January 7, 2020
This responds to your inquiry (19-131) asking whether, as a full-time judge, you may serve on the board of a not-for-profit entity “which provides art services to the disabled by providing occupational therapy activities such as classes and workshops” in various arts. You indicate that your court does not make referrals to this organization, nor is the organization regularly engaged in litigation in any court.
The Committee has previously advised that a full-time judge may serve as a director of a charitable non-profit organization, provided such service does not conflict with the judge’s official duties and provided it is unlikely the organization will be regularly engaged in adversarial proceedings in any court or in any proceedings that would ordinarily come before the judge (see 22 NYCRR 100.4[C][a] – ).
Accordingly, under these circumstances, you may serve on the board of this organization. However, you may not participate in any fund-raising activities on behalf of the organization nor provide any legal advice (see 22 NYCRR 100.4[C][b][i], [iv]; 100.4[G]).
Enclosed, for your convenience, are Opinions 18-166; 17-39; and 07-81 which address this issue.
Very truly yours,
George D. Marlow, Assoc Justice
Appellate Div., First Dept. (Ret)
Hon. Margaret T. Walsh
Supreme Court Justice