NOTICE TO THE BAR
CONTACT: Peter Quijano, 212-686-0666; or Anthony L. Ricco, 212-791-3919
SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF NEW YORK SEEKING CANDIDATES FOR CRIMINAL JUSTICE ACT MENTORING PROGRAM
The United States District Court for the Southern District of New York is seeking candidates for its Criminal Justice Act (CJA) Mentoring Program. Ideal candidates are attorneys with five or more years of experience litigating in state court, with fifteen felony trials to verdict as lead counsel or comparable in-court experience under their belt. Under the supervision of a member of the CJA Panel, CJA Mentees would represent defendants in federal court who qualify for appointed representation under the Criminal Justice Act.
The purpose of the CJA Mentoring Program is to diversify the composition of the CJA Panel—a roster of private attorneys who are authorized to serve as appointed defense counsel pursuant to 18 U.S.C. § 3006A—and to expose experienced state court practitioners to federal practice. While the mentee’s initial 15 hours of service will be done pro bono, mentees may earn a reduced rate of $65 per hour for their services after the pro bono requirement has been fulfilled.
Candidate interviews will be conducted in early June. To apply for the program, please e-mail your resume by June 4 to:
Peter Enrique Quijano
Quijano & Ennis, P.C.
“The CJA Mentoring Program offers attorneys a unique opportunity to expand their practice and learn from some of the top criminal defense attorneys in the nation,” said Chief Judge Loretta A. Preska. “The Court is fortunate to benefit from such an excellent program and grateful for the time and attention contributed by the mentor lawyers.”
The mentorship program is open to anyone who qualifies, and women, minorities, and persons with disabilities are particularly encouraged to apply. Participation in the mentorship program does not guarantee appointment to the CJA Panel.
MEDIA ADVISORY/NOTICE TO THE BAR CONTACT: Edward Friedland, 212-805-0513
Chief Judge Loretta A. Preska has announced that the United States District Court for the Southern District Court (SDNY) will hold a special session on Tuesday, November 4, 2014 to commemorate the first session of the Court held 225 years ago. President George Washington appointed James Duane, who had been a member of the Continental Congress and first mayor of New York City following the evacuation of British forces, as the Court’s first judge. Judge Duane held the first session on the first Tuesday of November, 1789, making it the first Court to convene under the new United States Constitution. For this reason, it is frequently referred to as the “Mother Court.”
The anniversary celebration will continue through 2015 with re-enactments of historic trials, lectures on some of the Court’s most notable jurists, and exhibits featuring art and historic artifacts such as the Silver Oar of the British Vice Admiralty Court for the Province of New York, the symbol of an admiralty court’s authority. A full calendar of events, under the co-chairmanship of District Judges Deborah A. Batts and P. Kevin Castel, will be published later this year.
Chief Judge Loretta A. Preska said of the anniversary commemoration:
“The history of this Court reflects the history of the nation. The Court has been the venue for civil war prize cases, litigation over the sinking of the Titanic and Lusitania, and the attack on the World Trade Center. It has seen criminal prosecutions from the Tea Pot Dome scandal to Watergate. Today its docket includes white collar and terrorism prosecutions. We are honored and delighted to mark this Court’s 225th year of continued service.”
Currently there are 28 active and 22 senior District Judges on the Southern District bench, in addition to 15 Magistrate Judges and 9 bankruptcy judges.
Loretta A. Preska, Chief Judge of the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York (SDNY), and Congressman José E. Serrano (NY–15) announced today that the court received $10.44 million to build a security pavilion outside the Daniel Patrick Moynihan United States Courthouse, located at 500 Pearl Street in Lower Manhattan.
“We gather here today to celebrate a success of bipartisan government action to improve the security of our courthouse and of the people who come here every day to do business,” said Chief Judge Preska. “We have been pursuing the means to construct this pavilion since September 11, and today’s triumph is long overdue.”
The pavilion will enhance security at and speed entry to the busy federal courthouse, home of many high-profile proceedings. The project was conceived after 9/11, but funding for the pavilion was not found until recently.
Congressman Serrano, who was instrumental in appropriating funds for the project, said: “I was happy to be able to intercede on the Moynihan Courthouse’s behalf from my seat on the Appropriations Committee. We know that keeping our federal buildings secure is of the utmost importance, especially one with high sensitivity trials involving national security like Moynihan. Waiting years after 9/11 was unacceptable.” No new appropriation was made to fund the pavilion; funds were reprogrammed from completed or cancelled projects.
Other key representatives who helped secure funding for the project were also on hand for today’s announcement:
“This new security pavilion is an essential modernization of the Moynihan Courthouse that will ensure that Manhattan’s federal court is a safe space for all who use it,“ said Congressman Jerrold Nadler (NY-10). “For the wheels of justice to operate smoothly, it is vital that our courthouses be secure. This is especially true in my district in Lower Manhattan, where we are still very much living in the shadow of 9/11.”
Representative Peter King (NY–2), said: “As the leading terrorist target, New York’s security is essential. I am proud to have played a part in ensuring funds for the Moynihan Federal Courthouse’s new security pavilion. It is imperative that all those who work for justice can do so in a secure environment.”
The U.S. General Services Administration will oversee construction, which is slated to begin in October and completed in April 2015. The 4,500 square foot glass and steel structure will be situated on the west side of the courthouse.
Vincent Chang sat on a New York County Lawyers Association (NYCLA) panel at a public hearing on Friday, December 2 that addressed the impact of present and future budget cuts on the Southern and Eastern Districts of New York. Chief Judge Loretta Preska of the SDNY and Chief Judge Carol Amon of the EDNY testified at the hearing, which discussed, among other things, the effect that budget cuts would have on public safety, including courthouse security, as well as pretrial and probation supervisory services. The hearing also addressed issues relating to cutbacks in services provided to lawyers and to the public, such as cuts in clerk’s office support staff, docketing, interpreters, court reporting, audio visual, IT, and other areas, which could result in increased delays and other challenges to the administration of justice.