The South Asian Bar Association of North America June 28 through June 30 celebrated its 15th annual conference, titled “Carrying the Torch,” in New York City.
The conference was attended by many dignitaries, including Rep. Grace Meng, SABA’s immediate past president Rishi Bagga, and Indian American judges Raja Rajeswari, Sanket Bulsara, Sri Srinivasan, Raj Chatterjee and Cathy Bissoon.
“We now live in a time when legal protections for immigrants are under attack; when nativist sentiments and rhetoric have sought to divide those who were born here from those who were not; at a time when our community’s lawyers must Carry the Torch for the South Asian immigrant community and other immigrant communities,” Bagga said in his opening remarks at the conference. “And a time when SABA must continue to work to ensure greater diversity and inclusion with the legal profession at large.”
The conference panels featured personal insights and learnings from luminaries in the South Asian legal community including judges, law firm leaders, in-house counsel and lawyers making waves inside and outside the profession.
It also focused on ways South Asian attorneys could break the current boundaries within the legal profession, SABA added.
The conference closed with a gala featuring keynote speaker Sen. Cory Booker who reminded SABA members that we continually have the choice “to accept things as they are or take responsibility for changing them.”
Preet Bharara, the former U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York, was also a featured speaker and echoed the comments of Sen. Booker – encouraging SABA members to continue “joining together in solidarity … by taking the effort to speak, march, vote or do other things necessary to fight for what they believe in,” according to SABA.
The conference also marked a change in leadership, with a swearing in ceremony for new president Sundeep Sandhu and executive committee members.