Sections & Committees

Commercial and Federal Litigation Section


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

1.0 MCLE Credits: 1.0 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 Preet Bharara and Joon Kim, former United States Attorneys for the Southern District of New York.

History of the Hon. George Bundy Smith Pioneer Award

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:
Gold: Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP, Kramer Levin Naftalis & Frankel LLP, Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP, Seyfarth Shaw LLP, Patterson Belknap Webb & Tyler LLP
Silver: Morrison & Foerster, LLP, Bond Schoeneck & King, PLLC, Covington & Burling LLP, Farrell Fritz, P.C., American Arbitration Association, Jenner & Block LLP
Bronze: Rakower Law PLLC, Labaton Sucharow LLP, DeVore & DeMarco LLP, Walsh Pizzi O'Reilly Falanga LLP, Barclay Damon LLP, Lowenstein Sandler LLP, Phillips Nizer LLP, MoxleyADR LLC, Venable LLP, Tannenbaum Helpern Syracuse & Hirschtritt LLP
NYSBA Sections: Antitrust Section, Corporate Counsel Section, Dispute Resolution Section, General Practice, Intellectual Property Section, Labor and Employment Law Section, Torts, Insurance and Compensation Law Section, Trusts and Estates Law Section


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

Commercial Division Lunch Series - Albany with Commercial Division Justice Richard M. Platkin
Sponsored by the Commercial and Federal Litigation Section of the New York State Bar Association and the Albany County Bar Association

Thursday, May 23, 2019 | 12:30 p.m.-1:30 p.m. 

New York State Bar Association
1 Elk Street
Albany, NY 12207

Cost to attend: $15.00 Lunch will be provided

Join us for an informal gathering with the Hon. Richard M. Platkin over lunch to discuss practice in the Commercial Division and share practice pointers.

Register Now

To register over the phone contact our Member Resource Center at 1-800-582-2452


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

June 5, 2019
5:30 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.

Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP
4 Times Square
New York, NY 10036

Registration and Networking 
5:30 p.m.- 6:30 p.m.

CLE Program
6:30 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.

7:30 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.

Hors D'Oeuvres will be served from 5:30 p.m.- 6:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.- 8:00 p.m.

Register Now

For questions regarding this program, please contact Kristina Gagnon


Tuesday, June 11, 2019

6:00 - 9:00 p.m.
New York International Arbitration Center (NYIAC)
150 East 42nd Street, 17th Floor
New York, NY 10017 (between Lexington and Third Avenues)
Complimentary registration offered to NYIAC and NYSBA International Section, Commercial & Federal Litigation Section, and Dispute Resolution Section members.

View Flyer

Join the NYSBA International Section in collaboration with the NYSBA Dispute Resolution Section and the NYSBA Commercial and Federal Litigation Section for a joint program and reception welcoming Justice Saliann Scarpulla of the New York State Supreme Court Commercial Division, Part 39 (International Commercial Arbitration). 

Justice Saliann Scarpulla | New York State Supreme Court Commercial Division
Noah J. Hanft | CPR
Luis M. Martinez | AAA-ICDR
Charles J. Moxley, Jr. | MoxleyADR LLC; Committee on Arbitration and ADR of the NYSBA Commercial and Federal Litigation Section
Rekha Rangachari | NYIAC; International Dispute Resolution Committee of the NYSBA Dispute Resolution Section and International Contracts and Commercial Law Committee of the NYSBA International Section
Nancy Thevenin | USCIB / ICC USA; International Arbitration & ADR Committee and NYSBA International Section
Stephen P. Younger | Patterson Belknap Webb & Tyler LLP; NYIAC; Chief Judge’s Commercial Division Advisory Council



Wednesday, August 14 
5:30 - 7:30 PM

Druthers Brewing Company
221 Harborside Drive
Schenectady, NY 12305


Complimentary finger foods and beer served during the first hour, cash bar for the second hour. Free event for members of NYSBA, the Albany County Bar Association, and the Schenectady County Bar Association. 
$10 registration fee for non-members to attend this event. 

Sponsored by: 

New York State Bar Association Young Lawyers Section
New York State Bar Association Commercial and Federal Litigation Section
New York State Bar Association Women in Law Section
Albany County Bar Association Young Lawyers Committee
Schenectady County Bar Association


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 NYLitigator features peer-written substantive articles relating to the practice of commercial and federal litigation on various topics, including discovery; mediation; settlements; corporate liability; and due process. Section Reports, written by various Commercial and Federal Litigation Committees, are often featured in each issue. The NYLitigator is published by the Commercial and Federal Litigation Section and distributed to Section Members free of charge.
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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: