On Thursday, February 27th, OJC is welcoming The Honorable Leo T. Sorokin and Alexis Hoag to discuss the restorative justice and the RISE Program, a three-year pilot in federal courts in Boston offering an alternative to the criminal justice system.
To learn more about the RISE Program:
Boston Globe - "Defendants offered alternative to prison"
The Hon. Leo T. Sorokin
The Honorable LEO T. SOROKIN was appointed as a United States District Judge for the District of Massachusetts in 2014. Before his appointment, he was a United States Magistrate Judge for nine years.
He is a 1983 graduate of Yale College, cum laude, and attended Columbia Law School, where he was a Kent and Stone Scholar. After graduating from Columbia in 1991, Judge Sorokin served as a law clerk to the Honorable Rya W. Zobel, a Judge of the United States District Court for the District of Massachusetts; worked as an associate at Mintz Levin in Boston; was an Assistant Attorney General at the Massachusetts Attorney General’s Office; and then served as an Assistant Federal Public Defender for the District of Massachusetts from 1997 to 2005.
As a Magistrate Judge, Judge Sorokin presided over the District of Massachusetts’s Court Assisted Recovery Effort (“CARE”), which promotes the development and maintenance of sober, employed, and law-abiding lives by individuals under the supervision of the Court, from CARE’s inception in 2006 until 2014. He also has guided the implementation in the District of Massachusetts of an innovative program called Repair, Invest, Succeed, Emerge (“RISE”), which aims to reduce recidivism and promote productive behavior and rehabilitation by applying restorative justice principles to cases in which defendants have entered guilty pleas and are under pretrial supervision awaiting sentencing.
Judge Sorokin has served as a faculty member of numerous educational programs sponsored by the United States District Court for the District of Massachusetts, the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit, the Federal Judicial Center, the Federal Bar Association, and the Boston Bar Association. Judge Sorokin has also taught trial advocacy at Boston University Law School. In 2009, the Boston Bar Association awarded Judge Sorokin its Citation of Judicial Excellence.
Alexis Hoag is the inaugural Practitioner-in-Residence at the Eric H. Holder Jr. Initiative for Civil and Political Rights. She has spent over a decade as a civil rights and criminal defense lawyer, primarily representing capitally convicted clients in federal post-conviction proceedings. Hoag’s scholarship interests include race and criminal justice, capital punishment, and civil rights.
Prior to the Holder Initiative, Hoag served as Senior Counsel at the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc. (“LDF”), where she represented clients in a variety of civil and criminal matters, including Davis, et al. v. City of New York and New York City Housing Authority, a federal class action lawsuit seeking systemic reform of the New York City Police Department’s discriminatory practices against Black and Latinx public housing residents and guests. Hoag supervised LDF’s parole advocacy in Mississippi on behalf of young people formerly sentenced to life without the possibility of parole. She also captained LDF’s Prepared to Vote efforts in Alabama and Missouri.
Hoag has authored amicus curie briefs before the U.S. Supreme Court and state supreme courts on behalf of capitally convicted individuals challenging their sentences due to racial discrimination. She regularly conducts death penalty trainings on racial discrimination in jury selection, developing race-based mitigation, and cultural competency in the defense team. Hoag also serves on the editorial board of the Amicus Journal, a publication reporting on worldwide capital punishment issues, and on the capital punishment committee of the New York City Bar Association.
Prior to LDF, Hoag served eight years in the Office of the Federal Public Defender for the Middle District of Tennessee as a writing and research attorney and Assistant Federal Public Defender, where she represented death-sentenced individuals in federal habeas and related state court proceedings. She clerked for The Honorable John T. Nixon of the United State District Court for the Middle District of Tennessee.
Hoag graduated from Yale College and NYU School of Law, where she was a Derrick Bell Public Interest Scholar and an editor on the Review of Law and Social Change. She is a member of the New York and Tennessee state bars and continues to represent a client sentenced to death in federal court.
Food will be provided.
Please RSVP in Symplicity for a head count.