Brooklyn shines bright with the return of local bar associations

September 5, 2023 Rob Abruzzese
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After taking a brief hiatus during the summer, the local bar associations will return to action this week and, appropriately, the Columbian Lawyers Association will kick off the return to action.

The Columbian Lawyers Association of Brooklyn is one of the most influential local bar associations and that was on display this past June when Mayor Eric Adams was on hand to personally oversee the transition from outgoing president Salvatore Scibetta to incoming president Yolanda Guadagnoli.

Yolanda Guadagnoli shaking hands with Mayor Eric Adams, marking her transition as the incoming president of the Columbian Lawyers Association.

Even the judge who performed the ceremony, Hon. Carl Landicino, a past president of the Columbian Lawyers Association, has since been elevated to the Appellate Division, Second Department.

Guadagnoli and the Columbian Lawyers kick off the new year of legal events at 6 p.m. on Wednesday night, Sept. 6, at Gargiulo’s Restaurant in Coney Island where the group will host Hon. Jeffrey Sunshine as the continuing legal education lecturer.

News for those who live, work and play in Brooklyn and beyond

Justice Sunshine, the Statewide Coordinating Judge for Matrimonial Cases, is a past president of the Brooklyn Bar Association and a frequent lecturer at most of the local bar associations. Last April, he addressed the Bay Ridge Lawyers Association on a variety of topics related to matrimonial law.

The presentation, titled “Matrimonial Law: From a Statewide Perspective,” covered subjects including the harmonization of Supreme Court and Matrimonial Rules, Joint Divorce Pilot Programs, and an essay he wrote on the impacts of COVID-19 on future custody determinations.

Justice Sunshine has been instrumental in creating the virtual evidence courtroom and the uncontested joint divorce pilot project in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. He also discussed the simplified divorce process implemented in five counties in New York and the new forms available on the court’s website.


New member luncheon at the Brooklyn Bar Association

The Brooklyn Bar Association wants to welcome in new potential members with a free luncheon and continuing legal education seminar on Remsen Street in Brooklyn Heights at 1 p.m. on Monday, Sept. 11.

The luncheon will feature a meet and greet with new president Joseph Rosato. It will also give prospective members a chance to meet with some of the past presidents, as well as committee and section chairs.

A Triumphant Trio: Joe Rosato (right) with Greg Cerchione (left) and Hon. Matthew D’Emic (center) at Rosato’s Brooklyn Bar Association installation last June.

In his past installation speech in June, Rosato conveyed a sense of optimism and resolve amidst the challenges faced by the Brooklyn Bar Association and the legal community at large. He highlighted the Association’s longstanding tradition of relevance and the collective value placed on this by the board.

Rosato’s message was one of emergence from a health crisis that impacted everyone personally and professionally, forcing adaptations in legal practice and court administration. He expressed gratitude for the Association’s resilience and continued relevance despite medical and financial hardships, attributing this success to the strength of its membership, board of directors, and past leaders.

Rosato emphasized the Association’s ongoing strength, as evidenced by growing membership, diverse and interesting Continuing Legal Education (CLE) programs, and important community services. He underscored the unique, respectful relationship with the Judiciary and the joint efforts to improve access and understanding of the judicial process for the benefit of all.

“The events faced by our legal system in the past few years could never have been imagined,” Rosato said. “The Brooklyn Bar Association has adapted and continues to adapt to these changing times.  As is sometimes said, unprecedented times call for unprecedented measures.”


A new dean dawns at Brooklyn Law School

The legal community is buzzing with anticipation for the installation of David Meyer as the President and 10th Dean of Brooklyn Law School on Sept. 13, 2023, at 6 p.m. The event, to be held in the Moot Court Room of Brooklyn Law School, will be followed by a reception.

Meyer, an esteemed constitutional and family law scholar, became President and Joseph Crea Dean of Brooklyn Law School on July 1, 2023. Prior to this, he served as Dean of Tulane Law School from 2010-2023, and as a faculty member and Associate Dean for Academic Affairs at the University of Illinois College of Law.

Meyer’s scholarly works include the books ‘Contemporary Family Law’ and ‘Family Law.’ He has also served as a legal adviser at the Iran-United States Claims Tribunal, practiced law in Washington, D.C., and Chicago, and clerked for the U.S. Court of Appeals and the U.S. Supreme Court. Meyer holds a B.A. with Highest Honors in History and a J.D., magna cum laude, from the University of Michigan.


Hispanic Heritage Month event at the Appellate Division with the Women’s Bar

The Brooklyn Women’s Bar Association will host a Hispanic Heritage Month event at the Appellate Division, Second Department on Wednesday, Sept. 27 from 1 p.m. until 2:15 p.m. New president Jovia Radix and the BWBA have announced this year’s theme as, “Latinos: Driving Prosperity, Power, and Progress in America.”

Performers at the Hispanic Heritage Month event hosted by the Brooklyn Women’s Bar Association (BWBA) last year.
Eagle file photo by Robert Abruzzese
Group shot of judges at the BWBA’s Hispanic Heritage Month event (from left to right: Hon. Christopher Robles, Hon. Connie Mallafre-Melendez, Hon. Joanne Quinones, Hon. Jenny Rivera, Hon. Betsy Barros, Hon. Frederick Arriaga, and Hon. Raymond Rodriguez).
Eagle file photo by Robert Abruzzese


A new chapter: Adam Kalish to take the helm at Bay Ridge Lawyers Association

The Bay Ridge Lawyers Association will hold its annual “Passing of the Gavel” ceremony at its first meeting of the 2023-2024 year.

Held on Sept. 27 at 6 p.m. at Mama Rao’s in Dyker Heights, the event will feature a group of past presidents on hand for a ceremony where they will welcome Adam Kalish as the association’s new president.

Adam Kalish with Ryan Mahoney, another incoming officer of the Bay Ridge Lawyers Association, gearing up for a new chapter.

Kalish specializes in a wide array of practice areas including Regulatory, Business Organizations, Commercial Litigation, Real Estate, Civil Litigation, Business & Commercial Law, and Government Agencies & Programs.

He earned his J.D. from Brooklyn Law School and graduated cum laude with a B.A. in International Affairs from The George Washington University. Admitted to the New York Bar in 2010, he has also been admitted to the U.S. District Court Eastern District of New York, U.S. Bankruptcy Court Eastern District of New York, and the U.S. Supreme Court.

Currently, Kalish is a Sole Practitioner, dedicating his time and expertise to a multitude of legal matters. He has been recognized for his volunteer work, receiving the VIP Recognition of Volunteer Bars in 2011 and actively participating in Pro-Bono Activities such as the Bankruptcy VLP and Foreclosure VLP in 2010. Prior to his current position, Kalish served on the NYS Senate Finance Committee.

Apart from his legal practice, Kalish is actively involved in various professional associations. He is a member of the Brooklyn Bar Association Volunteer Lawyers Project, New York State Bar Association, Columbia Lawyers Association, American Bar Association, and the Catholic Lawyers Guild.

He has also served as an Executive Committee Member of the Bay Ridge Lawyers Association from 2017 to 2022, Co-Chair of Young Lawyers Brooklyn Bar Association, and was a Brooklyn Bar Trustee from 2016 to 2022.


Mark your calendars: KCCBA announces date for annual dinner

The Kings County Criminal Bar Association will host its annual dinner at Giando’s on the Water in Williamsburg on Nov. 2 at 6 p.m. Coming off a successful golf outing in August, President Darran Winslow is gathering the details now and will announce the honorees in the upcoming weeks.

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