The Trial Lawyers Section Annual Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg Vanguard Award honors a Trial Attorney who has made extraordinary efforts in addressing and raising awareness about issues of equity, diversity, and inclusion.
Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg was a fervent advocate for equality and became a culture icon in the fight for women’s and minority rights. During her time in the Supreme Court, she championed diversity and equity for women, the BIPOC community, people with disabilities, and the LGBTQ+ community.
Her approach as Supreme Court justice was to take bold risks and use her voice with conviction. Her most memorable cases were those that impacted diverse groups. She had fought against voter discrimination, women’s right and also for the free exercise of religion and the separation of church and state.
At the core of her work was the need to recognize and uplift diverse voices. Ginsburg used her position of power and influence to pioneer equitable policy and opened the door of opportunity for millions of Americans.
During her time in the Supreme Court, she championed diversity and equity for women, the BIPOC community, people with disabilities, and the LGBTQ+ community. Her approach as Supreme Court justice was to take bold risks and use her voice with conviction. Her most memorable cases were those that impacted diverse groups. Justice Ginsburg understood intuitively that equality between the sexes ought to be an affirmative right and that laws treating men and women differently ultimately hurt all people.
The Trial Lawyers Section of the New York State Bar will be honoring a Trial Attorney who has made extraordinary efforts in addressing and raising awareness about issues of equity, diversity, and inclusion virtually on October 3, 2023 at the 4th Annual Ruth Bader Ginsburg Vanguard Award and CLE.
Congratulations to our 4th Annual Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg Award Winner:
David M. Tang, Partner at Underberg & Kessler LLP in Rochester, New York
Alexander Graham Bell once said, “Before anything else, preparation is the key to success.” These words could be David’s mantra. His clients laud him for his attention to detail, his gift for creating compelling legal strategies, and his ability to assess their situation with clarity and fairness.
Focus, preparedness, and a passion for problem-solving—David embodies these characteristics in and out of the courtroom. Whether it is advocating for his clients in state and federal courts or resolving their disputes through arbitration, he is driven by a lifelong desire to help others. After all, the law is in his DNA: both his father and uncle are attorneys.
While attending law school, David interned at the U.S. Department of Justice and at the State Department. He was also the Managing Editor of the Syracuse Law Review. David began his legal career as one of U&K’s most gifted summer interns before joining the firm full time after gaining experience at Harris Beach PLLC and White & Case LLP in New York City. He currently serves as chair of the Firm’s Creditors’ Rights and Health Care Practice Groups.
- The nominee has practiced substantially as a trial lawyer in state (or federal) courts in New York State.
- The nominee has demonstrated a commitment to diversity and inclusion in the legal profession.
- The nominee has impacted the legal community by being a better ally and advocate through mentoring and providing opportunities to others.
- Hon.Betsy Barros, Associate Justice, New York State Supreme Court Appellate Division, Second Department
- Hon. Shahabuddeen A. Ally, Acting Supreme Court Justice, New York County Civil Court, First Department, Commissioner, Franklin H. Williams Commission
- Hon. Deborah H. Karalunas, Supreme Court of the State of New York, Fifth Department
- Charles Small, Esq., Chief Clerk of the Supreme Court for Civil Matters
- Ayanna Sorett, Esq., Executive Director, Mayor’s Advisory Committee on the Judiciary, New York, New York
- Hon. E. Jeannette Ogden, Associate Judge, New York State Appellate Division, Forth Department
- Hon. George J. Silver (ret.), Silverstar Mediation and Arbitration LLC, New York, New York
The Trial Lawyers Section of the New York State Bar celebrated National Diversity Day on October 19, 2022 and honored all of the judges who participated in the program for making extraordinary efforts in addressing and raising awareness about issues of equity, diversity, and inclusion.
Hon. Silvia Hinds Radix, New York City Corporation Counsel
Hon. Joanne M. Winslow, Associate Judge, Fourth Department
Hon. Lillian Wan, Associate Judge, Second Department
Hon. Adam Silvera, Administrator Judge, New York County
Hon. Carolyn Walker-Diallo, Administrative Judge Civil Court of the City of New York
2021 Award Winner & Presentation
Congratulations to Katrine Aliha Beck, Esq., Founding Partner at Fullerton Beck LLP, winner of the 2nd Annual Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg Vanguard Award!
The Trial Lawyers Section honored and celebrated Katrine on October 6, 2021. The celebration also included a CLE program with presentations by special guests:
- Speaker: Hon. Genine D. Edwards, Supreme Court, 2nd Judicial District
- Speaker: Hon. Doris M. Gonzalez, Administrative Judge of Civil Matters, Bronx County
- Speaker: Hon. Hector LaSalle, Presiding Justice, Appellate Division, 2nd Department
- Speaker: Trini Ross, Esq., US Attorney Nominee for the Western District of New York
- Speaker: Hon. Rowan Wilson, Associate Judge of the Court of Appeals
About the Winner
With more than 20 years of litigation experience, Katrine Beck focuses her trial practice on general liability claims, municipal law matters and commercial disputes; with a subspecialty in coop/condo work. She has successfully handled all phases of litigation in state and federal courts and has demonstrated equal finesse not only in the courtroom but also in arbitrations and mediations. Her clients include individuals; small businesses; public and private corporations; property managers; condominium and co-op boards; and insurance carriers.
The general liability component of her practice involves the defense of high-exposure cases involving negligence, construction accident claims under New York Labor Law, truck/auto accidents and premises liability claims. Katrine is OSHA-10 certified and is well versed in the intricate dealings involving construction, AIA contracts and insurance procurement and indemnity requirements.
With respect to commercial litigation, Katrine exhibits the breadth and depth of experience to effectively serve large, well-established enterprises and small, entrepreneurial organizations when commercial disputes arise. She provides innovative legal strategies to co-op boards, property managers and developers, and executes focused litigation plans within limited or expedited time frames and budgets. At the same time, new companies with exposure to intense litigation rely on her to supply critical legal defense and expertise in varying areas of the law. Her clear-headed approach helps clients avoid protracted disputes that can easily distract from running a business successfully.
Katrine started her legal career as an Assistant Corporation Counsel with the New York City Law Department, Bronx Tort Division, where she tried numerous cases to verdict on behalf of New York City and its agencies, including the Police Department, Board of Education, and Corrections, Transportation and Sanitation departments. This experience proved invaluable in shaping her approach to litigation and her ability to identify the key issues in a case. In addition to gaining hands-on experience, Katrine experienced first- hand the value of mentoring early in her legal career. At the NYC Law Department, mentoring and fostering a learning and inclusive environment was a big part of the culture. Katrine recognized the importance of mentorship and actively mentored new attorneys in her department. After almost four years, she went on to private practice at a national law firm, carrying with her the value of mentoring and diversity. As an associate, she served as the co-chair of the associate mentoring and focus committees. When she was elevated to Partner, she remained connected and continued to mentor younger associates both formally and informally. Her passion ultimately led her to get involved with a non-profit organization, Girls Inc. of Westchester, to help support girls in underserved communities to be “Smart, Strong and Bold!”. She served on the board of directors for a total of six years and as Chair for the past two. As the Chair, she helped lead the organization through a challenging pandemic and helped navigate the organization onto virtual platform in order to reach more girls in their time of need. In addition to being named to New York Metro Super Lawyers since 2016, Katrine was named to the prestigious Crain’s New York Business “Notable Women in Law”. Katrine is a 2020 Westchester County Business Journal (WCBJ) C-Suite Awards honoree and recipient of the Business Council of Westchester’s coveted list of “40 under 40” Rising Stars.
As the co-founder of a women-owned litigation firm, she has ensured mentoring and inclusion are woven into the fabric of the Firm’s culture. In just three years, the Firm has grown from 5 attorneys to 25 and now has a New Jersey and Connecticut practice to complement its New York practice. This year, the Firm ranked fifth in the Best Companies to Work for in New York in the small employer category and was recently awarded Inc.’s Best in Business by Westchester Magazine.
Katrine earned her J.D. from Albany Law School in 2000 and her B.A., magna cum laude, from Ramapo College of New Jersey. Katrine is admitted to practice in the United States District Courts for the Southern and Eastern Districts.
Hon. Hector LaSalle
Presiding Justice, Appellate Division, 2nd Department
Honorable Hector D. LaSalle is the Presiding Justice of the Appellate Division, Second Judicial Department, appointed to by Governor Cuomo on May 25, 2021.
Prior to his appointment as Presiding Justice, Justice LaSalle served as an Associate Justice of the Court from 2014 to 2021. Justice LaSalle served as an Associate Justice in the 9th and 10th Judicial Districts of the New York State Appellate Term from 2012 to 2014. From 2008 to 2014, Justice LaSalle also served as a Justice in the 10th Judicial District, Supreme Court. From 2001 to 2008 and 1993 to 1998, Justice LaSalle worked in the Suffolk County District Attorney’s Office as Deputy Bureau Chief of the Special Investigations Bureau, Head of Anti-Gang Unit, and an Assistant District Attorney. He served as Assistant Attorney General in the New York State Attorney General’s Office from 1999 to 2001. Justice LaSalle was an Associate at Ruskin, Moscou, Faltischeck, P.C. from 1998 to1999. Justice LaSalle received his B.A. in Political Science from the Pennsylvania State University and a J.D. from the University of Michigan Law School.
Hon. Genine D. Edwards
Supreme Court 2nd Judicial District
Genine D. Edwards was elected to the Civil Court of the City of New York in November 2005. In 2011, Justice Edwards was elevated to Acting Justice of the Supreme Court, and in November 2015 she was elected as a Justice of the Supreme Court of the State of New York in Kings County. Justice Edwards has a medical malpractice docket and is the alternate dispute resolution jurist of medical malpractice matters in Kings County. Justice Edwards graduated from St. John’s University School of Law and began her career as an Assistant Corporation Counsel for the City of New York. For the proceeding thirteen years she was a litigator in both the public and private sectors. From 1997 to 2005, Justice Edwards served as a volunteer arbitrator in the Small Claims Part of the New York City Civil Court, in Kings County.
Justice Edwards is a Board member of the Brooklyn Women’s Bar Association and serves as Chair of the Black History Committee and Lunch with a Judge Committee, Co-Chair of the Young Lawyers Committee. Justice Edwards is also a Board Member of the Supreme Court Justices Association for the City of New York and the Lefferts Manor Association as well as a member of the Judicial Friends Association’s website committee. She is the Judicial Liaison for the Ronald H. Brown Law School Prep Program at St. John’s University School of Law and a staunch advocate for student interns. Justice Edwards created and moderates “Meet Your Judges” events for the Brooklyn community. She is the Religious Liberty Leader for her church, Kingsboro Temple SDA. Justice Edwards is the proud mother of three sons, Bryce Carter Edwards, Cole Preston Edwards and Chase Parker Edwards.
Trini Ross, Esq.
U.S. Attorney Nominee for the Western District of New York
Trini E. Ross was nominated by President Joseph Biden to be the United States Attorney for the Western District of New York in July 2021 and would be the first Black woman to serve in that position. Currently, she is the Director of Investigations for the Legal Division of the National Science Foundation’s Office of Inspector General in Alexandria, Virginia.
Ms. Ross has over 23 years of experience as an Assistant United States Attorney. During that time she pursued groundbreaking prosecutions in her role as head of the Mortgage/Financial Fraud Task Force and the Human Trafficking Task Force. Ms. Ross was also the Civil Rights point of contact for the district and, as such, prosecuted a number of color of law cases. Her other notable leadership positions while an AUSA include Senior Litigation Counsel, Chief of the Anti-Fraud and Corruption Section and Deputy Chief of the White Collar and General Crimes Section.
Working to ensure attorneys for the Department of Justice uphold the highest ethical standards, Ms. Ross served as Assistant Counsel to the DOJ Office of Professional Responsibility. As part of the DOJ’s Overseas Prosecutorial Development, Assistance and Training Program, she worked with prosecutors in Kenya, Africa, to provide training in the prosecution of civil rights prosecutions.
Prior to her career with the DOJ, Ms. Ross was a Court Attorney for the New York State Supreme Court, Appellate Division, Fourth Department and a litigation associate at a law firm in Buffalo, New York. Ms. Ross also serves as an adjunct professor of law at SUNY Buffalo Law School and has taught courses to law students and to undergraduate students since 1989.
Ms. Ross graduated cum laude from the State University of New York at Buffalo Law School in and earned her Master’s of Arts Degree in Criminal Justice from Rutgers University. She is the recipient of numerous awards for her work with the DOJ and with the Inspector General community. In addition, she has received distinguish alumni awards and awards from numerous community organizations.
Hon. Rowan D. Wilson
Associate Judge of the Court of Appeals
Rowan D. Wilson, Associate Judge of the Court of Appeals, was born in Pomona, California in 1960, and grew up in Berkeley, California. He received his A.B. degree from Harvard College in 1981, and his J.D. degree from Harvard Law School in 1984. He was admitted to the bar of the State of California in 1985, and the bar of the State of New York in 1987. From 1984 to 1986, he served as a judicial law clerk to the Honorable James R. Browning, Chief Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, based in San Francisco, California.
In 1986, he joined the firm of Cravath, Swaine & Moore in New York City as an associate, and was elected to partnership there in 1991, in which position he continued until February 2017. On January 15, 2017, Governor Andrew M. Cuomo nominated Judge Wilson to serve as an Associate Judge of the Court of Appeals, and the New York State Senate confirmed his nomination on February 6, 2017. While in private practice, Judge Wilson served on the boards of several charitable and not-for-profit organizations and handled numerous pro bono matters.
Judge Wilson resides with his wife and children in New York, New York.
Hon. Doris M. Gonzalez
Administrative Judge of Supreme Court Bronx County
Justice Doris Gonzalez is the Administrative Judge of Supreme Court, Bronx County for Civil Matters. She was born in Brooklyn and raised in the Bronx. She grew up in The Boston Secor Housing Projects located near Dyre Ave. Both of her parents were
born in Puerto Rico, but met here in New York. Her mom was a part-time lunch aid at her grammar school, Saint Philip and James and her father a furniture finisher.
Her father completed seventh grade and her mother received her GED thru a program offered by NYCHA. She has an older brother, retired from Law Enforcement and a sister who is the Assistant to a Podiatrist in the Bronx. Most importantly, she is a single mother to a daughter Milta, who is 21 years old, who is a volleyball player and attending Monroe College.
Justice Gonzalez attended, Cardinal Spellman High School, Fordham University, Rose Hill, and received her Juris Doctor from C.U.N.Y Law School at Queens College.
In 1985 she started her legal career in the insurance industry where very few Hispanic female attorneys were employed. She rose thru the ranks to become a senior trial attorney, trying high profile cases. After 15 years of practice in the private sector, she went to work for a Supreme Court Judge in the Appellate Term 1st Department and then in Supreme Court Civil Division, Bronx County.
She served as a member of : 1) her local Community Board, 2) the Neighborhood Advisory Board (Chairperson), and 3) the Community Action Board (Chairperson for Queens and Bronx County).
She was elected as a Civil Court Judge in Bronx County, in November of 2006. In December 2009, she was appointed by Judge Pfau as Acting Supreme Court Justice. She sat in Supreme Criminal Bronx County for three years; Supreme Court Matrimonial Division for three years; and now sits in Supreme Court Civil Division Bronx County handling an array of civil matters in the Special Trial Part, and the Foreclosure Part. She was elected to Supreme Court in 2016. December 21, 2018, she was appointed by Judge Larry Marks as Administrative Judge of Supreme Court Bronx County Civil Matters.
She served on the following: i) President of the Latino Judges Association; ii) Chair of the Gender Fairness Committee a) on the “women of distinction” subcommittee; iii) the Chair of the Committee to Encourage Judicial Service, for the New York City Bar; iv) appointed to the Judicial Advisory Council and sat on the facilities and technology committee.
She remains on the: Foreclosure Task Force of the New York City Bar; Special Committee to Encourage Judicial Service; Board Chair for not for profit Legacy Volleyball Club; Board of Trustee of Preston High School; sustaining member of The Bronx County Bar Association and The Bronx Women’s Bar Association; a member of the Puerto Rican Bar Association and The Cervantes Society.
2020 Award Winner & Presentation
The inaugural Trial Lawyers Section Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg Vanguard Award and CLE took place virtually on October 21. The Award is presented to a Trial Attorney who has made extraordinary efforts in addressing and raising awareness about issues of equity, diversity, and inclusion.
Congratulations to Tricia Prettypaul, Staff Attorney, Travelers Companies, winner of the 1st Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg Vanguard Award.
About the Winner
Tricia Prettypaul is a staff attorney with The Travelers Companies. In her legal work, she is responsible for litigation, appeals, research, investigation reviews, writing briefs and motions, and for providing training to both the company clients and legal staff. She currently holds various leadership positions, including lead of the Regulatory Compliance Committee, the Appeals group, the Legal Services subcommittee on Innovation and Technology Communications, the Technology Resources subgroup, and past co-lead of the firm’s investigation team.
She is dedicated to philanthropy, volunteerism, and propelling diversity initiatives. She has organized events that raised funds supporting local organizations and garnered the participation of multiple business lines to volunteer for events to fund the grants. She is chair of Travelers’ NYC Diversity Committee, and lead of the NYC Pride Diversity Network. In her chair role she is responsible for planning, programming and creating presentations on diversity initiatives. In the past year, she has received the Legal Services’ Diversity in Action Award, and has twice received the Claim Legal Diversity Award given quarterly.
Tricia’s long-term goal is to learn as much as possible from her roles, so she can pay-it-forward to the next generation of leaders. She was most recently a mentor to the firm’s summer associates, providing them with assignments and evaluations. She mentors’ students from her undergraduate alma mater, Fordham University and continues to work with the school’s CSTEP program helping minority and economically disadvantaged undergraduate scholars prepare for careers in fields in which they are underrepresented. She also works with Posse and Junior Achievement to elevate young scholars in their pursuit of education.
She is a member of the Board of Directors of the nonprofit Sigma Sigma Rho Sorority, Inc. and an officer of the Sigma Sigma Rho Sorority, Inc. Foundation. In these roles, she has the opportunity to influence the lives of young women and offer advice during organizational growth.
Tricia graduated with her Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees from Fordham University, Omicron Delta Epsilon and obtained her law degree from Maurice A. Deane School of Law at Hofstra University. She is admitted to practice law in New York, New Jersey, and the Southern District of New York. She is a member of the NYSBA, and a Committee member of LGBT & the Law and member of the NYSBA Task Force on Attorney Well Being.
She lives with her wife Stephanie, in Valley Stream, New York.
Presiding Justice Elizabeth A. Garry
16th Presiding Justice on the New York Supreme Court, Appellate Division, Third Department
The Honorable Elizabeth A. Garry was appointed by Governor Andrew Cuomo as the 16th Presiding Justice of the Third Department on January 1, 2018. She was elected Supreme Court Justice for the Sixth Judicial District in 2006 and appointed to the Third Department effective March 19, 2009.
Presiding Justice Garry graduated from Alfred University and Albany Law School, with honors. She began her legal career as Confidential Law Clerk to the Honorable Irad S. Ingraham, Justice of the Supreme Court, from 1990 to 1994. Presiding Justice Garry subsequently engaged in private practice with the Joyce Law Firm in Central New York and served on the Planning Board for the Town of New Berlin in Chenango County. She was elected as Town Justice in the Town of New Berlin in 2001 and reelected to a second term in 2005.
Presiding Justice Garry is a past Co-Chair and current Commissioner of the Richard C. Failla LGBTQ Commission of the New York Courts. She has served on various boards and professional associations, including the International Association of LGBTQ Judges, the New York State Bar Association (NYSBA) Committee on Courts of Appellate Jurisdiction, the NYSBA Special Committee on LGBT People and the Law, Albany Law School’s National Alumni Association Board, the New York State Continuing Legal Education Board, the Third Department CLE Committee and the Association of Justices of Supreme Court of New York State. Presiding Justice Garry is also a founding member of the Del-Chen-O Chapter of the Women’s Bar Association of the State of New York.
Associate Justice Sallie Manzanet-Daniels
Appellate Division of the Supreme Court, First Judicial Department
Justice Sallie Manzanet-Daniels was born in New York City, raised in the South Bronx and is a product of the New York City public schools. She is a graduate of Marymount Manhattan College where she earned her Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology in 1985. Justice Manzanet-Daniels is a graduate from Hofstra University School of Law, Class of 1988, where she attended on a full scholarship. While at Hofstra Law School, she founded and served as the first President of the Latino Law Students Association in 1987-1988. As an alumna, Judge Manzanet-Daniels co-founded and served as the first chair of the Lalsa Alumni Scholarship Fund, which continues to raise thousands of dollars for aspiring Latino law students.
In 1988, Justice Manzanet-Daniels began her legal career with the Legal Aid Society in the Bronx as a criminal defense trial attorney. Thereafter, Judge Manzanet-Daniels served as Principal Law Clerk for three years respectively to both Justice Frank Torres in Bronx Supreme Court, Criminal Term, and to Justice Luis A. Gonzalez, Administrative Judge for the 12th Judicial District.
In November 1999, Sallie Manzanet-Daniels was elected as Judge of the Civil Court of the City of New York, Bronx County. In November 2001, Judge Manzanet-Daniels was elected and received a Gubernatorial Citation for becoming, at the age of 37, the youngest Justice of Hispanic Heritage ever elected to the New York State Supreme Court.
In October 2009, Governor David Paterson appointed Justice Manzanet-Daniels to the Appellate Division, First Department, thereby making her the first Latina justice in the history of New York State to serve on this Court. Since her Supreme Court election, she has been recognized numerous times for her judicial excellence, Most recently, she was asked in 2015 to serve as the commencement speaker at her alma mater, and was bestowed a Doctor of Laws, honoris causa.
Her life has been marked by activism and leadership, in her community and during her academic and professional life. Throughout her career Judge Manzanet-Daniels has mentored many students of all ages and walks of life. Community service has always been one of her greatest passions, and includes organizations focusing on the elderly, the arts, and a myriad of community, bar and professional organizations servicing all spheres of public life. Justice Manzanet-Daniels has served on the boards of both the Puerto Rican Bar Association and the Latino Judges Association, and is a member of many other bar associations.
Last, but certainly not least, Judge Manzanet-Daniels is the proud mother of three beautiful daughters, Taina (born to her) and Toure & Asha (her blessings through marriage) and since 2006 has been married to New York’s former Secretary of State, Randy A. Daniels.
Presentation of the Award:
Betty Lugo, Esq., Chair | Chair, Trial Lawyers Section of the New York State Bar Association
Angélicque Moreno has been principal and partner at Avanzino & Moreno since 2008 in Brooklyn, NY. She focuses her practice on labor law and construction accidents, product liability, premises liability, negligent security, civil rights violation and automotive cases. She has honed her trial skills at several firms throughout New York and has successfully overseen hundreds of cases from their inception up to and including trial throughout her career.
Her understanding of the profound impact that accidents have upon individuals and their families, and her ability to translate legal concepts of fault and damages to a jury in “everyday” terms have allowed her to achieve substantial results for victims suffering from life altering injuries. To her credit, she has numerous multi-million dollar verdicts and settlements.
Ms. Moreno received a B.A. from Binghamton University in 1990 and a J.D. and from Northeastern University School of Law in 1993. She is very active in the legal community, most recently as President of the New York State Academy of Trial Lawyers (2019-2020) and sits on the Academy’s Judicial Screening Committee since 2014. She is also active in the leadership of the New York State Bar Association, the Brooklyn Bar Association, the Brooklyn Women’s Bar Association, and the New York City Trial Lawyers’ Alliance.
She has lectured frequently on a variety of topics for the NYS Academy of Trial Lawyers, and has contributed to the Annual Update series for over ten years as a presenter and in recent years as co-author of the Labor Law section.
Bill Friedlander currently serves as Vice Chair of the Trial Lawyer Section of the New York State Bar Association. He is also a member of the NYSBA Task Force for Nursing Home and Long Term Care. He is a charter member of the American Association for Justice President’s Club, and has served as past Chair of the Small Firm Solo Practitioner and Family Law sections of the American Association for Justice. He has also Chaired the Firearms and Ammunition Litigation Group and the School Violence Litigation Group.
Bill is a founder and former member of the Board of Directors of the New York Academy of Trial Lawyers and former member of the Board of Directors of the New York State Trial Lawyers Association and is a past President of his local Bar Association.
He also serves on the Board of Directors of the New York Nursing Home Litigation Group, which he helped form in 2005. He has published many articles in national legal magazines and has lectured throughout the United States on numerous legal topics.