Pace University Women’s Justice Center Names Family Law Expert Jane Aoyama-Martin Executive Director

WHITE PLAINS, NY, July 17, 2006 – The Pace Women’s Justice Center (WJC) at Pace Law School has appointed Jane Aoyama-Martin as executive director. Aoyama-Martin is an attorney known for her longstanding dedication to the fields of family law and domestic violence, and for her commitment to public service.

In the last decade the Pace WJC has emerged as a national leader in first response legal services for battered women, having pioneered 24/7 legal services so women can get help when they need it most. Staff attorneys carry beepers so they can be reached around the clock.

The Center also has expanded into training in such areas as sexual assault, gender violence, sex discrimination, stalking, and teen dating violence. It provides practical experience for Pace Law students and educates high school and middle school students as well as attorneys, judges, law enforcement officials, advocates, and medical professionals.

Aoyama-Martin comes to the Center after serving as the co-supervising attorney of the Legal Aid Society’s City-Wide Domestic Violence Project in New York City, and supervising the family law practices in the society’s Bronx and Harlem community-based neighborhood offices.  She specializes in matters involving divorce, protective orders, custody, support, property distribution, and other related issues. Throughout her career, she has practiced in both the private and public sectors, having worked as a legal services attorney, New York State Assistant Attorney General, solo practitioner, and senior associate in a private litigation firm.

For over 20 years, she has been actively involved in the anti-domestic violence movement. She is a founding member and former board member of the New York Asian Women’s Center, the first project on the East Coast to organize women on the problems of battering and sexual assault in the Asian communities. She began her legal career as a legal services attorney and Reginald Heber Smith Fellow in rural New York.

Aoyama-Martin is a graduate of UC Berkeley School of Social Welfare and UCLA School of Law.  She is admitted to practice in Hawaii, New York, and California, and has been a practicing attorney for over 26 years.

Aoyama-Martin’s experience, recognition in the legal community and passion for the work of the Center will provide the innovative leadership necessary to advance the mission of the Center as it seeks to eradicate domestic violence in our community.

Each year, the Center represents over 1,500 battered women and their children in family court. Since 1999, law students have contributed over 10,000 hours of free legal assistance, which have helped garner more than $2,000,000 in child support for victims. WJC education programs often are conducted in partnership with the White Plains Department of Public Safety and other Westchester police departments.

Founded in 1976, Pace University School of Law has nearly 5,000 alumni/ae throughout the country. It offers full- and part-time day and evening JD programs on its White Plains, N.Y., campus. The School also offers the Master of Laws in Environmental Law and in Comparative Legal Studies. The School, which has one of the nation’s top-rated environmental law programs, also offers the SJD program in that field. The School of Law is part of a comprehensive, independent and diversified University with campuses in New York City and Westchester County.

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