January 14, 2015
The Association of Women Attorneys New Orleans Chapter is honoring the work of Professor Becki Kondkar, new director of Tulane Law School’s Domestic Violence Clinic, with the Wynne Professionalism Award.
Professor Becki Kondkar, director of Tulane Law School’s Domestic Violence Clinic, has been selected for the Michaelle Pitard Wynne Professionalism Award from the Association of Women Attorneys New Orleans chapter.
The award, to be presented Jan. 15, honors service and professionalism, qualities exemplified by Wynne, who was a U.S. Magistrate Judge in 1982-94 and taught in Tulane Law’s Trial Advocacy program.
Kondkar has represented domestic violence victims for 15 years and has been a leader in improving the legal system’s response to abuse. She also provides training for law enforcement throughout Louisiana and, through the state Attorney General’s Office, is helping develop a course and manual for training prosecutors in handling domestic violence cases.
Gov. Bobby Jindal recently appointed her to the state’s new Domestic Violence Prevention Commission.
Dean David Meyer called Kondkar “an inspiring teacher and a savvy leader” in the law school’s clinical program. There, she represents domestic violence clients and supervises law students representing clients in protective order, child custody and family law cases in Orleans and Jefferson parishes. In January, she succeeded Professor Tania Tetlow as director of the Domestic Violence Clinic.
“Students regularly praise Professor Kondkar for her rigor and for pushing them to do their very best for clients, but also for her care and compassion,” Meyer wrote in a letter supporting her nomination for the award.
Kondkar teaches and mentors students not only about the law but about their role in counseling clients. As such, she acts as a role model who “combines a seasoned grasp of legal process and remedies with a wise and far-sighted understanding of the client’s broader interests in what are often deeply complex family systems,” Meyer said.
Kondkar joined the Tulane Law faculty in 2006 after spending several months assisting New Orleans residents who had been displaced by Hurricane Katrina and faced hurdles with housing, insurance coverage, loans and other matters in rebuilding their lives.
Previous Wynne Award winners include Tetlow, Professor Emerita Cindy Samuel (L ’72) and Jane Johnson (L ’74), Tulane Law’s director of experiential learning.