2019-2020 Board of Governors
Phil Nulud is an attorney at Buchalter and an expert in intellectual property law. He is a member of the intellectual property and corporate practice groups. His practice focuses on counseling clients in all aspects of intellectual property including: domestic and international trademark prosecution, strategy, enforcement, management, licensing, and policy; patent prosecution, clearance, and infringement; domain name arbitration; and related litigation concerning such. Because of his expertise, he is frequently requested to consult in connection with complex and high-stakes litigation matters regarding intellectual property.
Phil has successfully represented many clients in high stakes intellectual property litigation in both Federal and California courts, and has also assisted clients with complex infringement and counterfeiting matters domestically and worldwide. He is considered an expert in advising American clients on trademark law in China and has run the gauntlet of Chinese administrative procedures and court hearings. He also regularly represents clients in connection with ICANN domain name arbitration proceedings, and has acquired/ reclaimed hundreds of domain names for his clients that are critical to their business success.
He has published articles on these topics in various publications (legal and non-legal) and intellectual property blogs. He regularly lectures in undergraduate and law school classes regarding intellectual property, and hosts roundtables for the International Trademark Association (INTA).
His clients include multinational corporations, couture fashion houses, retail chains in excess of 500 stores, global beauty product manufacturers, celebrities, media companies, global architecture firms, and much more.
Phil has served on the Philippine American Bar Association (PABA) Board of Governors for almost a decade. He was President of PABA from 2017 – 2018. Phil also serves on the Board of Governors for the Loyola Law School Alumni Association. He is currently the secretary.
Phil earned his J.D. at Loyola Law School and his B.S. in Biomedical Engineering, with a minor in Political Science (concentrating in Law and Public Policy) from the University of Southern California. Phil also previously clerked for the Supreme Court of the Republic of the Philippines.
KRISTY MICHELLE GONOWON
Kristy Michelle Gonowon is in-house counsel at Allstate Insurance Company. Kristy performs a dual role within Allstate’s Law & Regulation department, both as the sole ERISA/employee benefits counsel for the company’s health & welfare plans and as a claim litigation management counsel. On the benefits side, Kristy’s practice focuses on compliance issues involving ERISA, PPACA, EEOC, and the Internal Revenue Code. On the claim litigation side, she oversees and approves legal strategies within eight states (New York, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Arkansas, Louisiana, North Carolina, and Alabama) on claims involving bad faith, excess verdict, and coverage issues. She is also the department’s subject matter expert on diminished value claims and Medicare issues. Within the Allstate community, Ms. Gonowon is a member of the women’s affinity network and the Asian-American affinity network.
Prior to becoming in-house counsel at Allstate’s corporate offices, Ms. Gonowon was a litigator handling both insurance defense and the recovery aspect of subrogation matters on behalf of Allstate in the Chicago staff counsel office for two years. Prior to that, she was a plaintiff’s personal injury attorney for 10 years with a boutique law firm in Chicago’s West Loop neighborhood.
Ms. Gonowon most recently served as NFALA’s Vice President of Programs & Operations under then-President Eric de los Santos. She has previously held roles as NFALA Secretary and NFALA Central Regional Governor.
In her spare time, Ms. Gonowon enjoys traveling and covering NBA games, specifically during All-Star Weekend and the NBA Playoffs and Finals.
Vice-President for Programs & Operations
JERILYNN GONZALES ABRAMS
Jerilynn Gonzales Abrams is one of the Managing Partners for her family’s mid-size, full-service Immigration law firm, Gonzales, Gonzales & Gonzales Immigration Law Offices. NAPABA selected Jeri’s Firm as the 2018 APA-Owned Law Firm of the Year. Jeri’s father, Jeffrey, began as a solo practitioner over 35 years ago. Her older brother, JJ, practiced in Miami, FL for a number of years before joining their father’s practice in 2009. Jeri joined the practice in 2012; and since then, the firm has grown to 17 attorneys, with offices in Portland, OR and Seattle, WA, where Jeri manages the Seattle office of the firm.
Prior to joining her family’s firm, Jeri began practicing law in 2007 as an associate for a large Pacific Northwest law firm, and she also practiced as an in-house attorney for a Seattle-area healthcare organization. Jeri received her undergraduate degree from Rice University, cum laude, where she attended on a full tennis scholarship. She received her J.D. from the University of Washington School of Law, where she was a member of the Moot Court Honor Board, the Tribal Court Criminal Defense Clinic, and was VP of the Asian Pacific American Law Students Association. Jeri is a Founding Member, Past-President, and current Board Member of the Filipino Lawyers of Washington (FLOW). Jeri has been involved with NFALA since its inception. She is the newly-elected VP of Programs & Operations, immediate Past-At-Large Board Member, Past-VP of Membership, Past-Co-Chair of & Presenter at the 2018 NFALA Mid-Year, Past-Secretary, Past-Regional Governor, and Founding Sponsor/Member for NFALA.
In her spare time, Jeri enjoys spending time with her family (even though she works for the family business), particularly with her husband and their two little boys, ages 4 and 2 years old.
Vice-President for Membership
Mark J. Calaguas is a staff attorney at the Chicago office of McDermott Will & Emery LLP, where he is a member of the Discovery practice group, which focuses on using technology to improve legal services in litigation, investigations, due diligence, compliance audits, government second requests, and other projects involving the preservation, review, and production of electronic data. He has also advised entrepreneurs on privacy law matters and coordinated data breach investigations for corporate clients in the healthcare and financial services industries.
Mark is a founding board member of both NFALA and the Filipino American Lawyers Association of Chicago, where he currently serves as Communications Officer. Mark is board vice president of the Alliance of Filipinos for Immigrant Rights and Empowerment (AFIRE) and an associate board member of HealthConnect One, a nationally renowned nonprofit that promotes maternal and early childhood health. He is also an active member of the Chicago Council on Global Affairs and served that organization as a Young Professionals Network Ambassador for several years.
Mark is an alumnus of the Filipino Young Leaders Program (FYLPRO) and the U.S.-Mexico Leaders Initiative. In September 2019, Mark was appointed to the Illinois State Advisory Committee of the United States Commission on Civil Rights.
Mark received a B.A. in English and Comparative Literature from the University of Michigan and a J.D. from the Loyola University Chicago School of Law, where he was publications editor of the Annals of Health Law, associate editor of the Loyola University Chicago International Law Review, and president of the Asian Pacific American Law Students Association, as well as a member of the Thomas Tang National Moot Court and Willem C. Vis (East) International Commercial Arbitration Moot teams.
Vice-President for Communications
Dennis Pangindian is an Associate Counsel in the Administrative Civil Remedies Branch of the Office of Counsel to the Inspector General for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). In this role, Dennis represents the Office of the Inspector General (OIG) in administrative and civil fraud enforcement actions related to Federal health care programs, monitors the compliance of providers under integrity agreements, and defends OIG in administrative appeals before the Departmental Appeals Board. In addition to representing OIG in the resolution of False Claims Act cases, Dennis specializes in health IT matters as well as grant and contract fraud matters related to HHS programs. Dennis was also the principal drafter of fraud and abuse waivers for innovative health care models being tested by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid.
As a law student, Dennis was the recipient of FALA Chicago’s inaugural law student scholarship. After moving to Washington, DC, he joined FALA DC where he currently sits as an At-Large member of its Board. He also served as NFALA’s Southeast Regional Governor and Chair of NFALA’s Advocacy Committee.
Since 2016, Dennis has been the chairman of the board of directors for Family Hope Charity, Inc (FHC), a nonprofit organization that works to alleviate poverty across the globe. Under Dennis’ direction, FHC issued grants to local non-governmental organizations in Kenya, Uganda, and India to support economic empowerment and educational support programs for families stricken by poverty and disease. Furthermore, FHC sponsors medical camps in partnership with Chamberlain School of Nursing where nursing students provide free medical care to thousands of men, women, and children who would otherwise have no access to basic health care.
In his spare time, Dennis performs improv comedy with his team at the Washington Improv Theater in Washington, DC.
Catherine Asuncion is currently Immediate Past President of the Filipino American Lawyers of San Diego, where coincidently her first board position was Treasurer. Originally from Hawaii, Catherine is so grateful to have had the FALSD family since law school, especially since it led her to the enthusiastic, inclusive, and forward-thinking group that is NFALA. She looks forward to serving NFALA and helping all its affiliates reach their full potential.
Catherine is an associate at Klinedinst PC in San Diego, California. She is a member of the firm’s Professional Liability Group where she focuses her practice on defending attorneys in legal malpractice matters. She is also helping to develop the firm’s Appellate Practice Group, bringing valuable experience in analyzing appellate issues in all phases of litigation and handling matters through the appeal process. To that end, Catherine is on the Executive Committee of the San Diego County Bar Association’s Appellate Practice Section and is Co-Chair of the Lawyers Club of San Diego’s Amicus Brief Committee.
In her free time, Catherine plays soccer with a local women’s soccer league and is trying to train her recently-rescued, poorly-behaved, but super sweet dog.
Bryan Ramos is a litigation attorney dedicated to representing Georgia’s working class.
In 2015, Mr. Ramos established the Ramos Law Firm, a boutique workers’ compensation law firm handling matters throughout Georgia. In particular, Mr. Ramos handles catastrophic bodily injury claims stemming from accidents occurring at work. Mr. Ramos and his team prosecute serious orthopedic and neurological injuries on behalf of Georgia’s injured workers exclusively to ensure Georgia’s working class receives quality medical care, a meaningful return to gainful employment, and just compensation for the workers’ occupational injuries.
In 2016, Mr. Ramos established the Georgia Filipino-American Bar Association (GFAB) and he currently serves on its Board of Directors. Mr. Ramos has held numerous offices within the local and national Filipino-American communities. Most recently, Mr. Ramos concluded his term as the Deputy General Counsel to the National Federation of Filipino-American Associations (NaFFAA). He also remains a Regional Director for the Filipino Veterans Recognition and Education Project (FilVetREP). Mr. Ramos also serves as the Trade & Industry Director for the Philippine American Chamber of Commerce of Georgia, and he served as a United States Delegate to the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) held in Manila, Philippines. For the National Filipino-American Lawyers Association (NFALA), Mr. Ramos has co-chaired the Political and Civic Engagement (PACE) and Membership Committees.
Mr. Ramos was recently appointed to the Board of Trustees for the Georgia Council on Substance Abuse, and Mr. Ramos is completing his first term on the Asians Americans Advancing Justice – Atlanta’s Board of Directors. He is also serving on the Board of Advisors for The Yonkofa Project (an organization dedicated to providing healthcare to rural Ghana) and the North Georgia Low Income Taxpayer Clinic.
Mr. Ramos has carried an AV-Preeminent rating from Martindale-Hubbell since 2010, and he is admitted to the Supreme Court of the United States, Northern District Court of Georgia, and State Bar of Georgia. Mr. Ramos has been designated as one of Georgia’s “Legal Elite” by Georgia Trend Magazine. He has also earned a spot as one of the “Top 100 Lawyers in Georgia” by Super Lawyers Magazine.
Mr. Ramos earned his Juris Doctor at the Walter F. George School of Law at Mercer University, and he is a graduate of the Florida State University.
Immediate Past President
ERIC C. DE LOS SANTOS
Eric C. de los Santos is Associate General Counsel and Senior Director of Employment Law for TrueBlue (NYSE:TBI), a leading provider of specialized workforce solutions, helping clients improve growth and performance by providing staffing, workforce management, and recruitment process outsourcing solutions. TrueBlue connects as many as 840,000 people to work each year.
Northeast Region | MARIA CELIS
Northwest Region | AILENE LIMRIC
Southeast Region | DARREN FERNANDEZ
Southwest Region | CAMILLE KILMARTIN
Central Region | GREG LAMORENA
Northern California Region | LAURIE ROSE LUBIANO
Central California Region | ZATHRINA PEREZ
Southern California Region | TRACY BADUA
Eastern California Region | EMMANUEL SALAZAR
ALLISON ALCASABAS | PHIL BAUTISTA | JUNE CASALMIR | JEFFREY GABA | LORNA GARCIA DE GUZMAN | ERNIE OCAMPO |
COMMITTEE AND AFFINITY NETWORK CHAIRS
Advocacy Committee | DARREN FERNANDEZ, DAVID MESA & DENNIS PANGINDIAN
Awards and Endorsements Committee | JERI GONZALES ABRAMS, JUNE CASALMIR & JOHN FETTERS
Communications Committee | MARK CALAGUAS & DENNIS PANGINDIAN
Young Lawyers Network | CAMILLE MANGANA KILMARTIN
HILDEGARDE AGUINALDO | ANNA MERCADO CLARK | VICTOR CORPUZ | VINCENT GONZALES | DAVID MESA | CAROLYN SIEVE