Noche de Gala 2019
San Francisco La Raza Lawyers Association’s Noche de Gala. Noche de Gala is a yearly dinner that raises money for the Bay Area Latino Lawyers Fund (BALLF), and celebrates the Latino legal community. BALLF provides scholarships to Latino law students committed to working on behalf of underrepresented communities.
This year's honorees include William R. Tamayo, Beatriz Mejia, and Sergio Garcia! The night will also include music from The Coolerators. The Coolerators are made up of those legal legends: Bill Tamayo on the keyboard and accordion, Elizabeth Cabraser on drums, Assemblymember David Chiu on violin, Judge Brad Seligman on guitar and harcmonica, Bob Hirsch on guitar with Eva Paterson, Paula Collins, and Cheryl Stevens on vocals.
Date/Time: Thursday, April 4, 2019, 6:00pm-8:30pm.
Location: InterContinental San Francisco 888 Howard Street, San Francisco, CA 94103
Buy your Sponsorship or tickets here.
Thank you to our sponsors: Google, Farella Braun + Martel, Cooley, Morrison & Foerster, Fenwick & West, and Foley & Lardner LLP
Sergio Garcia is being honored with the Lifetime Achievement Award. Sergio has served as Senior Vice President and General Counsel for publicly traded medical technology companies and as a trusted advisor to privately held technology companies and their boards of directors. Sergio has also served as a partner and leader at international law firms, Fenwick & West LLP and ReedSmith LLP, where he advised technology businesses and investors on structuring and negotiating a broad range of strategic transactions, including M&A, technology transactions and patent licensing agreements. A hallmark of Sergio’s leadership at law firms was his commitment to diversity, including developing strategies and programs for increasing the number of attorneys of color and mentoring young diverse lawyers.
Along with his career as a senior executive, general counsel and law firm leader, Sergio has worked to advance equity and to promote civil rights through pro bono legal service and dedicated service on nonprofit boards, including Public Advocates, the Latino Policy and Politics Initiative, California Bar Foundation, Bar Association of San Francisco, Hispanic Heritage Foundation, Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund and Centro Legal de la Raza. Sergio also served on Mayor Gavin Newsom’s San Francisco – Bangalore Sister City Board of Directors for several years.
Sergio has been recognized for his leadership in the legal profession and the business community, including receiving the prestigious Maestro Award for Leadership by Latino Leaders Magazine and the Pro Bono Legal Services Award by MALDEF.
Sergio is a native of Los Angeles and is the son of Mexican immigrants. Sergio received his JD from Berkeley Law School and his BA from Stanford University in International Relations. Sergio was a Fulbright Scholar, with a focus on teaching and researching in the areas of comparative constitutional law and antitrust law.
William R. Tamayo (Bill Tamayo) is being honored with the Ally Award. Bill is the District Director of the United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. Bille oversees and directs the EEOC’s investigations, administration and program in Northern California, Northern Nevada, Oregon, Washington, Alaska, Idaho and Montana. He served as EEOC Regional Attorney from June 1995 through June 2015 directing the District’s litigation. From 1979 – 1995 he was a staff attorney and the Managing Attorney for the Asian Law Caucus, Inc.
During his tenure as Regional Attorney, the EEOC San Francisco District obtained significant recoveries including among others,EEOC v. Tanimura & Antle ($1.855 million for sexually harassed and retaliated farm workers), EEOC v. Lowe’s Home Improvement ($1.72 million for sexual harassment of store workers), EEOC v. Kovacevich “5” Farms ($1.68 million for female farm workers denied hire) and obtained a nearly $1 million verdict for a farm worker who was sexually harassed (raped) and retaliated against, EEOC v. Harris Farms.
Bill received his J.D. from the University of California, Davis, School of Law, and his B.A. from San Francisco State University.
Beatriz Mejia's practice focuses on complex business disputes and general business litigation. In recent years, Beatriz’s practice has focused on international cartel investigations and related litigation. Her experience includes representing both corporations and individuals in government investigations brought by antitrust authorities around the world, including the US, Europe, Korea and Japan, and in litigation brought in multi-district and related class actions. Beatriz also has represented clients in antitrust litigation involving a range of federal and state antitrust claims, including monopolization claims. She currently serves as Northern California head of Cooley's business litigation practice.
Beatriz is an active member of the Hispanic National Bar Association, the California La Raza Lawyers Association and La Raza Lawyers Association of San Francisco. She is a former president and executive board member of the California La Raza Lawyers Association and is currently serving as treasurer. She is also a former board of directors member of La Raza Lawyers Association of San Francisco. Beatriz is currently serving as a board member for Centro Legal de La Raza, a legal services agency in Oakland. She is also a board member of the Association of Business Trial Lawyers and vice chair of the Cartel & Criminal Practice Committee, America Bar Association's Antitrust Section. Beatriz is currently serving as a member of the Magistrate Judge Merit Selection Panel for the Northern District of California.
This year’s image was created by Maria Blanco. María is executive director of the University of California Immigrant Legal Services Center. Launched in November 2014, the center provides legal services to undocumented students on nine UC campuses. Previously, she served as executive director of the Chief Justice Earl Warren Institute on Race, Ethnicity and Diversity at UC Berkeley Boalt Hall School of Law, and before that as executive director of the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights of the San Francisco Bay Area. She was counsel for the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund (1998–2003). She served on President Barack Obama’s transition team. Her undergraduate and law degrees are both from the University of California, Berkeley.