Carrie Anne Cavallo has served in nearly every capacity at the Brooklyn Women’s Bar Association since she joined it 14 years ago and on Wednesday she added a final title — president.
Cavallo was sworn in as president of the 100-year-old bar association by Hon. Joanne D. Quinones during a ceremony at the Brooklyn Bar Association in Downtown Brooklyn Wednesday night.
“C-A-C, my dear friend, you have worked tirelessly behind the scenes to promote our mission,” said Justice Quinones. “Your commitment has been steadfast and unwavering. For far too long, by your own choice and design, have been an unsung hero of the BWBA. It’s time to step into the spotlight. With you at the helm of our association, our future is indeed bright. So let’s make this official.”
Meredith A. Lusthaus served as the master of ceremonies for the event. When she asked why her, Cavallo explained that it was Lusthaus that convinced her to join BWBA nearly 15 years ago.
“I say, ‘You’re welcome,’ because I have witnessed firsthand how much you have gained working with the BWBA,” Lusthaus said. “You’ve served your community and fellow attorneys, you’ve inspired a love of reading in children, you’ve lobbied government, you’ve raised money for women’s shelters, and you’ve made lifelong friends. That’s just a few of her gratifying accomplishments.”
Cavallo is a founding partner of the firm Schpoont & Cavallo, LLP., a full-service matrimonial and family law firm. She has also served on the Judicial Screening Committee for the Women’s Bar Association of the State of New York WBASNY and BWBA. She was recently appointed to the Committee on Character and Fitness for the Second Judicial Department.
After Cavallo was introduced, she spent the first 10 minutes of her tenure as president talking up other’s achievements including Justice Quinones, who was recently awarded the Judith S. Kaye Access to Justice Award by WBASNY, and Joy Thompson, who was recently named a vice president at WBASNY. She also talked up the bar association itself and its achievements.
“When I was approached to join by Meredith Lusthaus, I was not sure what to expect from the BWBA and what the BWBA should expect from me,” Cavallo said. “In the past 14 years, I have learned a lot about myself and what an accomplished organization I am now a part of.
“As some of you know, the BWBA has lofty goals,” she continued. “Our programming, sponsorships, community development and our membership just to name a few. We depend on our members to help us achieve those goals and I hope that throughout the next year I can count on each one of you in helping achieve those goals.”
The event also gave members a chance to thank outgoing President Michele Mirman, who led the association during its centennial year. When Mirman accepted her trophy, she talked about all of the good work the bar association did in the past year, and especially highlighted the organization’s work advocating for Lavern’s Law.
“It was we, the BWBA, with the help of Marea Wachsman and Meryl Schwartz, who persuaded WBASNY, to support Lavern’s Law and rectify the inequality that kept cancer patients, mostly women with breast and ovarian cancer, from suing even before they even knew they had a case,” Mirman said. “We should take our effect on this legislation as a signal that our voice is powerful.”
Other officers sworn in by Hon. Sylvia Hinds-Radix included Meryl L. Schwartz as the president-elect, Natoya L. McGhie, Angelicque Moreno and Derefim Neckles as vice presidents, Susan Mauro as treasurer, Deborah A. Johnson as corresponding secretary and Sue Novick-Wasko as recording secretary.
Justice Hinds-Radix then swore in WBASNY delegates: Elaine N. Avery, Hon. Nancy M. Bannon, Helene Blank, Hon. Theresa M. Ciccotto, John F.K. Coffey, Holly E. Peck, Hon. Joanne Quinones and Marea Wachsman.
Special referee Hemalee Patel then swore in the directors: Hon. Sylvia Ash, Laura Ashikaga, Joanne Minsky Cohen, Hon. Genine Edwards, Barbara H. Grcevic, Andrea Hill, Andrea Nieves, Hon. Sylvia Hinds-Radix, Meredith Lusthaus, Hon. Connie Mallafre Melendez, Lisa Michael, Hon. Marsha Steinhardt, Anne Swern, Joy Anastasia Thompson and Hon. Lillian Wan.