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Bar Association of San Francisco Member Benefits: Publications

BASF Scholarship Recipient Makes Impact in San Francisco Legal Community

An update from 2003 scholarship recipient Amarra Lee


In 2003 I was awarded BASF’s Bay Area Minority Law Student Scholarship and it was my first indication of how much the San Francisco legal community valued all that I would bring to the profession. Individuals who had never met me were willing to invest significant money and time to ensure my success. The scholarship covered a large part of my tuition, housing and book costs for the entirety of law school. It enabled me to take on unpaid professional development opportunities such as interning at the San Francisco District Attorney’s Office, externing for the Honorable Teri L. Jackson, and serving as a teaching assistant for UC Hastings College of the Law’s Legal Education Opportunity Program (LEOP). Being able to take advantage of these opportunities made me a better lawyer. Each experience broadened my perspective, and thereby, broadened the creativity with which I approach client issues.

Amarra LeeAfter the clerkship, I joined Farella Braun + Martel as a member of its White Collar Crime and Business Litigation practice groups. I have successfully litigated cases in Intellectual Property, management disputes and Construction Law. I recently won a multimillion dollar arbitration on a breach of contract theory. The support, mentoring and experience that Farella has offered have been invaluable in developing my skills as a lawyer.


Beyond law school, I remain connected to BASF and committed to diversity. I now sit on BASF’s minority scholarship committee and consistently participate in its Destination Law School and Law Academy programs. At Farella, I co-chair the Women’s Initiative Steering Committee focusing on the advancement and support of women attorneys. I chair the Pipeline Subcommittee, a division of Farella’s Diversity Committee focused on introducing high school interns to law and preparing them to excel in college. Farella has just been awarded the State Bar of California’s Law Firm Diversity Award for their long-time commitment to diversity and for ensuring their workforce represents the diversity of the clients whom they serve.

Outside of the firm, I serve as a guest lecturer for the LEOP program and also the ABA’s Council for Legal Education Opportunity Program. By participating in these activities I am exposing myself to diverse experiences and individuals, which in turn, continues to broaden my perspective and approach to law.
Diversity matters. BASF recognized the value of diversity seven years ago when it decided to invest in me. I hope all of my continued diversity efforts demonstrate the value and high yield of making these types of investments.

Find out more about the Bay Area Minority Law Student Scholarship.

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