Pa'lante IX Conference: Si No Tú, ¿Quién?

MetroLALSA proudly presents Pa’lante IX: Si No Tú, ¿Quién? which will be held at on St. John's University School of Law on Saturday, March 30, 2019. This year’s theme Si No Tú, ¿Quién? MetroLALSA's mission is to empower and unify the Latina/o legal community, from pre-law students up to practicing attorneys, and the Pa'lante Conference is the central forum to achieving that mission.

Each year, the conference has been hosted by a different law school with a different theme, but always with a clear objective: to help create future Latina/o leaders, to build and foster a network for rising Latina/o leaders, and to empower our Latina/o communities to ensure that their voices are heard.

With our Pa’lante IX Conference, we seek to unify the Latino legal community to help and strengthen each other in order to close the Latino gap in the legal profession. Our panels and agenda for this year’s conference will be reflective of the legal concerns and interests that we have as a community.





MetroLALSA is honored to have Justice Sallie Manzanet-Daniels, Associate Justice of the New York Appellate Division of the Supreme Court, First Judicial Department, be our keynote speaker for Pa'lante IX. From her commitment to public service since attending Hofstra Law School, where she founded and served as the first President of the Latino Law Students Association in 1987-1988, to October 2009, where Governor David Paterson appointed Justice Manzanet-Daniels to the Appellate Division, First Department, thereby making her the first Latina justice in the history of New York State to serve on this Court, and into today, Justice Manzanet-Daniels inspires many in the legal profession. Her life has been marked by activism and leadership, in her community and during her academic and professional life. . Throughout her career Judge Manzanet-Daniels has mentored many students of all ages and walks of life. Community service has always been one of her greatest passions, and includes organizations focusing on the elderly, the arts, and a myriad of community, bar and professional organizations servicing all spheres of public life. Additional speakers will be announced in the coming weeks including the honoree of this year’s Liderazgo Award.

In addition to our Keynote speaker, we are also honored to have many influential and key individuals join us for the panel discussions. The panel discussions will provide legal professionals with the opportunity to earn between 1.5 to 4 CLE credits. At the conference, we will also be awarding our annual Pa’lante Scholarship to a deserving law student. Additionally, our pipeline program integrated with the conference is designed to give students and professionals interested in pursuing law school an opportunity to speak with law students, legal professionals, and law admission officers and to attend a mock 1L class. All attendees will have an opportunity to network, especially during the organization fair.

Continental breakfast and lunch will be provided. If you have any questions regarding the conference, please contact Austin Llamas, Conference Chair, at For Registration inquiries, please contact Connie Villon, Vice President of Public Relations, at For learn about how to get more involved with MetroLALSA and Sponsorship, please contact Sherri Litvak, Vice President of Fundraising, at




Click through the gallery below to view the panel topics and panelists for this year's Pa'lante IX Conference: Si No Tú, ¿Quién?. More Information on the remaining panels and workshops to come.  


New Frontiers in Immigration Law: Responding to the Trump Administration  

This panel will provide an overview of immigration policies under the current administration which is attempting to reconstruct immigration law and policy. From the flood of news coverage and litigation, the panelists will discuss topics such as the “zero-tolerance” policies causing the separation of families at the border, severely limiting refugee admission, DACA litigation & the “travel ban.” The Panelist will close by touching on the ways attorneys are pushing back and challenging these policies, and provide ways to move forward.

LGBTQ Issues and the Latinx Community:

This panel will cover an overview of issues currently confronted by the LGBTQ and Latinx community. Specifically, the panelists will discuss topics such as the detention of transgender immigrants/ increased barriers for asylum-seekers and refugees, criminalization of sex work, military life, and acquiring gender-affirming healthcare.

Intersectionality and the Law

Panelists will share best practices for navigating workplace relationships and the complexities of implicit bias, microaggressions, and difficult conversations while staying true to our various identities. These practical strategies apply to legal practitioners in all sectors, public and private, in-house, and law firms.

Latino Partners: Getting on the Partnership Track

Statistics show that about 4% of U.S. attorneys identify as Latinx, and less than 2% of them are in high positions, such as partners. So what does it take to make partner? The panelists will discuss their experiences as Latinx attorneys and how this has impacted their career trajectories, ultimately leading them to become partners. The Panelists will end with providing guidance and proactive strategies on how to get on the partnership track.

Criminal Justice Reform and Progressive Prosecution

As various District Attorney offices shift to a "progressive" model, many may wonder what does this actually look like? What does it actually mean to be a progressive prosecutor? The panelists will dive into these topics and discuss criminal justice reform from different lenses and the changes that they see from their current positions.

Hot Topics in Employment Law: Everything You Should Know

The panelists will discuss changes and challenges in labor and employment law during the past two years. During the Obama administration, through regulations and executive orders, various pro-employee policies were enacted, however, the new administration has reversed most of these policies.  Moreover, the panel will discuss, including but not limited to, NYS and NYC changes ranging from sexual harassment-related protections, Earned Sick Time Act, paid family leave, reasonable accommodations, and human rights law.



Below is a short view on the pipeline program content and the panel descriptions for this year's Pa'lante IX Conference: Si No Tú, ¿Quién?.  More to come soon.