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NAPABA Press Release

National Asian Pacific American Bar Association

1612 K Street N.W., Suite 1400
Washington, DC 20006


Contact: Tina Matsuoka

January 27, 2010

(202) 775-9555


WASHINGTON - Yesterday, the Massachusetts Governor's Council confirmed Associate Justice Fernande R.V. Duffly to the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court. Justice Duffly is the first Asian Pacific American member to serve on a state high court outside of California and Hawaii.

Justice Duffly has served as an Assistant Justice for the Massachusetts Appeals Court for almost eleven years and previously served as a trial judge for eight years. Before joining the bench, Justice Duffly was a trial attorney for fourteen years at the firm now known as K&L Gates, where she served as a partner in the litigation department.

"This is a historic achievement for the Asian Pacific American legal community," said Paul O. Hirose, President of NAPABA. "Justice Duffly is a proven leader among jurists and in the community. We are proud of her well-deserved confirmation."

Duffly has received numerous awards for her commitment to community outreach and diversity, including the NAPABA Trailblazer Award, which is NAPABA's highest honor, designation as a Diversity Hero by the Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly, the Distinguished Jurist Award from the Massachusetts Association of Women Lawyers, and a Judicial Excellence Award from the Boston Bar Association. Furthermore, Justice Duffly recently served as the president of the National Association of Women Judges. Justice Duffly is the daughter of a Chinese mother and a Dutch father. The family immigrated to the U.S. when Duffly was six years old. Her own struggles and interactions with other needy families cultivated Duffly's commitment to public service.

NAPABA applauds Governor Deval Patrick for nominating Justice Duffly and congratulates Justice Duffly on her confirmation.


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 63 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.


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