Commercial & Federal Litigation Section

Commercial and Federal Litigation Section

Introductory Lessons on Ethics & Civility 2019

Program Description:
A sound ethical compass and a civil and professional demeanor are the hallmarks of successful and respected attorneys in all areas of practice.  This four hour program will provide attendees with an update on developments in the law in the area of attorney ethics, including the most recent case law.  The rules of civility will be discussed, with emphasis on practical pointers for dealing with the uncivil adversary and civility issues within the law firm.  The program concludes with a discussion of real life hypotheticals by a panel of distinguished practitioners and jurists which is certain to benefit attorneys in all substantive areas of practice.

Celebrating the 20th Anniversary of this Program!  

Don’t miss this opportunity to obtain 4 MCLE Ethics credits at this lively and thought-provoking program

Sponsored by the Commercial & Federal LItigation Section and the Committee on Continuing Legal Education of the New York State Bar Association.  

Tuesday, April 9 | Hyatt Place Buffalo/Amherst | Buffalo 
Wednesday, April 10 | NYSBA | Albany 
Friday, April 12 Melville Marriott Long Island | Long Island
Friday, April 12 | Convene | NYC & Webcast
Friday, April 12 | RIT Inn & Conference Center | Rochester  
*This program is from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. at all locations 
4.0 MCLE Credits: 4.0 Ethics

NYSBA Member: $150 | Non-Member: $250
Commercial & Federal Litigation Section Member: $125

Learn more about the Introductory Lessons on Ethics & Civility 2019 CLE Program

Program Brochure

Agenda Topics

>What’s New for 2019 on Ethics?
>Civility in Everyday Lawyering: What Are the Basic Lessons to Be Learned?
>Colloquium on Ethics and Civility

Faculty Information

Overall Program Chair | Vincent J. Syracuse, Esq. | Tannenbaum Helpern Syracuse & Hirschtritt LLP 

Location Chairs
Sharon M. Porcellio, Esq. | Bond, Schoeneck & King, PLLC | Buffalo 
Scott N. Fein, Esq. | Whiteman Osterman & Hanna LLP | Albany
Vincent J. Syracuse, Esq. | Tannenbaum Helpern Syracuse & Hirschtritt LLP | NYC
John M. Brickman, Esq. | McLaughlin & Stern LLP | Long Island
David H. Tennant, Esq. | Law Office of David Tennant PLLC | Rochester

Hon. Lawrence J. Vilardo | United States District Judge, W.D.N.Y.
Vincent E. Doyle III, Esq. | Connors LLP
Margaret C. Callanan, Esq. | Attorney Grievance Committee, Eighth Judicial District
Krista Gottlieb, Esq. | Neutral, Mediator, Arbitrator & Advocate ADR Center & Law Office

Hon. Mae A. D’Agostino | United States District Judge, N.D.N.Y.
Bruce D. Feldman, Esq. | Office of the Attorney General
Michael J. Murphy, Esq. | Carter Conboy
Andrew R. Safranko, Esq. | Dreyer Boyajian LaMarche Safranko
Robert T. Schofield, IV., Esq. | Whiteman Osterman & Hanna LLP

Long Island
Andrew J. Luskin, Esq. | McLaughlin & Stern, LLP
Chris G. McDonough, Esq. | Foley Griffin, LLP
David M. Wirtz, Esq. | Littler Mendelson P.C

Hon. Tanya R. Kennedy | New York State Supreme Court, County of New York
Danielle C. Lesser, Esq. | Morrison Cohen LLP
Hal R. Lieberman, Esq. | Emery Celli Brinckerhoff & Abady LLP
Hon. Andrea Masley | New York State Supreme Court, County of New York
Carl Regelmann, Esq. | Tannenbaum Helpern Syracuse & Hirschtritt LLP
Mark C. Zauderer, Esq. | Ganfer Shore Leeds & Zauderer LLP

Joseph Scott Brown, Esq. | Hodgson Russ LLP
Daniel A. Drake, Esq. | Attorney Grievance Committee for the Seventh Judicial District
Stephanie Nott, Esq. | Abrams, Fensterman, Fensterman, Eisman, Formato, Ferrara, Wolf & Carone, LLP
Hon. Matthew A. Rosenbaum | NYS Supreme Court 7th Department | Commercial Division
Hon. Joanne M. Winslow | NYS Supreme Court 4th Department | Appellate Division

Newly Admitted Attorneys: To receive skills credit, newly admitted attorneys must take accredited transitional CLE courses in traditional live classroom settings that have been approved by the CLE Board for use by newly admitted attorneys.  For more information about the CLE Rules, please go to
Out of State Accreditation: This program has also been approved for MCLE credit by the State Bar of California, the Pennsylvania Continuing Legal Education Board and the Board of Continuing Legal Education of the State of New Jersey.  If you require MCLE credit in other states, we can provide you a Uniform MCLE Form.
Partial Credit for Program Segments Not Allowed: Under the New York State Continuing Legal Education Board Regulations and Guidelines, attendees at CLE programs cannot get MCLE credit for a program segment (typically, a lecture or panel, of which there are usually several in a program) unless they are present for the entire segment. Those who arrive late, depart early, or are absent for any portion of the program WILL NOT receive credit for that program segment.

Follow NYSBA CLE on Twitter! @NYSBACLE for the latest program announcements.
To view the full list of Continuing Legal Education Programs, click here.
If you have any questions about this program, please contact CLE Program Manager Simone Smith, or the CLE Program Coordinator, Bridget Donlon.

MAY 3 - 5, 2019

The Equinox Golf Resort & Spa
3567 Main St | Manchester, VT 


You can reserve your overnight accommodations by calling the hotel at 866-837-4219. Identify yourself as a New York State Bar Association member. Please be advised that The Equinox is part of the Marroitt Luxury Collection.
Reservation deadline is Friday, April 3, 2019

Register Online 
Program Agenda and Registration form coming soon!

- Commercial Arbitration at its Best: How Arbitration Can Benefit Clients
- Working With Men to Advance Women in the Profession
- Lessons for the Trial Lawyer from My Cousin Vinny
- Social Media Update 2019: Lessons in Ethics and Evidence for the Bench & Bar
NYSBA Member: $750.00
Non-NYSBA Member: $900.00
Special Young Lawyer: $325.00
Gala Award Dinner Only: $175.00
Sponsor Table for Gala Dinner: $1,250.00
Spouse/Guest: $275.00

Attendance at this meeting offers up to 6.0 MCLE credit hours consisting of 3 credits in Professional Practice, 1.5 credits in Diversity, Inclusion and the Elimination of Bias and 1.5 credits in Ethics. 

For more questions please contact Kristina Gagnon at (518) 487-5669 email

ComFed Spring 2019


Sponsored by the Commercial and Federal Litigation Section of the New York State Bar Association.

Thursday, May 23, 2019
5:00 p.m. 

The Stanley H. Kaplan Penthouse
70 Lincoln Center Plaza

165 West 65th Street, 10th Floor
New York, NY 10023

1.5 MCLE Credits: 1.5 Diversity, Inclusion, and Elimination of Bias Credits


This event is complimentary to all who attend, but capacity is limited so registration is required.

4:30 - 5:00 p.m. Registration 

5:00 p.m. - 6:30 p.m. 
The Color of Neutrality: Increasing Diversity in Alternative Dispute Resolution

This CLE panel will explore the case for advancing diversity within that arena. The panelists will make the case for why available neutrals should be representative of the individuals, institution and communities that come before them to ensure litigants’ perceptions of fairness within the increasingly utilized ADR forum. The CLE panelists will offer practical guidance to litigators of color, in particular, on ways to enhance their careers, by training to become neutrals in court-sponsored or private ADR programs.


  • Hon. Ariel E. Belen, Mediator and Arbitrator, JAMS
  • Sasha A. Carbone, Esq., Associate General Counsel and Assistant Corporate Secretary, American Arbitration Association
  • Theo K. Cheng, Esq., Mediator and Arbitrator, The ADR Office of Theo Cheng
  • Nicole C. Haynes, Esq., Associate Director of Recruitment and Training, Financial Industry Regulatory Authority
  • Nancy M. Thevenin, Esq., General Counsel for the United States Council for International Business, and Founder/Principal, Thevenin Arbitration and ADR

6:30 p.m. - 8:00 p.m. 

Presentation of the Section’s Hon. George Bundy Smith Pioneer Award to Hon. Preet Bharara and Hon. Joon Kim, former United States Attorneys from the Southern District of New York.

Presentation of the Commercial and Federal Litigation Section 2018 Minority Law Student Summer Fellowship administered by The New York Bar Foundation

Thank You to the Following Sponsors:
Bronze: Rakower Law PLLC, Labaton Sucharow LLP, DeVore & DeMarco LLP
NYSBA Sections: Trusts and Estates Law


This event is complimentary to all who attend, but capacity is limited so registration is required.


The American Bar Association (ABA) House of Delegates Monday unanimously approved a resolution affirming that women attorneys remain considerably underrepresented in courtrooms and in Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR), and outlined steps that can be taken by the judiciary, law firms, clients and ADR providers to address this disparity.

The measure is based on a New York State Bar Association (NYSBA) report entitled If Not Now, When? Achieving Equality for Women Attorneys in the Courtroom and in ADR, and was presented to the ABA by NYSBA President Sharon Stern Gerstman.

The report was compiled by the NYSBA Commercial & Federal Litigation Section’s Task Force on Women’s Initiatives, and was approved by NYSBA’s House of Delegates in November 2017. It encourages law firms, members of the judiciary, corporate clients, and alternative dispute resolution providers to provide women lawyers with opportunities to gain trial experience, participate in the courtroom and all aspects of litigation, and be selected as neutrals in ADR.

The ABA action was part of its Midyear Meeting in Vancouver, British Columbia.

“The approval by the ABA of this groundbreaking report underscores the importance of ensuring that women and diverse voices are empowered and able to play an active role throughout the judicial and dispute resolution process,” Gerstman said. “This is an issue of fundamental fairness and justice, and with agreement regarding the scope of the problem, we can now work together most effectively to address it.”

Gerstman noted that the ABA measure approved on Monday suggests specific actions, including encouraging judges to ensure that women lawyers have equal opportunities to participate in the courtroom, calling on corporate clients to work with outside counsel to facilitate the participation of women attorneys in all aspects of litigation and calling on corporate counsel to work with ADR providers to encourage the selection of women attorneys as neutrals.

The report is based on the first-ever observational study of women attorneys in the courtroom. It reveals that female attorneys comprise about 25 percent of attorneys in lead counsel roles in courtrooms statewide.

The study took place from Sept. 1 through Dec. 31, 2016. Approximately 2,800 questionnaires were completed and returned by judges in participating courts, including the New York Court of Appeals, the Second Circuit Court of Appeals, two of the four federal district courts, all four appellate divisions, and commercial divisions in supreme courts in counties from Suffolk to Onondaga and Erie. Three of the leading ADR providers in the state also participated.

The NYSBA Task Force on Women’s Initiatives is co-chaired by NYSBA Past President Bernice K. Leber of New York City (Arent Fox), retired U.S. District Court Judge Shira Scheindlin of New York City (Stroock & Stroock & Lavan and JAMS); former Assistant U.S. Attorney Carrie H. Cohen of New York City (Morrison & Foerster); Tracee E. Davis of New York City (Zeichner, Ellman & Krause); Sharon M. Porcellio of Buffalo (Bond, Schoeneck & King); Lesley F. Rosenthal of New York City (Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts); and Lauren J. Wachtler of New York City (Phillips Nizer LLP). All are former chairs of NYSBA’s Commercial & Federal Litigation Section.


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The Commercial and Federal Litigation Section Newsletter features updates on Section activities, programs and events; recent legislation; and information about current issues. The Commercial and Federal Litigation Section Newsletter is published three times per year by the Commercial and Federal Litigation Section and distributed to Section members free of charge.
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The Commercial Division Advisory Council has produced a new version of its short film about the Commercial Division of the New York State Supreme Court. The film features eleven General Counsel of major corporations speaking about the Commercial Division. 

The film portrays some of the recent improvements to the Commercial Division’s rules, procedures, and operations which have been designed to be responsive to the needs and concerns of the business community. The ultimate goal of these changes is to make the business litigation process in New York more cost‑effective, predictable, and expeditious, and to thereby provide a more hospitable and attractive environment for business litigation in New York State.

See the video here: