Judge Mainzer, an adjunct professor at Cardozo and a Family Court Judge in New York City, inspired generations of family law practitioners and jurists. When she passed away in July of 2010, her family honored her legacy by setting up the Gertrud Mainzer Family Law Fund to support educational and professional opportunities for students and recent law school graduates interested in pursuing careers in family law.

The first recipient of the new Fellowship is NYLAG fellow, Amira Samuel. While studying at the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law, Samuel became committed to the study of family law because, as she states, “Family law interested me both because it seemed like an area of law that was permissive of emotionality, and because family law encompasses a score of other legal issues, from housing to criminal law.” Upon graduation, Samuel was granted a fellowship to practice public interest law, and she brought her passion and expertise to NYLAG. “I was excited to work with so many dynamic and progressive people who are so obviously devoted to what they do,” she commented of her decision to join NYLAG’s Family Law Unit. At the conclusion of the public interest fellowship, Samuel applied for and became the first-ever recipient of the Judge Gertrud Mainzer Fellowship enabling her to continue her important work at NYLAG.