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Attorney Diane F. Bosse is the 2023 Robert J. Kutak Award Recipient

Diane F. Bosse is Special Counsel to the law firm of Hurwitz Fine in Buffalo, New York.  She was appointed by the New York Court of Appeals to the New York State Board of Law Examiners in 1998, after serving as an assistant to the Board for 19 years. She served as chair of the Board from 2001 to 2020. She served on the Board of Trustees of the National Conference of Bar Examiners from 1999 to 2008 (chair, 2006-2007), and is presently a member of the Conference's Implementation Steering Committee for the NextGen bar exam. Ms. Bosse is a past president of the Defense Trial Lawyers of Western New York and a past member of the boards of directors of the Bar Association of Erie County and of the Western New York Trial Lawyers Association. 

In 2014, Ms. Bosse was named Lawyer of the Year by the Bar Association of Erie County. She was selected as one of the New York Law Journal’s Top Women in Law for 2016.  Her prior awards include the Award of Merit from the Bar Association of Erie County, the  Distinguished Alumnus Award for Public Service from the University at Buffalo Law Alumni Association, the Defense Trial Lawyer of the Year from the Defense Trial Lawyers of Western New York, the New York State Bar Association Award for Excellence in Public Service, the Chair’s Award from the National Conference of Bar Examiners, and the Lamplighter Award from the Eighth Judicial District Gender & Racial Fairness Committee.

Ms. Bosse served on the Council of the ABA Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar from 2014-2021 (chair, 2019-2020).  She served on the Section’s Accreditation Committee for six years (2007-2013), including two years as chair; on the Standards Review Committee for three years (2004-2007); and on the Bar Admissions Committee for two years (2002-2004).

Ms. Bosse is an elected member of the American Law Institute. She received a B.A., magna cum laude, and a J.D., cum laude, from the State University of New York at Buffalo.

In nominating Ms. Bosse for the award, Nominating Committee Chair Rebecca Hanner White remarked: “No one, to my mind, better exemplifies the qualities honored by the Kutak Award than Diane Bosse.  Throughout her many years on the Accreditation Committee and the Council, Diane brought rigor, thoroughness, thoughtfulness, and far sightedness to the accreditation project, leading by example and inspiring those of us lucky enough to work with and to learn from her to try to meet the high bar she set.  Incredibly, Diane did this work on behalf of the ABA’s Section of Legal Education while simultaneously serving as Chair of the New York State Board of Bar Examiners, working tirelessly with the National Conference of Bar Examiners, and practicing law. Her hard work and dedication have enhanced legal education and the bar examination process for a generation of law students and law school graduates sitting for the bar.”

The Kutak Award is presented annually to honor an individual who has made significant contributions to the collaboration of the legal academy, the bench, and the bar. The award was established in memory of Mr. Kutak, a respected Omaha lawyer, who was committed to legal reform and a strong advocate for legal education. Ms. Bosse was presented with the award at the Section’s Council and Kutak Award Dinner on May, 11, 2023 in Chicago. 

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