Hon. Florence Perlow Shientag

Founder & Past President

Hon. Florence Perlow Shientag (Frankel) received a Bachelor of Science from NYU (1929) and law degree from NYU School of Law (1931). She was Law Secretary to NYC Mayor Fiorello LaGuardia and then clerked for Thomas Dewey, Special Prosecutor in NY County. In 1941, she became a Judge of the Domestic Relations Court (predecessor to Family Court). In 1943, she became an Assistant United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, the first woman prosecutor in the Criminal Division. In 1954, she established a private practice in domestic relations and the representation of artists. She was the first woman to successfully argue a First Amendment case before the U.S. Supreme Court (1954). She served as NYWBA President (1941-1942), Officer, Director, and Committee Chair, and was an active member for more than 60 years. She was also in the first class of women admitted as a member of the New York City Bar in 1937 and served as Chair of its Committee on Law and the Arts. She became the first female elected to the NYCLA Board of Directors of the New York County Lawyers’ Association (1942-1949) and chaired its Committee on the Domestic Relations Court. She was a member of the National Committee on Wiretapping and Electronic Surveillance and served on the Boards of the United Nations Development Corporation and the Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt Institute. Prior to her passing in 1997 at the age of 102, she underwrote an annual $10,000 NYWBA scholarship for law students, and thanks to her generous bequest NYWBA is able to provide CLE to current members for free.