CENTER FOR STATE COURTS HONORS SUPERIOR
COURT JUDGE ISAAC BORENSTEIN FOR LEADERSHIP ROLE IN
COURT INTERPRETER SERVICES IN MASSACHUSETTS
Dedham — Superior
Court Judge Isaac Borenstein today was honored with an
Award for Leadership from the National Center for State
Courts of Williamsburg, Virginia, for his extraordinary
efforts and achievements in helping to ensure access to
the courts for non-English speaking litigants. The
special award was presented by David Steelman, NCSC Principal
Court Management Consultant, at a ceremony held in Norfolk
Superior Court in Dedham among Judge Borenstein’s family,
court colleagues, and friends.
Borenstein has provided leadership of such excellence that
the Massachusetts courts can provide access to justice
for non-English speakers at a level that makes Massachusetts
one of the national leaders in the provision of court interpreter
services,” said Mr. Steelman.
Borenstein, who was appointed as chair of the Committee
on the Administration of Interpreters in 1998 by Chief
Justice for Administration and Management Barbara A. Dortch-Okara,
coalesced committee members, community groups, bar associations,
and other groups to address the Trial Court’s need for
effective court interpreter services. Under
the leadership of Judge Borenstein, the Committee requested
and obtained funding for technical assistance from the
National Center for State Courts to aid the Committee in
identifying issues and recommendations for the professional
operation of the Office of Court Interpreter Services (OCIS). Major
recommendations contained in a report by the National Center
for State Courts, which called OCIS “an operation in crisis” as
it was undergoing a major organizational change, were successfully
implemented by the Committee and OCIS under Judge Borenstein’s
to the NCSC, Massachusetts has now joined the national
Consortium on State Court Interpreter Certification, which
provides for sharing of court interpreter testing resources
among state court systems.
Borenstein also successfully sought an additional $700,000
for OCIS from the Legislature for fiscal year 2003, enabling
the Trial Court to hire a new manager and training coordinator
and seven full-time staff court interpreter employees. In addition, he established a subcommittee
on standards and procedures, which conducted public hearings
throughout the state to receive input on a draft report.
Last April the final draft was approved and new standards
and procdures are now being used by the courts.
Borenstein, a Wayland resident, was first appointed in
1986 as a Lawrence District Court judge. He was appointed to the Superior Court bench
in 1992. He has
taught at New England School of Law, Suffolk Law School,
Northeastern University School of Law, and Boston College
Law School. Born
in Cuba, Judge Borenstein is a graduate of George
Washington University and Northeastern University School
of Law. He also received an LL.M. from Harvard Law School.
Judge Borenstein was the recipient of the prestigious Haskell
Cohn Award for Judicial Excellence from the Boston Bar
Association in 2001, and has received numerous other awards
for his work as a judge, as a law school professor, and
for his community service.
National Center for State Courts, established in 1971,
is a non-profit organization dedicated to improving the
administration of justice by providing leadership, research,
consulting, education, and training to the state courts.