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This year’s conference includes a special focus on Racial Justice, Diversity, and Inclusion Programming. Workshops that will address this overarching theme include [RJ] after the session title.

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Public Defense [clear filter]
Thursday, November 1
 

10:30am

Defender Caucus - Pretrial Reform
Pretrial reform is accelerating across the country. Defenders can and should engage with these efforts to ensure that reforms are effective, fair, and equitable. The Defender Caucus will feature a forum through which attendees will identify the common components of pretrial reform, such as counsel at first appearance, pretrial supervision, risk assessment instruments, and others. This will be an interactive discussion about the issues and opportunities public defenders associate with these components.

Thursday November 1, 2018 10:30am - 12:00pm
Plaza Ballroom I Westin Galleria, 3rd Level

12:15pm

ACCD Meeting – Leadership Training: How to Make the Case for Public Defense Resources (NOTE: This meeting is by invitation only.)
This panel will discuss how chief public defenders and court administrators can effectively advocate for resources to support the Sixth Amendment Right to Counsel. The session will focus on the leadership and advocacy skills needed to “make the case” to funders and other key criminal justice stakeholders. We will train defender leaders on how to engage policy makers regarding the important role of the Sixth Amendment and the system-wide benefits of effective public defenders.

Moderators
avatar for Keir Bradford-Grey

Keir Bradford-Grey

Chief Defender, Defender Association of Philadelphia
Keir Bradford-Grey was named chief defender of the Defender Association of Philadelphia in 2015. Previously, she was a trial lawyer at the Defender Association and the Delaware Federal Public Defender’s Office before she was named chief defender for the Montgomery County (PA) Public... Read More →

Speakers
avatar for Vivian King

Vivian King

Chief of Staff, Harris County (TX) District Attorney's Office
Vivian R. King retired from her Fortune 500 banking/Accounting career after nine years and decided to go into a profession that needed more black women—the profession of law. So at 30, Vivian went to law school and three years later graduated cum laude from Thurgood Marshall School... Read More →
TS

Tami Sawyer

Commissioner, Shelby County District 7
Before she was elected to the Shelby County Commission, Tami Sawyer was the director, diversity & cultural competence with Teach For America Memphis and a writer, speaker, and social justice and education advocate. Tami was named by The Tennessean and Commercial Appeal as one of 18... Read More →
KT

Kevin Tully

Chief Defender, Mecklenburg County Public Defender Office


Thursday November 1, 2018 12:15pm - 1:30pm
Monarch Westin Galleria, 24th Level

2:15pm

Innovative Public Defense in America
I served for a time as the deputy director for the ABA Center for Innovation. What I saw—including artificial intelligence and the law, blockchain technology, and data analytics—blew me away. But I compared it constantly to the sorry state of innovation in public defense. My former office did not have enough phones for every attorney. We used outdated versions of Word Perfect to draft briefs. And we used MS-DOS to look up criminal histories. TIDC has embarked on an exploration of the most innovative indigent defense techniques in the United States. From low-tech solutions like the humble checklist and advanced mentoring programs, to SMS technology, Q&A markup, and expert systems, we explore where public defense is today and where it might be going. Most of all, this is a clarion call. The call for innovation is not driven by a search for what's cool, but a search for better tools—ways to make public defense more effective and efficient.

Speakers
GB

Geoffrey Burkhart

Executive Director, Texas Indigent Defense Commission
Geoff Burkhart came to the Texas Indigent Defense Commission from the American Bar Association (ABA), where he served as the first deputy director and counsel to the ABA Center for Innovation. He also helped lead the ABA’s indigent defense reform efforts as project director and... Read More →
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Scott Ehlers

Special Counsel, Texas Indigent Defense Commission
MS

Morgan Shell

Policy Analyst, Texas Indigent Defense Commission
Morgan Shell joined TIDC as a policy analyst in 2017. She is responsible for providing consultative services and technical assistance to jurisdictions through the review of county systems to promote local compliance with the Texas Fair Defense Act. She earned her J.D. from Texas Tech... Read More →


Thursday November 1, 2018 2:15pm - 3:45pm
Post Oak Westin Galleria, 3rd Level

2:15pm

Mentoring in Public Defense
The panel will discuss the history and future of public defense mentoring in Texas, beginning with the creation of the Future Appointed Counsel Training Program (FACT) in the Harris County Public Defender’s Office in 2012 and its expansion into a statewide program funded and overseen by the Texas Indigent Defense Commission and the Texas Criminal Defense Lawyers Association in 2018. The program sends lawyers with less than three years’ practice to Gideon’s Promise, a nationally recognized public defense training program, and then pairs the lawyers with seasoned criminal defense lawyers in their legal community back in Texas. FACT was recognized as an exceptional defense program by the American Bar Association’s Standing Committee on Legal Aid and Indigent Defendants.

Speakers
MB

Malia Brink

Staff Counsel, ABA Standing Committee on Legal Aid and Indigent Defendants
Malia N. Brink has spent more than 15 years working on criminal justice reform issues with a focus on public defense reform. She currently serves as the associate counsel for public defense to the ABA Standing Committee on Legal Aid and Indigent Defendants (ABA SCLAID). Brink also... Read More →
GD

Genesis Draper

Assistant Public Defender, Harris County Public Defender's Office
Genesis Draper is an assistant public defender with the Harris County Public Defender’s Office in Houston. Before joining Harris County, she was an assistant federal public defender for the Southern District of Texas in Houston and an assistant public defender with the Metropolitan... Read More →
JR

Jonathan Rapping

President/Founder, Gideon's Promise
Jonathan Rapping is the founder and president of Gideon’s Promise, an organization dedicated to training and supporting public defenders in an effort to build a movement to transform criminal justice in America. He is also a law professor at Atlanta’s John Marshall Law School... Read More →
SW

Sarah Wood

Assistant Public Defender, Harris County Public Defender's Office
Sarah V. Wood is an attorney in the Harris County Public Defender’s Office and is board-certified in Criminal Appellate Law. She developed and administers several prominent criminal defense training programs. The Future Appointed Counsel Training (FACT) Program is a highly competitive... Read More →


Thursday November 1, 2018 2:15pm - 3:45pm
Westchester Westin Galleria, 3rd Level

4:15pm

Building Rural Defense
Building quality public defense systems is a struggle. Nowhere is this more true than in rural areas. Faced with few attorneys, little funding, and geographic obstacles, states and counties must often innovate to meet Gideon’s promise in regions with low populations. In Building Rural Defense, policy leaders from indigent defense commissions in four states—Utah, Idaho, Michigan, and Texas—will discuss how they have grappled with the policies and practicalities behind providing the right to counsel in rural areas.

Speakers
KS

Kimberley Simmons

Executive Director, Idaho Public Defense Commission


Thursday November 1, 2018 4:15pm - 5:45pm
Post Oak Westin Galleria, 3rd Level

4:15pm

Defending Communities in Service: Defender Program Capacity-Building through National Service and NLADA
Join us to learn more about NLADA’s groundbreaking AmeriCorps VISTA program, Defending Communities in Service. This program, for the first time ever, will place AmeriCorps VISTA members in public defender offices across the country to build capacity. With support from the Corporation for National and Community Service, this program is poised to invest as much as $5 million in indigent defense over its first three years in action. As NLADA embarks on this journey, we want your feedback on how you think that National Service could serve the needs of your office and your community. Participants will meet several of our inaugural cohort VISTA members, gain a greater understanding of how DCS-VISTA has affected public defender offices across the country, and have the opportunity to help shape the next generation of National Service programs initiated by NLADA. Come. Share. Break ground with us.

Speakers
avatar for Emily Flanagan

Emily Flanagan

Senior Program Associate, Defender Legal Services, National Legal Aid & Defender Association
Emily Flanagan joined the National Legal Aid & Defender Association (NLADA) in 2017 as the senior program associate charged with connecting public defenders to resources. Emily has more than 12 years of experience promoting global community service and development within the private... Read More →
AL

Anna Ladd

Community Partnerships DCS-VISTA Member, National Legal Aid & Defender Association
Anna Ladd, originally from Kansas City, holds a Masters of Social Work from the University of Michigan and a Bachelor’s of Science in Social Work and Anthropology from Kansas State University. She brings experience in working with people experiencing homelessness and in refugee... Read More →
KS

Kameryn Sessoms

Data Systems DCS-VISTA Member, National Legal Aid & Defender Association
Kameryn Sessoms is a North Carolina native and graduate of North Carolina State University, where she obtained her B.A. in Women’s and Gender Studies. Growing up in Southeastern North Carolina gave her early insight on the widespread community impact of poverty and fueled her standing... Read More →


Thursday November 1, 2018 4:15pm - 5:45pm
Chevy Chase Westin Galleria, 3rd Level
 
Friday, November 2
 

8:30am

Holistic Defense: Intake through Resolution Best Practices for Cross Practice Collaboration
Holistic defense practitioners strive to provide optimal and collaborative client representation from the moment of intake through (and in some cases beyond) the resolution of each case. While much has been learned about the theories and goals of holistic defense, the logistics of collaboration in the real world require further exploration. The presenters will illustrate best practices in identifying client needs, efficiently deploying resources, and achieving the comprehensive outcomes that are sought in client-centered representation.

Speakers
MB

Michelle Burrell

Managing Attorney, Family Defense Practice, Neighborhood Defender Service of Harlem
Michelle Burrell is the managing attorney of the Family Defense Practice of the Neighborhood Defender Service of Harlem where she manages a staff of attorneys, social workers, and parent advocates who provide legal representation to indigent parents and family caregivers who have... Read More →
avatar for Vichal Kumar

Vichal Kumar

Managing Attorney, Neighborhood Defender Service of Harlem
Vichal Kumar joined the Neighborhood Defender Service of Harlem as the managing attorney of the Civil Defense Practice. As managing attorney, Vichal supervises the practice representing clients in essential civil matters including immigration, asset forfeiture, eviction prevention... Read More →


Friday November 2, 2018 8:30am - 10:00am
Sage

8:30am

How to Work Collaboratively with System Stakeholders to Advance the Right to Counsel
This panel will discuss the importance of cross-stakeholder collaboration in supporting the Sixth Amendment Right to Counsel. Most criminal justice stakeholders agree about the importance of the right to counsel and the important role it plays in preserving the justice system. They also recognize that sustainable reforms around the Sixth Amendment requires collaboration from all criminal justice system stakeholders, including those who are traditionally adversaries in the courtroom, such as defenders and prosecutors. The panel will discuss how to move beyond the traditional stakeholder roles and work together to advance Sixth Amendment reform.

Moderators
avatar for Stan German

Stan German

Executive Director, New York County Defender Services
Stan German is a graduate of New York University School of Law and a criminal defense attorney. Upon graduation, he worked at the criminal defense division of The Legal Aid Society of New York City in Brooklyn before joining New York County Defender Services as a staff attorney. He... Read More →

Speakers
DL

David LaBahn

President & CEO, Association of Prosecuting Attorneys
David LaBahn is president and chief executive officer (CEO) of the Association of Prosecuting Attorneys (APA), a national association representing elected and deputy or assistant prosecutors and city attorneys. The association acts as a global forum for the exchange of ideas, allowing... Read More →


Friday November 2, 2018 8:30am - 10:00am
San Felipe Westin Galleria, 3rd Level

8:30am

The State of Texas Indigent Defense
With a patchwork of defense across its 254 counties, Texas is both leading and lagging behind in the fight to provide consistent quality legal representation. This panel pulls together some of the leading lights of Texas indigent defense, including a 183-county capital defender office, one of America's most rural defender offices, a mental-health-focused managed assigned counsel system, and a civil-legal-aid/defender hybrid.

Speakers
avatar for Robert Doggett

Robert Doggett

Executive Director, Texas Rio Grande Legal Aid
AF

Alyse Ferguson

Chief Defender, Collin County Mental Health Defender (MAC)
RK

Ray Keith

Chief Defender, Regional Public Defender for Capital Cases
JM

James McDermott

Chief Defender, Far West Texas Public Defender
WS

Wesley Shackelford

Deputy Director, Texas Indigent Defense Commission


Friday November 2, 2018 8:30am - 10:00am
Post Oak Westin Galleria, 3rd Level

10:30am

Defending Our Own: The Life and Journey of the Black Public Defender [RJ]
This panel will discuss the lived experiences of black public defenders and formally introduce the new section of NLADA, the Black Public Defender Association. The panelists will discuss the purpose, goals, and why its creation was necessary.

Moderators
PJ

Patrice James

Director of Community Justice, Sargent Shriver National Center on Poverty Law
Patrice James has spent her career tackling the inequities of the criminal justice system. Most recently she was a founding attorney of Still She Rises, Tulsa, where she provided holistic legal representation, primarily to low-income women of color; engaged in community building... Read More →

Speakers
avatar for Keir Bradford-Grey

Keir Bradford-Grey

Chief Defender, Defender Association of Philadelphia
Keir Bradford-Grey was named chief defender of the Defender Association of Philadelphia in 2015. Previously, she was a trial lawyer at the Defender Association and the Delaware Federal Public Defender’s Office before she was named chief defender for the Montgomery County (PA) Public... Read More →
KG

Kevann Gardner

Criminal Defense Attorney, Public Defender Service for the District of Columbia
avatar for Lori James-Townes

Lori James-Townes

Clinical Assistant Professor, Towson University
Lori James-Townes has more than 20 years of clinical practice, leadership, and management experience. Professor James-Townes joined Towson University in 2017. Before joining the Towson family, Lori was director of social work, leadership, and program development at the Maryland Office... Read More →
avatar for Martesha Johnson

Martesha Johnson

Chief Defender, Nashville Defender's Office
avatar for James King

James King

Supervising Attorney, Public Defender Service for the District of Columbia
James King is a supervising attorney with the Public Defender Service for the District of Columbia in the Trial Division. Mr. King represents adults and juveniles charged as adults at the District of Columbia Superior Court and in front of the United States Parole Commission. He has... Read More →
avatar for Adeola Ogunkeyede

Adeola Ogunkeyede

Legal Director, Civil Rights & Racial Justice Program, Legal Aid Justice Center


Friday November 2, 2018 10:30am - 12:00pm
San Felipe Westin Galleria, 3rd Level

10:30am

Surveys, Data, and Client Satisfaction in Indigent Defense
How does an indigent defense office know if it's being effective? Is such a thing quantifiable? Rebecca Ackerman is a data scientist at New York County Defender Services, the second largest indigent defense office in Manhattan, and is the co-author of Incorporating Client Perspectives into Indigent Defense Research: A Guide for Practitioners. This will be a moderated, interactive lecture/discussion on the role of data-driven analyses applicable to the indigent defense community. We will include a discussion of the potential role of client satisfaction surveys and other possible metrics that may be brought to bear to improve the quality of representation that clients receive from indigent defense providers. Sergio De La Pava will provide the perspective of lifelong public defender helping to manage a public defender office and searching for any innovations in data science as it relates to indigent defense. Other topics will include the role of data analyses in the criminal justice system as a whole and how public defenders may usefully harness this information.

Speakers
RA

Rebecca Ackerman

Data Scientist, New York County Defender Services
Rebecca Ackerman is a data scientist, social science researcher, and technologist who focuses on using social science research to empower communities. She is a data scientist at New York County Defender Services, where she develops methods of determining what works in indigent defense... Read More →
SD

Sergio De La Pava

Legal Director, New York County Defender Services
Sergio De La Pava is the author of three novels: A Naked Singularity, Personae, and Lost Empress. He is also a lifelong public defender and legal director at New York County Defender Services in Manhattan, where he represents indigent criminal defendants and advocates for large-scale... Read More →
NT

Nicole Taylor

Managing Director, The International Legal Found
Nicole Taylor is managing director of the International Legal Foundation (ILF). She is an experienced criminal defense lawyer who practiced in the Philadelphia area for eight years as a private defense lawyer and as a staff attorney at the Public Defender Association of Philadelphia... Read More →


Friday November 2, 2018 10:30am - 12:00pm
West Alabama Westin Galleria, 3rd Level

2:30pm

Race and Wrongful Misdemeanors [RJ]
This session will explore how misdemeanors and municipal courts are abused to target, ensnare, and marginalize people of color. It will cover the criminalization of innocuous activity, the over-policing of neighborhoods, and the systemic problems within municipal courts that have weaponized misdemeanors as a tool of racial oppression. Lastly, it will encourage participants to examine and rethink the role and responsibilities of defenders in municipal court.

Speakers
avatar for Nikki Trautman Baszynski

Nikki Trautman Baszynski

Assistant State Public Defender, Ohio Public Defender
Nikki Trautman Baszynski is an assistant state public defender in the Ohio Public Defender's Appeals and Postconviction Department and the founding co-chair of the office's Racial Justice Initiative. Her work in the initiative has centered on the criminalization of poverty, relationship-building... Read More →


Friday November 2, 2018 2:30pm - 4:00pm
Post Oak Westin Galleria, 3rd Level

4:15pm

From Criminal Defense to Civil Action, Pre-Entry to Re-Entry: Recognizing the Transformative Power of Embedded General Civil Legal Services in Public Defender Offices [RJ]
Concentrated poverty and lack of access to fundamental civil needs—including homes, jobs, income, and education—are directly linked to and driving forces of criminal justice involvement (in addition to racism, classism, over policing and prosecution, and mass incarceration, to name a few). At the same time, stability in that access—preventing eviction, job loss, termination of benefits or other income—can be a powerful solution to the innumerable crushing consequences that individuals and families face when trapped in the criminal justice system. This session will focus on the Civil Action Practice at The Bronx Defenders—the largest and most comprehensive embedded general civil practice in a public defender office in the country. We will focus on our three main touchpoints for intervention: benefits access for community, team-based, integrated civil defense, and community reentry. We will relate the importance of attorney and non-attorney advocate collaboration and will discuss the value of having comprehensive civil legal services before, during, and after criminal justice involvement for impactful and transformational services. This will be presented as an innovation lab.

Speakers
WC

Wesley Caines

Reentry and Community Outreach Coordinator, The Bronx Defenders
Wesley Caines is the reentry & community outreach coordinator for Bronx Defenders. He works with the office’s former and current clients, as well as community members, to overcome barriers based on prior justice involvement. He created and oversees the organization’s Records Accuracy... Read More →
RR

Runa Rajagopal

Managing Director, Civil Action Practice, The Bronx Defenders
Runa Rajagopal, a litigator and social justice advocate for more than 14 years, is currently managing director of the Civil Action Practice at The Bronx Defenders. Having joined BXD in 2011, Runa oversees a practice of more than 30 attorneys, advocates, and other staff in defending... Read More →
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Cecilia Riera

Benefits Advisor, The Bronx Defenders
Cecilia Riera is a benefits adviser with the Civil Action Practice of the Bronx Defenders. She works on issues that include Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program benefits (food stamps), emergency assistance, and housing assistance, among other benefits. Before coming to the Bronx... Read More →
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Mohammed Sheriff

Civil Legal Advocate, Supervisor, The Bronx Defenders
Mohamed Sheriff was the first civil legal advocate at The Bronx Defenders and, 15 years later, now supervises the legal advocates. He holds an associate degree in Paralegal studies (AAS) from Hostos Community College and a B.A. in International Government and Human Rights from John... Read More →


Friday November 2, 2018 4:15pm - 5:45pm
Post Oak Westin Galleria, 3rd Level

4:15pm

The Right to Counsel National Campaign: Championing Public Defense by Garnering Support from Unlikely Allies
Presenters from the Right to Counsel National Campaign (R2C) will build on last year’s session where we discussed the findings from the public opinion research, American Views on the Right to Counsel and Public Defense, and how defenders and advocates can use the findings to advocate for public defense. In this session, we will also present on the findings from the system actor roundtables and the accompanying communications toolkit (to be released in the summer of 2018), the roles these other system actors play in ensuring the Sixth Amendment right to counsel, and persuasive messages to gain system actor champions. During this session we will explore what this means for defenders; how defenders can use this information to champion the importance of public defense; and how defenders can collaborate with other system actors to gain support for effective public defense systems and to ensure the Sixth Amendment right to counsel.

Speakers
KB

Kim Ball

Director, Justice Programs Office, The American University
Kim Ball joined the Justice Programs Office (JPO) in 2016 after spending 17 years at the U.S. Department of Justice. Kim is a nationally recognized and accomplished criminal justice strategist known for seeing all the moving parts and putting them together for successful social change... Read More →
GC

Genevieve Citrin

Senior Policy Advisor, Justice Programs Office, The American University
Genevieve Citrin Ray joined the Justice Programs Office (JPO) in 2015 and is the project director of the Right to Counsel National Campaign, a public awareness initiative that uses value-based communication tactics to inform policymakers, criminal justice stakeholders, and the public... Read More →


Friday November 2, 2018 4:15pm - 5:45pm
Plaza Ballroom II
 
Saturday, November 3
 

8:30am

Protecting Clients at the Intersection of Immigration and Public Defense
Speakers

Saturday November 3, 2018 8:30am - 10:00am
Post Oak Westin Galleria, 3rd Level

10:30am

Hot Topics in Public Defense: Race, Research, and Resources – Oh My! [RJ]
This session will provide updates from NLADA staff and others regarding some of the most important issues affecting the delivery of defender legal services, including: (1) leading by example in addressing implicit bias in your office and in the criminal justice system; (2) NLADA’s role in DOJ’s new Sixth Amendment Initiative; (3) upcoming replication tools from DOJ’s Innovative Solutions in Public Defense Initiative; (4) thinking outside the box on generating needed resources; and (5) other matters of interest.

Speakers
avatar for Emily Flanagan

Emily Flanagan

Senior Program Associate, Defender Legal Services, National Legal Aid & Defender Association
Emily Flanagan joined the National Legal Aid & Defender Association (NLADA) in 2017 as the senior program associate charged with connecting public defenders to resources. Emily has more than 12 years of experience promoting global community service and development within the private... Read More →
avatar for Maha Jweied

Maha Jweied

Consultant, National Legal Aid & Defender Association
Maha Jweied is a consultant with the National Legal Aid & Defender Association, where she supports initiatives on issues such as racial justice and fines and fees. She is also a member of the Legal Services Corporation’s Opioid Task Force. Until January 2018, she served as the acting... Read More →
avatar for Michael Mrozinski

Michael Mrozinski

Staff Attorney, Defender Legal Services, National Legal Aid & Defender Association
Michael Mrozinski is the staff attorney in the Defender Legal Services division. He supports the work of public defenders nationwide, as well as improvements to indigent defense systems, through research, policy, training and technical assistance, and development of resources and... Read More →


Saturday November 3, 2018 10:30am - 12:00pm
San Felipe Westin Galleria, 3rd Level