Joon Kim Receives NAPABA Trailblazer Award

August 29, 2018

Cleary Gottlieb partner Joon H. Kim has been selected by The National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA) as a recipient of the 2018 Trailblazer Award for his substantial and lasting contributions to the Asian Pacific American community.

The Daniel K. Inouye Trailblazer Award recognizes the outstanding achievements, leadership, and impact of lawyers who are paving the way for the advancement of other Asian Pacific Americans in the legal profession and the broader Asian Pacific American community.

“I am honored to be recognized by NAPABA, a terrific organization that does so much to advance the interests of Asian Pacific American lawyers around the country,” said Joon.

Cleary Managing Partner Michael Gerstenzang said of the award, “Cleary Gottlieb is thrilled that Joon Kim has been selected for this honor. Joon has demonstrated throughout his career – both in the private sector and public sector – excellence in lawyering, leadership, and commitment to the broader community. We are deeply proud of Joon’s accomplishments, and consider ourselves fortunate to have him as a colleague. Through his personal and professional qualities, Joon has strengthened our firm and will help lead the continued growth of our practice.”

“Joon’s selection as a recipient of NAPABA’s Trailblazer Award is a wonderful and well-earned recognition,” said Carlos Dávila-Caballero, Director of Diversity and Inclusion at Cleary. “As a partner at Cleary, Joon has served as a mentor to many junior lawyers, including Asian Pacific Americans. He is a dedicated and active contributor to the firm’s affinity group and a tireless inclusion champion in the legal profession. Joon is an exemplary role model for all lawyers.”

NAPABA is a national group that represents the interests of Asian Pacific American attorneys, judges, law professors, and law students. The award is named for Sen. Daniel Inouye, who represented Hawaii for more than five decades. He was the first Japanese American to serve in the U.S. House of Representatives and U.S. Senate, and at the time of his death in 2012 was the highest-ranking Asian American politician in U.S. history.

Joon said of the honor, “I am particularly humbled to receive an award named after a truly great American, the late Senator Daniel K. Inouye. I, like so many other Asian Americans, grew up inspired by Senator Inouye’s trailblazing presence at the highest levels of American government and by his selfless service and sacrifice to our country. In Senator Inouye, not just Asian Pacific Americans, but all Americans, found a hero worthy of our nation’s finest principles. I look forward to celebrating his legacy at NAPABA’s annual convention.”

The award will be presented at a ceremony in Chicago on November 9, 2018.

For more information about the Trailblazer Award, click here.