Mark Your Calendars for these upcoming Network of Bar Leaders Events:
- October 29, 2014: Meet the Chief - Judge Jonathan Lippman
- November 14, 2014: Bar Association Fair for Law Students, Met Life, Taa Grays, Chair
See the Calendar for details on this and other events.
Network of Bar Leaders
Bar Association Fair Registration
Friday, November 14, 2014, 3:30-6:30pm
Who: A contact from your bar association and law student attendees
What: A representative from your association will discuss the benefits of membership in your bar association and distribute information regarding events, scholarships etc. to law students in attendance
Why: To encourage early and consistent bar association engagement by law students
Letter from Paula Edgar to Bar Association Leaders
It was great to see many of you at the NOBL installation. We look forward to having your Association participate in the Bar Association Fair.
Please fill out the form (using the link below) to sign up to participate in the upcoming Bar Association Fair for law students sponsored by the Network of Bar Leaders and hosted at MetLife on Friday, November 14 from 3:30 - 6:30pm. Space is limited, so in order to reserve your bar association's table please register as soon as possible. We ask that you confirm your participation by Friday, October 3rd in order to be featured on the final event flyer (Click here for the Save the Date Flyer).
Registration link: bit.ly/BarFair14
Request: Please fill out the social media information on the form even if your association will not participate in the Fair. We will distribute this information to the students.
The Network of Bar Leaders is a coalition of 50 member bar associations dedicated to bringing together the leadership of the diverse bar associations of the greater New York Metropolitan area. Formed over 25 years ago, Network provides a forum for the exchange of information and ideas and serves as a vehicle for joint action on issues of mutual concern and pending legislation. The Network of Bar Leaders is the legal community's most diverse institution. It includes each of the five county bar associations, numerous citywide and statewide specialty groups, specialty bar associations dedicated to every field of practice, as well as ethnic and religious bar associations. Because of its great diversity, the organization is often called upon to express a consensus opinion on behalf of the organized bars in matters affecting the legal community as a whole.
News & Updates
Judicial Voter Guide
For the 2014 general election, the New York State Unified Court System has launched an upgraded non-partisan Judicial Voter Guide which is available at www.nycourts.gov/vote. The guide provides a list of judicial candidates on the ballot in each county based on information provided by the state and county boards of election and is designed to help voters make a more informed decision on Election Day.
From Retiring President Raymond J. Dowd
Dear Fellow Members of Network of Bar Leaders:
The death of the Hon. Harold Baer, Jr., founder of Network of Bar Leaders, was the most significant event of my year as Network President. I started planning my Presidency with lunch at Forlini’s Restaurant with Judge Baer. His vision of a bar association that would open doors and provide a voice to leaders of minority bar associations and affording them an opportunity to meet with the leaders of the larger bar associations was controversial from the beginning, and this year proved to be no different. We had the great good fortune of having the Hon. George B. Daniels introduce a rousing and vigorous speech from Judge Baer only days before his untimely death. I am thankful that Network of Bar Leaders was able to provide wonderful photographs of Judge Baer and his wife Suzanne in a ceremony where Judge Baer was able to celebrate his life’s work with so many Network Past President in attendance. In the coming year I will be working with Judge Daniels and Network’s new President Justice Bernice Siegal to develop an appropriate recognition to honor Judge Baer’s legacy.
My second presidential planning lunch was with Past President Taa Grays at the National Arts Club. It is only thanks to the structure that Taa built, her vision for the future, and her friendship and mentorship me that this past year was successful. Network has added many new members this year. That growth is a sign of our strength and the value we provide to our membership. In the past year we have worked to open doors and include diverse players in a wide array of conversations. We have worked to ensure that the leaders of the smallest and most specialized bars have the opportunity to break bread and share a collegial moment with leaders of large bar associations, members of the judiciary and members of the government.
Thanks to the support of the highest levels of the state and federal judiciary, particularly Chief Judge Jonathan Lippman who swore in our Network 2013-2014 offices and Chief Judge of the Second Circuit Robert Katzmann who hosted a “Meet the Chiefs” event for us at the Thurgood Marshall courthouse where all of the federal chiefs: SDNY, EDNY, Bankruptcy and Court of International Trade greeted us, we have opened doors and forged relationships for Network members. Chief Administrative Judge A. Gail Prudenti welcomed Network members to meet all of the administrative and supervising judges in New York State, truly a dazzling occasion for which we are thankful.
This year we learned about effective government relations from legal experts and joined a successful coalition to support the creation of judgeships for the Family Court. We supported the Haitian and Dominican bars in searching for a joint solution to grave human rights issues facing their membership. We supported operational funding for small claims arbitrators.
This year Network has promoted many bar association social, networking and CLE events that have been collaborations born of meetings between bar leaders around our ever-growing conference table. These collaborations, often made possible by bar associations with greater resources, we are thankful for, and extend our thanks to the New York State Bar Association, the New York City Bar, the New York County Lawyers Association and to each of the county bars who have contributed so much energy, leadership and support. I note that long-time Network member Glenn Lau-Kee ascended to the NYSBA Presidency this year, a moment that all Network members should be truly proud of. A special thank you to Elba Galvan, President of the Puerto Rican Bar Association of New York for so putting so much energy and resources into joint programming with Network.
Without the unfailing support of the Federal Bar Association SDNY and EDNY Chapters, my participation in Network would not be possible. Special thanks to Phil Schatz, Bill Dahill, and Olivera Medenica of the SDNY Chapter. Ernie Bartol and Judge Joanna Seybert of the EDNY Chapter have been tremendously supportive of Network and me personally and am particularly thankful to them. My former law partner Dan Marotta, who will serve as President of the Richmond County Bar Association next year, continues to keep me out of trouble and when the chips are down, Dan is the man who delivers. Each and every member of the Executive Council supported us tremendously this year and I am so grateful to those who traveled from so far away to attend our events, particularly the Suffolk County and New Rochelle Bar Associations. The minutes of our meetings kept by Alexander Badillo have transformed our operations and our Treasurer Tara Zurheide did an amazing job of keeping our finances intact.
Network is in good hands. Our incoming President Justice Bernice Siegal is a superstar who will light the Network on fire. Our new mentor Judge George B. Daniels holds the torch passed to him by the late Judge Baer with steady hands.
A final, special thanks to our webmaster and friend Mary Lacerenza. Without Mary’s unfailing pro bono support of Network, her good humor and her attention to detail, our website and our entire system of helping bar associations communicate and learn about each other’s events would not function.
I look forward to our September 29 event at the Appellate Division Second Department where Presiding Justice Randall Eng will swear in our new officers and new President, Justice Bernice Siegal. I have included our current RSVPs below.
Raymond J. Dowd
DUNNINGTON, BARTHOLOW & MILLER LLP
1359 Broadway, Suite 600
New York, New York 10018
On May 19, 2014, shortly before Judge Harold Baer's untimely death, Loretta A. Preska, Chief Judge of the S.D.N.Y. and the Network of Bar Leaders honored Judge Baer and the Past Presidents of the Network of Bar Leaders at a cocktail reception. With humor and grace Judge Baer recounted stories from his career and explained how his interest in encouraging and expanding communication among diverse bar associations resulted in the founding of the Network of Bar Leaders in 1981. It was a very memorable evening. Judge Baer was an inspirational leader and will be sorely missed.
Below are a few of the photos taken at the event. Click here to view or download all photos.
Network Welcomes New Member
At the March 12, 2014 Meeting, the Iranian-American Bar Association (NY Chapter) joined Network of Bar Leaders. With over 300 religiously-diverse members here in New York they are a great addition to Network. IABA's President Raymond Iryami has invited Network members to a March 30 celebration of the Persian New Year. More info at iaba-ny.org and in Network's Events section.
Network of Bar Leaders Issues Three Consensus Resolutions
Network of Bar Leaders Joins the Coalition for Family Court Judges
February 11, 2014
I am happy to announce that Network of Bar Leaders voted last night to join the Coalition for Family Court Judges. We have been asked to urge individual bar associations to sign on and to support the Coalition’s activities. Please have your bar association join and please circulate the information below from Denise Kronstadt about the Coalition’s activities that your members will be interested in. Special thanks to Susan Lindenauer of NYSBA who came to our meeting last night and spoke so eloquently on behalf of the families and children affected by the crisis in Family Court. I note that Chief Administrative Gail Prudenti expressed her appreciation to Network of Bar Leaders for this support.
We had an action-packed meeting last night, there will be more news to report. Please mark your calendars for Tuesday March 4 for a Network of Bar Leaders visit to Albany. More details to follow.
Click here for NYSBA’s testimony on the budget re Family Courts from Susan Lindenauer.
Click here to read the Mission Statement of the New York State Coalition for More Family Court Judges.
Network Consensus Letter to President Obama on Dominican-born Persons
President Barack Obama
The White House
Washington, DC 20500
Dear President Obama,
On February 10, 2014, the Network of Bar Leaders passed a consent resolution stating, in part, the following:
The Network of Bar Leaders expresses its grave concerns regarding the unreasonable ruling of the Constitutional Court of the Dominican Republic that rendered over 200,000 Dominican-born persons stateless. We further call on the Dominican government to enact a law repealing this ruling, and ask the United States Congress and the Obama administration to engage in diplomatic outreach to guarantee basic human rights to persons affected by the Constitutional Court’s ruling.
For more information about consensus resolutions and to access the full text, please visit www.networkofbarleaders.org.
Raymond J. Dowd
Message from Network's President Raymond J. Dowd
The Network of Bar Leaders consent resolution regarding the decision of the Dominican Constitutional Court rendering certain persons stateless has been sent to President Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry. Both the Haitian American Lawyers Association and the Dominican Bar Association have taken formal stances consistent with the consent resolution on this important human rights issue that directly impacts the administration of justice.
Consensus Resolution Regarding Small Claims Court
At its February 10th Meeting, The Network of Bar Leaders voted to issue a consensus resolution
That the New York State Court System increase the hours of evening operation for the Small Claims Court.
Letter to Hon. A. Gail Prudenti from NOBL President Raymond J. Dowd
Hon. A. Gail Prudenti
Chief Administrative Judge
of the State of New York
Office of Court Administration
25 Beaver Street
New York, NY 10004
Dear Chief Judge Prudenti,
On behalf of the Network of Bar Leaders, I would like to thank you and each of the administrative and supervising judges of the State of New York for including us in the breakfast meeting at New York University’s Greenberg Lounge this past Thursday, January 29 at 10:00 a.m. Special thanks to Ernie Bartol of the Eastern District of New York Chapter of the Federal Bar Association for organizing and sponsoring the event. We hope, with your kind permission, to make it an annual event.
As we discussed, many Network members are concerned about adequate funding of the judiciary. We are planning a visit to Albany this spring to discuss issues regarding the administration of justice and I would be happy to circulate any advance materials to members that you believe might be helpful. Our Legislative Liaison Dan Marotta is working with Governor Cuomo’s counsel to finalize a date and we will keep Matt Kiernan in the loop on any developments. It looks as if we may have the participation of the New York State Conference of Bar Leaders (now known as “New York Bar Leaders”) in this effort, which would help to ensure that upstate bar associations would be fully represented in these efforts.
I hope that we will be able to schedule a Network of Bar Leaders meeting with you this spring to see how our bar associations may further support the administration of justice in the State of New York.
About Network of Bar Leaders
The Network of Bar Leaders is a coalition of over fifty member bar associations dedicated to bringing together the leadership of the diverse bar associations of the greater New York Metropolitan area. Formed over 25 years ago, Network provides a forum for the exchange of information and ideas and serves as a vehicle for joint action on issues of mutual concern. The Network of Bar Leaders is the legal community's most diverse institution. It includes each of the five county bar associations in New York City, numerous citywide and specialty bar associations dedicated to every field of practice, as well as ethnic, gender, and religious bar associations. Because of its great diversity, the organization is called upon to express a consensus opinion on behalf of the organized bars in matters affecting the legal community as a whole. More information is available at the Network’s website at www.networkofbarleaders.org.
Raymond J. Dowd
Network of Bar Leaders Honors Gary B. Pillersdorf
The Network of Bar Leaders gratefully thanks LawCash and Forge Consulting, LLC for its sponsorship of this event.
Click here for Gary Pillersdorf's bio.
Judicial Campaign Ethics Center
Resources for Attorneys Involved in Judicial Campaigns
For attorneys who are considering a campaign for elective judicial office this year in New York State or who may be asked to serve on a judicial candidate's campaign committee, click here for a flyer providing information on these items.
Judicial Campaign Ethics Center are available to answer any questions and offer assistance to either candidates or campaign committee members.
The Network of Bar Leaders held its Annual Legislative Forum on October 26, 2012 at New York County Lawyers' Association
Sen. Diane Savino, City Council members Daniel Garodnick and Julissa Ferreras, and Assemblyman Guillermo Linares discuss regulations affecting gypsy cabs, the city's restaurant grading system, food carts, proposed real property developments in Queens and other issues that affect lawyers, their clients and NY businesses with representatives from Network's member bar associations.
City Council members Daniel Garodnick and Julissa Ferreras at the Network's Annual Legislative Forum.
Network's Legislative Event was organized by Jeff Kurzon, Daniel Marotta and Taa Grays and provided bar association representatives the opportunity to dialogue with legislators on issues of concern to them and their clients. Assemblyman Herman D. Farrell, Jr. and Congressman Jerrold Nadler also attended.
The Funding Crisis and the Sequestration Process and Its Impact on the American Justice System
Message from Ronald Kennedy, Director of NYSBA’s Department of Governmental Relations
I am writing to alert you to an issue that is of critical importance to practicing lawyers, the legal community and every Bar Association. Unless Congress acts, “sequestration” will take effect on January 2, 2013 by operation of law. Should it take place, it will be very damaging to the federal courts and civil legal services programs. It is up to us as Bar Leaders to do what we can to prevent our justice system from being severely undercut.