Judge Juanita Bing Newton, dean of the New York State Judicial Institute on Professionalism in the Law, has been honored with the New York State Bar Association’s highest honor, the Gold Medal.
State Bar President Glenn Lau-Kee (Kee & Lau-Kee) presented the 2015 award to Newton on January 31 at the President’s Dinner during the association’s Annual Meeting in New York City. The Gold Medal is presented annually to individuals in recognition of lifelong excellence in the legal profession and constructive contributions to civic and community matters.
“Judge Newton is that rare person who can see the big picture needs of the legal system while understanding the daily struggles of lawyers and the judiciary to achieve justice within a system constrained by budgetary challenges,” said Lau-Kee.
Dean of the Judicial Institute since 2009, Newton began her career as a prosecutor in Bronx County, where she was one of the first women lawyers in the criminal court. Early in her career, she served as the executive director and counsel to the New York State Committee on Sentencing Guidelines and as a non-judge court administrator.
She was a member of the Commission on Judicial Conduct and sits on the statewide Permanent Commission on Sentencing, the Committee on Court Interpreting and the State Bar’s Subcommittee on Pro Bono and Senior Lawyers. Twice, the Commission on Judicial Nominations found her “highly qualified” and recommended her for appointment to the New York Court of Appeals.
Past winners of the State Bar’s Gold Medal include U.S. Supreme Court Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg, William Brennan, Jr. and Sandra Day O’Connor; U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder; former New York Chief Judges Judith S. Kaye and Sol Wachtler; former New York City prosecutor Robert Morgenthau; Barry Scheck and Peter Neufeld, co-founders of The Innocence Project; and last year’s winner, Louis A. Craco, a former chair of the Judicial Institute.
The 74,000-member New York State Bar Association is the largest voluntary state bar association in the nation. It was founded in 1876.
-30-Contact: Christina Couto
Senior Media Writerccouto@nysba.org