NEW YORK, May 14 LawFuel.com – Legal Newswire – — Mark G. Cunha, a partner in the civil litigation department of Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP, was elected the new Chair of the Board of Directors of Legal Services NYC – the largest organization devoted to providing free civil legal services in the United States, with neighborhood offices in every borough of New York City – at its May 12, 2009 annual board meeting.
A member of Legal Services NYC’s board since 1997, Mr. Cunha brings a rich blend of leadership experience in the private and non-profit sectors to the organization. In addition to his service on the Legal Services NYC board, Mr. Cunha has also served as a director for New York Lawyers for the Public Interest, and serves as a Trustee for the Lycee Francais de New York. He has served on the Executive Committee of the State Bar’s Section on Commercial and Federal Litigation. At the New York City Bar Association, Mr. Cunha has held several high-profile leadership positions, including Vice President and Chair of its Executive Committee, Chair of the Association’s Committee on Legal Assistance, and Chair of the Association’s delegation to the New York State Bar Association’s House of Delegates. Mr. Cunha’s legal advocacy on behalf of low-income New Yorkers has been recognized by both the Legal Aid Society, which deemed him Outstanding Volunteer Lawyer in 1990, and by the New York County Lawyers Association, which awarded him its Pro Bono Award in 1991. Mr. Cunha is a graduate of Cornell University (B.A., Magna Cum Laude, and Phi Beta Kappa) and Stanford University (J.D.), and served as an intern in The White House under President Carter. Of his election as Chair, Mr. Cunha stated that “I look forward to the challenges of leading the Legal Services NYC Board during this period of economic crisis for our client community, and to continuing to provide and expand the highest quality of legal services for New York City’s low-income residents.”
Mr. Cunha succeeds Fern Schair, of the Feerick Center for Social Justice at Fordham Law School, who has been a Legal Services NYC board member since 2002 and was elected chair of the board in 2006. Board bylaws limit the Chair to a single three-year term. Said Legal Services NYC’s Executive Director and President, Andrew Scherer, of the leadership transition, “We are doubly fortunate – first, to have had someone with the vision and commitment of Fern Schair as our board chair over the past three years to help lead us into a strong fiscal position to withstand the current economic downturn, and, second, to now have Mark Cunha, an outstanding leader in the New York legal community, to help us as we focus on strengthening and increasing our programmatic outreach in order to help as many New Yorkers as possible at a time when they need our help the most.”
In addition to Mr. Cunha, Joseph Genova, Esq., a partner in the Litigation Department of Milbank, Tweed, Hadley & McCloy LLP and the director of that firm’s public service program, was elected Vice-Chair; Roxalana Jordan, appointed to the Board by CNR Healthcare Network, will continue in her current position as Secretary; and Carol S. Rosenbaum, Chief Financial Officer of the New York City Bar Association, will continue in her current position as Treasurer. Also elected as members of the board’s executive committee were Atiba Adams, an Assistant General Counsel at Pfizer Inc., Bruce Saber, recently the Managing Director of the Merchant Banking Division of Goldman, Sachs & Co., and Kay Reese, a Marketing and Communications Consultant.