Honoring the Recipients of LeGaL's

Community Vision and Community Excellence Awards

The Annual Gala supports the charitable and educational activities of the LeGaL Foundation, including our pro bono legal clinicsLGBT Law Notes, Law Student Career FairJudicial Fellowship Program, and a host of  additional activities benefiting the LGBT legal community and the public.

2021 Community Excellence Awards

In 2021, LeGaL was thrilled to present Community Excellence Awards, which recognize New York LGBTQ legal professionals, across all fields of practice, for their commitment to the LGBTQ community, and for high achievement in the profession. The 2021 class of honorees includes: Charlie Arrowood, Deborah Lolai, Daniel Pepitone, John Quinn, and Ethan Rice.

Charlie headshot.JPG


Counsel, Name Change Project, Transgender Legal Defense & Education Fund / Principal Attorney, Arrowood Law 

Charlie Arrowood is Name Change Project counsel at the Transgender Legal Defense and Education Fund and Principal Attorney at Arrowood Law. Despite wearing numerous hats, Charlie is generous with their time in helping attorneys across the state become better advocates to the transgender and gender nonconforming communities. Charlie has helped ensure countless families both in and outside of the NYC metro area are able to obtain accurate and affirming documentation with dignity and greater ease. 

deborah lolai.jpg


Founder & Supervising Attorney, LGBTQ Defense Project, Bronx Defenders

Deborah Lolai is the Supervising Attorney of the LGBTQ Defense Project of The Bronx Defenders, a project she founded, which provides specialized representation and public defense for The Bronx Defenders’ LGBTQ clients on issues ranging from criminal defense and prisoner rights to immigration and civil matters. In addition to direct legal representation, Deb advocates for systematic changes through policy making, and training. Deb is an adjunct professor at Columbia University. 



Staff Attorney, Manhattan Legal Services

Daniel Pepitone is a staff attorney with Manhattan Legal Services. Daniel founded a project to improve the health of people living with HIV and LGBTQ New Yorkers. Over his career, Daniel has helped NYC’s most vulnerable with disability benefits, discrimination, eviction defense, wills, and advance directives. In 2018, Daniel started a new project to support self-employed New Yorkers and small businesses; during the pandemic, Daniel reorganized his project to focus on commercial leases and evictions.

J. Quinn Hi-Res.jpg


Partner, Kaplan Hecker & Fink LLP

John Quinn is a partner at Kaplan Hecker & Fink LLP and was one of the co-founders of the firm in 2017. As a litigator, John has achieved remarkable success for his clients—including tech companies, start-ups, celebrities and public figures, a group of Mississippi LGBTQ youth opposing the denial of a license to hold a pride parade, and a group of individuals who were defrauded by the Trump organization. John is a mentor to LGBTQ students and a board member of the Ali Forney Center, the largest LGBTQ youth homelessness shelter, community center, and services organization in the country.



Senior Attorney, Fair Courts Project, Lambda Legal

Ethan Rice is a senior attorney at Lambda Legal’s Fair Court Project. Thanks to Ethan’s skill and dedication, courts from coast to coast have greater LGBTQ+ cultural competence, and legal standards concerning juror and judicial bias are improved. Ethan was the lead advocate for the successful birth certificate ordinance in NYC that is a model of respectful self-attestation for gender marker change.

Annual Gala Sponsorship

Each year, LeGaL's Annual Gala receives support from the small and large law firm community, as well as corporations and individual contributors. If you are interested in becoming a sponsor, please click he re.




Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP


Kirkland & Ellis LLP

The Morrison & Foerster Foundation

Outten & Golden LLP

Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP

Proskauer Rose LLP

Seyfarth Shaw LLP

Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz

Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP

Allen & Overy LLP

Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer LLP

Barclay Damon LLP

Boies Schiller Flexner LLP

Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner LLP

Capell Barnett Matalon & Schoenfeld LLP

Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP

Cooley LLP

Covington & Burling LLP

Cravath, Swaine & Moore, LLP

Debevoise & Plimpton LLP

Epstein Becker & Green, P.C.

Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP

Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson LLP

Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP

Greenberg Traurig, LLP

Jenner & Block LLP

JPMorgan Chase & Co.

Kaplan Hecker & Fink LLP

Katten Muchin Rosenman LLP

Kelley Drye & Warren LLP

Kramer Levin Naftalis & Frankel LLP

Latham & Watkins LLP

Loeb & Loeb LLP

Lowenstein Sandler LLP

McDermott Will & Emery

MetLife, Inc.

Milbank LLP

Momentum Search Group

Moses & Singer LLP 

Patterson Belknap Webb & Tyler LLP

Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP

Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan, LLP

Rimland & Associates

Robins Kaplan LLP

Schulte Roth & Zabel LLP

Sullivan & Cromwell LLP

Susman Godfrey LLP

Wigdor LLP

Willkie Farr & Gallagher LLP

Seth Rosen & Jacob Goertz

Paul Ryneski

Hon. Michael R. Sonberg

Ari Ezra Waldman

Daniel Noble, Finn Dixon & Herling LLP


Caprice Bellefleur

Kristen Browde

William & Elizabeth Crosby

Russ Korins

Arthur S. Leonard

Anthony M. Lise

John B.F. Martin

Meredith R. Miller

Joe Niemczyk

Thomas Prol

Divya Rashad

*Sponsors listed above have been confirmed as of 02/25/2021