Frank A. Bress
Professor of Law, Emeritus
St. John's University, J.D. 1972; New York University, B.A. 1969
Frank A. Bress joined New York Law School in June 2002. At NYLS, he developed and taught a Criminal Defense Clinic, the Criminal Prosecution Clinics, and Advocacy of Criminal Cases. He also served as Director of Clinical Programs.
Earlier in his career, as associate dean for clinical education at Pace Law School, Professor Bress started the clinical education program, developed and taught a Trial Advocacy course and a Homicide Defense Clinic, and developed the Child Support Enforcement and the Appellate Litigation Clinics. As part of the Homicide Defense Clinic, Professor Bress litigated a high-profile murder case on Long Island (the “Pebbles Murder”) and achieved the first change of venue in a criminal matter in New York State after the Brinks Robbery more than five years earlier, and the last until the Amadou Diallo murder case more than 12 years later.
Before Pace, Professor Bress taught clinical and advocacy courses for 12 years at New York University (NYU) School of Law. While there, he served as Executive Director and Managing Attorney of Washington Square Legal Services, the umbrella under which students practiced in the areas of criminal law, juvenile justice, women’s rights, prison reform, and public benefits law.
Prior to working at NYU School of Law, Professor Bress was vice president and general counsel for a public company for four years. Subsequent to his work as general counsel, Professor Bress spent 10 years in private practice engaged in white-collar criminal defense, commercial and tort litigation. His firm was one of a few that defended the County of Westchester in tort cases, including federal civil rights matters.
Professor Bress has always been an advocate for high professional standards, working actively within lawyers’ associations to that end. While at NYLS, he co-chaired the Criminal Justice section of the New York County Lawyers’ Association (NYCLA), chaired a NYCLA Task Force on Penal Policy, and was a member of the Criminal Courts Committee of the New York City Bar Association (NYC Bar).
In the past, Professor Bress chaired the Central Screening Committee for the Appellate Division, First Department for five years and was a member for another seven years. During his tenure, the Central Screening Committee established one of the first attorney peer review and disciplinary systems in New York. He also served as secretary for the prestigious Council on Criminal Justice, which coordinates the activities of all NYC Bar committees involved in criminal justice issues.