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 Press Center - N.Y. State Courts
Communications Office:
David Bookstaver, Director
Mai Yee, Assistant Director
(212) 428-2500 

Date: June 17, 2002

Seal of the Unified Court System
New Center for Court Innovation Director Named
NEW YORK-Chief Judge Judith S. Kaye and Chief Administrative Judge Jonathan Lippman, in conjunction with Mary McCormick, President of the Fund for the City of New York, today announced the appointment of Greg Berman as Director of the Center for Court Innovation. The Center, a unique public-private partnership of the state court system and the Fund for the City of New York, acts as the judiciary's research and development arm to identify new methods of improving the administration of justice. Mr. Berman fills a position left vacant by the departure of the Center for Court Innovation's founding director, John Feinblatt, who was named Criminal Justice Coordinator for the City of New York by Mayor Michael Bloomberg.

 Mr. Berman's appointment is the result of a nationwide search conducted by a three-person committee, headed by Carey Dunne, a partner at the New York City law firm of Davis Polk & Wardwell, and consisting of Frank Hartmann of the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University and Sharon King of the Heron Foundation. After interviews with scores of candidates across the country, the committee issued its recommendations to Chief Administrative Judge Lippman and Ms. McCormick, who conducted the final interviews and, with the approval of Chief Judge Kaye, made the selection of the new director.

 "Since its inception, the Center for Court Innovation has been an incubator of new ideas and fresh approaches for the courts' handling of complex, persistent problems that plague a modern society," said Chief Judge Kaye. "The result of the Center's inventiveness has been the creation of problem-solving courts in New York that have garnered national praise and attention, as well as new, smarter ways of delivering justice services. I can think of no individual more capable than Greg Berman to carry on this stellar organization's momentum of productivity and to lead it into its next era of excellence."

Judge Kaye added, "I would like to thank John Feinblatt, the Center's founding director, for his unwavering dedication to the Center and for shepherding it from its initial creation to its now formidable reality."

In making the announcement, Judge Lippman stated, "Greg has been with the Center for Court Innovation from its very beginning, playing an instrumental role in crafting the organization's mission and structure and helping to guide its creation from start-up to the present. For the past six years, as the Center's deputy director and more recently as acting director, he has become well acquainted with the position that he will now officially occupy and the network of people and agencies with which he will be working. I feel confident that Greg Berman is the ideal person to head this vital organization and to continue its critical work."

The Fund of the City of New York President Mary McCormick said, "Greg is the right person at the right time. He has the skills necessary to consolidate the impressive accomplishments of the Center and to lead it into its next phase of innovation."

Mr. Berman was Deputy Director of the Center for Court Innovation from 1996 to the early part of this year when he began serving as Acting Director. From 1994 to 1996, he was the Red Hook Community Justice Center Project Coordinator, where he coordinated the planning of New York's second community court and managed an AmeriCorps community service program for 50 participants. After graduating from Wesleyan University, he worked in various organizations with interests in the areas of non-profit and community development. He was granted a public affairs fellowship by the Coro Foundation to participate in a public policy leadership training program, during which time he completed assignments with the Midtown Community Court, the New York Foundation and other agencies. Mr. Berman has written several articles on criminal justice issues and is the co-author of a forthcoming book about the impact problem-solving judges and attorneys are having on the nation's courts.

 The appointment is effective immediately.

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