Welcome to the Federation of Asian Canadian Lawyers (FACL) British Columbia podcast! We are a diverse coalition of Asian Canadian legal professionals. We promote equity, justice, and opportunity for Asian Canadian legal professionals and the community. The purpose of this podcast highlights the diverse and unique members of our community. We are grateful to have received the 2022 Clawbies Award for Best Podcast.
This podcast is brought to you by FACL BC's Membership Committee and we are grateful for the generous support from FACL ON in helping with the launch of our podcast.
Episode 33: Taking a Break and Throwing Your Own Party with James Hsu
In this episode, James Hsu unveils his unique career journey - transitioning from a litigator to employment lawyer to in-house legal counsel before finding his calling back in private practice as an employment and human rights lawyer at PortaLaw. James also shares his reflections from a nine-month long break between positions. Having gained valuable insights into maintaining personal autonomy, life satisfaction, and identity, James speaks on the importance of taking a break, understanding the meaning behind your career goals, and "throwing your own party".
In this candid conversation, James delves into his reset and pivot into employment law, emphasizing guiding principles like helpfulness, honesty, and a human approach, with the unique addition of "happiness." James concludes the episode with valuable advice for lawyers navigating their own career transitions and finding their place in the legal industry.
Please note the following changes since our interview with James:
There are now 6 members on the PortaLaw Team.
PortaLaw’s guest Ukrainian lawyer has since moved on from his temporary role at PortaLaw to a permanent role in another organization.
Episode 32: A Discussion on Navigating a Dynamic Legal Career with James Chen
In this episode, we chat with James Chen, an accomplished legal professional who's paved a unique career path. As the founder of CMJC Law, James spent over a decade in big firms, specializing in corporate and securities law, before transitioning to an in-house role at a large company, where he drove transformative growth initiatives. In 2016, he took the leap to establish his own practice, CMJC Law, offering legal, strategic, and business advice. James shares insights from his journey, highlighting the importance of a supportive legal network and lessons learned from his varied experiences. Join us for a fresh perspective from James, a seasoned legal professional who has truly seen it all!
Episode 31: A Discussion with Chilwin Cheng on Diversity, Mentorship, and Legal Success
In this podcast mini-series, join Brian Cheng for a captivating conversation with Chilwin Cheng, a seasoned business litigator specializing in complex commercial litigation and regulatory and white-collar defence. As the principal of Ascendion Law, Chilwin shares insights into his career journey, the changing landscape of diversity, the significance of mentorship, and his distinct perspective on work-life balance. Together, we'll explore the legal profession, gaining unique insights into Chilwin's exceptional experiences and the challenges he's navigated as an Asian lawyer finding success.
Episode 30: Driving Change in Public Transportation with Gigi Chen-Kuo
In this episode, we sit down with Gigi Chen-Kuo, TransLink's Chief Operating Officer, as she discusses her 30-year career that fuses law and public transportation. From her favorite TransLink route to her transition from law to an in-house role, Gigi shares insights on her unique position, daily challenges, and defining moments. Get a glimpse into her historic role as the first Asian heritage person to lead TransLink, her involvement in EDI initiatives, and practical advice for balancing legal work with non-legal roles. Tune in to gain valuable insights from Gigi's experiences at the intersection of leadership, law, and public service.
Episode 29: Corporate Lawyer Series with Julia Winters
This is the first episode of FACL BC's new Corporate Lawyer Series. In this episode, we invite Julia Winters, a partner in Lawson’s Asia Pacific Group focusing on corporate/commercial and real estate law and the Chief Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Officer at Lawson Lundell. Julia shares her journey towards a corporate and real estate practice, her experience interacting specifically with Asian or Chinese clients, and her efforts in promoting EDI. She shares her views on how EDI may be improved in the legal profession. Whether you are a law student interested in solicitor’s work, an associate practising corporate/commercial or real estate law, or an associate considering the partner track, you can benefit from the practical advice that Julia candidly offers. Bonus: you will learn about Julia’s passion beyond practising the law and her vegetable garden.
Episode 28: Becoming a Partner/Shareholder with Sameer Kamboj
In this episode, we sit down with Sameer Kamboj, a litigator and new shareholder at Owen Bird. Sameer takes us on a journey through his path to law and shares his insights on the keys to success in becoming a shareholder or partner in a law firm. But that's not all. Sameer also provides invaluable advice to law students and associates, offering practical tips to help them thrive in the legal profession. And as a bonus, Sameer also opens up about his personal life and shares with us the journey of finding love while in law school. Spoiler Alert: during the recording of this episode, Sameer revealed that his partner is actually one of our previous podcast guests. Who could it be? Listen in to find out!