New York – April 4, 2008 – LAWFUEL – Christopher K. Tahbaz, a litigation partner and Co-Chair of the Pro Bono Committee at Debevoise & Plimpton LLP, has been named Chair-Elect of New York Lawyers for the Public Interest (NYLPI). His term begins on June 25, 2008 and will run through June, 2010. Mr. Tahbaz has served on NYLPI’s board since June 2000 and will succeed John S. Siffert, a partner at Lankler Siffert & Wohl LLP, who has served as Chair since 2006.
“Chris has been a major contributor to the Board of NYLPI since he joined in 2000,” said Mr. Siffert. “He has worked closely with the staff through his role as Chair of the Litigation & Program Committee, and he has been a true leader by example. He is the perfect person to carry on NYLPI’s multiple missions to protect the rights of people with disabilities, to fight for environmental justice and to ensure equal access to health care.”
“I am honored to become Chair of an organization that is doing so much to serve individuals and organizations who could not otherwise avail themselves of essential legal services,” said Mr. Tahbaz. “Last year NYLPI placed over 200 matters with the great network of volunteer lawyers in New York’s law firms and corporate legal departments. I look forward to continuing the tradition of service that has enhanced the lives of both the clients and the lawyers who have taken the time to offer their services.”
New York Lawyers for the Public Interest is a nonprofit, civil rights law firm that strives for social justice. In partnership with member law firms, corporate law departments and other organizations, NYLPI helps underrepresented people develop legal strategies to serve their vision for themselves and their communities. Created in 1976 to address unmet legal needs, NYLPI combines a pro bono clearinghouse with an in-house practice which blends innovative lawyering, community organizing and advocacy.
Mr. Tahbaz is a member of Debevoise & Plimpton LLP’s Litigation Department and its International Dispute Resolution Group. His practice focuses on complex commercial disputes, including representations of leading industrial companies and financial services providers, among others. Mr. Tahbaz is active in the New York pro bono community, also serving on the board of the Urban Justice Center. He leads a team of Debevoise lawyers who serve as class counsel in Brad H. v. City of New York, a class action, now settled, that successfully challenged the City’s lack of appropriate planning for inmates who had received treatment for mental illness while incarcerated in City jails.
Mr. Tahbaz received his B.A. cum laude from Columbia University in 1986 and his J.D. in 1990 from Columbia Law School, where he was a Stone Scholar and an Articles Editor of the Columbia Law Review.
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