Touro Law Center to give Adams honorary degree

March 31, 2016 By Paula Katinas Brooklyn Daily Eagle
Eric Adams says he’s honored to be receiving the honorary law degree. Photo courtesy of the Borough President’s office

Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams can add another honor to the list of awards he has received since he took office in January of 2014. Touro Law Center announced this week that it will give Adams an honorary Doctor of Laws degree at its commencement ceremony on May 29.

The graduation ceremony will take place at the Tilles Center for the Performing Arts in Greenvale on Long Island.

“Adams is a well-regarded advocate for the people of Brooklyn. We are excited that he will participate in our ceremony, providing us with a chance to honor his career and dedication to the community,” Touro Law Center Dean Patricia Salkin said in a statement.

“I am deeply honored to have been selected by Touro Law Center to join the 90,000 alumni of Touro College, many of whom are a part of our Brooklyn community, by receiving an honorary Doctor of Laws degree,” Adams told the Brooklyn Eagle via email. “Touro Law Center has a distinguished record of preparing its students for meaningful careers in public service, and I am proud to be a part of that tradition.”

The commencement speaker will be Mark C. Zauderer, a high-profile litigator and partner at the Manhattan law firm Flemming Zulack Williamson Zauderer LLP. Zauderer grew up in Brooklyn.

“We are delighted to honor Mark Zauderer, who in nearly a half-century at the bar has compiled an unparalleled record of success in the courtroom, the boardroom and in public service, and set an example superb lawyering and selfless dedication to the profession and to the community that will inspire generations of law students,” Salkin stated. 

In 2003, Hon. Judith S. Kaye, the state’s chief judge at the time, chose Zauderer to spearhead efforts to reform New York’s antiquated jury system, naming him chairman of the Commission on the Jury, a blue ribbon panel that held public hearings and recommended changes to make better use of citizens’ time in jury service.

Adams has served the residents of New York City as a police officer, coalition builder, state senator and as Brooklyn borough president, a post he was elected to in November of 2013.

In 1995, he co-founded 100 Blacks in Law Enforcement Who Care to improve police-community relations. The group also raised funds for charity. 

Adams was elected to the state Senate, representing the 20th District, in 2006. The district includes parts of Crown Heights, Park Slope, Prospect Heights, Sunset Park and Windsor Terrace.

He organized support against the NYPD’s controversial “stop and frisk” policy, and led efforts on behalf of gun control. His often spoke out on issues such as protecting the right to privacy, supporting marriage equality and defending a woman’s right to choose.  

Touro Law Center is located adjacent to both the state and federal courthouses in Central Islip, N.Y. The school has a student body of approximately 650 and is part of the Touro College system.