September 10, 2009


Award honors State Bar members who have made noteworthy contributions to addressing women's issues

ALBANY-The New York State Bar Association is seeking nominations for its annual Ruth G. Schapiro Award, which is given to a member of the State Bar who has made a noteworthy contribution to addressing issues of concern to women. The award will be presented at the January 29, 2010 meeting of the State Bar's House of Delegates.

The award was developed and is administered by the Committee on Women in the Law in honor of its first chair, Ruth G. Schapiro. The committee's ground-breaking 1987 report, developed under Schapiro's guidance, has served as a model for subsequent Association reports and actions on issues affecting not only women in the profession, but the public at large. These issues include domestic violence, child abuse, bias, health care and gender equity. Through Schapiro's leadership, the committee formulated several educational programs and publications for the public and the profession.

"Ruth Schapiro recognized that proactive steps needed to be taken to ensure that women achieved equality in the legal profession," said Taa R. Grays of New York (MetLife), chair of the Committee on Women in the Law. "This award recognizes her indelible accomplishments and shines a light on those who continue her legacy."

The deadline for nominations is October 9, 2009. Nominations should be directed to the Committee on Women in the Law, New York State Bar Association, One Elk Street, Albany, NY 12207, faxed to 518-463-8527, or e-mailed to [email protected]. Additional forms can be obtained by calling 518-487-5561. Current members of the Committee on Women in the Law are not eligible to receive the award.

Past recipients include: Hon. Judith S. Kaye, retired Chief Judge of the State of New York; Maryann Saccomando Freedman, past president of the New York State Bar Association, currently with Cohen & Lombardo, PC; M. Catherine Richardson, past president of the New York State Bar Association and retired private practitioner (Bond Schoeneck & King, PLLC); Denise E. O'Donnell, deputy secretary for public safety and commissioner, New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services; and Karen DeCrow, 2009 National Women's Hall of Fame inductee and former president of the National Organization for Women (NOW), who is a solo practitioner in Jamesville, New York.

The 76,000-member New York State Bar Association is the official statewide organization of lawyers in New York and the largest voluntary state bar association in the nation. Founded in 1876, State Bar programs and activities have continuously served the public and improved the justice system for more than 130 years.