WASHINGTON - Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick has announced the nomination of Associate Justice Fernande R.V. Duffly to the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court, the highest court in the state. Upon confirmation by the Governor's Council, Justice Duffly will be the first Asian Pacific American to serve on the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court.
Justice Duffly is currently an Associate Justice for the Massachusetts Court of Appeals, where she has served for almost eleven years. Prior to that, Justice Duffly spent eight years as a trial judge. Before joining the bench, Justice Duffly was a trial attorney for fourteen years at K&L Gates, where she served as Partner in the Litigation Department.
"This is an outstanding achievement for the Asian Pacific American legal community," said Paul O. Hirose, President of NAPABA. "Justice Duffly is a leader in the courts, and a leader in promoting diversity and public service at all levels of the legal profession. We urge her speedy confirmation and look forward to her continued leadership on and off the bench."
Justice Duffly has been dedicated to diversity and community service throughout her career, a fact that she attributes to her experience as a bi-racial daughter of a Chinese mother and Dutch father who immigrated to the United States with very little means when she was six years old. Justice Duffly's experiences with the generosity of strangers during her family's times of need motivated her ongoing desire to giving back today. She has received numerous awards for her commitment to community and diversity, including the NAPABA Trailblazer Award, which is NAPABA's highest honor, designation as a Diversity Hero by the Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly, the Distinguish Jurist Award from the Massachusetts Association of Women Lawyers, and a Judicial Excellence Award from the Boston Bar Association.
NAPABA applauds Governor Patrick for his commitment to nominating well-qualified, diverse candidates to the bench and for nominating Justice Duffly to the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court. We congratulate Justice Duffly on this well-deserved nomination.
The National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA) is the national association of Asian Pacific American attorneys, judges, law professors and law students. NAPABA represents the interests of over 40,000 attorneys and 62 local Asian Pacific American bar associations. Its members represent solo practitioners, large firm lawyers, corporate counsel, legal service and non-profit attorneys, and lawyers serving at all levels of government. NAPABA continues to be a leader in addressing civil rights issues confronting Asian Pacific American communities. Through its national network of committees and affiliates, NAPABA provides a strong voice for increased diversity of federal and state judiciaries, advocates for equal opportunity in the workplace, works to eliminate hate crimes and anti-immigrant sentiment, and promotes professional development of minorities in the legal profession.