» 2016 Social Justice Symposium

Blinded Justice: A Discussion About Whether The Legal System Values and Protects Diverse Communities

Thursday, March 3, 2016
1 - 8 p.m.
Kennedy Hall, Room 237

Presented by the Chapman University Dale E. Fowler School of Law Diversity Initiative Symposium and Publication


Chapman University is a State Bar of California approved MCLE provider and certifies that this activity has been approved for MCLE credit in the amount of 5.5 units of MCLE credit, including elimination of bias credit.

*Due to unforeseen personal circumstances, Paulette Brown will be unable to join the symposium. 

Symposium panelists will discuss unequal justice in three substantive areas of law, addressing how diverse communities are impacted, ways they are responding, and exploring legal and policy solutions:

Panel I: Inequality: The Immigration and Asylum Process (1 - 2:30 p.m.) (View webcast)

Moderators: Darrell P. White, Esq., Orange County Hispanic Bar Association Chief Financial Officer; and Sasha Tymkowicz, Esq., Orange County Hispanic Bar Association Chief Financial Officer Board of Directors

  • Munmeeth Soni, Esq., Immigration advocate with Public Law Center
  • Farida Chehata, Esq.,Immigrants Rights Attorney at Council on American-Islamic Relations
  • Julie Marzouk, Clinical Professor of Immigration at Fowler School of Law
  • Jorge Gutierrez, Founder and Director of Familia: Trans Queer Liberation Movement
  • Gary Silbiger, Esq., National Lawyers Guild, Immigration Court Watch Committee

Panel II: Impracticality: The School to Prison Pipeline (2:35 - 4:05 p.m.) (View webcast)

Moderator: Michael Gregg, Esq., Thurgood Marshall Bar Association President

  • James Bell, Esq., Founder and Director of the W. Haywood Burns Institute
  • Elizabeth Calvin, Esq., Senior Advocate for Children's Rights at Human Rights Watch
  • Abraham Colunga, Tanisha Denard and Juan Peña, Members of Youth Justice Coalition, Community organization dedicated to systemic reform of the justice system that will improve outcomes for youth and families

Panel III: Impunity: The Criminal and Civil Justice Response to Violence Against Minorities (4:10 - 5:40 p.m.) (View webcast)

Moderator: Bobby Dexter, Professor at Fowler School of Law

  • John L. Burris, Esq., Civil rights advocate and author of Blue vs. Black, Civil Rights Attorney for: Rodney King, Tupac Shakur and Oscar Grant
  • Margaret Prescod, Founder of Black Alliance Fighting Back Serial Killers and host of Sojourner Truth radio show on Pacifica Radio
  • Nana Gyamfi, Esq., Civil rights attorney and community activist

Dinner Keynote (6 - 8 p.m.) (View webcast)

Introduction: Kathy Esfahani, Esq., Senior Research Attorney at California Court of Appeal, 4th District, Division III

  • Hamid Khan, Founder and Former Executive Director of South Asian Network, Campaign Coordinator for Stop LAPD Spying

Inquiries may be addressed to the Submissions Coordinators at lawdiversityinitiative@chapman.edu.

+ - About the Diversity Initiative

The Diversity Symposium and Publication Initiative provides two forums for stakeholders, practitioners and academics to collaboratively discuss barriers and solutions to social justice issues – an annual Social Justice Symposium and an online publication.  

Our goals are that the symposium and subsequent online publication will: (1) foster coalitions for positive change in the practice of law in Orange County and the wider legal community; (2) provide a resource for practitioners litigating or lobbying on the issues addressed; and (3) foster ties between the Chapman University Dale E. Fowler School of Law community and Orange County practitioners, academics and community leaders who are involved in matters of social justice and diversity in the law.

+ - Article Submission Process

The Diversity Initiative seeks articles from stakeholders, practitioners, policy makers, academics, judges, lawyers, political leaders and other experts. After acceptance our editors will work with the author to prepare the article for publication. Articles have no mandatory minimum page count.


Submissions may address any area of diversity and social justice. Authors are not limited to those topics addressed in the symposium or to the social justice concerns of any particular geographic local.  


Please submit article on or before February 1, 2016 to be considered for our inaugural publication.

Via Email      

All articles should be submitted via email to lawdiversityinitiative@gmail.com.


Inquiries may be addressed to the Submissions Coordinators at lawdiversityinitiative@chapman.edu or call Hugo Ivan Salazar at (619) 254-1261.


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Hamid Khan

Keynote Speaker

Hamid Khan, Founder and Former Executive Director of South Asian Network, Campaign Coordinator for Stop LAPD Spying