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Brooklyn Law School gives chief judge of EDNY honorary degree during commencement

May 21, 2018 By Rob Abruzzese, Legal Editor Brooklyn Daily Eagle
Hon. Dora Irizarry (center), Chief Judge for the Eastern District of New York, received an honorary degree from Brooklyn Law School by Dean Nicholas Allard (right) while Stuart Subotnick (left) looks on. Photos courtesy of Brooklyn Law School

Brooklyn Law School held its 117th annual commencement on Friday which featured speaker Hon. Dora Irizarry, chief judge of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York, who was given a Degree of Juris Doctor Honoris Causa.

Other speakers included valedictorian Jaimie Freilich; Maria Ortiz; and Nicholas Allard, president and Joseph Crea dean of Brooklyn Law School.

“Think about what you want your legacy to be over time,” said Allard. “I offer three seemingly old-fashion words that I believe are more relevant to us than ever as lawyers, as citizens and as human beings — virtue, courage and civility.”

During his speech, Allard referenced the multiple investigations involving government officials including the president. He suggested lawyers are uniquely positions to effect change in the government and called the 2018 graduating class a cavalry riding to the rescue.

“We recently have seen how people themselves can mobilize, focus attention, raise awareness and change perceptions,” Allard said. “One only need look at how citizens have organized to take back control of their lives and regain their inalienable rights, including a resurgence of civil rights activism, such as Black Lives Matter, the #MeToo movement, Times Up, Parkland Strong and ongoing efforts to address climate change.”

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