The membership of the CJC consists of three judges appointed by the Supreme Judicial Court, three lawyers appointed by the Chief Justice of the Trial Court, and three lay (non-attorney) members appointed by the Governor.
Judge Julie J. Bernard, Chair
The Honorable Julie J. Bernard was appointed to the Commission in 2014. She became Chair of the Commission in November of 2018. First appointed to the bench in 2002, she currently serves as the First Justice of the Brockton District Court. Judge Bernard is a member of the District Court Committee on Continuing Education, member of the District Court Working Group on Alternative Dispute Resolution, member of the Trial Court Task Force on Diversity and Cultural Competence, and a Judicial Mentor.
She previously served as a member of the District Court Appellate Division. Prior to her appointment to the bench, Judge Bernard was a Senior Counsel for Keyspan Energy Inc., and served as a Litigation Counsel for Verizon, Inc. Judge Bernard was also an Associate at Segal and Feinberg, Assistant General Counsel for the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority, and Staff Attorney for the Committee for Public Counsel Services. Judge Bernard is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania and Boston College Law School.
Kathleen M. O'Donnell, Esq., Vice Chair
Kathleen M. O'Donnell, Esquire was appointed to the Commission in 2014. She became Vice Chair of the Commission in November of 2018. Ms. O'Donnell has her own law practice, O'Donnell Law Firm, where she concentrates her practice in all aspects of personal injury litigation. Ms. O'Donnell is a past President of the Massachusetts Bar Association (2004-2005), the Massachusetts Academy of Trial Attorneys (1995-1996), and the Greater Lowell Bar Association (1990-1991). Ms. O'Donnell also served as Vice President of Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education, Inc. from 2002-2003 and has served on its Board of Directors continuously since 1998. She was listed by the Massachusetts Lawyer's Weekly in 1995 as one of the top ten lawyers in Massachusetts and in 1997 as one of the twenty-five most influential lawyers in Massachusetts between 1972 and 1997.
In 2000, the National Law Journal named Ms. O'Donnell one of the twelve most influential lawyers in Massachusetts. In 1996 and 1997 the American Association of Justice (an organization with 60,000 members) awarded her the prestigious Weidemann Wysocki Citation of Excellence for her commitment to the civil justice system. She has been listed by Boston Magazine as a Massachusetts Super Lawyer since 2004 in the category of Best of Boston Personal Injury. Ms. O'Donnell was the first woman elected as a member of the Massachusetts Chapter of the American Board of Trial Advocates and she has been listed consistently in Who's Who in America, Who's Who in American Law, Who's Who of American Women, and Who's Who in the East. Ms. O'Donnell's peers have given her the highest rating established by Martindale Hubbell's Legal Directory. This rating is only given to lawyers and law firms which are considered to have a very high to pre-eminent legal ability and who are thought to embrace very high professional standards. Ms. O'Donnell is a frequent presenter or lecturer on personal injury litigation and automobile insurance policy and law. Ms. O'Donnell graduated magna cum laude from Wheaton College and cum laude from Suffolk University Law School.
Judge Daniel M. Wrenn, Judge Member
The Honorable Daniel M. Wrenn was appointed to the Commission in 2018. Judge Wrenn was appointed an Associate Justice of the Superior Court in 2011.
Prior to his appointment as a judge, from 1991 to 2011, Judge Wrenn was a partner at the Worcester law firm of Milton, Laurence and Dixon, LLP, where he practiced in the areas of Personal Injury, Medical Malpractice, and Workers Compensation. Judge Wrenn also regularly provided arbitration and mediation services and was a Board of Bar Overseers Hearing Committee Member for District 4 (Worcester County) from 2006 to 2011.
Judge Wrenn is a graduate of Suffolk University School of Law and has been a featured speaker for MCLE and Worcester County Bar Association seminars. Judge Wrenn has also been active in county and state bar associations, including serving as a Member of the Executive Committee (2001-2005), the Bench and Bar Committee (2005-2011), and the Community Relations Committee (2004-2011) of the Worcester County Bar Association. Judge Wrenn also served as the Co-Chair of the Worcester County Bar Association’s Superior Court Committee (2008-2011) and as Co-Chair of its District Court Committee (1996-1998).
Judge Katherine A. Field, Judge Member
The Honorable Katherine A. Field was appointed to the Commission in 2018. Judge Field is the First Justice of the Bristol County Probate and Family Court, where she has presided since her appointment as a judge in 2010.
Prior to her appointment as a judge, Judge Field was an Attorney and shareholder at Gay, Gay & Field, P.C., where she worked for twenty-five years in the areas of divorce, paternity, adoption, and guardianship. Judge Field also served as a member of the Judicial Nominating Commission from 2003 to 2005. Judge Field is a graduate of Boston College Law School and has served as a panelist for MCLE and the Massachusetts Bar Association. She has also been active in the local, county, and state bar associations, including serving as the President (2001-2002), Vice President (2000-2001), Treasurer (1999-2000) and Secretary (1989-1991) of the Bristol County Bar Association.
Herby Duverné, Lay Member
Herby Duverné was appointed a lay member of the Commission in 2019. He is the Principal and CEO of Windwalker Group LLC, an award-winning, 8(a) small business with more than 25 years of experience in developing physical and cybersecurity solutions that help businesses protect and prepare; delivering custom learning and training solutions that guide teams to success; and offering professional services solutions that help customers meet a variety of business objectives.
Before becoming an entrepreneur, Mr. Duverné held the position as director of emergency management and deputy director of aviation security at the Massachusetts Port Authority (Massport), which oversees Logan International Airport. His leadership directly contributed to Logan Airport's designation as “One of the best, most secure airports in the country” by then-TSA Administrator John S. Pistole.
Before Massport, Mr. Duverné served as the Regional Security Manager at State Street Corporation for five years where he managed the on-site security of six corporate buildings in Massachusetts and oversaw the business security control center in Quincy as well as the global operation of its badging system. He also worked as a security professional and manager for several national retail corporations including Kmart and the TJX Companies.
Mr. Duverné devotes many personal hours giving back to the greater Boston community. He formerly served on Somerville's Anti-Gang Board as well as its Human Rights Commission. He was also the president of the Board of Directors of the Haitian Coalition of Somerville from 2001 to 2003. Mr. Duverné is currently a Governor’s appointee to the Massachusetts Children's Trust Board of Directors and serves as President of the Board of the Boston Foundation’s Haiti Development Institute.
Mr. Duverné is the recipient of multiple awards and recognition such as the 2003 State Street’s William S. Edgerly Community Service Award, the 2005 Northeastern University’s Medallion Award, the 2005 YMCA’s Black Achievers Award, the 2016 Boston’s GK25 and the 2016 ILC’s Immigrant Entrepreneur of the Year Award for Business Growth.
Mr. Duverné earned both Bachelor's and Master's degrees at Northeastern University in criminal justice administration.
Jacqueline A. O'Neill, Lay Member
Jacqueline A. O'Neill was appointed to the Commission in 2014. She is currently employed as the Harvard University Marshal. Ms. O'Neill previously served as the chief of staff for Harvard's President and Provost; and prior to that, as Harvard's associate vice president for state and community relations. Ms. O'Neill has served on the National Board of Common Cause, the Massachusetts Board of Regents, and the Higher Education Coordinating Council. She has been a trustee at the Brigham and Women's Hospital and currently serves on their Women's Health Leadership Council and the President's Advisory Committee.
She has also been chair of the fiduciary board of the American Repertory Theatre, a trustee of Shady Hill School and Beaver Country Day School, and chair of the board of McBride House, a residence for individuals and families living with HIV/AIDS. Ms. O'Neill graduated from Boston College with a Bachelor of Arts Degree and the Harvard Kennedy School of Government where she received a Master's Degree in Public Administration.
Felicia P. Wiltz, Ph.D., Lay Member
Felicia P. Wiltz, Ph.D., was appointed to the Commission in 2014. She is an associate professor at Suffolk University and has served as the Chairperson of Suffolk University's Sociology Department since 2006. She previously worked as a Cooperative Education Coordinator and Lecturer at Northeastern University. Dr. Wiltz is a frequent presenter or lecturer on workplace diversity and has authored or co-authored scholarly works on that subject. She is also a frequent presenter on the topics of breast cancer and the experiences of black women survivors of breast cancer.
Dr. Wiltz served as a member of the trustee board of the Bethel A.M.E. Church in Boston, from 2009 to 2012; as a member of the board of directors of Daybreak Pregnancy Resource, Inc., from 2007 to 2010; and as a member of the advisory board for the Black Women Breast Cancer Survivors Project, from 2005 to 2010. Dr. Wiltz received a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration from Savannah State University; a Master of Education Degree in Counseling from Northeastern University; and in 2002, she earned a Ph.D. in Sociology from Northeastern University.
Edward P. Ryan, Jr., Esq., Attorney Member
Edward P. Ryan, Jr., Esquire was appointed to the Commission in 2016. He is the Managing Partner at O’Connor and Ryan, P.C. in Leominster, Massachusetts. Mr. Ryan has significant federal and state court trial experience in a diverse array of matters, including criminal, civil, personal injury, civil rights, and divorce and estate matters. He has also served, by court appointment, as a discovery master and guardian ad litem, monitoring litigation for the court and reviewing accounts in estate matters.
Mr. Ryan is a past President of the Massachusetts Bar Association (2000-2001). Mr. Ryan has also served as President of the Worcester County Bar Association, the Northern Worcester County Bar Association, and the Bar Advocates of Worcester County, Inc. He is a member of the American Association for Justice, the Massachusetts Academy of Trial Attorneys, the National Association of Criminal Defense Attorneys, and the Massachusetts Association of Criminal Defense Attorneys.
Mr. Ryan served as an Assistant District Attorney/Student Prosecutor in the Worcester County District Attorney’s Office from 1973 to 1977. In private practice since 1977, Mr. Ryan has been involved in a number of high-profile cases, including his successful defense of a homeless person against manslaughter charges stemming from the tragic Worcester Cold Storage Warehouse fire. As labor counsel to the cities of Fitchburg and Gardner, Mr. Ryan has negotiated labor contracts on behalf of those municipalities and has handled a wide variety of labor disputes as an advocate and hearing officer. More recently, he has served as counsel to various unions. Mr. Ryan has represented both employees and corporate employers in various private sector labor matters. Mr. Ryan has also appeared as a legal analyst and commentator for various media outlets, including NECN, WBZ, and the Fox News Channel.
Mr. Ryan has received the American Jurisprudence Awards for Criminal Law, Administrative Law, Trusts, and Constitutional Law; the Massachusetts Bar Association Gold Medal Award (2007); and in 2014, was named Lawyer of the Year by the Frank J. Murray Inn of Court. He was also named Lawyer of the Year by Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly in 2000, and Martindale-Hubbell, the nation’s premier attorney directory, has given Mr. Ryan a rating of AV, which is its highest rating for lawyers.
Mr. Ryan is admitted to practice in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, the U.S. Supreme Court, the 1st U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, and the U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts. He is on the Massachusetts Committee for Public Counsel list of attorneys approved for appointment in murder cases, and is also on the Federal Criminal Justice Act panel of attorneys qualified to accept appointment in federal criminal cases in Massachusetts. He received his undergraduate degree from Wheeling Jesuit College in 1972 and graduated magna cum laude from Suffolk University Law School in 1976.
Patricia Saint James, Esq., Attorney Member
Patricia Saint James, Esquire was appointed to the Commission in 2018. Ms. Saint James is a Member of the Boston law firm of Tarlow, Breed, Hart and Rogers, where she concentrates her practice in all aspects of Domestic Relations law.
Ms. Saint James is President Ex-Officio of the Massachusetts Family and Probate American Inn of Court. She is AV-rated by Martindale-Hubbell Legal Directory (its highest rating for legal ability and professional ethics), has been named a Massachusetts Super Lawyer each year since 2006 by Boston Magazine, was named one of the best lawyers in Massachusetts by the Boston Globe, and was named one of the top women lawyers in the northeast by Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly.
Ms. Saint James is a past Chair of the Family Law Section of the Boston Bar Association. In that capacity, she worked with the Bar and Judiciary to initiate the Lawyer for the Day Program in the Commonwealth’s Probate and Family Courts. She served as a Board Member and Vice-President of the Arts and Business Council/Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts, is a past Board Member of the Massachusetts Family and Probate American Inn of Court, and a past Member of the Boston Bar Association Continuing Legal Education Steering Committee.
Ms. Saint James co-authored the chapter on valuation for the Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education Divorce Law Practice manual and is often called upon to teach seminars in the areas of business valuation, taxation, jurisdiction and real estate, and to serve as a special master in complex business disputes.
Ms. Saint James obtained her law degree from the University of Pennsylvania Law School, where she was an Arthur Littleton Legal Writing Instructor. She graduated magna cum laude with a Bachelor’s Degree from Central Connecticut State University and summa cum laude with a Master’s Degree from the University of Connecticut.