I extend heartfelt congratulations to the Co-Chairs, Hon. Sara Doyle and Hon. Carol Hunstein, for an outstanding Annual Conference. I also wish to thank Karlise Grier, for her conference support, as well as the Friends Committee, volunteers, NAWJ staff, Marie Komisar and Lavinia Cousin, and our partners at Calibre for their exceptional work. Also, many thanks to our conference sponsors for their support of NAWJ and its mission.
I was honored to be sworn-in as your 39th President during the Annual Conference. I would like to share excerpts of my remarks following my swearing-in ceremony with those who were unable to attend, as well as to reiterate them to those in attendance.
The theme for my 2017-2018 term is "The Emerging Legal Landscape: Navigating a Path to the Future." Our midyear meeting, which bears the same theme, will be held at the New York Marriott at Brooklyn Bridge, in downtown Brooklyn, Thursday, April 12, 2018 through Saturday, April 14, 2018. For those who may be unfamiliar with downtown Brooklyn, our midyear meeting is located in a bustling retail, restaurant and cultural environment that is in close proximity to major airports, mass transit and Manhattan. Among the educational panels during Friday's session will address artificial intelligence, cyber-security and the Internet of Things, as well as bail reform. On Saturday, we will turn our attention to maintaining our mental well-being; developing the pipeline to the judiciary – effective outreach to millennials; and what is your brand – effective career strategies for new and experienced attorneys, as well as judges who leave the bench. This is one event not to be missed. Stay tuned for further details.
I have established a presidential advisory council, as well as three new committees: Technology, Law School Outreach and ADA Compliance Policy. We must stay abreast of the technological advances to ensure that our website, social media presence and messaging is relevant and appealing to our target demographic, in addition to those we are trying to educate, attract and encourage joining. Not enough people know that NAWJ membership extends beyond the judiciary and is also open to law students, lawyers, law school professors, as well as men in any of the aforementioned categories. We need to spread the word.
In order for us to play a role in the development of future attorneys, we must have a stronger connection with law schools and invite law school deans, students and professors to join and partner together on a number of initiatives. This is the roadmap for how we build our pipeline to the legal community, and eventually to the judiciary.
The challenges and opportunities we faced when we were founded in 1979 are different than those which exist today. We must adapt and adjust to the emerging legal, technological, economic, social and global landscape. However, our mission will always remain the same. We have and will continue to lead the American judiciary on achieving fairness and equality for vulnerable populations. We have and will continue to promote the judicial role of protecting the rights of individuals through strong committed diverse judicial leadership; fairness and equality in the courts; and equal access to justice. We have and will continue to provide judicial education on cutting edge issues of importance. We have and will continue to develop judicial leaders and to increase the number of women in the judiciary.
We live in perilous times and our judicial independence is under attack. However, we will not be deterred and will remain steadfast. Together, we will forge ahead because WE are the leading voice for women in the judiciary and with this responsibility, WE MUST LEAD THE CHARGE!
Thank you to those who responded to my October 31, 2017 appeal to join a committee. For those of you who have yet to respond, I encourage you to sign up. NAWJ is only as strong as our members and programs. I welcome your input and suggestions. Please do not hesitate to contact me at email@example.com.
Hon. Tanya R. Kennedy
President, National Association of Women Judges
ANNOUNCING NAWJ 2017-2018 Executive Committee, District Directors
and Board of Directors
NAWJ met during its annual conference in Atlanta to elect the Executive Committee, District Directors (in even numbered districts) and Special Directors at its business meeting on Saturday, October 14, 2017.
Members are encouraged to contact their District Director to obtain information regarding programs and activities in their respective districts.
Hon. Tanya R. Kennedy, New York State Supreme Court, New York County
Hon. Tamila Ipema, Superior Court of California, San Diego County
VICE PRESIDENT, DISTRICTS
Hon. Orlinda Naranjo, 419th District Court of Texas
VICE PRESIDENT, PUBLICATIONS
Hon. Anita Santos, Superior Court of California, Contra Costa County
Hon. Kathy King, New York State Supreme Court, Kings County
Hon. Bernadette D'Souza, Orleans Civil District Court, Louisiana
PROJECTS COMMITTEE CHAIR
Hon. Marcella Holland, Baltimore City Circuit Court (Retired)
FINANCE COMMITTEE CHAIR
Hon. Heidi M. Pasichow, Superior Court of the District of Columbia
|DISTRICT 1 - ME, MA, NH, PR, RI
Hon. Marylou Muirhead
Boston Housing Court
|DISTRICT 8 - IL, IN, KY
Hon. Casandra Lewis
Cook County Circuit Court, Illinois
|DISTRICT 2 - CT, NY, VT
Hon. Cenceria P. Edwards
New York City Civil Court
|DISTRICT 9 - IA, MO, WI
Hon. Ellen Levy Siwak
21st Judicial Circuit, Division 11
|DISTRICT 3 - DE, NJ, PA, VI
Hon. Barbara McDermott
First Judicial District Court of Common Pleas
|DISTRICT 10 - KS, MN, NE, ND, SD
Hon. Renee Worke
Minnesota Court of Appeals
|DISTRICT 4 - DC, MD, VA
Hon. Judith Kline
Juvenile & Domestic Relations District Court
|DISTRICT 11 (AR, OK, TX
Hon. Karen Sage
299th District Court of Texas
|DISTRICT 5 - FL, GA, NC, SC
Hon. Sara L. Doyle
Court of Appeals of Georgia
|DISTRICT 12 - AZ, CO, NM, UT, WY
Hon. Emily Elizabeth Anderson
Adams County District Court, 17th Judicial District
|DISTRICT 6 - AL, LA, MS, TN
Hon. Sheva Sims
Shreveport City Court, Louisiana
|DISTRICT 13 - AK, HI, ID, MT, OR, WA
Hon. Karen Matson Donohue
Seattle Municipal Court
|DISTRICT 7 - MI, OH, WV
Hon. Michelle M. Rick
29th Circuit Court
|DISTRICT 14 - CA, NV
Hon. Elizabeth Allen White
Los Angeles Superior Court
Hon. Lisette Shirdan-Harris
Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas
Hon. Toni E. Clarke
Circuit Court for Prince George's County, Maryland
| NAWJ DISTRICT 4 HONORS
NAWJ PAST PRESIDENT HON. ANNA BLACKBURNE-RIGSBY,
CHIEF JUDGE OF THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA COURT OF APPEALS,
WITH EDNA G. PARKER AWARD
On November 2, 2017, NAWJ District 4 honored NAWJ Past President Hon. Anna Blackburne Rigsby, Chief Judge of the District of Columbia Court of Appeals, with the Edna G. Parker Award at a reception held at the E. Barrett Prettyman Courthouse in Washington, D.C.
The Honorable Edna G. Parker served on the United States Tax Court, and was a devoted mother and community servant, as well as a tireless champion for justice. The award honors the memory of Judge Parker and her invaluable service to NAWJ and the general community.
Chief Judge Beryl A. Howell of the U.S. District Court, District of Columbia, extended a warm welcome to attendees and U.S. Supreme Court Associate Justice Sonia Sotomayor, NAWJ President Tanya R. Kennedy, and Past NAWJ President Julie Frantz provided congratulatory remarks and highlighted Chief Judge Blackburne-Rigsby's commitment to community service and to mentoring others. Chief Judge Blackburne Rigsby's parents, Hon. Laura Blackburne and Hon. Elmer Blackburne; husband, Hon. Robert Rigsby; NAWJ Past Presidents and members; NAWJ Executive Director, Marie E. Komisar; other members of the judiciary; and a host of other supporters attended the event to salute Chief Judge Blackburne-Rigsby. District of Columbia Superior Court Judge Heidi Pasichow served as reception chair.
NAWJ extends its congratulations to Chief Judge Blackburne Rigsby for a well-deserved honor.
| NAWJ Women in Prison Committee Needs Your Help to Assist the
United States Civil Rights Commission in its 2019 Study of
Please forward to Lavinia Cousin at firstname.lastname@example.org by November 24, 2017, any information you have on the following topics:
1) The name of any state or political jurisdiction that is operating what you believe to be a well-managed system for incarcerated women that considers the needs of the women and their families;
2) Any programs for incarcerated women that has been shown to produce positive results for the women and their families;
3) The names of any experts that should be read and/or consulted;
4) A list of articles, studies, reports, analyses, etc. that the United States Civil Rights Commission staff should review.
Lavinia Cousin will forward your information to the committee, which will then organize and provide them to the Commission. Sincere thanks in advance for your assistance. If you have any questions, feel free to contact any of the Women in Prison Co-Chairs:
Hon. Cheryl Gonzales, email@example.com
Hon. Brenda P. Murray, MurrayB@SEC.GOV
Hon. Betty J. Williams, firstname.lastname@example.org
| PROFILES IN LEADERSHIP
|MEET RESOURCE BOARD MEMBER CO-CHAIR KAREN JOHNSON MCKEWAN ESQ.
AND RESOURCE BOARD MEMBER LINDA LEALI, ESQ.
RESOURCE BOARD CO-CHAIR
KAREN G. JOHNSON-MCKEWAN, ESQ.
Karen G. Johnson-McKewan, an Intellectual Property partner in Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP's San Francisco office, is a trial lawyer with thirty-two years of experience. She concentrates her practice on complex intellectual property and commercial litigation for technology and consumer products companies. Karen served as Orrick's San Francisco Office Leader from 2005-2008. She was named one of the 100 "Most Influential Women in Bay Area Business," by the San Francisco Business Times in 2007 and 2009; and "Forever Influential" in 2010. Karen was also named one of the "Top Women Litigators" by the Daily Journal (California), in 2010.
Karen has significant experience litigating and trying particularly intricate cases where simplifying complex technology issues is invaluable, and in finding creative solutions to client problems that lie at the intersection of multiple legal disciplines. Her engagements have involved matters in technology, internet, media, financial, e-commerce, retail, software and gaming industries in a diverse set of courts and multiple arbitral bodies. She has led intellectual property and complex commercial litigation teams for companies such as Oracle, NVIDIA, Netflix, VMWare and Levi Strauss & Co.
Karen joined the NAWJ Resource Board in 2005, and served as co-chair from 2006 to 2009. Among her many accomplishments during this period, Karen secured Forster-Long, Inc.'s partnership in producing a statistical summary of gender ratios of the judiciary in every state of the country. In 2011, Karen assumed the responsibilities of co-chair of the Resource Board for a second time and, together with Elaine Metlin, Esq., played a critical role in moving NAWJ forward. She continues to serve as co-chair of the Resource Board, along with Cathy Winter. Karen also served as vice-chair of NAWJ's California Coordinating Committee for the Informed Voters-Fair Judges Project (IVP) in that project's first year.
Orrick provided substantial resources for the IVP in the form of generous financial contributions and pro bono work of its attorneys, who preserved NAWJ's tax-exempt status and the independence of IVP's Intellectual property.
In 2015, Karen received NAWJ's Florence K. Murray Award for Leadership. NAWJ appreciates Karen Johnson-McKewan's dedication for the past twelve years and commitment to further NAWJ's mission to ensure "Equal Access to Justice for All."
RESOURCE BOARD MEMBER
Linda Leali has had an extensive career devoted both to the legal profession and to public service. As a shareholder of Linda Leali, P.A., which she founded in South Florida in 2013, she maintains an active practice in the United States Bankruptcy Courts and regularly serves as a court appointed fiduciary, including as a receiver over businesses and properties. Before founding her firm, Linda was a senior associate in the Miami office of White & Case LLP practicing exclusively in the area of Chapter 11 bankruptcy, and previously served as a consultant at the Miami office of Pricewaterhouse Coopers LLP.
Linda has served NAWJ in a variety of roles. In 2012, she served as co-chair of the Friends Committee for NAWJ's annual conference held in Miami. In 2013, she joined NAWJ's Resource Board, and in 2015 she was appointed as co-chair of NAWJ's flagship Informed Voters-Fair Judges voter education project (www.ivp.nawj.org). In her role with the project, Linda was instrumental in arranging for the Broward County, Florida courts to present the Emmy Award winning public service announcement (which NAWJ sponsored) regarding jury service daily to jury pools in the county.
For three years, from 2014 until 2017, Linda served as Chair of the Consumer Bankruptcy Committee in the Business Law Section of the American Bar Association, one of the most prominent committees of consumer bankruptcy attorneys in the country. Linda regularly instructs both lawyers and judges on various substantive legal topics, including receivership, civil litigation and bankruptcy law, and has served as a faculty member at the Florida Circuit Court Conference and before the Eleventh Judicial Circuit. Linda has also served as an adjunct professor of business law at Florida Atlantic University's School of Accounting.
Linda served on the board of the Miami-Dade chapter of the Florida Association for Women Lawyers for five years and as its Leadership Chair for four years. In that role, she founded the Leadership Summit designed to promote women in the law, which is currently in its fifth year. Linda is a two-time recipient of the Florida Association of Women Lawyer's Miami-Dade chapter's President's Award, and is also the recipient of the prestigious Leader in the Law Award presented by the Florida Association for Women Lawyers.
Linda currently serves as a member of the Florida Bar Constitutional Judiciary Committee, where she actively promotes public education for fair and impartial courts. Linda also serves as a board member for the Florida Youth Orchestra located in Davie, Florida, where her eleven year old daughter Violet is a first violinist in the Symphony Orchestra. Previously, Linda served as a member of the Board of Directors of Legal Services of Greater Miami, where she participated in public outreach on financial education for disadvantaged populations. She has also served as a member of the board of the Southeastern Division Children's Home Society, which provides foster care services to children in need.
Linda received her undergraduate degree from the University of Central Florida with a specialty in accounting, and her law degree from the University of Miami School of Law.
Thank you, Linda, for your steadfast commitment to NAWJ and to our mission.
LINDA LEALI, ESQ.
NAWJ HOSTS ITS 39TH ANNUAL CONFERENCE
"ACCESS TO JUSTICE – PAST, PRESENT AND FUTURE"
IN ATLANTA, GEORGIA
Click here to view a photo gallery from the Annual Conference. Click here to read the Conference Program.
NAWJ hosted its 39th Annual Conference "Access to Justice – Past, Present and Future" in Atlanta, GA from October 11-15, 2017. Among the conference highlights were thought provoking conversations with the 39th President of the United States, Jimmy Carter, Former First Lady Rosalynn Carter and Sally Yates, Former Deputy Attorney General; a stirring keynote address from Judge Glenda Hatchett (Ret.); poignant lessons from the civil rights movement; the documentary "Balancing the Scales" by Film Producer/Director Sharon Rowan, Esq. of Rowen & Klonoski; and a memorable private tour of the Center for Civil and Human Rights Museum. NAWJ recognizes and thanks all those involved for such an unforgettable experience.
Hon. Carol W. Hunstein • Hon Sara L. Doyle
Hon. Kathlene F. Gosselin
Hon. Gail S. Tusan
Hon. Brenda S. Weaver
Hon. Marguerite Denise Downing
Hon. Bobbi Tillmon
Hon. Shondeana Crews Morris
Karlise Y. Grier, Esq., C.W.L.S.
|BAR ASSOCIATION RECEPTION
Shiriki L. Cavitt, Esq.
V. Sharon Edenfield, Esq.
|THANK YOU TO OUR SPONSORS
Click here to review the entire list of conference supporters.
| NAWJ MEMBERS GATHER AT THE APPELLATE JUDGES EDUCATION INSTITUTE
From November 2-5, 2017, the Appellate Judges Education Institute held its annual Summit in Long Beach, California. Several NAWJ members attended. Pictured above, left to right, Justice Irene Rios (Fourth Court of Appeals, Texas), Justice Rebeca Martinez (Fourth Court of Appeals, Texas), Justice Gina Benavides (Thirteenth Court of Appeals, Texas), Justice Eva Guzman (Texas Supreme Court), Judge Patricia Riley (Indiana Court of Appeals), Claudia Kennedy, Judge Lucy Inman (North Carolina Court of Appeals), Judge Margret Robb (Indiana Court of Appeals), Judge Ann Breen-Greco (City of Chicago Administrative Hearings Department).
The Appellate Judges Education Institute (AJEI) Summit is an annual conference open to judges and lawyers from across the country which addresses various cutting edge appellate judicial educational topics.
Informed Voters Program Co-Chair, Justice Barbara Pariente,
Named Recipient of Sandra Day O'Connor Award
The Board of Regents of the American College of Trial Lawyers will present Justice Barbara J. Pariente of the Florida Supreme Court with the Sandra Day O'Connor Jurist Award for her "exemplary judicial independence in the performance of [her] duties."
The Award will be presented during the College's 2018 Spring Meeting in Phoenix, Arizona, March 1-4, 2018.
Justice Pariente is a longtime NAWJ member and a founding co-chair of NAWJ's Informed Voters-Fair Judges Project. Job well done, Justice Pariente! Congratulations!!
| "NO ONE KNEW WHAT TO EXPECT:
BREAKING THE PHOENIX GENDER BARRIER IN 1969"
BY THE HONORABLE MARY M. SCHROEDER
NAWJ member Hon. Mary M. Schroeder, Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, shares her story of strength and perseverance in "No One Knew What to Expect: Breaking the Phoenix Gender Barrier in 1969," which was first published in Arizona State Law Journal, Volume 49, No 2. Judge Schroeder's story not only reminds us of the great strides that women have made in the legal profession, but the obstacles that continue to persist. Thank you Judge Schroder for sharing your story with us. You are truly an inspiration.
Please click here to read.
NAWJ PAST PRESIDENT AMY L. NECHTEM
NAMED TOP WOMEN IN LAW BY
MASSACHUSETTS LAWYERS WEEKLY
Past NAWJ President Hon. Amy Nechtem, Chief Justice of the Massachusetts Juvenile Court, was named among the "Top Women in Law" list in this Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly. Chief Justice Nechtem commenced her legal career as a Suffolk County Assistant District Attorney prosecuting major felony and child abuse cases, work that enabled her to "provide a voice and a vehicle for children to be heard." In 2001, she was appointed to Massachusetts's Juvenile Court. She shared with the weekly, "[t]his line of practice is not for everybody. The people that do practice in this area are passionate and committed and devoted to the community. And the results can be astounding, how you can change the trajectory of a child's life or a family's life."
Chief Justice Nechtem, you make us proud! Congratulations!!
Landmark Sponsor GEICO
The partnership between NAWJ and GEICO provides insurance discounts to NAWJ members. Contact GEICO for a free quote on auto insurance to see how much you could be saving. Remember to mention your NAWJ affiliation since you could qualify for an exclusive member savings opportunity. Visit www.geico.com/disc/nawj (special portal here) or call 1-800-368-2734 for your free rate quote. GEICO also can help you find great rates on homeowners, renters, motorcycle insurance, and more.