January 21, 2020: State Bar to Honor U.S. District Judge John G. Koeltl

By Communications Department

January 21, 2020

January 21, 2020: State Bar to Honor U.S. District Judge John G. Koeltl


By Communications Department


The New York State Bar Association (NYSBA) Commercial and Federal Litigation Section will recognize the Honorable John G. Koeltl, United States District Judge for the Southern District of New York, with the 2020 Stanley H. Fuld Award on January 29 at the NYSBA Annual Meeting.

“The Commercial and Federal Litigation Section is proud to honor Judge Koeltl, with its Stanley H. Fuld Award,” said Laurel Kretzing, chair of the Commercial and Federal Litigation Section. “Judge Koeltl is not only a distinguished jurist but he combines scholarship with a practical approach to the law, as demonstrated by his role as a former member of the Civil Rules Advisory Committee and Chair of the Subcommittee that focused on active judicial case management and the long-ignored principal of proportionality in discovery.”

The award is, named for the late Chief Judge of the New York Court of Appeals and is given for outstanding contributions to the development of commercial law and jurisprudence in New York.

Koeltl was nominated to the bench by President Bill Clinton in 1994 and has presided over some notable cases during his tenure. In 2006 he sentenced disgraced civil right lawyer Lynne Stewart for her role in providing material assistance to Omar Abdel-Rahman, the mastermind behind the 1993 World Trade Center bombing. More recently he dismissed a civil suit brought by the Democratic National Committee filed against the Donald J. Trump for President campaign, The Russian Federation and WikiLeaks over their alleged involvement in the hacking of Democratic Party email accounts during the 2016 presidential race. 

After graduating from Harvard Law School in 1971, Koeltl clerked for U.S. Supreme Court Associate Justice Potter Stewart for two years before serving as an assistant special prosecutor on the Watergate special prosecution force. He joined Debevoise & Plimpton as an associate in 1975 and became a partner in 1979.

Honoring attorneys who render extraordinary service to the public and the profession is part of NYSBA’s Annual Meeting, which each January attracts thousands of lawyers from around the state, the nation and the world. They come to meet and connect with colleagues and to learn from experts in many areas of law.

A wide range of programs at NYSBA’s 143rd Annual Meeting January 27-31 explores current issues for lawyers and legal practice.

The Presidential Summit on Wednesday, January 29, will look at White Nationalism and Domestic Terrorism in America.  At Thursday evening’s sold-out Gala Dinner, U.S. Supreme Court Associate Justice Elena Kagan will receive the Gold Medal, NYSBA’s highest honor, and participate in a fireside-style chat with Prof. John Barrett of St. John’s University School of Law.

Other featured speakers at the Annual Meeting include New York State Attorney General Letitia James, the first African American and the first woman elected to that office; Janet DiFiore, chief judge of the New York State Court of Appeals; and Craig Boise, dean of Syracuse University College of Law.

For more information on NYSBA’s Annual Meeting, click here.

About the New York State Bar Association
The New York State Bar Association is the largest voluntary state bar association in the nation. Since 1876, NYSBA has helped shape the development of law, educated and informed the legal profession and the public, and championed the rights of New Yorkers through advocacy and guidance in our communities.


Contact: Brendan Kennedy
[email protected]

Six diverse people sitting holding signs
gradient circle (purple) gradient circle (green)


My NYSBA Account

My NYSBA Account