Rappaport Executive Director Named to Probation Task Force

Susan Prosnitz


The Supreme Judicial Court has appointed Susan Prosnitz of the Rappaport Center for Law and Public Service at Suffolk University Law School to serve on the task force examining the hiring and promotional practices of Probation and other departments of the Massachusetts Judicial Branch.

Prosnitz, an attorney, is executive director of Rappaport Center, which addresses law and public policy issues while promoting leadership in public service and pro bono work.

An independent counsel appointed by the SJC found “systemic abuse and corruption of the hiring and promotion processes of the Probation Department,” abuses that also were explored in a Boston Globe Spotlight series.

The task force has been charged with reviewing “hiring and promotion procedures in the Judicial Branch” and making recommendations for ensuring fairness and transparency within a system that will base personnel decisions on applicant qualifications.

Former Attorney General L. Scott Harshbarger of Proskauer Rose LLP will chair the task force, which includes members of the legal community, public policy makers, and academics. It will report to the justices.

Appointment of the task force is one of several steps taken by the SJC in response to the report on the Probation Department by Independent Counsel Paul F. Ware, Jr., of Goodwin Procter LLP.

Prosnitz has held several senior positions in state and local government, including general counsel to the Executive Office of Public Safety and Security, chief counsel to the Massachusetts Highway Department, general counsel and executive director for the Special Advisory Task Force on Massport, and chief of litigation for the Boston Police Department. She has served as co-chair of the Governor’s Task Force on Hate Crimes and led the Statewide Racial and Gender Profiling Task Force and Working Committee.

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