Frank Torres, a former New York State Supreme Court Justice, son of a family court attorney and father of a later federal judge, supported greater Hispanic representation in the legal profession and the courts. He was in Bronk on Thursday. If he died. He was 93 years old.
His daughter, Analisa Torres, a judge at the United States District Court in Manhattan, confirmed that she died in hospital of complications from pneumonia.
In an article in the Journal of the New York State Bar Association in 1991, he complained that there are 1.8 million Hispanic Americans and 2,000 Hispanic attorneys practicing in the state of New York City, but what is surprising is that New York City York not Hispanic federal judge.
“This kind of absence,” he wrote, is widely regarded as “a legacy of unequal opportunity and racial discrimination in America.”
His complaint was filed shortly before Judge John Caro (he was the first Puerto Rican to be named a member of the New York Court of Appeals) withdrew his status as a federal judge. He was nominated by Democratic Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan, but George H.W. Bush has been in the nomination for several years.
However, when Judge Carro retired, Senator Moynihan’s Judicial Selection Committee was set to triumph: another Bronx judge, Sonia Sotomayor, who was confirmed and later became the first Hispanic jurist to join the Supreme Court of the United States.
To help increase the ratio of Hispanic attorneys to judges, Judge Torres encourages high school and college students to study law, and encourages attorneys to run for judicial office, including elections and appointments. He also publicly asked law firms to expand their network by hiring employees, and asked the judicial selection committee to find more Hispanic candidates.