ROSELAND, N.J./November 24, 2009 -- Connell Foley Partner Brian G. Steller, during his first term as President of the Northern New Jersey Chapter of the American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA), has announced that a five-day trial college will take place from June 6 through June 10, 2010, on the campus of Princeton University. Approved by the local chapter of ABOTA and the Executive Committee of the National Board of Directors, the inaugural session of the trial college will include 35 students with three or four years of trial experience from New Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania firms, along with 20 faculty attorneys from across the country. The college is intended to provide an opportunity to learn advanced techniques in trial preparation and trial practice. Following multiple days of instruction and moots, the faculty will select a group of students to demonstrate those skills during a mock trial.
Participants will be housed in dormitory buildings located on Princeton’s campus, and the academic sessions will take place at Robertson Hall. The highlight of the event will be the full mock trial on the last academic day presided over by former Chief of the Federal District Court for the District of New Jersey and Princeton alumnus John Bissell, followed by a graduation ceremony.
From former National Presidents of ABOTA to jurists from Federal and State Courts, presenting faculty members will be coming from as far as Washington, Texas, California, and Arkansas.
Said Steller, “This trial college will serve as a tremendous resource for firms and individual attorneys involved in heavy trial practice. Faculty will work closely with students during academic hours, at all daily meals and during other downtime. Our ultimate goal is to extend the trial college to other venues throughout the northeast and then, throughout the country. Given ABOTA’s mission to promote professionalism and civility, the trial college will deliver formal presentations on these subjects at the conclusion of each academic day.”
When Steller was first sworn in as President of the Northern New Jersey Chapter of ABOTA by Federal Court Judge Jose Linares, he promised the membership that his two-year term would be most active. To date, his agenda has included a formal presentation at Seton Hall Law School on the subject of civility, ethics and professionalism. Former Appellate Division Superior Court Judge Jack Lintner, National Board Member Jack Wurgaft, and Seton Hall law professor Paul Franzese participated in that successful program.
On Dec. 5, 2009, the Northern New Jersey Chapter will be presenting ABOTA’s Master In Trial Program at Montclair State University. An all-day program, the program will demonstrate trial techniques by some of the best trial lawyers from both sides of the bar. A mock trial will be presented in an abbreviated fashion, including real fact and expert witnesses, and a real jury. At the conclusion of the trial, the jury will deliberate with those deliberations available to the audience by way of video and audio monitoring. This program has been approved for New Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania Continuing Legal Education credits.
The American Board of Trial Advocates is an invitation-only group of attorneys from both sides of the bar dedicated to the preservation of the right to a jury trial and the promotion of professionalism and ethical practice.
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