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Brooklyn’s courts will celebrate Black History Month with 18 days of programs

February 1, 2020 Rob Abruzzese

February might be the shortest month of the year, but the Brooklyn court system is going to make the most out of it during this year’s Black History Month commemoration as the system is sponsoring or co-sponsoring an incredible 18 events in celebration.

The opening ceremony will be held on Monday, Feb. 3 at the Supreme Court, Criminal Term, in the ceremonial courtroom, kicking off the 22nd year in which the courts have celebrated Black History Month. It will feature Dr. Christina Greer, a Fordham University professor, as its keynote speaker.

After that, there will be various events, big and small, around the court system including two “Popcorn and a Movie” events at which the movies “Rigged” and “Freedom Summer” will be shown.

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Court employees Maris Mike (front left), portraying Harriet Tubman, and Marleene Jasper (front right), portraying Ida B. Wells, during the Tribune Society’s Black History Month event at the Brooklyn Supreme Court in 2019. Also pictured are Silas Pratt (back left) and Howard Wright.

There will also be a book signing with Gloria Browne-Marshall, author of “The Voting Rights War” on Thursday, Feb. 6. Aversion of “Let’s Make a Deal,” the Black History Month Way, will be played on Monday, Feb. 24.

Each courthouse will get its day. The Family Court is hosting a program on Tuesday, Feb. 11; the Red Hook Youth Impact Court will host an event on Friday, Feb. 14; the Appellate Division, Second Department will host Zachary Carter, former corporation counsel, on Wednesday, Feb. 19; the Surrogate’s Court will hold an event on Thursday, Feb. 20; the Civil Court has a children’s program planned for Friday, Feb. 21; and the Criminal Court will have one on Tuesday, Feb. 25.

The month ends in a huge way with the annual fashion show featuring judges, lawyers and other courthouse employees that will be held in the lobby of the Supreme Court, Civil Term, on Friday, Feb. 28. That event always draws huge crowds as people love seeing the judges dressed up or down, depending on the outfits they wear, and it always features clothes by local black designers.

The courts will not be the only parts of the legal community celebrating the month. Many of the local bar associations will host events, including the Brooklyn Women’s Bar Association, which is hosting its annual celebration on Tuesday, Feb. 18. District Attorney Eric Gonzalez also hosts annual events in celebration.


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