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April 18, 2019

Lawyers and judges to exchange ideas, explore latest trends at ABA conference in New York

CHICAGO, April 18, 2019 — Insights into hot-button issues, from unprecedented assaults on the First Amendment to the 10th Amendment concept of federalism and the relationship between federal and state governments, are among the topics of 60 programs to be presented during a joint conference of the American Bar Association Section of Litigation and Solo, Small Firm and General Practice Division, May 1-3 in New York City.  

The conference for lawyers and judges from across the U.S. and Canada also recognizes outstanding contributions to the quality of justice and diversity in the legal community during awards luncheons:

The Diversity Leadership Award Luncheon on May 1 recognizes the contributions of U.S. District Court Judge Richard A. Jones of Seattle, co-founder of the Northwest Minority Job Fair.

The John Minor Wisdom Public Service and Professionalism Award will be presented on May 2 to John G. Levi, chairman of the board of directors of the Legal Services Corporation, the single largest funder of civil legal aid for low-income Americans who would be otherwise unable to afford adequate legal counsel.  The award is presented in recognition of outstanding contributions to equality of justice in legal communities, ensuring that the legal system is open and available to all.


Solo and Small Firm Lifetime Achievement Awards on May 3 will honor Gary L. Anderson of San Antonio, Texas, who served as an assistant U.S. attorney for 28 years and Glenn Lau-Kee, of New York, who serves on the executive committee of the New York State Bar Association. The Solo and Small Firm Trainer Award will be presented to Cynthia Sharp of The Sharper Lawyer in Philadelphia.

2019 Section of Litigation & Solo, Small Firm and General Practice Division CLE Conference
Sponsored by the ABA Section of Litigation and the ABA Solo, Small Firm and General Practice Division

Wednesday-Friday, May 1-3

New York Marriott Marquis       
1535 Broadway
New York, NY

Programming focuses on building trial skills, case management, practice advice, business development, ethics, diversity and inclusion, young litigators and mental health and wellness. 

Highlights include:

“The Media in the Crosshairs: The Vital First Amendment Values at Stake”R. Bruce Rich of Weil Gotshal & Manges LLP in New York will moderate as experts examine the state of press freedom and the prognosis for the future.  Panelists include Sunny Hostin, ABC News, The View; David E. McCraw, The New York Times; David Remnick, The New Yorker; Nadine Strossen, New York Law School.

Wednesday, 4:30-6 p.m.

“Whither the 10th Amendment?  State Attorneys General, Federalism and Litigation” — Oregon Attorney General Ellen F. Rosenblum will moderate. Panelists include Jeff Landry, attorney general for the State of Louisiana; Karl A. Racine, attorney general for the District of Columbia; Daniel B. Rodriguez, Northwestern Pritzker School of Law in Chicago; and former Wisconsin solicitor general Misha Tseytlin of Troutman Sanders LLP in Chicago.  

Thursday, 8:15-9:45 a.m.

“From Broadway to the Courtroom: A Mock Oral Argument Showcasing Alexander Hamilton, the Lawyer”—This reenactment of Hamilton’s argument in People v. Croswell, a case that forced the highest court in New York to decide whether truth is a defense to libel, includes analysis by First Amendment practitioner Alex Abdo of the Knight First Amendment Institute in New York.  Speakers include Ishan K. Bhabha, Jenner & Block in Washington, D.C.; Judge Joseph A. Greenway, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit, Newark, N.J.; and Judge Therese M. Stewart, California First District Court of Appeals in San Francisco.

Wednesday, 3:15-4:15 p.m.

Download the brochure here.

Click here to view the schedule of events. 

This event is open and free to members of the press. For media credentialing, please contact Julie Brown at 312/988-6133 or [email protected]

The ABA Section of Litigation is the premier association for lawyers and judges involved in litigation and trial practice. Legal professionals from all areas of practice turn to the Section for member-only access to the latest news, information, and thinking on legal strategy, bringing all sides of a trial to one place to form a comprehensive view of the profession.

The ABA Solo, Small Firm and General Practice Division is committed to providing unique resources exclusively for solo, small-firm and general practitioners, who represent half of the nation’s lawyers.


With more than 400,000 members, the American Bar Association is one of the largest voluntary professional membership organizations in the world. As the national voice of the legal profession, the ABA works to improve the administration of justice, promotes programs that assist lawyers and judges in their work, accredits law schools, provides continuing legal education, and works to build public understanding around the world of the importance of the rule of law. View our privacy statement on line. Follow the latest ABA news at and on Twitter @ABANews.