Pace Law School: 15th Annual Leadership Dinner to Honor Three Outstanding Members of Legal Community

Pace Law School’s 15th Annual Leadership Awards Dinner will be held on Wednesday, November 18, 2009, at the Rye Town Hilton, 699 Westchester Avenue, Rye Brook, New York. The Distinguished Service Award will be presented to three outstanding members of the legal community: Delores Scott Brathwaite, Commissioner of Westchester County Human Rights Commission and Office of Equal Employment Opportunity/Affirmative Action, Thomas R. Lalla, Jr., General Counsel and Senior VP of Pernod Ricard USA, and John J. Rapisardi, Partner and Financial Restructuring Department Co-Chair of Cadwalader, Wickersham & Taft LLP.

Contact: Regina Pappalardo,(914) 422-4268, rpappalardo@law.pace.edu

Protector of Victims of Domestic Violence, Leader in Westchester business and U.S. spirits and wine industry, And “Restructuring Advisor of the Year” Who Served the U.S. Department of Treasury and the Presidential Task Force for Restructuring of Automotive Industry and CIT To be honored at Pace Law School’s 15th Annual Leadership Awards Dinner, November 18

WHITE PLAINS, NY (November 17, 2009) – Pace Law School’s 15th Annual Leadership Awards Dinner will be held on Wednesday, November 18, 2009, at the Rye Town Hilton, 699 Westchester Avenue, Rye Brook, New York. The Distinguished Service Award will be presented to three outstanding members of the legal community: Delores Scott Brathwaite, Commissioner of Westchester County Human Rights Commission and Office of Equal Employment Opportunity/Affirmative Action, Thomas R. Lalla, Jr., General Counsel and Senior VP of Pernod Ricard USA, and John J. Rapisardi, Partner and Financial Restructuring Department Co-Chair of Cadwalader, Wickersham & Taft LLP.

Information about attending is available from Katie Taormina, Office of Philanthropy and Alumni Relations, (914) 422-4079 or ctaormina@law.pace.edu.

Background on the honorees: Delores Scott Brathwaite, Esq., Commissioner of the Westchester County Human Rights Commission and Office of Equal Employment Opportunity/Affirmative Action, is responsible for the administration, implementation and enforcement of the Westchester County Human Rights Law, the Fair Housing Law and the Equal Employment Opportunity Laws. She assisted in obtaining protection under the Human Rights Law for victims of domestic violence; successfully obtained significant expansion of the remedies and penalties provided under the law and, under her leadership, the Commission’s authority was increased from limited to countywide jurisdiction in order to handle human rights cases.

In 2007, Brathwaite spearheaded the creation of the county’s first Fair Housing Law and in 2008 formed a partnership with the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). The Commission now has a Fair Housing Department which handles complaints of discrimination in housing in Westchester County. Delores heads the county’s Office of Equal Employment Opportunity and Affirmative Action, handling internal issues of alleged discrimination in employment.

A graduate of Pace University, Pace Law School, and New York University Center for Labor and Employment Law, Delores is a Certified Mediator and Arbitrator. She also lectures and speaks on human and civil rights issues and employment law topics. Admitted to practice law in the State of New York, the U.S. Federal District Courts and the U.S. Supreme Court she is a member of several bar associations and is currently President of the Westchester Black Bar Association. In the past, she has also been named to the board of the Holocaust and Human Rights Center in Purchase, N.Y. and the vice president of human resources and legal affairs for North America at Virgin Atlantic Airways.

Thomas R. Lalla, Jr. is the General Counsel and Senior Vice President of Pernod Ricard USA, the U.S. subsidiary of Pernod Ricard, the world’s co-leader in the spirits and wine industry. Lalla supervises legal matters involving the brands produced and imported by Pernod Ricard USA, including Absolut vodka, Chivas Regal Scotch whisky, Malibu flavored rum, The Glenlivet Scotch whisky, Jameson Irish whisky, Kahlua coffee liqueur, Perrier-Jouet and Mumm champagnes, and Jacob’s Creek Australian wines.

Lalla is a member of the board of directors of the National Association of Manufacturers and the Westchester Business Council. He has served as director of the Westchester-Fairfield Division of the American Corporate Counsel Association and as Chairman of the Legal and Judicial Affairs Committee, National Association of Beverage Importers. He contributes to the “Inside Perspective” column of Inside Counsel magazine and has spoken at legal seminars on the topics of advertising in regulated industries, and developing or acquiring famous marks for the International Trademark Association.

Before joining Pernod Ricard USA, Lalla was a managing partner at the firm of Buchman & O’Brien. Prior to that he served as an Assistant District Attorney for Westchester County, where he was a member of the Superior Court Trial Division. A graduate of Temple University School of Law and Fordham University, he is an Adjunct Professor at Pace Law School and a member of the School’s Board of Visitors.

John J. Rapisardi, Co-Chair of Cadwalader Wickersham & Taft’s Financial Restructuring Department, has more than 27 years of domestic and international restructuring experience across a variety of industries, including automotive, casinos, chemical, healthcare, retail, real estate, satellite, sports franchises, textile, and telecommunications companies. He served as outside counsel to the United States Department of Treasury and the Presidential Task Force with respect to the restructuring of Chrysler, General Motors and Delphi.

Co author of The PRC Enterprise Bankruptcy Law: The People’s Work in Progress, for the past ten years, he has been a regular bankruptcy columnist for the New York Law Journal. Most recently, he was chosen by the United States Department of Treasury to represent the government in the restructuring of CIT, the distressed bank holding company.

Rapisardi was recently recognized by the Global M&A Network as “Restructuring Advisor of the Year” and received a Turnaround Atlas Award in this category for his work in 2008/2009. He has been named as a highly recommended international restructuring counsel in the PLC Cross-border Restructuring and Insolvency Handbook, recognized as one of the leading restructuring lawyers in the U.S. by Chambers USA, and included in Best Lawyers in America. He is a graduate of Pace Law School and currently serves as a member of the School’s Board of Visitors.

About Pace Law School Founded in 1976, Pace University School of Law has nearly 6,700 alumni throughout the country and the world and is consistently ranked among the nation’s top three programs in environmental law. It offers full- and part-time day and evening JD programs on its White Plains, NY, campus and offers the Master of Laws degree in Environmental Law, Real Estate Law and Comparative Legal Studies, and a Doctor of Laws in environmental law. The School of Law is part of Pace University, a comprehensive, independent, and diversified university with campuses in New York City and Westchester County. www.law.pace.edu

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