Celebrating Our AAPI Attorneys

May 28, 2021

May is Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage Month, an opportunity to listen to Asian American and Pacific Islander perspectives, learn about the diversity within Asian American and Pacific Islander communities, support AAPI organizations, and pay tribute to the contributions and achievements of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders in the United States.

This month, we featured the perspectives of some of Keller Rohrback's Asian American and Pacific Islander attorneys, who spoke about what being an AAPI attorney means to them and what their hopes are for future AAPI attorneys. Read their insight below.

Benson Wong

"I'm pleased that the number of Asian American attorneys has increased significantly throughout my career, but that number only represents 5% of practicing attorneys in the US. There's still a long way to go to reflect the diversity of our community," said KR partner Benson Wong.

Benson has spent his career guiding the formation of businesses and working as legal counsel for a number of non-profit organizations. He currently serves as Mayor of Mercer Island and on KR's Executive Committee.

Read more about Benson.

David Ko

"I'm very proud to be a Korean-American attorney and a minority partner at a firm like KR in a field lacking AAPI representation. Our field has made great strides in the hiring of AAPI lawyers, but there are fewer leaders, especially litigators who are partners," said David Ko.

"Every time I step into a courtroom, deposition, or meeting full of lawyers who don't look like me, I am driven to make my voice heard. Litigation is fueled by perspective, and my vantage point as a Korean-American born in Seoul helps move the legal engine forward," he continued.

"I'm really looking forward to the next decade to see whether we can execute the well-intentioned perspectives of many lawyers who want to see more diverse representation in leadership. I hope that AAPI attorneys step up to the challenge and emerge as pillars of the legal field.

Read more about David.

Rachel Morowitz

"Being a Pacific Islander and Fijian attorney means challenging the notion of what a lawyer looks like. It means making space for the Pasifika community in an industry where few Pacific Islanders are represented," said Rachel Morowitz.

"I struggle to identify with the term 'AAPI' because it encompasses over 50 ethnic groups. I appreciate the usefulness of the term for coalition building, but I look forward to the day where members of the AAPI community can be seen in their specificities," she continued.

"As an advocate for DEI efforts in the legal industry and more broadly, I strongly believe that the more Pacific Islanders attorneys there are, the more diverse and intersectional our work will become. Helping make this a reality is a key part of my life's work."

Read more about Rachel.

Natida Sribhibhadh

"Being an AAPI attorney means making space for our community in a field that wasn’t created with us in mind. It means embracing our ethnicities, inspiring the next generation of AAPI attorneys, & creating initiatives to diversify our practice," said Natida Sribhibhadh.

"The greater our presence, the greater the realization that the AAPI community is not one, large homogenous group – that the term 'AAPI' ambitiously tries to encompass 50+ ethnicities that are wonderfully diverse, with unique perspectives to bring to the table," she continued.

"I hope that future AAPI lawyers continue to break down stereotypes and move into leadership positions. I look forward to watching our community play a greater role in shaping the legal profession for years to come."

Read more about Natida.