John K. Lee, Senior Vice President & Associate General Counsel, Bank of Hope
John Lee-HEADSHOT-120x120

Dear ACC SoCal Members & Colleagues,

I can’t believe we are almost halfway through 2018.  Thus far, the Board of Directors together and our sponsors have been busy facilitating many wonderful CLE events for you.  With the summer months upon us, we have at least one event planned nearly every week.  You should be receiving email announcements about upcoming functions from Betty St. Marie.  If not, please check your spam folder or visit the Chapter’s webpage for further information because we definitely want to see you at an event soon!

Speaking of events, those of you who attended the 23rd Annual Gala Dinner and Pro Bono Silent Auction on May 8 are now a part of a new milestone for the Chapter, which set three new records with this Gala.  First, 1,800 guests from as far away as Washington D.C. attended the Chapter’s largest Gala ever. Together we welcomed the keynote speaker, President Barack Obama.  His eloquence and refreshing insight on a range of issues and topics left everyone in attendance with an optimistic sense for the future.  Second, the event sold out in less than two weeks.  And finally, we conducted a live auction for two once in a lifetime travel packages –the live auction and silent auction proceeds netted over $80,000 in donations for Public Counsel.  This was truly an epic event of ginormous proportions, and I want to thank our Gala Dinner Chair, Preston Hopson, the Gala Dinner Committee, Betty St. Marie, and the supporting cast who made the evening one for the ages.

I’ve preached this mantra before but it bears repeating: Please take advantage of the many resources that both ACC Southern California and ACC Global provide for your daily in-house law practice.  We also have a plethora of programs for networking, career advancement, and personal growth opportunities too.  Whether your passion is advocacy, diversity, pro bono, education, or simply enjoying the many fun social events, we literally have something for you.  There’s simply no better organization that caters specifically to the in-house counsel profession.

I want to call your attention to the ACC Global Annual Meeting, which this year will be in Austin, Texas between October 21-24, 2018.   The Annual Meeting is a tremendous value considering the number of continuing legal education hours offered, and you will be amazed by the massive number of legal related vendors who showcase their services in style and substance.  But the real value is the networking opportunities.  There are several thousand attendees from all over the world, and you will meet dozens of new contacts in three short days.  We hope to see you there!

Take some personal time for yourself, and with family and friends.  That’s what the in-house counsel profession is about—a nice work life balance.  Have a great and safe summer!

If you have any thoughts to share, please email me at  I’ll pass them to the Board so we continue to make ACC Southern California the leader of all ACC chapters.  

I look forward to continuing to make a difference together in 2018.


John K. Lee
President, ACC Southern California, 2017-18
Senior Vice President, Bank of Hope

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