News Release

Seattle Defense Attorney Colette Tvedt Appointed Indigent Defense Director for Nation's Criminal Defense Bar

Washington, DC (May 8, 2014) – The National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (NACDL) today announces the appointment of Colette Tvedt as indigent defense training and policy director. She will begin at NACDL this June. Tvedt has devoted her career over the past 25 years to representing poor people accused of crimes. She spent 18 of those years as a public defender and the last seven in private practice with the Seattle law firm, Schroeter, Goldmark & Bender, where she has continued to represent the indigent by court appointment in state and federal court, as well as serving without pay on the board of one of Seattle’s public defender providers.

NACDL Executive Director Norman L. Reimer said: "NACDL is thrilled that Colette Tvedt will lead NACDL's Indigent Defense Reform and Training Department. Colette brings an extraordinary breadth of experience to this position, with a long history of service to the accused and the profession – as a public defender, a private attorney, and as assigned counsel. Her commitment to high quality training and effective reform will position her to be a forceful advocate for indigent defense in this country. Her appointment reflects NACDL's determination to commit substantial resources to the unfinished mission of ensuring that every accused person in the United States has access to the highest caliber advocate in any case in which a criminal conviction may result." 

In addition to a lengthy career as a criminal defense lawyer, Colette Tvedt has extensive experience training attorneys. She has organized training programs for hundreds of defense lawyers and served for several years as the director of the Suffolk Defenders Clinical Program at Suffolk University Law School in Boston. In recent years, in addition to her practice, she has served as professor of advanced trial advocacy at the University of Washington School of Law and at Seattle University Law School. Further, she is a six-time speaker at NACDL continuing legal education programs, including a stint as an NACDL CLE chair. Colette Tvedt is an honors graduate of Rutgers University, where she also attended law school.

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Ivan Dominguez, Director of Public Affairs and Communications, National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, (202) 465-7662 or

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 many thousands of 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 legal system.