Yesterday, the Russian American Bar Association of South Florida hosted a talk with Miami-Dade Circuit Judge Stanford Blake and U.S. Magistrate Judge John O'Sullivan on their experiences on the bench and on the legal system in Ukraine.
"Be civil, be prepared and be candid," said the renowned Judge Blake to the group of about 30 attendees at the Shutts Miami office. Blake has served in the family division since 2009. He is a former chief administrative judge of the criminal division, where he presided over various high-profile trials.
Magistrate John O'Sullivan discussed his personal experience meeting with attorneys in Ukraine, after recent changes in the Ukrainian legal system have created an adversarial legal process, where each side has an opportunity to conduct discovery and to be heard, similar to the process we have in the United States. "It's going to take some time," said O'Sullivan. "They have begun training the defense attorneys in Ukraine to teach them how to advocate differently because they never had the opportunity to do so."
The Russian American Bar Association of South Florida recently elected its inaugural board of directors in March and was founded by its president Anya Freeman and attorney Yana Manotas. The organization was formed to provide a forum where Russian, Russian-related Republics and Russian-speaking attorneys can share information, network and engage in the community.
According to this Daily Business Review article on the group's formation, about 8,500 Russian and Russian-speaking people live in Miami-Dade County and more than 890,000 live in the United States.
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