Bar Association President to Receive Alumni Award at Grand Reunion
When it comes to selecting Board of Governors Recognition Award recipients for Loyola Law School, Los Angeles’ annual Alumni Grand Reunion, it can be difficult to select just one standout from among 18,000 amazing choices. But this year, one choice was clear: alumna Cyndie M. Chang ’03.
Chang is a constant presence on the Loyola campus, where she frequently returns to speak to students about developing their careers. She urges them to become involved in bar association activities. “They offer so many resources,” she says, including opportunities for members to learn, serve and network.
For all her work giving back to the community, Chang will be given the Board of Governors Recognition Award at the Alumni Grand Reunion to be held at 6 p.m., Wednesday, Nov. 14, 2018 at the Jonathan Club in downtown Los Angeles. Other honorees include Brian S. Kabateck ’89, founding and managing partner, Kabateck Brown Kellner, LLP, who will be honored as Distinguished Alumnus of the Year; and John Horn ‘’96, managing partner, Cohan-Horn, LLP, who will also receive Board of Governors Recognition Award honors.
Chang followed her own advice as a Loyola student. She was a class representative in the Student Bar Association and a member of the Asian Pacific American Law Students Association chapter – just a few of Loyola’s myriad student organizations. “That kind of civic-mindedness and community involvement were instilled in me early on,” Chang says.
Now the office managing partner in the 750-lawyer firm Duane Morris LLP, Chang became the president of the National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA) in November 2017. The group is a bar organization representing 50,000 lawyers and more than 75 national, state and local bar groups across the country and serves as the national voice of the Asian Pacific American legal community. It advocates on issues such as diversity in the legal profession, civil rights and the advancement of Asian Americans in the legal profession, aside from being a resource for professional development for its members.
In addition to leading the association, Chang heads the Duane Morris office in Los Angeles and is a litigator focusing on complex business disputes that range from insurance coverage to trademarks to real estate.
Chang’s desire to become a trial lawyer was one reason she chose Loyola Law School after graduating from Johns Hopkins University. Loyola attracted her because it “had a great reputation, a solid alumni base, a beautiful downtown campus and was well-known for its trial advocacy programs,” she says.
As a student, Chang belonged to the school’s National Moot Court Team and the Scott Moot Court Honors Board. A former journalist, she was an editor of the Loyola of Los Angeles Entertainment Law Review and the American Bar Association’s Student Lawyer magazine.
“It was enjoyable going to law school,” Chang says. Students were collaborative, not competitive, and professors were caring and involved. “I certainly think that the advocacy programs and the faculty at Loyola fostered confidence in our preparation to be excellent lawyers.”