Past Events2019-08-05T14:42:52-04:00

AFBNJ Past Events

Camden Brown Bag Luncheon- January 23, 2020

Thursday, January 23, 2020 – Camden Brown Bag Luncheon

The Trial Penalty: The Sixth Amendment Right to Trial on the Verge of Extinction and How to Save It


The Honorable Noel L. Hillman, U.S. District Judge, District of New Jersey
Barry J. Pollack, Esq., Partner, Robbins, Russell, Englert, Orseck, Untereiner & Sauber, LLP
Matthew Skahill, Esq., Deputy U.S. Attorney for the District of New Jersey
Daniella Gordon, Esq., Partner, Hyland Levin Shapiro LLP (Moderator)

Topics included:

  • The impact of the decline in jury trials upon the criminal justice system
  • The disparity in sentences imposed after trial versus sentences imposed after entry of a guilty plea
  • Factors that contribute to the decline in the federal criminal trial rate
  • Sentencing enhancements, mandatory minimums, departure provisions
  • Proposed recommendations for reform


Trenton Brown Bag Luncheon: November 7, 2019

Trenton Brown Bag Luncheon: Thursday, November 7, 2019

Federal Civil Jury Trial Practice: Topics included pretrial conference, final pretrial order, jury selection in the age of social media, preserving issues for appeal and overlapping criminal issues in civil trials.

Hon. Michael A. Shipp, U.S District Judge, District of New Jersey
Hon. Tonianne J. Bongiovanni, U.S. Magistrate Judge, District of New Jersey
Hon. Zahid N. Quraishi, U.S. Magistrate Judge, District of New Jersey
J. Andrew Ruymann, Chief, Civil Division, U.S. Attorney’s Office (DNJ)
Marc Haefner, Partner, Walsh Pizzi O’Reilly Falanga LLP
Moderator: Corinne McCann Trainor, Partner, Fox Rothschild LLP

AFBNJ Presents Inaugural Simandle Award to Thomas R. Curtin

The AFBNJ Presents Inaugural Simandle Award to Thomas R. Curtin at the Second Annual Pro Bono Institute on September 20.
Caldwell, NJ – September 23, 2019 –

The Association of the Federal Bar of New Jersey (AFBNJ) presented the inaugural Simandle Award to Thomas R. Curtin at the Second Annual Pro Bono Institute.

The Simandle Award honors Chief Judge Jerome B. Simandle, who recently passed away at the age of 70. The Simandle Award will be presented annually to a lawyer and/or jurist who has exemplified exceptional service to the bench and the bar of the New Jersey federal court.

Ed Kole, AFBNJ President, said, “There is no one I can think of who better deserves this award than Tom Curtin.” Thomas R. Curtin is a partner with the law firm of McElroy, Deutsch, Mulvaney & Carpenter. Mr. Curtin is a former Trustee of the AFBNJ, a recipient of the Association’s prestigious Brennan Award, and a former President of the New Jersey State Bar Association.
Chief Judge Freda L. Wolfson presented the inaugural Simandle Award to Mr. Curtin. She spoke about Judge Simandle, “This is not an easy task, since there are so many accolades and comments that can be attached to this consummate judge and gentlemen who left us too soon.”

The Second Annual Pro Bono Institute took place at the New Jersey Law Center on September 20, 2019 from 9 am until noon. The event centered around panel discussions on the Court’s pro bono and re-entry programs, with speakers including Judges Freda Wolfson, Lois Goodman, Michael Hammer and Karen Williams. Additional speakers included Dianne Moratti, Chief, Deputy Attorney General, Melissa Rhoads, Deputy-in-Charge in the Trenton division of the U.S. District Court for the District of NJ, and Sheila Wiggins, Duane Morris.

Photo (left to right): Hon. Michael Hammer, Hon. Karen Williams, Edward T. Kole, Thomas R. Curtin, Chief Judge Freda L. Wolfson, Hon. Lois Goodman, Dianne Moratti, Sheila Wiggins and Melissa Rhoads.

43rd Annual William J. Brennan, Jr. Award Reception

The 43rd Annual William J. Brennan, Jr. Award Reception was held on Wednesday, June 12, 2019.
This year, we recognized the contributions of:
The Honorable Stanley R. Chesler, United States District Judge for the District of New Jersey
Joseph P. LaSala, Partner, McElroy, Deutsch, Mulvaney & Carpenter LLP.
We also present three New Jersey law students with the John J. Barry Memorial Scholarship. President  Edward T. Kole was sworn in and we welcomed our new officers and trustees.

Newark and Camden Vicinage Brown Bag Luncheons

Newark Vicinage
Wednesday, April 10, 2019
12:30 – 2:00 pm
“Get What You Need and Use What You Get: Dealing with Admissibility and Authenticity of Evidence in Federal Proceedings.”

Camden Vicinage
Thursday, April 11, 2019
12:30 – 2:00 pm
“April Rules Day: Class Action Basics & Rule 23 Amendments.”

43rd Annual Judicial Conference Held on Thursday, March 28, 2019

The 43rd Annual United States District Court Judicial Conference was held on Thursday, March 28, 2019  at Mayfair Farms, West Orange, NJ.

8:30 AM Conference Registration and AFBNJ Member Photo
Identification Cards

9:30 AM Welcome Remarks and Update from the Historical Society
• William T. Reilly, President, AFBNJ and Partner, McCarter & English, LLP
• Keith J. Miller, President, United States District Court Historical Society and Partner, Robinson Miller LLC

9:45 -10:50 AM The Immigration Debate: The Constitution, Federal Powers, and Current Litigation Update
Explore the current law and policy debate over immigration in the United States and the status of relevant litigation, including DACA and the Executive Order limiting travel to the U.S. from certain countries.

Moderator: Lawrence S. Lustberg
Co-Chair, Commercial & Criminal Litigation, Gibbons P.C.
• Hon. Michael A. Chagares, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit
• August E. Flentje, Special Counsel, U.S. Department of Justice
• Lee Gelernt, Deputy Director, ACLU Immigrants’ Rights Project
• Amy Gottlieb, Associate Regional Director, American Friends Service Committee

10:50-11:10 AM Break

11:10 AM State of the Judiciary
• Honorable Jose L. Linares, Chief Judge, U.S. District Court, District of New Jersey

11:30 AM – 12:35 PM The First Amendment Right of Access to the Courts: Promoting Openness and Protecting Privacy
Topics will include confidentiality orders, proprietary information, sealing orders, courtroom closure, secrecy involving uncharged individuals, and the District Court’s protocol for the disclosure of sentencing material.

Moderator: Professor Alexis Karteron
Director of the Constitutional Rights Clinic at Rutgers Law School
• Hon. Stanley R. Chesler, U.S. District Judge
• Hon. Leda Dunn Wettre, U.S. Magistrate Judge
• John M. Fietkiewicz, Senior Counsel, Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer LLP
• Jeanne LoCicero, Legal Director, ACLU of New Jersey
12:35 PM Closing Remarks
• William T. Reilly, President, AFBNJ

2019 Judicial Conference Coordinators: Jennifer C. Critchley and Zahid N. Quraishi