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Commissioner Directory

Hon. Judith S. Kaye (Ret.), Chair
Appointed by Governor Paterson
Term ends 3/31/13

John A. Cirando
Appointed by Assembly Minority Leader Kolb
Term ends 3/31/17

Steven M. Cohen
Appointed by Governor Cuomo
Term ends 3/31/16

Ruth W. Friendly
Appointed by Chief Judge Lippman
Term ends 3/31/16

Milton S. Hoffman
Appointed by Chief Judge Lippman
Term ends 3/31/15

Simone M. Levinson
Appointed by Governor Cuomo
Term ends 3/31/14

Alan Mansfield
Appointed by Senate Minority Leader Sampson
Term ends 3/31/16

Hon. E. Leo Milonas (Ret.)
Appointed by Chief Judge Lippman
Term ends 3/31/17

Margaret S. Morton
Appointed by Chief Judge Lippman
Term ends 3/31/14

Ellen Schall
Appointed by Speaker Silver
Term ends 3/31/18

David M. Schwartz
Appointed by Temporary President of the Senate Skelos
Term ends 3/31/15

Dierdre K. Scozzafava
Appointed by Governor Cuomo
Term ends 3/31/15



Henry M. Greenberg, Counsel
Greenberg Traurig LLP
54 State Street, 6th Floor
Albany, New York  12207
Phone:  518-689-1400
Fax:  518-689-1499

Katrina E. James, Assistant Counsel

Cynthia L. Neidl, Assistant Counsel
Greenberg Traurig, LLP
54 State Street, 6th Floor
Albany, New York 12207
Phone: 518-689-1435
Fax: 518-677-1828

Commissioner Biographies

Hon. Judith S. Kaye (Ret.): Judge Kaye served as Chief Judge of the Court of Appeals of the State of New York, and Chief Judge of the State of New York, until her retirement on December 31, 2008. After several years in private practice, in 1983 Judge Kaye was appointed as an Associate Judge of the Court of Appeals by Gov. Mario Cuomo, becoming the first woman to serve on New York's highest court. Chief Judge Kaye worked to improve the jury system, and established community courts and other "problem-solving" approaches to issues in the courts involving drug addiction, mental health, and domestic violence. Judge Kaye is currently Of Counsel to Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP. A native of Monticello, New York, Judge Kaye attended Barnard College and New York University School of Law.

John A. Cirando: John Cirando is a partner of the law firm of D.J. and J.A. Cirando, Esqs., in Syracuse, New York. He served as Chief Assistant District Attorney in the Onondaga County District Attorney's Office and was a member of the United States Army, Judge Advocate General Corps. He has served as Chairperson of the New York State Bar Association's Committee on County Courts and Public Relations Committee, and as Secretary and member of the Board of Directors of the Onondaga County Bar Association. He has taught as an adjunct professor of law at Syracuse University College of Law and authored the 2004-2005 Survey of Criminal Law in New York State for the Syracuse University Law Review. He is general counsel for Vera House, Inc., and in 2005, received the Sister Mary Vera Recognition Award. He is a member of the NYS Law Revision Commission. He received his B.A. from St. Bonaventure University and his J.D. from S.U.N.Y. at Buffalo, School of Law.

Steven M. Cohen: Steven M. Cohen is currently a partner at the law firm of Zuckerman Spaeder LLP.  Previously, he served as Secretary to Governor Cuomo, and also as Mr. Cuomo’s Counselor and Chief of Staff in the Office of the New York Attorney General.  He also served as an Assistant U.S. Attorney and Chief of the violent gang unit for the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York.  Mr. Cohen graduated from the University of Pennsylvania Law School, and earned his B.A. from New York University.  He currently resides in Brooklyn.

Ruth W. Friendly: Ruth Friendly is director of Media and Society Seminars at the Columbia Graduate School of Journalism. Until 2012 she served as vice president and senior editorial director of Fred Friendly Seminars, Inc., continuing the work initiated by her husband, Fred Friendly. Starting in 1980, she worked with her husband creating and expanding the Columbia University Media & Society Seminars to promote constructive dialogue on complex contemporary issues. Ms. Friendly has served as executive producer, producer, editor, and researcher on more than 80 hours of Seminars programming for PBS. Ms. Friendly has also produced over 300 non-televised seminars for medical, legal, judicial, educational, governmental and civic groups across the country. Prior to 1980, Ms. Friendly taught for seventeen years in the Scarsdale public school system. She received her B.A. from Smith College and her M.A. from Teachers College, Columbia University.

Milton S. Hoffman: Milton S. Hoffman is a retired journalist, formerly serving as reporter, columnist and editor for the Journal News and its predecessor newspapers in Westchester for more than 50 years.  Before retiring as senior editor of the editorial page in 2001, Mr. Hoffman held several positions at the Journal News, including county and state government reporter, political columnist, and editor of the editorial page.  Mr. Hoffman has been a member of the Westchester County Fair Campaign Practices Committee since 2002.  Mr. Hoffman is a former Navy seaman and ship's radio operator, and received his B.A. from Champlain College of the State University of New York at Plattsburgh.

Simone M. Levinson: Simone M. Levinson is Vice Chair of the Board of Directors of Turnaround for Children, a nonprofit organization devoted to helping high-poverty, low-performing public schools create positive learning environments.  Ms. Levinson is also a member of the New York State Spending and Government Efficiency Commission, and serves on the National Council for AIPAC.  In 2009, Ms. Levinson co-founded the first New York Women's Division of AIPAC.  Previously, Ms. Levinson ran Martel Productions, her own successful event and marketing firm.  Ms. Levinson is a graduate of Tufts University.

Alan Mansfield: Alan Mansfield chairs the litigation practice of the New York office of Greenberg Traurig, LLP and serves on the firm's executive committee. Mr. Mansfield handles complex civil litigation and white-collar criminal matters, representing clients in diverse industries in matters ranging from product liability to corporate and securities to defamation and fraud. Mr. Mansfield is a former Chair of the Board of Directors of MFY Legal Services, Inc., and continues to serve on MFY's Board. He graduated from Brown University and Duke University School of Law.

Hon. E. Leo Milonas (Ret.): Judge Milonas has had twenty-six years of judicial experience, including service as an associate justice of the Appellate Division, First Department and as the Chief Administrative Judge of the State of New York. Judge Milonas is a past president of the Association of the Bar of the City of New York, and serves or has served on numerous other judicial advisory committees. Judge Milonas is a graduate of Brooklyn Law School and is currently a partner at Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP.

Margaret S. Morton: Margaret Morton is the Deputy Commissioner of the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, where she formerly served as General Counsel. Ms. Morton manages day-to-day operations of the City's funding for the not-for-profit cultural field. Prior to her appointment, Ms. Morton served in several government counsel positions, including the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee, the New York City Mayor's Office of Public Safety, and the New York State Unified Court System, where she also managed the Human Resources Department. Ms. Morton is a graduate of Barnard College and Georgetown University Law Center.

Ellen Schall: Ellen Schall is a Senior Presidential Fellow at New York University and Martin Cherkasky Professor of Health Policy & Management at NYU’s Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service. Most recently, Schall served as Dean of the Wagner school from 1992 to 2013. In that role she led the school’s trajectory from an institution with a strong local and regional reputation to one that is widely recognized nationally and internationally, and ranked #6 overall in the US. News & World Report ranking of public affairs schools. She began her career as a Legal Aid Society criminal defense attorney, and served as Commissioner of the NYC Department of Juvenile Justice from 1983 to 1990. She has extensive experience in nonprofit management and governance, including more than 30 years of active membership on the board of University Settlement House. Dean Schall’s legacy is one of helping to transform organizations by encouraging others to step up to their leadership potential. She received a B.A. from Swarthmore College and a J.D. (cum laude) from NYU School of Law.

David M. Schwartz: David Schwartz began his legal career as an Assistant District Attorney in Kings County before entering private practice in 1997. Mr. Schwartz is currently a partner in the law firm of Gerstman Schwartz, LLP, where he practices primarily white-collar defense litigation. Mr. Schwartz is a member of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority's Inspector General Management Advisory Board, a member of the Board of Directors of New York Javits Convention Center Operating Corporation, and a trustee of the Brooklyn Bar Association. Mr. Schwartz is a graduate of Tulane University and Touro Law School.

Dierdre K. Scozzafava: Dierdre K. "Dede" Scozzafava is the New York Deputy Secretary of State for Local Government.  Before Governor Cuomo appointed her in January 2011, she previously served from 1999 through 2010 in the New York State Assembly representing the 122nd Assembly District, which includes portions of St. Lawrence, Lewis, and Oswego Counties.  She also served as a trustee in her hometown Village of Gouverneur, and then as mayor of Gouverneur from 1993 through 1998.  Ms. Scozzafava worked for 20 years with the investment firm of Tucker Anthony.  She holds a B.S. from the Boston University School of Management, and an M.B.A. from Clarkson University.

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