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Pro Bono

April 15, 2021

Gibson Dunn Joins New Pro Bono Initiative to Combat Anti-Asian Violence in Partnership with Industry Peers and Advocacy Organizations

We are thrilled to announce Gibson Dunn’s participation as a member of The Alliance for Asian American Justice (“The Alliance”), a national pro bono initiative committed to standing up for victims, and preventing future acts, of anti-Asian hate. Gibson Dunn is joined by a group of Fortune 1000 General Counsel and over 40 law firms in this important effort. The Alliance will be co-chaired by Gibson Dunn partner Debra Wong Yang and White & Case partner Tai Park. Deb will also serve on The Alliance’s Board of Directors alongside Tai; Don H. Liu, Executive Vice President and Chief Legal & Risk Officer of Target Corporation.; Wilson Chu, Partner, McDermott Will & Emery and Brian A. Sun, Partner, Norton Rose Fulbright. The Alliance will coordinate and drive law firm pro bono resources on behalf of victims to assist and support them in obtaining legal remedies. This can include providing victims with counsel to bring lawsuits to seek compensatory and other civil remedies or working with law enforcement to ensure that perpetrators are held accountable, where appropriate. The Alliance will also identify additional resources, when relevant, that will help victims navigate this challenging time, including specialized legal services, social services, and other community support. Initial case intake will be conducted by The National Asian Pacific American Bar Association, Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund, Asian Americans Advancing Justice (AAAJ), and frontline legal and community organizations, before being referred to The Alliance. We are grateful to expand our partnerships with these organizations through our work with The Alliance and we welcome you to join in this important effort.
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March 18, 2021

A Statement in Support of the Asian American Community

As we have now passed the one-year milestone of navigating life in a global pandemic, we have been confronted with a seemingly endless barrage of tragedies and challenges across the world.  Last June, Gibson Dunn reaffirmed our commitment to combating racism by launching our Racial Justice and Equity Initiative and formalizing our pre-existing efforts in this space.  We are proud of the firm’s response to confronting racial injustice and hateful incidents impacting our communities.  And as the hateful incidents continue to tragically grow in number, so grows the legitimate anger, hurt, distrust, fear and public outrage of those in our community who have been, and continue to be, targeted.  We stood in solidarity with our Black American community then, and we must now stand in solidarity with our Asian American community given the recent surge in anti-Asian racially-motivated attacks. Stop AAPI Hate recently released data showing that between March 2000 and February 2021, nearly 3,800 firsthand accounts of anti-Asian incidents were reported.  Sadly, there continues to be an uptick in attacks against the Asian community, and more specifically, disturbing attacks against the elderly and most vulnerable.  Click here to read the newly-issued Stop AAPI Hate report.  We must do all that we can to ensure that such injustices will be prevented moving forward. Fighting for a more inclusive and equitable future is always a work in progress, and as we continue to navigate the shifting social landscape, Gibson Dunn remains steadfast in our commitment to combating racial injustices while taking affirmative measures to engender greater equity among the most marginalized.  We must recognize and address anti-Asian bias and racial intolerance.  We must ensure that the Asian community is included in our efforts to combat racism in all of its ugly forms.  And finally, we must amplify the diverse experiences of Asian Americans – like many other communities, theirs is not a monolithic experience and as such, we must take the time to understand the deep and painful history of discrimination faced by Asian Americans, and to stand in solidarity with the community to fight for a more inclusive and equitable future. The firm is proud to have longstanding partnerships with many Asian American community organizations, including but not limited to the Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund (AALDEF), a New York-based national organization founded in 1974 which aims to protect and promote the civil rights of Asian Americans, and Asian Americans Advancing Justice - Los Angeles (AAAJ-LA), the largest Asian American legal and civil rights organization in the country.  We will make monetary contributions to these organizations and others like Stop AAPI Hate which are on the frontlines combating anti-Asian sentiments.  Katie Marquart is also working alongside our Asian American partners in an effort led by Debra Wong Yang to further engage in this important work.  We encourage you to join in our efforts as they continue to grow and scale in size. Gibson Dunn remains committed to championing racial justice and equity, and to taking a stand against racial intolerance. We will continue pushing the needle on behalf of all marginalized communities, and to combat hatred and discrimination wherever we see it.
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December 22, 2020

Pro Bono Newsletter – Racial Justice Initiative (December 2020)

This last year has brought with it unprecedented challenges to our personal and professional lives as we sought to deal with the widespread ramifications of the coronavirus pandemic. Amidst this backdrop, we all watched in horror as the brutal killing of George Floyd by the police was captured on camera, sparking activism, protests, and discussions about racism and inequality in the United States and around the world, including here at Gibson Dunn. Immediately the firm spoke out and, more importantly, acted to reaffirm its commitment to addressing and tackling racial justice and equity issues. As part of that, we refocused and recommitted our efforts to take on pro bono matters that directly impact systemic racism and racial justice, including police reform, criminal justice reform, equity in education and health care, and much more. We have also launched several racial justice-focused pro bono collaborations with many of the Firm’s corporate clients. In the past six months, nearly 400 lawyers have dedicated more than 16,000 hours to over 50 matters dedicated to achieving racial equity. As we all know, when this Firm puts its mind to a cause, we can achieve great things. And, just as we have with issues like LGBTQ rights and immigrant rights, Gibson Dunn is dedicated to playing a meaningful role in the fight against policies, practices, and actions that produce unequitable outcomes for people of color. Together we will achieve lasting, real change. View Newsletter
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July 30, 2020

Pro Bono Newsletter – Coronavirus Response Efforts (July 2020)

When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, it introduced unimaginable challenges into all our lives.  But for those living in poverty or within marginalized communities, the impact of the disease was especially devastating. Gibson Dunn has remained steadfast throughout, while also pivoting and adapting to meet the needs of the moment, reaching out to help those most dramatically impacted and doing what we could to help.  Since March 2020, over 300 Gibson Dunn lawyers have dedicated more than 8,000 pro bono hours to these Coronavirus-response efforts.  By coming together during this challenging time we hope that we have made a difference in the lives of our pro bono clients, as well as in the broader communities in which we all live. Over the course of the last few months we have also seen the uprising of a powerful racial justice movement that has captured the hearts of people around the world.  Gibson Dunn has met this moment by recommitting to working towards racial justice with an overwhelming collective energy.  In just a few short weeks we have taken on new projects and cases that address a variety of racial justice issues, and put in place teams and structure to do so much more.  We look forward to seeing what is still to come in this important fight.  As the Firm charges ahead to tackle racial justice and systemic oppression, we also want to reflect on all that we have already accomplished together in 2020. View Newsletter
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June 24, 2020

Cyber Dignity: Digital Age Law for Teens and Young Adults

Palo Alto partner Carrie LeRoy was inspired by tragedies in her community involving cyber bullying and other forms of harassment via social media. Recognizing the disconnect between the practice of victim-blaming – which appeared to be rampant on social media – and the reality that the law strives to protect survivors and punish perpetrators, she developed a program now known as Cyber Dignity. The program trains pro bono attorneys to educate thousands of young people in the Bay Area and beyond, with a focus on teaching teenagers their rights and responsibilities in the areas of social media, cell phone use, and other technology. Its primary goals are deterrence of sexual assault and cyber bullying, empowerment of survivors, and engagement of bystanders. The curriculum addresses First Amendment rights in the social media space, accomplice liability via texting in the case of a suicide, documenting sexual assault online, and other timely and important issues. The Practising Law Institute (PLI) recently digitized the program as part of its pro bono curriculum, and in June 2020, Carrie was featured on Pro Bono Net’s Connecting Justice Communities blog.
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June 5, 2020

A Statement on Racial Justice and Equality from Gibson Dunn Chairman and Managing Partner, Ken Doran

Our communities are being torn apart by incidents of unspeakable racism.  As these incidents grow in number so, too, grows the legitimate anger, hurt, distrust, fear and public outrage of those in our community who have been targeted.  These incidents include, but are not limited to, the death of Ahmaud Arbery, a 25 year old African-American who was shot while jogging through a neighborhood in southeast Georgia, the death of Breonna Taylor, a 26 year old African American woman killed by police after they forcefully entered her home on a no-knock warrant, and the recent death of George Floyd, a 46 year old African American man who was murdered in Minneapolis, Minnesota.  Mr. Floyd was in police custody – handcuffed and lying on the ground in prone position when one of the arresting officers placed his knee on the back of Mr. Floyd’s neck and kept it there for nearly nine minutes with other officers watching.  Mr. Floyd repeatedly called out that he could not breathe and onlookers protested that his life was in jeopardy.  Mr. Floyd suffocated and died from these injuries.  Both the death of Mr. Arbery and Mr. Floyd were captured on videotape which is very hard to watch, and impossible to justify. These traumatic events and resulting unrest during a global pandemic have left many of us at a loss and with an overwhelming sense of despair, anger, fear and helplessness during these trying times.  I know that many of our colleagues are struggling on a very personal level with these heinous tragedies and inequities.  We, at Gibson Dunn, stand with our colleagues and will fight racism wherever we see it as we continue to defend the rule of law, civil liberties and equal justice for all.  Our lawyers have been encouraged to take up that mantle, through pro bono efforts, charitable giving, or otherwise.  Our firm is already engaged in a variety of matters that impact on racial justice issues, including tackling police reform and criminal justice reform. We know that there is much more work to be done and we are not doing nearly enough, but I do believe that we have arrived at a pivotal moment in the fight for racial equality and I am proud to say that Gibson Dunn will play a prominent role in that fight. As an initial step, Gibson Dunn will contribute $100,000 to the NAACP Legal Defense and Education Fund (LDF).  LDF is America’s premier legal organization fighting for racial justice and has been a long-standing beacon of hope for communities of color.  Through litigation, advocacy, and public education, LDF seeks structural changes to expand democracy, eliminate disparities, and achieve racial justice in a society that fulfills the promise of equality for all Americans.  Gibson Dunn’s very own Ambassador Ron Kirk serves on LDF’s Board of Directors.  We are proud to stand alongside Ron in supporting LDF’s important work. Martin Luther King, Jr. notably stated "The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy."  In my communication earlier this year celebrating Dr. King’s life and legacy, I wrote that Dr. King’s work “is an amazing gift to the world – challenging the status quo and its many inequalities, yet he was hopeful, optimistic, empowering and inspirational about a better world that lies ahead.”  Gibson Dunn is committed to ensuring that a better and more equitable world lies ahead. Stay safe and healthy, and stand strong. Kenneth M. Doran Chairman & Managing Partner Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP
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