As the Boston Bar Association's efforts to
identify models of excellence in diversity and inclusion initiatives gain
traction, the BBA today named the eight attorneys who will serve on the 2012
Beacon Award Selection Committee. The BBA's Beacon Award was established just
two years ago to recognize institutions or individuals who have an exceptional
impact in advancing diversity and inclusion in one or more of these areas: legal
scholarship, recruitment and retention practices, pro bono, community service,
legal advocacy, and legislative advocacy. The award recipient must either
be located in Massachusetts or have had a significant impact in Massachusetts
and or the Greater Boston community.
"The purpose of the Beacon Award is to raise the bar
for excellence in diversity and inclusion efforts in every facet of the legal
profession," said Colin Owyang, National Grid USA, Chair of the BBA Beacon Award
Committee. "Diversity and inclusion is a journey -- actually an adventure
of constant exploration of new frontiers."
The charge of the 8 person Beacon Award
Selection Committee, itself a microcosm of diversity and inclusion in the legal
profession, will be to "go beyond the job" in its work to spotlight programs
that can serve as catalysts for continuous innovation in diversity and
inclusion. Based on the large number of nominations the Committee has received
in just the first two years, the Committee members will spend a significant
amount of time conducting due diligence on prospective nominees.
If you have someone you'd like to nominate for the Beacon Award,
please contact Heather Leary by June 1, 2012: firstname.lastname@example.org
Committee members are as follows:
Colin Owyang is Senior Vice President and
General Counsel at National Grid USA. He previously served as Vice President of
Global Records Management and Assistant General Counsel for Commercial
Litigation; Director and Counsel of Merger Integration and Strategy
Implementation; and Assistant to the CEO. Prior to joining National Grid, Colin
was an Assistant U.S. Attorney in Boston, a Special Assistant U.S. Attorney in
Washington, DC, a Trial Attorney in the Environmental Crimes Section of the U.S.
Department of Justice, an associate at Foley Hoag and a judicial clerk for three
federal judges in Boston and Detroit, MI. Colin serves on the BBA Council and on
the Boards of the Boston Lawyers' Group and the New England Legal Foundation. He
is a member of the External Diversity Committee of the Middlesex District
Attorney's Office. Colin is also on the legal committees of the Edison Electric
Institute and the American Gas Association where he serves on the Leadership
Colin is a graduate of Yale College, Yale University and the University of
Michigan Law School.
Navjeet K. Bal
Navjeet is a member
of Nixon Peabody's Public Finance group and has extensive experience serving as
bond counsel, underwriter's counsel, and borrower's counsel in publicly and
privately placed debt financings for governmental, quasi-public, and nonprofit
borrowers. She was formerly the Commissioner of Revenue for the Commonwealth of
Massachusetts, a post she was appointed to in February 2008 by Governor Patrick.
She is also a Board member of the Federation of Tax Administrators. Prior to her
appointment, Navjeet practiced at Mintz Levin for 17 years in its public finance
department, where she co-founded Mintz's Domestic Violence Project. Navjeet is
currently a Board member of the Legal Advocacy and Resource Center, the Lawyers'
Committee for Civil Rights, and was appointed in February 2010 by Chief Justice
Marshall to the Access to Justice Commission. Navjeet is a member of the South
Asian Bar Association of Greater Boston Advisory Board, and was a 2008 recipient
of the National South Asian Bar Association's Cornerstone Award. She is also a
member of the BBA's Public Policy Development Working Group.
Navjeet graduated from Williams College and Northeastern University School of
Cristina E. Gonzalez
Cristina is Senior Company Counsel
at Staples, Inc. She is responsible for all board and public company matters,
corporate governance and securities compliance. In addition to her core
responsibilities, Cristina serves as co-Chair of HOLA, Staples' associate
resource group for Hispanics and Latinos and serves as a member of Staples'
Global Diversity Council. In 2010, she served as founding co-Chair of Staples'
Legal Department’s Diversity Committee. Her efforts helped Staples' Legal
Department be recognized as a 2010 Employer of Choice by the Minority Corporate
Counsel Association. Prior to joining Staples, Cristina served in similar legal
roles at two technology companies. She also worked in the corporate and
securities department of the law firm, Bingham McCutchen, for approximately
eight years Cristina currently serves as a mentor in the BBA Diversity and
Inclusion Section's Group Mentoring Program.
Cristina is a graduate of George Washington University and Georgetown
University Law School.
Anthony E. Hubbard
Anthony is a Member in the Corporate
& Securities Section at Mintz, Levin, Cohn, Ferris, Glovsky and Popeo, P.C.
where he provides general corporate law and business advice to public and
private corporations with regard to financings, mergers and acquisitions, tender
offers, corporate governance, public disclosure, and federal and state
securities law compliance. Before joining the firm, Anthony served as General
Counsel to Designs, Inc., a publicly traded apparel retailer. As in-house
counsel, he advised senior executives and board members concerning corporate
transactions, corporate governance, related party transactions, executive
compensation matters, and public disclosure. In 2011 and 2012, Anthony has been
selected by his peers to be included in The Best Lawyers in America for his
expertise in non-profit/charities law.
Anthony is a graduate of Seattle University, Haas Graduate School of Business
Administration and Boalt Hall School of Law at the University of California,
Berkeley (both in 1985).
Renée M. Landers
Renée is a Professor of Health Law,
Constitutional Law and Administrative Law at Suffolk University Law School and
is faculty director of the school's Health and Biomedical Law Concentration.
Before joining the Law School faculty, Renée was with the Boston law firm of
Ropes & Gray. She previously had served as deputy general counsel for the
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and as deputy assistant attorney
general at the U.S. Department of Justice. Before entering government service,
Renée taught at Boston College Law School. She is a past president of the Boston
Bar Association and immediate past Co-Chair of the BBA's Diversity &
Inclusion Section. Renée has served on the boards of many organizations
including the Board of Directors at WGBH, the Boston Bar Foundation's Board of
Trustees, the Board of Overseers for the Dartmouth Medical School, and the Board
of Trustees at the Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary and the Beth Israel
Deaconess Medical Center. She is a former president of the Harvard Board of
Renée is a graduate of Radcliffe College and Boston College Law School.
Christina Ely Miller
Chief of District Courts and Community Prosecutions for the Suffolk County
District Attorney's Office, where she oversees the office's operations in the
Boston Municipal and District Courts, manages the hiring and training of
Assistant District Attorneys, and supervises hate crime prosecutions. She has
prosecuted criminal cases in the Appellate, Superior, and District Courts of the
Commonwealth through her work in the Suffolk, Norfolk, and Essex District
Attorneys' Offices. Christina is a member and former Co-Chair of the BBA's
Criminal Law Section, during which time she organized a number of BBA programs,
represented the BBA on the Governor's Anti-Crime Council, and contributed to the
Boston Bar Journal. Christina is an Ex Officio Chair for the Massachusetts
Lesbian and Gay Bar Association and served on its board for six years. In
addition, she is currently serving as Co-Chair of the BBA Diversity &
Inclusion Section's Affinity Bar Relations Subcommittee.
Christina graduated from Ohio Wesleyan University and
Northeastern University School of Law.
E. Macey Russell
Macey is a Partner at Choate Hall &
Steward LLP where he represents financial institutions, banks, businesses and
corporations in disputes involving contracts, securities, investments, and
lending arrangements, and in class action matters in state court, federal court
and in arbitrations. In addition, Macey co-chairs the firm’s Diversity Committee
and is a member of the firm’s Hiring Committee. Macey serves on the Judicial
Nominating Commission and was appointed Chairman of the Commission by the
Governor in 2011. In 2011, the American Bar Foundation named him a Fellow, which
is reserved for one third of one percent of attorneys in his jurisdiction. He
currently serves as Co-Chair of the BBA’s Diversity and Inclusion Section. The
Burton Foundation and Library of Congress honored Macey with a 2011 Burton Award
for excellence in legal writing for his co-authored article “Developing Great
Minority Lawyers for the Next Generation.” Since 1989, Mr. Russell has been a
frequent advisor and contributor to Harvard University Law School’s Trial
Advocacy Workshop. Macey currently serves on the board of several organizations
including The Boston Lawyers Group, The Board of Trustees at Suffolk University,
The Boston Bar Foundation Grants Committee, The Fellows of the American Bar
Foundation, Board of Overseers at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, and
Board of Fellows at Trinity College.
Macey is a graduate of Trinity College and Suffolk University Law School.
William F. Sinnott
Corporation Counsel for the City of Boston, where he oversees all legal matters
for the City. Prior to his appointment as Corporation Counsel, Bill was a
partner in a small litigation firm, an Assistant U.S. Attorney, and an Assistant
District Attorney. He has served on the BBA's Diversity and Inclusion Steering
Committee, as a mentor in its Group Mentoring Program, and on the BBA Summer
Jobs Steering Committee. He also served as Chair of the BBA's Committee on Legal
Services for Military Personnel, Veterans and Families. Bill has been a speaker
or panelist at a number of BBA programs, including the Public Interest Leaders
Program, the Building Better Lawyers symposium and the BBA Leadership Retreat. A
member of the Boston Lawyers Group Executive Committee, he also serves as a
Trustee at Massachusetts Maritime Academy. Bill is also a member of the BBA's
Bill is a graduate of Holy Cross College and Suffolk
University Law School.