February 5, 2020
Contact: Toni Valenti
New York County Lawyers Association Statement on the Passing of Judge Deborah A. Batts
Stephen C. Lessard, President of the New York County Lawyers Association (NYCLA) issued this statement today on behalf of the Association:
“We express our most sincere condolences to the family of Judge Deborah A. Batts on her unexpected passing on February 3, 2020. As the nation’s first openly LGBT, African American federal judge, Judge Batts helped paved the way with her appointment in 1994 for Jurists who are both women of color and a part of the LGBT community. Her innate characteristics enabled Judge Batts to bring perspectives to her work that made her an incredible jurist and she will be greatly missed.”
Taking Senior Status in 2012 Judge Batts continued to serve concurrently as an adjunct professor at Fordham University. Inspiring generations of law students and young lawyers, Judge Batts was a longtime supporter and participant in NYCLA’s Hon. Harold Baer Jr. & Dr. Suzanne Baer Minority Judicial Internship Program, through which she offered internship opportunities for several law students over the years.
About the New York County Lawyers Association
The New York County Lawyers Association (www.nycla.org) was founded in 1908 as one of the first major bar associations in the country that admitted members without regard to race, ethnicity, religion or gender. Since its inception, it has pioneered some of the most far-reaching and tangible reforms in American jurisprudence and has continuously played an active role in legal developments and public policy.