First Page



Law; Judge Kevin Thomas Duffy


Where to begin . . . Clerking for KTD was my first job after graduating from Fordham Law. I was a kid in the law working with a tenured professor who was also the chair of the department. The first lesson was that you worked with KTD. While many of my fellow graduates who were working as clerks were working for a particular judge, I didn’t work for KTD, as he was quick to remind me, I worked with him. It was a collaboration. While I knew nothing really, he insisted we worked as a team. That was the first lesson and one I never forgot. The second lesson quickly on the heels of the first was: No bullshit! If you thought he was going to step in it, you said it out loud. No subtle hints, no multiple cushion shots as in a game of billiards. Just say it out loud. A tough lesson for a very green lawyer, but one he insisted on. He wasn’t offended by my mistakes but he embraced them with a sense of humor, and had a knack to turn them into a lesson in the funniest and most humane way. I always walked away with a smile, never feeling small in the presence of a legal giant. That was an art, a gift he gave to generations of clerks.

Included in

Law Commons