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About Us & Our Mission

The Bar Association of San Francisco (BASF) organized its Marriage Fairness Task Force to respond to the attempts being made to attack our Supreme Court and to rewrite our state's constitution and deny Californians the marriage rights currently protected by the constitution as interpreted by the Supreme Court.

The Marriage Fairness Task Force put together talking points on why the legal profession and bar associations in California should educate their communities on why Prop 8 should have been opposed.

Now that Proposition 8 has passed, the Marriage Fairness Task Force turns its efforts to the legal battle ahead. Known for its longstanding efforts and commitment to promote equality for all, BASF is continuing to work  alongside many community organizations in achieving this goal.

Latest news from BASF

Read BASF's reaction to the California State Supreme Court ruling on May 26, 2009, upholding Proposition 8. 

BASF hosts roundtable on Prop 8 topics on December 12. Read the press release.

Read BASF's reaction to the passing of Proposition 8.

Read the November 10, 2008 Amici Letter (597KBPDF) filed on behalf of BASF, Legal Aid Society-Employment Law Center (LAS-ELC), Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights of the San Francisco Bay Area (LCCR), and the Impact Fund.

Letters to the Editor and Commentary

November 7 commentary by Jan Vaughn Mock in The Recorder: A Letter from the Morning After

October 31 commentary by Jenelle Prins in The Recorder: A Mother and Lawyer on Prop 8

October 17 commentary by Jim Brosnahan in The Recorder: A Debate with Myself on Prop 8

July 11, 2008 letter to the editor by Jim Brosnahan in The Recorder: The Reason Lawyers Should Oppose Marriage Measure

Lawyers' Leadership Council for Equality

The Lawyers' Leadership Council for Equality was a coalition comprised of members of BASF’s Marriage Fairness Task Force, the Minority Bar Coalition, the Lawyers' Club of San Francisco, Bay Area Lawyers for Individual Freedom, the National Lesbian and Gay Law Association, and other bar groups to support the fight against the anti-gay marriage initiative (Prop 8). 

Find out more about the Lawyers Leadership Council.

Unity Coalition

BASF's Marriage Fairness Task Force invites your organization to join the "Unity Coalition," a group of bar associations and organizations who opposed Proposition 8. View the list of participating organizations.

For more information about BASF's Marriage Fairness Task Force, please contact Yolanda Jackson at

Related Information from BASF

No on Prop 8 Leadership Training Available to View on Google Videos

Ten ways lawyers can help defeat Proposition 8

Why should bar associations and legal professionals get involved

Letter to bar leaders regarding Proposition 8

Related Web Sites

Equality for All:

Lavender Law:

National Center for Lesbian Rights:

Amici Letters Filed after November 4

November 10, 2008 Amici Letter on behalf of BASF, Legal Aid Society-Employment Law Center (LAS-ELC), Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights of the San Francisco Bay Area (LCCR), and the Impact Fund.

Amici Letters Filed before November 4

Amici Letter from BASF, Legal Aid Society - Employment Law Center, Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights of the San Francisco Bay Area, Equal Justice Society and The Impact Fund

Amici Letter from Law School Professors in California

Amici Letter from Asian Law Caucus, California National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, Japanese American Citizens League, Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund, Asian American Justice Center, Anti-Defamation League, Asian American Bar Association of the Greater Bay Area, Chinese for Affirmative Action, California Women's Law Center, Asian Pacific American Bar Association of Los Angelese County, Asian Pacific American legal Center and Japanese American bar Association of Greater Los Angeles

Marriage Fairness Task Force Chair

Russell Roeca, Roeca Haas Hager LLP

Marriage Fairness Task Force Sub-Committees

Litigation Committee Co-chairs: Mike Lee, Attorney at Law and James Finberg, Altshuler Berzon LLP

Fundraising Committee Co-chairs: Kelly Dermody, Lieff Cabraser Heimann & Bernstein, LLP and Cathleen Yonahara, Freeland Cooper & Foreman LLP

Community/Legal Outreach Committee Co-chairs: Khurshid Khoja, Thelen Reid Brown Raysman & Steiner LLP; Joan Haratani, Morgan Lewis & Bockius LLP; Kelly McCown, McCown & Evans and Daniel Burkhardt, BASF; Merri A. Baldwin, Chapman Popik & White

Marriage Fairness Task Force Members

Jane Aceituno James Finberg Stephen Modde
Jeff Adachi Margaret Gannon Ann Murphy
Jennifer Addams Shay Aaron Gilmore Steve Ngo
Fred Alvarez Susan Griffin Angela Padilla
David Balabanian Emi Gusukuma Vid Prabhakaran
Merri Baldwin Joan Haratani Gail Quan
Tara Bedeau David Heilbron Russell Roeca
Laurel Beeler David Helbraun Jeffrey Ross
Jeff Bleich Kevin Ho Renee R. Ross
Angela Bradstreet Jo Hoenninger Steve Ruben
James Brosnahan David Hopmann Mark Schickman
Sharon Bunzel Yolanda Jackson Marjorie Schultz
Daniel Burkhardt Edward Kallgren Michael Sears
Boone Calloway Peter Keane Thomas Smegal
Nanci Clarence Khurshid Khoja e. bob wallach
Daniel Dean Juna Kim Wendy Tice-Wallner
Rob DePew Celia Lee James Weixel Jr.
Kelly Dermody Michael G.W. Lee Maria Weydemuller
Erin Dominguez Patricia Lee Kristi Whitehorse
James Donato Sydney Leung Cathleen Yonahara
Vanessa Eisemann Raymond Marshall Douglas Young
Jerry Falk Gonzalo C. Martinez  
Farschad Farzan Kelly McCown