About HBA-DC

About the Hispanic Bar Association of the District of Columbia


The Hispanic Bar Association of the District of Columbia ("HBA-DC” or "Association”) is a non-profit, non-partisan professional organization founded in 1977 as the Hispanic Lawyers Association.  The Association adopted its current name in 1984.  Its membership includes several hundred lawyers practicing in Washington D.C., Maryland and Virginia, law students, and other non-lawyer associate members.  The HBA-DC encourages the active involvement of all its members and the meetings of its Board of Directors are open to all members. The meetings are generally held the first Tuesday of each month at 6:30 pm. Please e-mail the HBA-DC for more information/confirmation regarding the next meeting.


The HBA-DC has historically been associated with the Hispanic National Bar Association, a national network of Hispanic lawyers and bar associations.

The HBA-DC is dedicated to the following principles:

  • Advancing and developing Latinos in the legal profession;
  • Promoting equal justice and opportunity for all Hispanics;
  • Educating the Hispanic community about relevant legal issues;
  • Promoting the professional development of Hispanic lawyers and law students;
  • Encouraging Latinos to enter the legal profession; and
  • Promoting the appointment of Hispanics to leadership positions in Federal, state, and local governments, in the judiciary, and in other leadership positions.

To put these principles into action, the HBA-DC engages in varied activities and programs.  For example, the Association

  • hosts networking events, often in cooperation with other professional groups;
  • sponsors seminars on current legal developments;
  • comments on issues affecting Latinos;
  • evaluates the qualifications of candidates for executive and judicial positions, the D.C. Bar’s Board of Governors and other bar offices, and  may endorses such candidates;
  • gathers and disseminates information on employment opportunities to members;
  • publishes a newsletter to report on HBA-DC activities;
  • assists the Hispanic community in obtaining pro bono legal services;
  • notifies members of opportunities for participation in local government, bar, and civic boards and committees;
  • monitors legislation concerning immigration, bilingual education, welfare reform, budget measures, and other matters that impact the Latino community;
  • sponsors a mentor-mentee program for law students and new attorneys;
  • conducts a diversity survey of area law firms and in-house legal departments; and
  • organizes the Equal Justice Awards to recognize outstanding lawyers and community actors by awarding the Hugh Johnson Awards (individual and organization), the Judge Ricardo Urbina Lifetime Award, the Hispanic Attorney of the Year Award (new for 2019), and the Rising Star Award.           
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