News Release ~ 09/15/2005

Nordyke Hired as Katrina Disaster Relief Liaison

Washington, DC (September 15, 2005) – The National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers is pleased to announce the appointment of Keith B. Nordyke, a defense lawyer in Baton Rouge, La., with outstanding contacts throughout Louisiana and the Gulf region, as our new Katrina Disaster Relief Liaison. NACDL hired Keith as a temporary full-time staff lawyer upon the recommendation of our state affiliate organization, the Louisiana Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers. Keith will work full-time for the next several weeks representing the interests of defense lawyers, their staffs, and families  throughout the affected areas as they struggle to rebuild their practices.

This position is being funded by the NACDL, based on a unanimous decision of the NACDL Executive Committee last week to hire a local Gulf region coordinator.

Keith's duties will include the following (though we recognize these duties may change in the days ahead):

  • Surveying all relevant federal, state, and local government offices in Louisiana, Alabama, and Mississippi to assess how these offices are able to assist criminal defense lawyers – including, but not limited to, the provision of loans, grants, in-kind contributions, computer hardware and software, office equipment, and other items so that defense lawyers in the affected areas are able to resume thepractice of law as soon as practicable;
  • Surveying all relevant non-governmental and humanitarian organizationsthat are able to provide material, financial, emotional, and other support to defense lawyers, their families, and their employees, and to publicize the existence of these service to defense lawyers and their families in the affected areas;
  • Relaying in a timely manner to defense lawyers in the affected areas all relevant information garnered from contacts with governmental and nongovernmental agencies;
  • Serving as the Program Officer for the NACDL Katrina Disaster Relief Fund (the “Fund”), which is being raised by NACDL’s Foundation for Criminal Justice, and in that capacity, gather and screen applications for financial assistance from defense lawyers in the affected areas and forward them to NACDL for processing and distribute funds to individuals or organizations as authorized by the Trustees of the Foundation for Criminal Justice.

As of September 15, NACDL members and Affiliate organizations have raised more than $100,000 for disaster relief.

Keith Nordyke's e-mail address is: knordyke@nordykelaw.com.

The National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers is the preeminent organization advancing the mission of the criminal defense bar to ensure justice and due process for persons accused of crime or wrongdoing. A professional bar association founded in 1958, NACDL's approximately 10,000 direct members in 28 countries – and 90 state, provincial and local affiliate organizations totaling up to 40,000 attorneys – include private criminal defense lawyers, public defenders, military defense counsel, law professors and judges committed to preserving fairness and promoting a rational and humane criminal justice system.

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