Search News & Press Releases

NJSBF’s High School Mock Trial Program inspiring generations of students, lawyers

January 3, 2023
Contact: Thomas Nobile
Director of Communications
Tel: 732-937-7527
[email protected] 
NEW BRUNSWICK – The New Jersey State Bar Foundation’s annual mock trial competitions are a shining example of how legal and education communities come together to provide interactive learning experiences for high school students outside of the classroom. 
Using an original case the NJSBF’s Mock Trial Committee prepares, student teams take on the roles of attorneys, witness and jurors and present the case in county courtrooms for the first round of competitions. Regional competitions heat up this winter and the finals are held at the New Jersey Law Center. The winning team represents the state at the National Mock Trial Championship held each spring. The program helps students develop skills in public speaking, critical thinking, and teamwork. 
Launched in 1982, the number of teams participating in the Vincent J. Apruzzese High School Mock Trial Competition has grown from 70 to over 200, with more than 3,000 students participating each year. Hundreds of members of the legal community volunteer to coordinate, coach and judge teams across New Jersey. 
From Mock Trial witness to judge to coach
Walter Luers, a partner at Cohn Lifland Pearlman Herrmann and Knopf in Saddle Brook, had the role of witness on the 1991 Bergen Catholic High School mock trial team, the year it won not only the New Jersey state competition but the national championship. For over 10 years he has volunteered as a competition judge and is now coach for his daughter’s mock trial team. 
“Coaching a team or judging a competition can help reinvigorate an attorney’s love and faith in the practice of law. I keep coming back to volunteering for the mock trial program because I think it is important that lawyers show students that a legal career is built not just on hard work and perseverance, but also on teamwork, cooperation, and public service.”
Student interaction at its best
Julie Nugent, an associate at Fox Rothschild in Atlantic City, has been a mock trial volunteer for nearly a decade. She has judged high school competitions, elementary students in the Foundation’s the Law Fair Competition and is now the Atlantic County coordinator for local high school competitions. 
“Watching students compete is a fun and fulfilling experience. Their enthusiasm reminds me of how great it is to be part of the legal profession. There are not a lot of opportunities for students of any age to engage directly with members of the local bar, judiciary, and other members of the legal profession. This program provides a way for attorneys and judges to provide insight into the legal profession while giving back to the community in a way that can help shape a young mind.” 
Volunteering has its rewards
For seven years, Travis Nunziato, an associate attorney at Laddey, Clark & Ryan in Sparta, has volunteered as a judge for Sussex and Morris County competitions and coached high school teams. He also serves as the Sussex County coordinator and a judge for Law Fair. 
“I volunteer with the mock trial program to give back to the very program that opened my eyes to the legal profession while I was in high school. My high school experience led me to pursue a career in law and fueled my passion for trial work. As long as the mock trial program is around, I will be volunteering in some capacity. Nothing compares to hearing about a student you previously coached moving onto to law school.”
To volunteer to be a mock trial coach or judge, visit


Contact: NJSBA Communications Department
Tel: 732-937-7527
Email: [email protected]


Founded in 1899, the NJSBA is the largest organization of attorneys, judges and legal professionals in New Jersey. At the core of our mission is improving the lives of our members, advancing the rule of law and serving as the voice of the profession. With 85 sections and committees, the NJSBA allows attorneys to benefit from being part of the most wide-reaching legal association in the state, while still cultivating expertise and building networks within specialized practice areas.



The New Jersey State Bar Association is committed to promoting and fostering a diverse and inclusive bar association. The Association recognizes that the broad concept of diversity includes race, ethnicity, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, religion, age and disability. The NJSBA fosters and promotes an inclusive environment that gives value to the unique contributions of diverse individuals and organizations in all aspects of the Association.

Learn More


The NJSBA Legal and  Government Affairs Department serves as the liaison between NJSBA members and the state’s three branches of government.


The New Jersey Law Center is located at 1 Constitution Sq, New Brunswick, NJ, 08901. Need directions to the Law Center? Click on the button below to get started right away.

Contact NJSBA

NJSBA Contact Us Form
If you're looking for an attorney, click here for help.

If you cannot afford an attorney and have a civil matter, click here for Legal Services of New Jersey.

Looking for information about a specific lawyer? Contact the Lawyer’s Fund for Client Protection at 855-533-3863.

Have a complaint about a lawyer? Visit the Office of Attorney Ethics website. Select “Attorney Discipline” from the navigation bar for discipline of attorneys.

Contact Info

One Constitution Square
New Brunswick, NJ 08901

9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday - Friday

Fax 732-249-2815

Email us

NJSBA Meetings and Events Calendar

From section, committee and division meetings with valuable CLE credit, to receptions and dinners and special events, the New Jersey State Bar Association regularly holds meetings so our members can meet their mandatory CLE requirements and network with the state’s largest attorney membership.

View Calendar

2024 Mid-Year Meeting

The New Jersey State Bar Association is thrilled to announce the 2024 Mid-Year Meeting will be held in Dublin, Ireland at The Shelbourne Hotel, Nov. 2-9.

View more information

2024 Annual Meeting & Convention

The New Jersey State Bar Association is thrilled to announce the 2024 Annual Meeting & Convention will be held at the Borgata Hotel, Casino & Spa May 15-17

For more information, or to register today, visit the links below:

Access Seminar Materials

Practice HQ Training Events

Lawyers aren't taught practice management skills, and the NJSBA is here to fill the gap — no matter whether you are just starting out, mid-career or thinking about wrapping up their practices. Our PracitceHQ is here to help with webinars, informative articles, free consultations, comparison charts and so much more.

Practice HQ Training Events


The new NJSBA member benefit Decisis will help you level-up your legal research.

Decisis gives members access to a robust database of local and federal case law is necessary information often used to structure your case. Decisis provides industry-leading tools to make legal research easier and more intuitive, and it’s a free benefit to all active New Jersey State Bar Association members.

Decisis Training Events

Networking Events

The NJSBA provides a host of networking events so members can maintain relationships with existing colleagues and make new connects. Join us at a baseball game, the hockey arena, for a community service project, or another event.

Upcoming Networking Events

Benefits Of Membership

As a member of the New Jersey State Bar Association (NJSBA), you will join a powerful network of 16,000 legal professionals across the state of New Jersey. NJSBA membership grants you access to year-round virtual and in-person networking events, leadership and professional development opportunities, member-only discounts, educational resources to help you stay in the know and much more!

Practice Management Tools

The NJSBA provides tools lawyers need to improve their practice, from our comprehensive PracticeHQ library of resources; a career center to find your next colleague or opportunity; an intuitive and high-powered legal research platform; and a robust Member Assistance Program to connect members, and those who live in their households, with experienced counselors and resources to address mental health needs.



As an NJSBA member, you'll become part of the collective power of the NJSBA network, giving you the ability to influence legislation and caselaw in New Jersey. Let’s work together to shape the future and solve critical issues facing attorneys and the public.

Become a Member Today!


Membership helps you build and maintain a powerful network through our in-person and online events with attorneys all over the state.


Become a Member Today!

Become A Partner Organization

The New Jersey State Bar Association (NJSBA) offers an exclusive partnership opportunity to amplify your organization’s impact and drive success. By harnessing the power of the NJSBA legal community, you can connect with our vibrant network of 16,000 legal professionals from 35+ different areas of practice, unlocking unparalleled opportunities for growth and achievement.


News and Press Publications

Learn more about the accomplishments of the Association, its members and events from regular news updates, press releases, and our award-winning magazine.



Read the comments, reports, resolutions and Board of Trustee news from the state’s largest organization of lawyers, judges and legal professionals.


Statements and Positions

The NJSBA is the voice of the profession and takes public positions on a range of issues with the legal community and government officials. It also takes positions on legislation and files friend-of-the-court briefs on matters that impact the profession. 

Photo Galleries

Check out photos from recent NJSBA events.

View Photo Albums

You do not have permission to view this form.