HARTFORD—The Hartford Judicial District and the Hartford County Bar Association (HCBA) gathered on Friday, May 3rd, to celebrate Law Day 2013, Realizing the Dream: Equality for All. In welcoming those in attendance, Judge Julia Dewey, the Administrative Judge for the Hartford JD, said that we all must “…strive for equality while recognizing diversity.”
She then introduced newly installed Superior Court Judge Jason M. Lobo (pictured, left) to give Law Day remarks from the Bench. Judge Lobo emphasized the synchronicity of this year’s Law Day theme with the 150th anniversary of Abraham Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation and the 50th anniversary of the I Have a Dream speech by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
“The messages from these aforementioned leaders have no less resonance today in our current judicial system than when they were proclaimed those many years ago,” said Judge Lobo.
Judge Lobo, who spoke not only of these two important documents but also recited examples emphasizing the need for equality from Dr. Seuss’s book, The Sneetches—a parable in which Sneetches with stars on their bellies discriminate against those without.
“Although life is not always a children’s story without troubles and worry-free endings, the realistic ideals of equal treatment and access for the people our legal process serves is a constant goal upon which we cannot lose sight,” he added.
Following Judge Lobo’s remarks, Attorney James F. Sullivan, President of the HCBA, read an official Law Day Proclamation from the Governor.
Then Attorney Jonathan H. Beamon, Senior Assistant Corporation Counsel, City of Hartford, delivered the Law Day speech, expounding upon Dr. King’s statement that “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.”
The HCBA presented its annual scholarship award to college-bound senior, Bryan Ndibnu Tajam. Tajam, who attends Hartford Public High School’s Law and Government Academy, was born and raised in Cameroon, Africa and immigrated to the United States in the 11th grade.
This year’s HCBA Pro Bono Award was presented to Attorney Bruce E. Berman “For outstanding community service in the provision of free legal service to the citizens of Connecticut.”
Finally, the 2013 Liberty Bell Award was presented to the Hartford Judicial District Victims’ Advocates “For promoting a better understanding of the rule of law, stimulating a sense of civic responsibility and contributing to good government in the community.” Recipients of this award were Koren Butler Kurth, Robert Eccleston, Olga Massa, Adranna Venegas-McCormick and Melissa Zavickas.
“These are individuals who
interact with the victims of crimes on a daily basis,” said Judge Dewey.
“They assist victims in their navigation through the judicial process.
Without them, it would be difficult for victims to secure those rights
guaranteed by our state constitution. They also assist the court by acting
as a liaison between the victims and the court.”