Touro Law Center Establishes Distinguished Jurist in Residence: Hon. Leonard Wexler, First Recipient

Date: October 25, 2012
Media Contact:

Patti Desrochers
Director of Communications
(631) 761-7062

Central Islip, NY – Touro Law Center Dean Patricia Salkin is pleased to announce the creation of a new position at the law school, Distinguished Jurist in Residence, and the first jurist to fill that post is the Hon. Leonard Wexler, Senior Judge, United States District Court, Eastern District of New York.

Touro Law Center has distinguished itself as the only law school in the country with a fully integrated collaborative court curriculum. The program includes a court observation program for all first year students in both the state and federal courthouses adjacent to the Law Center, as well as the state court complex in Riverhead, NY. Upper level law students have an option to further their court experience through a collaborative court program that integrates the law school classroom with the federal and state courtrooms, using a medical school model to rotate students throughout the diverse courts and correlating those rotations with academic and practical educational components. The collaborative court Program bridges the gap between doctrinal law classes, skills development classes and actual practice classes such as clinics and externships. It contains elements of all three types of instruction, culminating with student performances, written and oral, before sitting judges in the courtroom, on redacted real-life cases. Judge Wexler will continue to offer his externship program as the Distinguished Jurist in Residence and work with faculty to further advance the Collaborative Court Program.

“The establishment of a Distinguished Jurist in Residence program that affords our students and faculty regular curricular contact with leading jurists is an important complement to our collaborative court program,” explained Dean Salkin. “The appointment of Judge Wexler as the inaugural holder of this appointment is recognition of his unwavering commitment to positively affecting legal education through stronger collaboration between the bench and the academy.”

Judge Wexler currently oversees the Federal Judicial Summer Externship. This special summer externship places students in Judge Wexler’s chambers four days a week for the month of June or July, with a concurrent seminar class meeting three evenings per week during that time period. Judge Wexler also participates in Touro Law’s Collaborative Court Program. He works with Touro Law  professors, facilitates court visits for students, participates in student lunches and dinners at the law school and provides guidance for students.

Judge Wexler said, “I am proud to be associated with Touro Law. I believe Touro Law has the best program for teaching law students and is number one in the nation for training students to be good lawyers.”

“On behalf of our students, our faculty, our alumni and the entire Touro Law community, I want to thank Judge Wexler for honoring us with his involvement and contributions,” said Dean Salkin.