Former Chief Administrative Judge Ann T. Pfau was honored with the Stanley H. Fuld Award, given by the Commercial and Federal Litigation Section of the New York State Bar Association.
Pfau received wide acclaim for guiding the New York State court system through a difficult economy.
Her decisive leadership ensured that, despite significant budget cuts, justice was served. She guided the courts through the foreclosure crisis and expanded electronic court filings. She also laid the groundwork for
a long-overdue pay raise for judges.
"As our state judicial system faced extraordinary budget challenges, Judge Pfau did an outstanding job administering justice and running the courts. The Commercial Division continued to thrive, largely because of her stalwart support," said David H. Tennant of Rochester (Nixon Peabody), chair of the Commercial and Federal Litigation Section. "We are pleased to recognize her many achievements."
Former Chief Judge Judith S. Kaye appointed Pfau chief administrative judge in May 2007. She oversaw the operations of the state's court system and administration of the $2.3 billion budget, its 3,600 judges and more than 15,000 employees. She stepped down from the position December 1, 2011.
She now hears medical malpractice cases in State Supreme Court in Brooklyn and is the coordinating judge for the pilot New York State Medical Malpractice Program, which aims to settle malpractice cases. In addition, she handles certain commercial cases.
Pfau was appointed interim judge of the New York City Civil Court in 1997 and a judge of the City Criminal Court in 1998. She was named an acting Supreme Court justice in 1999. She previously served as first deputy chief administrative judge and deputy chief administrative judge for management support between 2004 and 2007.
She earned an undergraduate degree from Wells College, a master's degree from Columbia University and a law degree from Brooklyn Law School.
The award recognizes outstanding contributions to the development of commercial law and jurisprudence in New York. It is named for the late Chief Judge Stanley H. Fuld, who served on the state Court of Appeals from 1946 to 1973.
Pfau received her award on January 25 during the Commercial and Federal Litigation Section luncheon during the Annual Meeting of the State Bar Association in New York City.
The 77,000-member New York State Bar Association is the largest voluntary state bar association in the nation. It was founded in 1876.
Contact: Brandon Vogel