Latham & Watkins New York litigation associate, Virginia Tent, was recognized by the National LGBT Bar Association among its Class of 2012 “Best LGBT Lawyers Under 40.” The association presents the award annually to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender legal professionals under the age of 40 “who have distinguished themselves in their field and demonstrated a profound commitment to LGBT equality.”
In announcing this year’s winners, D’Arcy Kemnitz, executive director of the National LGBT Bar Association, said: “Every individual recognized has made unique contributions to the fight for equality.” Tent’s practice focuses on antitrust law analysis and investigations of mergers, acquisitions and joint ventures, Hart-Scott-Rodino (HSR) filings, white collar investigations, and antitrust-related litigation. In the summer of 2006, shortly after arriving at Latham, Tent pursued her dedication to mentoring and diversity by co-founding an innovative associate-driven diversity umbrella group called MPAC (Multicultural Promotion and Attainment Coalition) with the mission to recruit, retain and promote attorneys with diverse backgrounds through various professional, educational and social activities.
Tent is also a passionate advocate for pro bono. Many of her pro bono cases are on behalf of clients who are seeking asylum in the United States because they are LGBT and face persecution in their home countries. Tent’s pro bono work, which also includes mentoring and supervising younger associates working on asylum cases, was central to her being named to the prestigious list. “I am honored to be among this class of distinguished practitioners and advocates, whose contributions to LGBT equality in the profession are hugely important and inspirational,” said Tent. “I am particularly proud of my pro bono work. With each asylum case I supervise now, I feel truly lucky to see our clients’ access to justice profoundly improve, our immigration courts strengthen support for LGBT equality, and our junior associates develop confidence and skill. Economists like to talk about vicious circles. It’s heartening to see evidence, like this, of virtuous circles.”