Brooklyn Women’s Bar Association’s resilience under the leadership of President Susan Mauro

August 7, 2023 Rob Abruzzese
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Emerging from the dark tunnels of the pandemic, the Brooklyn Women’s Bar Association (BWBA) found its light under the decisive leadership of Susan Mauro, who took the helm as the association’s president in June 2022.

“I just want to say how proud I am of this woman,” NYC Corporation Counsel Sylvia Hinds-Radix said of Mauro. “I remember when Susan walked into her first meeting. It was at a time when we couldn’t find anyone to be the treasurer. We were looking around for a while, she volunteered and I remember asking her, ‘Are you sure?’

The BWBA honored Hon. Ellen Spodek during its annual Holiday Party. From left: Susan Mauro, Ellen Spodek, and Helene Blank.

“But she came in and has worked tirelessly,” Hinds-Radix continued. “This is the trajectory that I had in mind for her and I’m really happy to see what she has done so far. I wish you the best of luck as you continue serving as president.”

Mauro, a distinguished partner at Ahmuty Demers & McManus, focusing on an array of legal disciplines, from premises liability to commercial litigation, was officially installed as the president of BWBA on June 14. She replaced Madeline Kirton in a ceremony graced by Hon. Sylvia Hinds-Radix at the Brooklyn Bar Association. With her expansive experience, including her commendable service at the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Eastern District of New York, she breathed new life into the association.

The BWBA Paint and Sip event is continuing next month under new president Jovia Radix. Here is Susan Mauro (third from right), Hon. Genine Edwards (second from right, and Madeline Kirton (far right) posing with organizers at the event last September in Brooklyn Bridge Park.

Highlighting her commitment to rebuilding community ties weakened by the pandemic, Mauro reinvigorated the BWBA with events reminiscent of pre-pandemic traditions. Early in her tenure, the association organized the Paint and Sip event on September 20 at Fornino on Pier 6 in Brooklyn Bridge Park, echoing the memories of the past. This was just the beginning.

October saw the BWBA continuing its altruistic endeavors with the American Cancer Society’s Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Walk in Coney Island. Originating years ago with a passionate group of attorneys, the event has expanded each subsequent year. This dedication to community engagement was further highlighted by monthly “Lunch with a Judge” events and the much-anticipated holiday party.

The annual holiday party Brooklyn Law School in December. Pictured from left: Hon. Genine Edwards, Angelicque Moreno, Victoria Serigano, Susan Mauro, Meryl Schwartz, and Lisa Michael.

While the resurgence of these traditional events was vital, it was two significant milestones that cemented Mauro’s exemplary year. First, the Sylvia Hinds-Radix scholarship, aided by past president Michele Mirman, paved the way for the BWBA Foundation. Dedicated to charitable pursuits, the foundation, under Mauro’s guidance, spotlighted Hon. Sylvia Hinds-Radix’s impressive career, and in doing so, underscored the BWBA’s commitment to the community.

In addition to hosting events, the BWBA president is responsible for representing the association at public events, like Mauro did here at the Supreme Court’s Black History Month celebration. From left: Susan Mauro, Joseph Rosato, Hon. Lisa Ottley, Hon. Lewis Douglas, and Dr. Hakim Lucas.

“The Foundation is important because it allows the BWBA to raise money and do charitable giving,” Mauro said. “This year we partnered with Brooklyn Law School and we have created the Sylvia Hinds-Radix scholarship.”

Her connection with Rodneyse Bichotte Hermelyn, the Kings County Democratic Party chair and local assembly member, marked the second significant achievement. Their bond, forged at a Black History Month event, blossomed into a collaborative relationship. Mauro lauded Bichotte Hermelyn, celebrating her as a beacon of perseverance and determination.

BWBA President Susan Mauro honored Rodneyse Bichotte Hermelyn, the Kings County Democratic Party chair, during Women’s History Month.

“Assemblymember Bichotte Hermelyn is a role model for women and girls everywhere, demonstrating that anything is possible with hard work, dedication, and perseverance,” Mauro said. “She has faced many obstacles throughout her life and career but has overcome them with grace and determination. She is a true inspiration and a trailblazer for women in law and government, and the Brooklyn Women’s Bar Association is proud to honor her during Women’s History Month.”

Of course, the BWBA’s dedication to continuing legal education (CLE) did not wane under Mauro. With her at the helm, the association organized enlightening CLEs, ensuring attorneys were abreast with recent developments.

From the BWBA’s Luncheon at the Appellate Division. Pictured from left: Hon. Lillian Wan, Hon. Hector LaSalle, and Susan Mauro.

The year was interspersed with various significant events, from celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month to raising funds for worthy causes and holding educational seminars. The culmination of Mauro’s year was encapsulated in the Annual Gala at the Liberty Warehouse in Red Hook. It was a night of reflection and recognition, celebrating the unyielding spirit of the association and individuals committed to furthering women in the legal domain.

As the year drew to a close, Mauro graciously passed the baton to Jovia Radix. Looking back, she recognized the contributions of many, including Hinds-Radix, Mirman, and Hon. Genine Edwards, highlighting the collaborative spirit of her tenure.

From a membership party in October. From left: Hon. Jill Epstein, Hon. Connie Mallafre Melendez, Susan Mauro, Michele Mirman, Hon. Sylvia Hinds-Radix and Angelcque Moreno.

Hinds-Radix warmly reminisced about Mauro’s initial days, lauding her dedication and commitment to the association. “This is the trajectory that I had in mind for her, and I’m really happy to see what she has done so far,” Hinds-Radix shared, exemplifying the respect and admiration Mauro garnered during her tenure.

With her year as president drawing to a close, Susan Mauro leaves behind a legacy of resilience, unity, and commitment to service. The Brooklyn Women’s Bar Association, under her leadership, not only thrived but became an emblem of hope and community in challenging times.

The annual Judge’s Night is where the BWBA invites all of the local administrative and supervising judges in to meet their members, introduce their new judges, and network. This year’s event was hosted at the Appellate Division. Pictured from left: Victoria Serigano, Hon. Connie Mallafre Melendez, Susan Mauro, Hon. Sylvia Hinds-Radix, Hon. Wavny Toussaint, Helene Blank, Meryl Schwartz, Jovia Radix and Danielle Ciraola.

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