North Brooklyn

Three legal trailblazers were celebrated at Brooklyn Women’s Bar Association Annual Gala

May 20, 2024 Robert Abruzzese, Courthouse Editor
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The Brooklyn Women’s Bar Association (BWBA) held its Annual Gala at the Liberty Warehouse in Red Hook on Wednesday, May 15, honoring Hon. Lillian Wan, Angelicque Moreno and Judith Livingston for their exceptional achievements in the legal field and dedication to advancing the status of women in society and law.

BWBA President Jovia Radix opened the event by welcoming members and guests and thanked everyone for their support. 

“Your efforts this year and your support have been incredible and have allowed me to do such incredible things here with the Brooklyn Women’s Bar Association,” said Radix. She also acknowledged the hard work of the board members and gave a special thanks to her mother, Sylvia Hinds-Radix, a past president of the BWBA.

“This incredible group of women planned every event you go to, from the venue to food: They take on so much in a volunteer position,” Radix continued. “You should know how dedicated they are to this bar association and to women in the law. A very special thank you, of course, to my mother — Sylvia Hinds-Radix, a past president of this bar association.”

Hon. Lillian Wan, a trailblazer in the legal community, was honored with the Beatrice M. Judge Award, presented by Hon. Hinds-Radix, Corporation Counsel for the City of New York. This prestigious award recognizes a distinguished member of the BWBA whose acts exemplify justice through outstanding achievements or long-standing contributions to society and the law.

“I stand on the shoulders of the Honorable Randall T. Eng, the former presiding justice of the Appellate Division, Second Department,” Justice Wan said. “Judge Eng was the very first Asian-American jurist in the State of New York in the year of 1983, which is really not that long ago. Judge Eng taught me from the beginning the value of being visible and embracing leadership positions. He opened the door so others like me could walk through it too, and now I leave that door open for others now.”

Justice Wan, appointed to the Appellate Division, Second Department by Gov. Kathy Hochul in 2022, is the first Asian American woman to hold this position. She has served in various judicial capacities since her appointment by Mayor Michael Bloomberg in 2012, demonstrating unwavering dedication to justice and community service. A prominent figure in the Brooklyn legal community, Justice Wan has also been an active member of the BWBA Board for the past eleven years.

Angelicque Moreno, a distinguished trial attorney and partner at Avanzino & Moreno, received the Sybil Hart Kooper Award, presented by Helene Blank of Blank & Star and a past president of the BWBA. This award is given to an outstanding BWBA member who has made significant contributions to the association.

I’m so emotional, so you have to give me a second,” Moreno said, fighting back tears. “I am so deeply humbled to be presented with an award named after a woman who is known as an esteemed jurist, a trailblazer and a proud member of the women’s bar association.”

Moreno, known for her expertise in personal injury law, has been recognized for her superior strategic skills and command in the courtroom. Her career spans over three decades, during which she has served in various leadership roles, including president of the New York State Academy of Trial Lawyers and the New York State Puerto Rican Bar Association. Moreno is also an active participant in numerous bar associations and legal committees.

Judith Livingston, founding partner of Kramer, Dillof, Livingston & Moore, was honored with the President’s Award, presented by BWBA President Jovia Radix-Seaborough, Esq. This award acknowledges an outstanding member of the legal profession for their numerous achievements and dedication to the legal community.

Jovia talked about how important a role that Livingston had in mentoring her and about her being one of the early female litigators.

“It was in 1918 that nine remarkable women got together to form this remarkable bar association,” Livingston said. “There was no NYSTLA, but there was the Brooklyn Women’s Bar Association because these lawyers knew that there was a need, and that need has been met by this wonderful organization for over 100 years now. Everyone here that is part of this organization realizes that and promotes other women. You are doing a wonderful job.”

Livingston, hailed as “A Legal Legend” by Law Dragon and the “Queen of Million Dollar Verdicts” by CNN, has achieved unparalleled success in plaintiff’s law, securing 37 verdicts in excess of $1 million. Her contributions extend beyond the courtroom, as she has been instrumental in educating and mentoring future legal professionals and advocating for women’s health through her work with the Judges and Lawyers Breast Cancer Alert (JALBCA).

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