Boalt Law Students Launch Dale Minami Fellowship

The Asian Pacific American Law Student Association (APALSA) at the University of California, Berkeley’s Boalt Hall School of Law will Friday, Jan. 25, hold a fundraiser for their inaugural Dale Minami Boalt Alumni Fellowship, named after the prominent attorney and Boalt Hall alumnus.

Speakers at the event include Boalt Hall’s Dean Christopher Edley, Jr. and Assistant Dean for Student Services Victoria Ortiz, Asian American Bar Association president Edwin Prather, San Francisco school board member Jane Kim and Bingham McCutchen partner Charlene “Chuck” Shimada. The 7 p.m. sold-out dinner will be at the Empress of China, 838 Grant Avenue, in San Francisco’s Chinatown.

The Minami Fellowship ( will support outstanding Asian American students who commit to working in the public interest sector after graduation.  Boalt Hall’s APALSA is the largest student-run organization at the school and largest APALSA chapter in the nation, has been funding public interest fellowships since the 1990s. The group is expanding its fundraising efforts to achieve the goals of endowing the fellowship and increasing the award amount.

“We’d like this dinner to be a new tradition where Boalt APALSA alumni can network while supporting a cause that pays tribute to our organization’s social justice roots,” said event organizer Vina Ha, a Boalt 2L.

Minami is a partner with Minami Tamaki LLP ( in San Francisco and specializes in personal injury and entertainment law.

He has been involved in significant litigation involving the civil rights of Asian Pacific Americans and other minorities, including Korematsu v. United States, a lawsuit to overturn the 40-year-old conviction for refusal to obey exclusion orders aimed at Japanese Americans during WWII, originally upheld by US Supreme Court in landmark decisions, United Pilipinos for Affirmative Action v. California Blue Shield, the first class action employment lawsuit brought by Asian Pacific Americans on behalf of Asian Pacific Americans, Spokane JACL v. Washington State University, a class action on behalf of  Asian Pacific Americans to establish an Asian American Studies program at Washington State University and Nakanishi v. UCLA, a claim for unfair denial of tenure which resulted in the granting of tenure after several hearing and widespread publicity over discrimination in academia.

A co-founder of the Asian Law Caucus, a co-founder of the Asian American Bar Association of the Greater Bay Area, the Asian Pacific Bar of California and the Coalition of Asian Pacific Americans, Dale has received numerous awards including the American Bar Association’s 2003 Thurgood Marshall Award and the 2003 ACLU Civil Liberties Award.

Dale has been recognized as one of the top personal injury lawyers in the Bay Area. He was selected by Law & Politics Magazine as one of the Top 100 Super Lawyers, in 2005 and 2007, one of the Super Lawyers for 2004, 2005 and 2006 in Northern California in the Personal Injury category, one of the Top Lawyers in the Bay Area in the Personal Injury category by Bay Area Lawyer Magazine in 2006 and one of the 500 hundred Best Lawyers in America by Lawdragon Magazine in 2005.

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