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Attorney discipline committee members named

Chief Judge Jonathan Lippman on Monday announced the members of the new Commission on Statewide Attorney Discipline.

Chaired by Chief Administrative Judge A. Gail Prudenti and made up of leaders from New York’s bench and bar, the commission will conduct a comprehensive review of the state’s attorney disciplinary system to determine what is working well and what can work better, and offer recommendations to enhance the efficiency and effectiveness of New York’s attorney discipline process.

Former Appellate Division, Second Department Associate Justice Barry Cozier, currently with the law firm LeClairRyan, will serve as the commission’s vice chair.

The creation of the new commission was first publicized by Judge Lippman last month during his State of the Judiciary address, in which he also announced attorneys’ public disciplinary histories will now be accessible via the Unified Court System’s website.

Among the issues to be studied by the commission are whether New York’s departmental-based system leads to regional disparities in the implementation of discipline, if conversion to a statewide system is desirable, and how to achieve dispositions more quickly in an effort to provide much-needed closure to clients and attorneys.

The commission will issue a report with its findings and recommendations to Judge Lippman by Aug. 1.

“The distinguished members of this new commission, under the dynamic leadership of Chief Administrative Judge Prudenti, will carefully examine the need for change in New York in the area of discipline for professional misconduct by lawyers, thoroughly assessing our current system and proposing viable reforms where appropriate,” said Judge Lippman.

“I have every confidence that their efforts will help to enhance both the consistency and effectiveness of New York’s attorney discipline system, which is integral to the fair administration of justice.

Committee members are:

  • Harvey B. Besunder, partner, Bracken Margolin Besunder LLP;
  • The Hon. James M. Catterson, special counsel, Kaye Scholer LLP and former associate justice,    Appellate Division, First Department;
  • Ronald M. Cerrachio, chief Clerk, Richmond County Surrogate’s Court and member, Grievance Committee, Appellate Division, Second Department;
  • The Hon. Carmen Beauchamp Ciparick, of counsel and co-chair, National Appellate Practice    Group, Greenberg Traurig LLP, chair of Mayor’s Advisory Committee on the Judiciary and      former senior associate judge, state Court of Appeals;
  • Lance D. Clarke, managing attorney, Cooke & Clarke and former president, Nassau County Bar Association;
  • The Hon. Jeffrey A. Cohen, associate justice, Appellate Division, Second Department;
  • John P. Connors Jr., partner, Connors & Connors P.C. and chairman, Grievance Committee for the Second, Eleventh and Thirteenth judicial districts;
  • Rita DiMartino, former vice president of Congressional Relations for AT&T; member, CUNY board of trustees; and member, Grievance Committee, Appellate Division, First Department;
  • Vincent E. Doyle III, Connors & Vilardo LLP and former president, New York State Bar  Association;
  • Monica Ann Duffy, chief counsel, Committee on Professional Standards, Appellate Division, Third Department;
  • Donna M. England, England & England and president-elect, Suffolk County Bar Association;
  • Charlotte Moses Fischman, general counsel, Kramer Levin Naftalis & Frankel LLP;
  • Emily F. Franchina, founding partner, Franchina & Giordano P.C.;
  • Stephen Gillers, Elihu Root professor of law, New York University School of Law;
  • Robert J. Giuffra Jr., partner, Sullivan & Cromwell LLP;
  • Nicholas A. Gravante Jr., administrative partner and general counsel, Boies, Schiller & Flexner LLP;
  • Robert P. Guido, executive director for Attorney Matters, Appellate Division, Second Department;
  • Sarah Jo Hamilton, partner, Scalise, Hamilton & Sheridan LLP; former special trial counsel and first deputy chief counsel, Departmental Disciplinary Committee, Appellate Division, First Department;
  • Peter James Johnson Jr., president, Leahey & Johnson P.C., and chairman, Committee on Character and Fitness, Appellate Division, First Department;
  • Frederick C. Johs, founding partner, Lewis Johs Avallone Aviles LLP and vice chairman, Grievance Committee for the Tenth Judicial District;
  • The Hon. E. Michael Kavanagh, neutral, National Arbitration and Mediation and former    associate justice, Appellate Division, First and Third departments;
  • Devika Kewalramani, partner and general counsel, Moses & Singer, and chair of the New York City Bar Association’s Committee on Professional Discipline;
  • Glenn Lau-Kee, partner, Kee & Lau-Kee, and president, New York State Bar Association;
  • Hal R. Lieberman, partner, Emery Celli Brinckerhoff & Abady LLP, and co-author, “New York Attorney Discipline;”
  • The Hon. Stephen K. Lindley, associate justice, Appellate Division, Fourth Department;
  • Christopher D. Lindquist, principal appellate court attorney, Appellate Division, Fourth Department;
  • The Hon. Angela M. Mazzarelli, associate justice, Appellate Division, First Department;
  • William T. McDonald, CPA, partner and healthcare department head, EFP Rotenberg, and member, Grievance Committee, Appellate Division, Fourth Department, Seventh Judicial District;
  • Sean Michael Morton, deputy clerk of the court, Appellate Division, Third Department;
  • The Hon. Eugene L. Nardelli, counsel, Boies, Schiller & Flexner LLP, and former associate        justice, Appellate Division, First Department;
  • Jerold R. Ruderman, of counsel, Wilson Elser Moskowitz Edelman & Dicker LLP, and chairman, Grievance Committee, Ninth Judicial District;
  • Christina Leann Ryba, special projects counsel for the presiding justice, Appellate Division, Third Department;
  • The Hon. Fred T. Santucci, former associate justice, Appellate Division, Second Department, and executive director of its Committee on Character and Fitness;
  • The Hon. Peter B. Skelos, associate justice, Appellate Division, Second Department;
  • Sheldon K. Smith, partner, Nixon Peabody;
  • Eun Chong Thorsen, associate, Vishnick McGovern Milizio LLP, and vice president, Korean American Lawyers Association of Greater New York;
  • W. Bradley Wendel, professor, Cornell University Law School;
  • Milton L. Williams Jr., partner, Vladeck, Waldman, Elias & Engelhard, P.C., and chair,  Departmental Disciplinary Committee, Appellate Division, First Department;
  • Akosua Yeboah, senior information technology project manager, city of Albany, and member, Committee on Professional Standards, Appellate Division, Third Department; and
  • Mark C. Zauderer, partner, Flemming Zulack Williamson Zauderer LLP.