Janet DiFiore, chief judge of the state Court of Appeals, is the 2016 recipient of the Ruth G. Schapiro
Memorial Award given by the New York State Bar Association’s Committee on Women in the Law.
DiFiore received the award on January 27 during the State Bar Association’s Annual Meeting in New
York City. It recognizes a State Bar member for outstanding contributions to addressing the concerns of
“The Committee on Women in the Law is honored to recognize Janet DiFiore as the 2016 Ruth G. Shapiro
Award recipient for her noteworthy contributions to women and leadership that truly embody the
essence of the award,” said Susan L. Harper (Bates Group), co-chair of the Committee on Women in the
DiFiore served as an assistant district attorney in the Westchester County District Attorney’s Office from
1981 to 1987, and from 1994 to 1998 as chief of its Narcotics Bureau. In 1998, she was elected a judge of
the Westchester County Court. Four years later, she was elected a justice of the New York State Supreme
In 2005, DiFiore resigned from the bench and was elected Westchester County District Attorney. She
served in this position from 2006 to 2016, when she became chief judge.
While Westchester DA, she hired and promoted women in large numbers; more than 50 percent of the
employees in her office were women. Before becoming chief judge, DiFiore was a longtime active board
member of the Westchester Women’s Bar Association.
DiFiore has participated in numerous women’s bar events to help women, children and their families,
including anti-bullying programs in schools and various reading programs.
The 72,000-member New York State Bar Association is the largest voluntary state bar association in the
nation. It was founded in 1876.
Contact: Christian Nolan