WSM Attorneys to Celebrate Fifth-Grade Writing Contest Winners
May 21, 2014
Eleven fifth-graders who wrote the winning entries in this year's Celebrate America Creative Writing Contest will be honored tonight at the Chinese American Citizens Alliance Lodge in San Francisco. WSM Managing Partner Kirsten Schlenger, Senior Associate Lisa Baker Jones and Associate Katy Chase will be in attendance to celebrate their achievements and also those of their teachers. Ms. Schlenger will hand out cash awards totaling more than $6,300 to the teachers — money donated through a fundraising campaign spearheaded by Ms. Schlenger in which Ms. Chase and Associate Stephanie C. Smith also participated.
The contest, now in its 12th year locally, is run by AILA NorCal (the Northern California chapter of the American Immigration Lawyers Association) and its sister nonprofit the AIC (American Immigration Council). The contest gives fifth-grade students a chance to reflect on the theme, "Why I Am Glad America Is a Nation of Immigrants," and helps nurture thoughtful dialogue on this topic in the classroom. As part of the contest, AILA NorCal member attorneys visit fifth-grade classrooms throughout Northern California and talk with students about immigration. WSM has been a proud sponsor of the contest for many years.
Also tonight, Ms. Baker Jones will be honored as she concludes her role as AILA NorCal Chair for the past year. Ms. Baker Jones has made critical contributions while leading the chapter, including fighting for a vastly improved version of state Assembly Bill 1159, which in its original form would have been harmful to immigrant communities. We are proud of Ms. Baker Jones' strong leadership and important achievements as chapter Chair, and in the prior three years as Vice Chair, Secretary and Treasurer, respectively. For the past number of years, Ms. Smith has served as the chapter's Advocacy Co-Coordinator, and Ms. Chase as the Media Coordinator.