Bill Lee, the Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale and Dorr litigator named this year as a Lifetime Achievement honoree by The American Lawyer, describes himself as an “anchor baby.” His parents emigrated from Shanghai in 1948, and both were facing deportation proceedings in the United States when he was born in 1950. They were parents of a citizen, and they could stay.

All these years later, their son has made his mark on the legal profession, and at The American Lawyer Industry Awards in New York last week, he spoke about his family’s experience.

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