April 13, 2015
PERSONAL AND CONFIDENTIAL
This responds to your inquiry (15-64) asking whether you may permit two defense attorneys who regularly appear before you to include your name as a reference on an application nominating your court attorney for an award from a legal publication. The attorneys must provide references who are comfortable discussing the nominee’s legal work and accomplishments.
The Committee previously advised that a judge may nominate a probation department employee for an award acknowledging employees who significantly assist the court in the administration of justice (see Opinion 10-164). The Committee also has advised, at a bar association’s request, that a judge may write a letter supporting the nomination of a local family services agency for an annual award from a newspaper (see Opinion 08-175) and supporting a bar association’s nomination of an attorney for a state bar association award where the judge had worked with the attorney on an attorney grievance committee and the attorney had appeared before the judge many times (see Opinion 02-118). Accordingly, you may permit two defense attorneys who regularly appear before you to include your name as a reference on an application nominating your court attorney for an award from a legal publication.
Enclosed, for your convenience, are Opinions 10-164, 08-175 and 02-118 which address this issue.
Very truly yours,
George D. Marlow, Assoc. Justice
Appellate Division, First Dept. (Ret.)