The Founding of JABA: Getting Judges Appointed

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The Chinese lawyers had already formed SCCLA (Southern California Chinese Lawyers Association). The Hispanic lawyers had already formed the Mexican American Bar Association. And the Black lawyers had already formed Langston, the Black bar association. […] And Ed thought that it was really important if we wanted to make a significant impact on getting judges appointed to the bench—JAs appointed—that we really had to form a bar association. And we were sort of following in the footsteps of those other minority bar associations. And there was Minority Bar Association from the very beginning, and that’s how we all got to know each other. Bob Roberson was president of the…of Langston, Ben Aranda was head of the Mexican American Bar Association, and I can’t remember who was president of the Southern California Chinese Lawyers Association, but we all knew each other and tried to help each other in terms of organization, in terms of trying to get ahead, and I really think one of the primary purposes of the Japanese American Bar Association—formation—was to encourage appointments to the bench.

Date: July 10, 2012
Location: California, US
Interviewer: Lawrence Lan
Contributed by: Watase Media Arts Center, Japanese American National Museum; Japanese American Bar Association

JABA law minority

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