National Center for Access to Justice

John R. Cuti

John R. Cuti is a partner at Cuti Hecker Wang LLP, a litigation firm that handles a wide variety of commercial litigation, criminal matters, and civil rights cases, including those involving employment discrimination and retaliation, election law, housing, labor, First Amendment, and children’s rights, religious liberties, police misconduct, and prisoners’ rights.   Prior to helping to found the firm, John was a partner at Davis Wright Tremaine and Emery Cuti Brinckerhoff & Abady.  He also served as the General Counsel to two public companies, including Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia, Inc.; was a long-time trustee of the Neighborhood Defender Service of Harlem (a community-based public defender); and has been honored by Common Cause for his efforts to improve access to the ballot, and by Legal Information for Families Today for his efforts to improve access to the courts.

Brenna DeVaney

Brenna DeVaney, pro bono Counsel at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom, LLP, coordinates the firm’s pro bono efforts in the New York office. Her practice focuses on representing low-income individuals, including women in family law matters who have been the victims of domestic violence. She also is involved with the Skadden Honors Program in Legal Studies at The City College of New York, part of the firm’s effort to increase diversity in law schools and the legal profession.  In 2011, Ms. DeVaney was honored by Sanctuary for Families with its Above and Beyond Award for Excellence in Pro Bono Advocacy. She also was recognized by The Legal Aid Society as one of the recipients of the 2011 Pro Bono Publico Awards for her outstanding service and leadership to develop pro bono best practices and to expand access to justice for low-income New Yorkers. She also has been the recipient of the New York Family Court Volunteer Attorney Program Pro Bono Service Award on multiple occasions.  Prior to the her role as the firm’s first pro bono associate, Ms. DeVaney was a member of the Government Enforcement and White Collar Crime Group, where she represented individual and corporate clients in federal and state criminal and regulatory matters and conducted internal corporate investigations.

Faith E. Gay

Faith E. Gay, partner at Quinn Emmanuel Urquehart & Sullivan, is Co-Chair of the Firm’s National Trial Practice Group. She has been repeatedly recognized as one of the leading trial and appellate lawyers in the United States by Chambers USA, Best Lawyers in America, Corporate Counsel and Super Lawyers. Prior to entering private practice, she was Deputy Chief of the Special Prosecutions Unit and the Civil Rights Division while serving as an Assistant United States Attorney in the Eastern District of New York. She was twice awarded the Director’s Award for Special Achievement in Trial Litigation by the Attorney General of the United States. Ms. Gay has broad courtroom experience with more than 25 trials and 30 appellate arguments to her credit. Her practice is focused upon complex civil litigation and corporate governance/white collar matters. Ms. Gay’s principal clients include Coca-Cola, Colgate, Home Depot, McDonald’s, Morgan Stanley, Motorola, Nuance, Pfizer, Schwab and Wyeth. In recent years, Ms. Gay’s civil matters – in which she has an undefeated record at trial – have focused in the areas of securities litigation, complex contractual and financing disputes, products liability, intellectual property and Alien Tort Statute claims. In the white collar arena, she has represented corporations and individuals in investigations by the SEC, FINRA, DOJ, FDA, IRS, EPA, DOD and numerous attorneys general. Ms. Gay’s SEC/FINRA experience includes OFAC and FCPA compliance and investigations; reporting and accounting issues involving registration, exemptions, proxy statements, private offerings, and related books and records requirements; options backdating; and investment-related distribution and advertising issues. She has also led internal investigations at the request of corporations, boards of directors, and special committees. No corporation or individual that Ms. Gay has represented while under investigation has ever been indicted. Ms. Gay has also devoted significant time and energy to public interest litigation. By way of example, she successfully defended a constitutional amendment establishing a state minimum wage before the Florida Supreme Court. She also recently represented New York Governor David Patterson in a victory the New York Times called “stunning” in upholding the appointment of Richard Ravitch as Lieutenant Governor. More generally, she has litigated numerous white collar, immigration and housing court matters on a pro bono basis during her 20+ year career.

Toby Golick [Secretary]

Toby Golick, Clinical Professor of Law, Director of Clinical Legal Education, and Founding Director, Bet Tzedek Legal Services Clinic, is a nationally prominent legal services leader and a member of the faculty of Cardozo School of Law.  Through the Bet Zedek Legal Services Clinic she directs the representation of elderly and disabled New York residents in a range of civil legal matters.  As a senior attorney for 10 years at Legal Services for the Elderly in New York City, she litigated nationally significant cases involving the rights of the elderly and disabled. She is a frequent lecturer on public benefits issues and on health law issues concerning the poor, and is the author of Justice Scalia, Poverty and the Good Society, 12 Cardozo Law Review 1817 (1990-1991).

Jon L. Mills

Jon L. Mills is former Dean of the University of Florida College of Law and former Speaker of the Florida House of Representatives. He is counsel to Boies Schiller Flexner. Mr. Mills’ main focus is on appellate litigation.  He has appeared in courts throughout the United States on issues ranging from international jurisdiction, constitutionality of presidential budget cutbacks, the constitutionality of laws protecting victim’s privacy, constitutionality of a Governor’s gaming compact with Indians, to the constitutionality of proposed constitutional initiatives. Mr. Mills has represented a broad range of clients and interests including: The Florida Academy of Trial Lawyers, Gannett Newspapers, The First Amendment Foundation, Florida School Superintendents Association, Florida Education Association, Floridians for Constitutional Integrity, Save Our Everglades Foundation, the Versace Family, Teresa Earnhardt, Dale Earnhardt Incorporated, the Eighth Judicial Circuit State Attorney, Collier County Clerk of Circuit Court, Circuit Judge Candidates 2006, Audubon Society, Florida School Boards Association, Bob Kerrigan Firm, the Florida House of Representatives, and in the 2008 Florida Reapportionment Initiative. During his ten years in the Legislature he sponsored the Florida Growth Management Act; the Child Abuse Prevention Act and the Constitutional Amendment guaranteeing Individual Privacy against governmental intrusion.  He has been listed in Florida Trend Magazine’s “Legal Elite” as one of the best lawyers in Florida chosen by members of the Bar.  In 2007, he was appointed to the advisory committee to the American Bar Association’s World Justice Commission and was the reporter for the American Bar Associations Task Force on Preservation of the Justice System.

Judith Mogul

Judith Mogul is a partner at boutique litigation firm Morvillo, Abramowitz, Grand, Iason, Anello & Bohrer, P.C.  Ms. Mogul focuses her practice on complex commercial litigation for individual and corporate clients in state and federal court. She has extensive experience defending individuals in internal investigations, securities class actions and related regulatory proceedings. She also regularly represents individuals and companies in a broad variety of commercial matters involving employment, partnership, contract, unfair competition, real estate, tax, insurance and other disputes.  Ms. Mogul is co-author of the treatise Civil Practice in the Southern District of New York, 2d Ed. (Thomson West 2010) and of a regular column on federal civil practice for the New York Law Journal.  She served as law clerk to the Honorable José A. Cabranes, then U.S. District Judge for the District of Connecticut and was an Assistant United States Attorney in the Southern District of New York.  As an Adjunct Professor at Pace University Law School, she taught classes in federal pre-trial civil litigation and coordinated a legal services/public interest externship program.   She received her B.A from Wesleyan University and her J.D., cum laude, from New York University School of Law, where she was a member of the Law Review and of the Order of the Coif.

Burt Neuborne

Burt Neuborne, nationally renowned scholar, Inez Milholland Professor of Civil Liberties at NYU School of Law (where he has taught since 1974) and Legal Director of the Brennan Center for Justice, has litigated a wide range of landmark cases in the U. S. Supreme Court and other federal and state courts. He has authored or co-authored four books, including The Rights of Candidates and Voters and two volumes of Political and Civil Rights in the United States, as well as seventeen law review articles that touch on a wide range of topics including free speech, legal theory, separation of powers, legal procedure, and comparative law.  He presented plaintiffs’ constitutional claims in Legal Services Corporation v. Velazquez to the U.S. Supreme Court, successfully overturning a funding restriction that had barred legal services lawyers from challenging welfare reform laws when representing people seeking welfare benefits.

Ellen J. Rosenthal [Chair]

Ellen Rosenthal is an attorney with varied legal experience including healthcare law, criminal law, and corporate legal operations. Ellen is Counsel to MediSys Health Network, the parent of several hospitals and a network of related healthcare entities. Before that, Ellen was Vice President and Assistant General Counsel for Strategy and Operations at Pfizer and Chief Counsel of the Pfizer Legal Alliance, the company’s industry-leading alternative-fee model. At Pfizer, Ellen led a signature project to increase access to justice. Before joining Pfizer, Ellen worked in the General Counsel’s office of Mount Sinai Medical Center and also worked as a prosecutor responsible for sex crimes and racketeering cases. Ms. Rosenthal also spent time in private practice. She is a graduate of Wesleyan University with Highest Honors and earned her J.D. at Columbia Law School where she was a Charles Evans Hughes Scholar. She currently serves on the Advisory Boards of the Berman Institute of Bioethics at Johns Hopkins University, the New York City Bar Justice Center, and the New Perimeter global pro bono program. Ellen was named a Woman of Power and Influence by NOW in 2013.

William T. Russell, Jr.

William T. Russell, Jr., partner at Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP in the firm’s Litigation Department, is co-chair of the firm’s Pro Bono Committee, a member of the American Law Institute, former Chair of the New York City Bar Association’s Committee on Pro Bono and Legal Services, a member of the Association’s delegation to the New York State Bar Association House of Delegates and chair of the Association’s Committee on Legal Services Awards, Chairman of the Board of Manhattan Legal Services, a member of the Advisory Board of Legal Outreach, Inc., a member of the New York State Bar Association’s President’s Committee on Access to Justice and a member of Court of Appeals Chief Judge Jonathan Lippman’s Attorney Emeritus Council.  He also currently serves on the Disciplinary Committee for the First Judicial Department and was selected as a David Rockefeller Fellow for 2000-2001.  He represented the Campaign for Fiscal Equity in its successful constitutional challenge to the public education funding system in New York State.  He is a graduate of Princeton University and New York University School of Law and is admitted to practice before the Southern, Eastern and Northern District Courts of New York, the United States District of Arizona, the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, the United States Supreme Court.

Amanda Smith

Amanda Smith is Associate Talent & Pro Bono Partner at Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP. In this role, Amanda is responsible for recruiting, retention and professional development of the law firm’s associates and oversees Morgan Lewis’s extensive, award-winning pro bono practice, working to advance the quality of pro bono opportunities for the firm’s lawyers and the effectiveness and impact of the firm’s pro bono representations. Amanda leads the Morgan Lewis Associate Talent Team, which includes the firm’s senior pro bono counsel and the directors of attorney recruiting, professional development, and diversity. Amanda joined Morgan Lewis in 2003 with a practice focused on appellate litigation. In 2004, she was selected to serve as Morgan Lewis’s first pro bono counsel, and in 2008, she was named pro bono partner. Complementing her advanced degree in international human rights law, Amanda’s pro bono practice has historically focused on human rights litigation under the Alien Tort Statute. Amanda also leads the firm’s veterans law pro bono practice—which is recognized throughout the United States—providing legal assistance and strategic advice on veterans legal rights to many nonprofit organizations. In addition to serving on NCAJ’s board, Amanda is a board member for the National Veterans Legal Services Program and she serves on the Emeritus Council of the Association of Pro Bono Counsel, a national organization she co-founded in 2006. She is a frequent panelist at the Pro Bono Institute and Equal Justice Conferences. She has also served as an adjunct professor at Cardozo Law School where she has taught a course on the private bar response to the access to justice crisis.

Hon. George Bundy Smith 

Hon. George Bundy Smith, served on the New York Court of Appeals (the state’s highest court), served for 14 years, from 1992 until his retirement in September 2006.  From 1987 until 1992, he was an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court, Appellate Division, First Department, and, from 1980 to 1986, was a Justice of the Supreme Court of the State of New York.  His judicial service began in May 1975 when he was named to the Civil Court of New York City.  Judge Smith has served as an Adjunct Professor of Law at Fordham University Law School since 1981 and served at New York Law School in 2001. Earlier in his career, Judge Smith worked as an attorney for the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc. He later became a judicial law secretary in the New York state courts, and from 1974 to 1975 was the administrator of New York City’s Model Cities Program.  He has also been involved in a variety of community and professional activities, including service as Chairman of the Board of Trustees of Grace Congregational Church and as a member of the Board of Directors of the Harlem Dowling – Westside Center for Children and Family Services.  Judge Smith is Chair of the Justice Advisory Board of the New York County Lawyers Association and is also a member of the board of directors of the Fund for Modern Courts.

Peter W. Tomlinson [Treasurer]

Peter W. Tomlinson, partner at the law firm of Patterson Belknap Webb & Tyler LLP, is a member of the litigation department and concentrates his practice in complex financial litigation, law firm defense, and internal investigations.  Mr. Tomlinson is one of two partners at the firm in charge of the VOLS Metropolitan Hospital Children’s Project, which provides pro bono legal services to pediatric patients facing legal challenges that affect their health.  He is also a member of the firm’s Pro Bono Committee, which plays an important role in overseeing the firm’s significant pro bono work.  The firm has received numerous awards for its outstanding pro bono contributions to New York’s neediest.  In addition, Mr. Tomlinson served as the secretary of the International Human Rights Committee of the Association of the Bar of the City of New York from 2001 to 2004, and in that role, he participated in a fact-finding mission in Indonesia to investigate the killings of human rights defenders from the Aceh region and co-authored a report detailing the mission’s findings, which was published in The Record.  Euromoney / Institutional Investor’s Benchmark: America’s Leading Litigation Firms and Attorneys lists Mr. Tomlinson as a “Litigation Star” for New York.  Mr. Tomlinson served as a law clerk to both the Hon. Raymond J. Dearie, U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York, and the Hon. Will Garwood, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit.

David Udell [Executive Director]

David Udell, Executive Director of the National Center for Access to Justice and Co-chair of the Fordham Law School Access to Justice Initiative (with Matthew Diller, dean of Fordham Law School, and Jonathan Lippman, Counsel, Latham & Watkins and former Chief Judge of the NYS Unified Court System) guides the work of NCAJ in relying on data to improve the circumstances of vulnerable people in the justice system. NCAJ’s flagship project is its pathbreaking Justice Index, Founder of the Justice Program of the Brennan Center for Justice in September 1997 and its director until August 2010, he has also held positions as a senior attorney at Legal Services for the Elderly and as a managing attorney at MFY Legal Services. He has served as a leader in the national civil right to counsel movement and the national indigent defense reform movement, has guided national initiatives to help strengthen the nation’s Legal Services Corporation, and has helped to develop new models, including new roles for non-attorneys, to provide assistance to people with unmet civil legal needs. He has served as chair of the Subcommittee on Access to Justice of the Committee on Professional Responsibility of the Association of the Bar of the City of New York, member of the Advisory Board to the Justice Center of the New York County Lawyers’ Association, and member of the Pro Bono and Legal Services Committee of the Association of the Bar of the City of New York. He has taught NCAJ’s law school seminar, The Justice Gap: Strategies for Securing the Delivery of Equal Justice in American Courts, at Cardozo Law School, and has also taught courses at New York University Law School and at Fordham Law School. He is a 1982 graduate of New York University School of Law.

Stephen Zack 

Stephen Zack, Administrative Partner for Boies Schiller & Flexner’s Miami office,  is a former President of the American Bar Association and was the first Hispanic American to assume the ABA Presidency. Mr. Zack was the first Hispanic American and youngest President of the Florida Bar. He has also served as President of the National Conference of Bar Presidents and as the Chair of the ABA’s House of Delegates – one of the nation’s most influential positions on matters relating to the legal profession. He is a member of the ABA International Law Section and has served on the ABA Board of Governors. Mr. Zack’s main practice area is complex commercial litigation, emphasizing class actions, products liability cases and federal multi-district litigation. He is a specialist in civil trial law, as well as eminent domain, corporate and international law.  Mr. Zack has represented: Florida’s former Governor and U.S. Senator, Bob Graham as General Counsel; the Florida Senate; the Florida Department of Professional Regulation; the Cities of Hollywood, Hialeah, Miami Beach, Miami and numerous other national clients such as Philip Morris and National Geographic Society. In 2000, he represented former Vice President Al Gore in the trial of Bush v. Gore.

Among many other accomplishments, Mr. Zack is the current chair of the board of the ABA’s Rule of Law Initiative. He has served as Chair of the Florida Ethics Committee and was appointed by Governor Lawton Chiles to re-write the Florida Constitution as a member of the Florida Constitution Revision Commission. In November 2009, Mr. Zack was selected by the University of Florida to receive the distinguished Alumnus Award, an award given to those who have excelled in their chosen field. Mr. Zack has also served as a member of the following organizations: the Miami Beach Charter Revision Commission (Chair), the Environmental Review Board of the City of Miami (Chair), the Federal Judicial Nominating Commission for the Southern District of Florida as well as the 11th Circuit (Miami-Dade County) Judicial Nominating Commission, the American Bar Association, the American Judicature Society, Florida Bar Foundation, and Cuban American National Council. The Board of Trustees of the Public Health Trust for Jackson Memorial Hospital and Dade County and is on the Board of Directors of the Florida Children’s Coalition and the Ounce of Prevention Fund of Florida.