You are here

Annual Federal Criminal Practice Seminar Will Be Held on August 23, 2024

Monday, June 24, 2024

The 2024 Federal Criminal Practice Seminar is scheduled for Friday, August 23, 2024, and is presented by the Federal Public Defender Office for the Northern District of Ohio, in association with the Northern District of Ohio Chapter of the Federal Bar Association, and with the assistance of the Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Association. This year, you have the option to attend in person, or by Zoom webinar, but in order to receive the best experience, we encourage you to attend in person.

We are pleased to bring to you: Francisco Morales, Assistant Federal Public Defender, Southern District of Texas, presenting on Voir Dire strategies; Benton Martin, Assistant Federal Public Defender, Western District of Michigan, will present the Sixth Circuit case update; Claire Cahoon, Assistant Federal Public Defender, Northern District of Ohio, and Ryan Mekota, Psy. D., Neuropsychologist, will present on how to effectively work with a mental health expert; Andrea George, Federal Public Defender, Eastern District of Washington and District of Idaho, will discuss representing clients with mental illness in a compassionate, holistic, and client-centered way; and Professor Douglas Berman of The Ohio State University Moritz College of Law will present the annual Supreme Court case update.

This year, we have a special luncheon presentation by three supervisors from our local U.S. Probation and Pretrial Services Office. Paul Skarupa, Dave Filippi and Craig Stubbs will discuss matters related to pretrial release and supervision, offering pointers for best practices. A portion of this presentation will include a question-and-answer session. As a special bonus, those attending in-person will be treated to a deli-style luncheon.

This program has been approved by the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Ohio to satisfy the requirements of Local Rule 57.5(o) and the Criminal Justice Act Plan for CLE training in federal criminal law and procedure. Application has been made to the Ohio Supreme Court CLE Commission for 6.5 hours of general CLE. The program is scheduled to run from 8:30 a.m. through 5:00 p.m. The lunch break (which will include the U.S. Probation presentation) will be from 11:45 a.m. until 1:00 p.m.

The cost to attend is $75.00 for the live in-person event, or $125.00 if attending by Zoom webinar. All current CJA Panel members and County Public Defenders may attend either format for the reduced fee of $25.00. The in-person event will be held at the Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Association, 1375 E. 9th Street, 2nd Floor, Cleveland, OH 44114, and will include lunch for all attendees.

Handout materials, and a course evaluation will be sent by e-mail after the program. CLE credit from the Ohio Supreme Court will be awarded after the program, once your attendance has been verified.



Everyone must register and pay for this event. The preferred payment method is by credit card via PayPal, please visit the Northern Ohio Chapter of the Federal Bar Association website at  and click on “calendar.” To register by check or money order, please complete the attached registration form and mail it to the address listed on the form.


If you registered and paid to attend via Zoom webinar, you must also follow the link below to complete your Zoom registration: Webinar Registration - Zoom Once registered, you will receive a separate e-mail containing your personal Zoom link to the event. You must use your personal link so that the webinar system tracks your attendance for CLE credit.

If you have any questions, please contact the program coordinators, Christine Sason at 216-861-3689, or by e-mail at, or Ashley Chinrock at 216-861-3628, or by e-mail at

Please click here for invite and mail in registration form.

Please click here for the agenda.