ELLEN M. SPODEK was elected as a Justice of the Supreme Court in 2008. She is currently sitting in the default motion part, a guardianship part and general trial backup. She was elected to the Civil Court of Kings County in January 2003, where she served until May of 2005, when she was appointed to Family Court. She served in Family Court through December 2006. Thereafter Justice Spodek was appointed as the Supervising Judge of Civil Court in January 2007, a position she held until December 2008.
Born and raised in Brooklyn, New York, Justice Spodek attended New York City public schools before going on to graduate from SUNY Albany. In 1988 she graduated from Fordham Law School, then went on to work for the New York City Corporation Counsel's Office in the Torts Division. She left the Corporation Counsel's office to join Jackson & Consumano, LLP as a trial attorney. In 1995 she formed her own firm, Spodek & Barrett, LLP, where she represented both plaintiffs and defendants in personal injury cases. She also served as a small claims arbitrator from 2000 until her election to the bench.
A frequent lecturer, Justice Spodek has presented CLE lectures at the National Institute of Trial Attorneys, New York State Trial Lawyers Institute, New York County Lawyers' Association and the Bay Ridge Lawyers Association. She is a member of multiple bar associations, including the Brooklyn Bar Association where she has been a member since 1996 and the New York State Bar Association, where she serves as Presiding Member of the Judicial Section Executive Committee.
Justice Spodek is currently the co-president of Judges and Lawyers Breast Cancer Alert (JALBCA), a legal organization dedicated to promoting awareness of breast cancer and education regarding issues relevant to the diagnosis, treatment and cure of the disease. Among other initiatives, JALBCA sponsors free mammogram vans at courthouses in the five boroughs, as well as Nassau and Suffolk counties.
Justice Spodek's dedication to the Brooklyn community is illustrated by her ongoing commitment to pro bono work. As a practioner she was co-chair of the Advisory Board to Brooklyn Legal Services Corporation A. She was instrumental in starting the Claro Clinic in the Kings County Civil Court, in connection with Brooklyn Law School, and the Brooklyn Bar Association Volunteer Lawyers Project, which provides the public with free legal counsel on civil debt-related matters. This program has helped hundreds of consumers and fulfilled a vital need in the community.