MBA COO Healy, 14 others named to new CPCS board

Issue January 2012

Martin W. Healy, the Massachusetts Bar Association's chief operating officer and chief legal counsel, was appointed to the governing committee of the Committee for Public Counsel Services with 14 others. CPCS is the statewide agency that provides legal representation to the commonwealth's poor in criminal and civil court cases.

Previously, the Supreme Judicial Court appointed all 15 members, but the state's fiscal 2012 budget divided up the appointments. The SJC now appoints nine members, with the six remaining positions appointed by the governor, Senate president and speaker of the House of Representatives, with two selections each.

"I look forward to working with the new committee to preserve our constitutional mandate to provide quality counsel during a time of fiscal constraint and rising costs due to expanding criminal justice policies," CPCS Chief Counsel Anthony Benedetti said.

Of the SJC appointments, five of the nine must have the following backgrounds: one with experience as a public defender, one with experience as a private bar advocate, one who has criminal appellate experience, one with a background in public administration and public finance, and one who is a current or former dean or faculty member of a law school.

The other six selections must "have a strong commitment to quality representation in indigent defense matters or have significant experience with issues related to indigent defense."

Healy also serves as a member of the Board of Bar Examiners and is a former hearing committee member of the Board of Bar Overseers. In the early 1990's, Healy worked with MBA leadership to formulate the MBA's Standing Committee on Bar Advocates. He is the MBA's chief legal advisor and liaison to the legislative, executive and judicial branches. He is responsible for legal advice in corporate matters and legal support in issues of public policy concerning the practice of law and administration of justice. He serves as counsel to the MBA's leadership team and its House of Delegates and Executive Management Board. Healy works with the MBA's sections and committees in developing policy, analyzing legislation, drafting bills and testifying before court, legislative and regulatory bodies.

"I have a long and positive working relationship with both the private bar advocate community and the public defender staff. I look forward to continuing these exciting efforts. There is virtually no other area of the law as important to the public and the administration of justice than our criminal justice system. The high quality of representation provided by our state's bar advocates and public defenders is an unparalleled national model."