October 30, 2019

5 leaders in field of criminal justice to be honored at Criminal Justice Section Fall Meeting

WASHINGTON, Oct. 30, 2019 — A retired federal judge, state prosecutor, attorney, law professor and community service organization will be honored for their contributions to the legal profession during the American Bar Association Criminal Justice Section’s  Twelfth Annual Fall Institute, Nov. 7-8, in Washington, D.C.

The awards will be presented during a luncheon ceremony on Friday, Nov. 8, at the Madison Washington Hotel, where Judge Richard Mark Gergel of the U.S. District Court Charleston Division in South Carolina will deliver the keynote address. The luncheon is from 12:30-2:15 p.m.

The honorees are:

Charles E. English Award

Judge Arthur L. Burnett, Sr., is the recipient of the Charles E. English Award, which is awarded to judges, prosecutors, the defense bar, academics and other attorneys who are members of the American Bar Association Criminal Justice Section and have distinguished themselves by their work in the field of criminal justice. Judge Burnett, Sr. retired as senior judge on the Superior Court of the District of Columbia in 2015. He is one of the founding members and former vice president of administration of the National African American Drug Policy Coalition Inc., a nonprofit District of Columbia corporation at Howard University School of Law. He continues to serve as its national executive director and as its national spokesperson focusing on dealing with substance abuse individuals in a public health manner through drug courts in lieu of criminal prosecution and incarceration, or in drug treatment programs. He is currently serving as president and chairman of the Board of Directors of Youth Court of the District of Columbia, Inc.

Click here for a photo of Judge Arthur L. Burnett, Sr.

Livingston Hall Juvenile Justice Award

Jay Blitzman is the recipient of the 2019 Livingston Hall Juvenile Justice Award, given to an attorney or legal service provider (including organizations) who have either directly represented specific victims in criminal, juvenile or appellate courts or who have worked to promote or implement policies to improve the treatment of crime victims in the criminal justice system. Blitzman served as the First Justice of the Middlesex Division of the Massachusetts Juvenile Court from 2008-19. Prior to his judicial appointment he was a founder and the first director of the Roxbury Youth Advocacy Project and a co-founder of the Massachusetts Citizens for Juvenile Justice and Our RJ, a community-based diversionary restorative justice initiative. He now serves on the advisory boards of both organizations. Blitzman recently joined the faculty of the Center on Law Brain and Behavior (at Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School). He teaches juvenile law at Northeastern University School of Law and has designed a new course, Deconstructing the Cradle to Prison Pipeline, which he will teach at Boston College Law School.

Click here for a photo of Jay Blitzman.

Raeder-Taslitz Award

Joseph L. Hoffmann is the recipient of the 2019 Raeder-Taslitz Award, presented to a law professor whose excellence in scholarship, teaching or community service has made a significant contribution to promoting public understanding of criminal justice, justice and fairness in the criminal justice system, or best practices on the part of lawyers and judges. Hoffmann is an award-winning scholar and law teacher at Indiana’s Maurer School of Law. He teaches courses in criminal law and criminal procedure, a seminar on the law and psychology of criminal law and a course about law for honors undergraduates. In 2017, Hoffmann created (and funded) the Bradley Fellows program to enhance the legal education of IU Maurer students with an interest in becoming prosecutors or public defenders. Hoffmann has served for more than 30 years on the faculty of the National Judicial College, and has also regularly contributed to continuing education programs for judges in Texas, Pennsylvania, New York, Tennessee, Indiana and elsewhere.

Click here for a photo of Joseph L. Hoffmann.

Norm Maleng Minister of Justice Award

Camelia M. Valdes is the recipient of the 2019 Norm Maleng Minister of Justice Award, presented to a prosecutor who embodies the principles enunciated in the ABA Standards for Criminal Justice, Prosecution Function, particularly that “the Duty of the prosecutor is to seek justice, not merely to convict.” Valdes is the Passaic County (N.J.) prosecutor. When Valdes was appointed on May 16, 2009, by Gov. Jon S. Corzine and confirmed by the New Jersey State Legislature, she became the first Latina county prosecutor in the State of New Jersey, the first woman prosecutor in Passaic County and the first lead prosecutor of Dominican ancestry in the United States. Valdes, a career prosecutor, served as a municipal prosecutor in the City of Newark, a deputy attorney general in the New Jersey Attorney General’s Office, an assistant governor’s counsel to Gov. Christine Todd Whitman and Acting Gov. Donald T. DiFrancesco and as an assistant U.S. attorney in the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Newark.

Click here for a photo of Camelia M. Valdes.

Frank Carrington Crime Victim Attorney Award

Network for Victim Recovery of DC is the recipient of the Frank Carrington Crime Victim Attorney Award, presented to an attorney or legal service provider (including organizations) who have either directly represented specific victims in criminal, juvenile or appellate courts or who have worked to promote or implement policies to improve the treatment of crime victims in the criminal justice system. Network for Victim Recovery of DC (NVRDC) empowers victims of all crimes to achieve survivor-defined justice through a collaborative continuum of advocacy, case management and legal services. Started in 2012, NVRDC’s legal team has aggressively pursued survivor’s rights under the federal Crime Victims’ Right Act in DC and the DC Crime Victims’ Bill of Rights and the various other statutes and court rules that provide survivors with enforceable rights in court. NVRDC’s holistic model of vertical advocacy allows for survivors to be supported by a wraparound team of attorneys and advocates to support the totality of needs post-victimization.

Click here for a photo of Network for Victim Recovery of DC.

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