The Legal Advocate

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Cook County Public Defenders – NITA Public Service Program

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For the second year in a row, NITA and Cook County Public Defenders worked together on a public service training program in Chicago, IL. This year, NITA Program Director Richard Hutt led the 4-day trial skills program which covered topics such as: direct and cross examination, exhibits and evidentiary foundations, impeachment, opening statements, and closing arguments. Hutt worked closely with Chief of Professional Development at Cook County, Parul Desai, to develop the schedule that would be best suited for the training.

Furthermore, the program trained 22 Cook County Public Defenders who found the training to be very effective and helpful in developing their trial skills. One participant stated, “{The program had} excellent trainers! I learned great information and had great feedback from the trainers.”

Likewise, another participant stated, “It was a very fun and great experience. I learned a lot of tips and techniques to improve my trial skills.”

NITA is very grateful to have continued our partnership with Cook County for a second year in a row and to have had the opportunity to work with their Public Defenders.

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NITA’s team of practicing lawyers, professors and judges from around the nation dedicates its efforts to the training and development of skilled and ethical legal advocates to improve the adversarial justice system.

NITA’s Goals are to:

  • Promote justice through effective and ethical advocacy.
  • Train and mentor lawyers to be competent and ethical advocates in pursuit of justice.
  • Develop and teach trial advocacy skills to support and promote the effective and fair administration of justice.
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