wrigley Field, and watching the Cubs lose. If that doesn’t say “Chicago in the summer,” what does?

Chicago Beaches • We may not have the waves,

Delaware Place

Chicago Avenue rollerblading, volleyball, relaxing and soaking up some Tiffany and Co. rays or checking out tiny swimwear, Oak Street Beach is steps away from the Magnificent Mile Sak’s Fifth Avenue and a people-watching extravaganza right in O’Hare Intl Airport the middle of a bustling Chicago. • Location: 1000 N. Lake Shore Drive at Oak Street • Wrigley Building Transportation: CTA Bus #151 Sheridan Northbound


Dog Friendliest of Chicago’s Beaches:

Belmont Harbor • Belmont Harbor underwent a major renovation in 2004, and now boasts a bike, walking and running path along with ample parking. Belmont Harbor is also home to Chicago’s Yacht Club and the city’s unofficial “dog beach” — a fenced in beach area perfect for those traveling with their canine companion.

Hancock Center Northwestern University

Tribune Tower

Lakeshore Drive

Best of Chicago Beaches: People Watching—Oak Street Beach • Whether it’s

Lake Michigan


Michigan Avenue

but with the vast blue water of Lake Michigan and the beautiful people lying out in the sun Chicago’s beaches give any in California a run for their money.

Wacker Drive

Best of Chicago Beaches for Athletics: North Avenue Beach • Chicago’s answer to Venice Beach,

North Avenue Beach has a Crunch Fitness mini-gym and a biking and running path. North Avenue Beach plays host to professional volleyball tournaments and the Chicago Air & Water Show. The busiest beach in Chicago, public transportation is advised as parking is limited. • Location: 1600 N. Lake Shore Drive at North Avenue • Transportation: CTA Bus #151 Sheridan Northbound

Navy Pier • One of the most popular tourist attractions in Chicago, Navy Pier offers tons of summer fun such as a 150-foot high Ferris wheel, Lake Michigan boat cruises, live entertainment on the Skyline Stage, and fireworks shows twice a week.


Watch the Fireworks • You don’t have to be at Navy Pier to see the fireworks that are part of their show every Wednesday night. Until Labor Day, Navy Pier hosts a firework show that can be seen along most of Chicago’s lakefront at dusk, so grab a blanket and enjoy the show. Millennium Park • Chicago’s most recent landmark, Millennium Park, is definitely worth a stroll in the summer months,

if for nothing else but to cool off by dipping your toes along the Lurie Garden foot bridge, or letting the kids get drenched in the Crown Fountain.

Buckingham Fountain • Buckingham Fountain, one of Chicago’s most recognizable landmarks, has a large 20-minute water display during the summer months at the top of every hour. Make sure to visit it at least once at night, when the display also includes multi-colored lights and music. Lincoln Park Day Trip • Lincoln Park’s vast 1,200 acres along Lake Michigan is a great spot to spend an entire Chicago day in the summer. There’s certainly plenty to do, from the Lincoln Park Zoo to the Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum to North Avenue Beach to the Lincoln Park Conservatory.

chicago guide

• Location: 3200 N. Lake Shore Drive at Belmont • Transportation: CTA Bus #146/151 Northbound

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Museums • The Museum Campus, near Soldier Field, is home to The Field

Museum and the Adler Planetarium, two excellent museums. See our museums section for more information. Also located at Museum Campus is the Shedd Aquarium, which is the world’s largest i n d o o r aquarium with more than 8,000 aquatic animals representing more than 700 species from all parts of the world. You can take a water taxi between Museum Campus and Navy Pier.

Other Sights and Attractions:



Zoos • Two of the finest zoos in the country are located in the Chicago area and

Adler Planetarium & Astronomy Museum

both are highly recommended. First, on the city’s north side is Lincoln Park Zoo. This free zoo is open every day of the year. While it is one of the oldest zoos in the country, it is also one of the most modern. Brookfield Zoo, located in Brookfield, Illinois, just west of Chicago, is situated on 216 acres of beautifully landscaped grounds, featuring over 2,000 animals.

R estau rant I deas


Cheesecake Factory: 312.337.1107. Located in the lower level of the John Hancock Center, this restaurant offers a wide variety of food and cheesecakes. They do not accept reservations so please see the concierge for a priority seating pass. American cuisine.

L’appetito: 312.337.0691. Located in the lower level of the John Hancock Center, this restaurant offers a variety of deli sandwiches, Italian desserts and imported Italian foods. Deli. Oak Tree: 312.751.1988. Located on the top floor of the 900 N. Michigan Ave. building. Serving breakfast, lunch and dinner. American cuisine. Foodlife Food Court: 312.335.3663. Located in the mezzanine level of the Water Tower Place, the food court offers 13 world kiosks with an emphasis towards ethnic and healthy food. A great place for anyone that has different tastes and wants something relatively quick. Mike Ditka’s Grill: 312.587.8989. From the corner of Michigan and Delaware go 1 block south on Michigan Ave. to Chestnut and turn right and walk a ½ block. American sports grill. Bistro 110: 312.266.3110. Make a left on Michigan blocks to Pearson. Make a right and walk a ½ block.


Ave. and walk south 2 French Bistro.

Giordano’s Pizza: 312.951.0747. Great pizza and they will deliver to the hotel. You can order your pizza before you get seated. When it’s busy it can take up to 40 minutes to get your pizza from the time you get seated. From the corner of Michigan Ave. and Delaware make a left and walk 4 blocks south to Superior and make a right and walk 1 block. Pizza. Chalfins: 312.943.0034. Make a left on Delaware and walk a ½ block to Mies Van Der Rohe and make a right and walk 1 block to Chestnut. Make a left on Chestnut and walk a ½ block. Chalfins is downstairs at the Seneca Hotel. Traditional Jewish Deli. McCormick & Schmick’s: 312.397.9500. Make a left on Michigan Ave. and go south 1 block to Chestnut. Make a right and walk west 1 block. Seafood. Tempo: 312.943.4373. Serving breakfast, lunch and dinner 24/7 days a week. Cash only. Make a left on Michigan Ave., and walk 1 block south to Chestnut. Make a right and walk 3 blocks west on Chestnut. American cuisine. • Please check with the concierge for hours or reservations •

Brookfield Zoo Buckingham Fountain Chicago Blues Festival

Signature Room/Signature Lounge @ the 95th John Hancock Center: 312.787.9596. Across the street from the Westin, this restaurant located on the 95th floor of the John Hancock Center has a spectacular view. The lounge is more casual and less expensive with a limited menu. American cuisine.


Amazing Chicago Funhouse Maze

Chicago Cultural Center ESPN Zone Frank Lloyd Wright Home and Studio Harold Washington Library Center Lincoln Park Zoo Magnificent Mile Millennium Park Navy Pier Ogilvie Transportation Center Ravinia Festival Sears Tower Skydeck Shedd Aquarium Six Flags Great America Taste of Chicago The Art Institute of Chicago The Hancock Observatory Time Escape at Navy Pier Union Station Venetian Night

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Important Phone Numbers Local Hospitals:

Local Area Pharmacies:

Northwestern Memorial Hospital 251 E. Huron, Galter and Feinberg Pavilions

Parkway Drugs 680 N Lake Shore Dr # 1

(312) 926-2000


St. Joseph's Hospital 2900 N. Lake Shore Drive 773-665-3000

Walgreens 342 E Illinois St 312-467-0485 Prestige Pharmacy Inc 260 E Chestnut St

Rush Presbyterian/St. Lukes Hospital 1650 W. Harrison (312) 942-5000 Children's Memorial Hospital 2300 Children's Plaza 773.880.4000

312-337-2617 Dominick's Finer Foods 255 E Grand Ave 312-279-1305 Discount Prescription Svc Inc 233 E Erie St 312-266-2600

Post Office Locations: US Post Office 227 E Ontario St, 312-642-3576 US Post Office 875 N Michigan Ave,

Checker Taxi Association Inc. • (312) 733-4790 Yellow Cab Affiliation Inc.. • (773) 907-0020 Wolley Cab Association Inc. • (877) 888-8294


chicago guide


Local Cab Companies:

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CTA Schedules are available at stations and at the hotel.

Conference Book Designed by Tomato Graphics • Printed by R. R. Donnelley

NASABA Program (excerpt)  

An excerpt from the program for the 2008 annual North American South Asian Bar Association event. Includes sponsor ads, bios, event schedule...

NASABA Program (excerpt)  

An excerpt from the program for the 2008 annual North American South Asian Bar Association event. Includes sponsor ads, bios, event schedule...