Faculty Information

  • Biography

    B.S., Union College
    J.D., Brooklyn Law School
    M.A.P.A., University of Virginia
    Ph.D., University of Virginia

    Clerked for Judges Matthew J. Jasen and Stewart F. Hancock Jr. of the New York State Court of Appeals. Held U.S. Supreme Court Judicial Fellowship. Served in U.S. Army Military Intelligence and Judge Advocate General's Corps. Joined Albany Law School in 1990. Has taught as a visiting professor at Syracuse University College of Law and the Maxwell School of Public Affairs. Author of "Streams of Tendency" on the New York Court:Ideological and Jurisprudential Patterns in the Judges' Voting and Opinions (W.S. Hein). Published recent articles on judicial decision making, state constitutional law, criminal and civil rights, legal ethics, and New York Court of Appeals. Founding editor-in-chief, Government, Law, & Policy Journal (New York State Bar Association). Editor, State Constitutional Commentary and director, The Center for Judicial Process.

    Prof. Bonventre is also the author of New York Court Watcher, a blog devoted to commentary on developments at the Supreme Court, the New York Court of Appeals, and other state supreme courts nationwide. And he is the founder and Director of the Center for Judicial Process.

    Many of his publications can be accessed at SSRN.​

  • Center for Judicial Process

    ​The Center for Judicial Process is an independent, nonpartisan, nonprofit organization devoted to the interdisciplinary research and study of courts and judges, including decision-making and voting, the judicial role and selection, and other facets of the judicial process. The Center's mission is to encourage such research and study and to provide a forum for publication.

    The organization of the Center, as well as the research and study undertaken and published, is intended to be primarily the work of students. It is operated by a staff of students of Albany Law School, under the direction of Albany Law School Professor Vincent Martin Bonventre. The Center, however, welcomes law students and law-related graduate students nationwide to participate in the work of the Center and to contribute research and study of the judicial process for publication.

    Ultimately, the Center's aim in encouraging and publishing judicial research and studies is to serve as a valuable educational resource for the academic community, public officials, journalists, and the public at large.

  • Recent Presentations

    Taylor Law Conference [PPT], 5/16/08: "Public Sector Labor Law in the Kaye Court"

    Rockefeller Institute [PPT], 10/15/07: "NY Court of Appeals: The Judges, Selection & Making of the Current Court"

    NYS Legislative CLE [PPT], 12/14/06: "The Pataki Court"

    Rockefeller Institute [PPT], 11/06: "The Court of Appeals: 'Non-Political Merit' Appointment"

    New York Court of Appeals Criminal Law Update [PPT], 11/05

    The Cornell PowerPoint Presentation [PPT] -- i.e., The NYSBA Criminal Justice Section Fall Meeting at Cornell University, 11/08/03​

  • Selected Media Commentary

    New York Law Journal

    Defense Bar Considers Rosenblatt The 'Swing' Vote on Criminal Justice Issues By John Caher

    ....as the 69-year-old judge heads into his last year on the bench before mandatory retirement, there is a recognition in the defense community that with the increasingly polarized Court of Appeals...Judge Rosenblatt's vote is crucial....

    [T]he New York State Bar Association's Criminal Justice Section.... were joined by Albany Law School Professor Vincent M. Bonventre, who for the last 15 years has tracked the voting patterns of Court of Appeals judges.

    The professor's research, presented at the Bar Association event, validated statistically what other panelists noted anecdotally.

    Mr. Bonventre's study of voting patterns in 67 criminal cases over several years shows that:

    • Three of Republican Governor George E. Pataki's appointees - Judges Victoria A. Graffeo, Susan Phillips Read and Richard C. Wesley (now of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit) - have never taken a more pro-defendant position in a criminal case than the majority of the Court.
    • Judge Rosenblatt, also an appointee of Mr. Pataki, has never taken a more pro-prosecution position than the majority of the Court. In other words, he has never broken from a pro-defendant majority to join a dissent favoring the prosecution.
    • Two members of the Court - Judges George Bundy Smith (an appointee of Democratic Governor Mario M. Cuomo) and Robert S. Smith (an appointee of Mr. Pataki) - have parted with the majority at times to advance a pro-defendant position, and at times to argue for the prosecution.
    • Chief Judge Judith S. Kaye and Judge Carmen Beauchamp Ciparick are voting for the defendant more frequently than they were a few years ago. Some commentators have suggested that the consistently conservative positions taken by Judges Graffeo, Read and Wesley have nudged the chief judge and Judge Ciparick back toward the left, where Mr. Bonventre's study shows they were before Mr. Pataki exerted his influence on the Court.

    "Wesley, Graffeo and Read never - not once - disagreed with a pro-prosecution position on the Court," Mr. Bonventre said in an interview last week. "They all have dissented, but every time it was to take a more pro-prosecution position. On the other hand, Rosenblatt never disagreed with a pro-defendant position of the Court. Not once. Every single time the Court decided in favor of the rights of the accused, Rosenblatt was with the Court. Every time he disagreed, he took a position more protective of the rights of the accused. I find that staggering."

    Still, Mr. Bonventre said, Judge Rosenblatt is hardly "the poster judge for the rights of the accused, like his predecessor," the late Vito J. Titone, who served from 1985 to 1998.

    "Titone was by far the most pro defendant, liberal judge on the Court," Mr. Bonventre said. "Rosenblatt is not that. His voting is not nearly as liberal as Titone's, but it is also nothing like the other Pataki appointees - Wesley, Graffeo and Read. He is the non Pataki judge."

    October 16, 2005
    Albany Times Union

    Packed dockets hinder justice - Watchdog group says Schenectady County needs 2nd county judge By ANNE MILLER

    The Schenectady County courthouse is overwhelmed. The caseload is so heavy that a statewide watchdog group has singled out the county as desperately in need of another full-time county judge. [But] Rensselaer County snagged an additional county judge in the last round of new judicial postings. The county has some need, but it's also home to the state Senate majority leader.

    "That's insane -- but that's politics," said professor Vincent Bonventre, of Albany Law School. "The politicians and parties are pretty jealous of their judgeships. The politicians and parties in other counties don't want to part with their judges. You end up having to move them around."

    In the late 1970s, the concept of moving judges to help in busy courts was hatched under Court of Appeals Chief Judge Lawrence H. Cooke, who desperately needed judges in New York City. The rural judges revolted, unwilling to forsake their quiet homes for a week in the Bronx courts....

    Rarely does the Legislature create new judgeships two years running...."To create a bunch of judgeships and come back again and create a bunch of other judgeships -- that's not likely," Bonventre said.

    July 08, 2005
    New York Law Journal

    Obituary: Judge Vito J. Titone Jr. By John Caher

    Vito J. Titone Jr. - a Staten Island judge who proudly carried the banner of liberalism in a long career that concluded with 13 years on the Court of Appeals - died Wednesday night, a day after his 76th birthday. He had long struggled with diabetes and related health ailments....

    Albany Law School Professor Vincent M. Bonventre, who clerked at the Court of Appeals during part of Judge Titone's tenure and has tracked the Court since, said Judge Titone "was the most reliable defender of constitutional rights against government abuse."

    Mr. Bonventre added that Judge Titone "really believed that the primary function of courts and judges is to stand between the government and the individual. He was the most loved and loveable figure in the courthouse."

    July 7, 2005
    The Associated Press / New York Newsday

    Former Court of Appeals Judge Vito Titone Dies

    Vito J. Titone, who served 13 years on the state's highest court and penned landmark decisions on issues ranging from child custody to police searches, has died at a nursing home in New York City. He was 76....

    Vincent Bonventre, a professor at Albany Law School, said Titone stood his ground against criticism that he was too liberal from politicians such as Gov. George Pataki and former New York City Mayor Rudolph Giuliani.

    "He was just far and away the most reliable protector of constitutional rights [against] government abuse throughout his tenure on the court," Bonventre said. "Even when the court came under harsh criticism for being too liberal by politicians ... Judge Titone just dug his heels in and was steadfast. He really was remarkable."

    June 27, 2005
    The New York Times

    In Reversals, Questions for Ex-Judge Challenging Morgenthau By LESLIE EATON

    It was hardly an unusual moment in the career of Leslie Crocker Snyder, a New York State judge known for tough talk and long sentences, who is now running for Manhattan district attorney....Judge Snyder has historically had a very strong record of prevailing when her decisions have been appealed....[T]he Court of Appeals....which tends to focus on cases with broad legal applications, has upheld Ms. Synder in 7 out of the 11 appeals since 1988. "That's a pretty darn good record," said Vincent M. Bonventre, a professor at Albany Law School who studies the Court of Appeals.

  • Streams of Tendency

    Streams of Tendency, Hein Cite
    "Streams of Tendency" On the New York Court: Ideological and Jurisprudential Patterns In the Judges' Voting and Opinions (W.S. Hein, 2003)
    Title Page
    Table of Contents
    STREAMS OF TENDENCY ON THE NEW YORK COURT may be ordered directly from the publisher, W. S. Hein
    Order and Review/s




  • The Best of New York's Court of Appeals, New York Law Journal, October 2013

  • Toward the Lippman Court: Flux and Transition at New York’s Court of Appeals, 73 Albany Law Review 889 (2010)

  • The Fall of Free Exercise: From ‘No Law’ to Compelling Interests to Any Law Otherwise Valid, 70 Albany Law Review 1150 (2008)papers.cfm



  • Book Review, reviewing Bernard S. Meyer, Burton C. Agata and Seth H. Agata, THE HISTORY OF THE NEW YORK COURT OF APPEALS, 1932-2003, 49 American Journal of Legal History 497(2007)

  • Changing Roles: The Supreme Court and the State High Courts in Safeguarding Rights, 70 Albany Law Review 841 (2007)papers.cfm

  • Appellate Division on Appeal: The Justices' Rates of Agreement, Rejection, and Vindication by the Court of Appeals, 70 Albany Law Review 983 (2007) (with Jason A. Cherna and Jessica Blain-Lewis)Bonventre.Article.pdf

  • Judicial Activism, Judges' Speech, and Merit Selection: Conventional Wisdom and Nonsense, 68 Albany Law Review 557 (2005)papers.cfm

  • Judicial Politics? What is New?, The Christian Science Monitor, September 24, 2003, at 9

  • Richard C. Wesley: Voting and Opinion Patterns on the New York Court, 66 Albany Law Review 1065 (2003) (with Todd A. Ritschdorff and Erika L. Bergen)


  • Court of Appeals Update, 2000 & 2001: Conservative Voting, Narrow Rulings, 65 Albany Law Review 1085 (2002) (with Kelly M. Galligan)

  • Albany Law School on the High Court, 64 Albany Law Review 1155 (2001)

  • ALS on the High Court, Albany Law School Magazine 18 (Spring/Summer 2001)

  • Public Law at the New York Court of Appeals: An Update on Developments, 2000, 64 Albany Law Review 1355 (2001) (with Amanda Hiller)

  • Tribute to Chief Judge Lawrence H. Cooke: 1914-2000, 64 Albany Law Review 1 (2000)

  • Tribute to Chief Judge Lawrence H. Cooke: 1914-2000, 2 (no.2) Government, Law & Policy Journal 8 (2000)

  • The Diallo Case, "People v. Boss": Panel Discussion, 63 Albany Law Review 969 (2000)

  • Book Review, reviewing ALL THE LAWS BUT ONE: CIVIL LIBERTIES IN WARTIME by William H. Rehnquist, 221 (no. 21) New York Law Journal 2 (Feb. 2, 1999)

  • Editor-in-Chief, Government, Law and Policy Journal (semiannually, vol.1- , 1999-continuing)

  • Editor's Foreword, Government, Law and Policy Journal (semiannually, vol.1-, 1999-continuing)

  • Constitutional Law: Many Constitutional Challenges Fail, 220 (no. 67) New York Law Journal S3 (Oct. 5, 1998)

  • Court of Appeals Bashing: Political Rhetoric, Media Hysteria, and Reality, The Defender 60 (July 1997) (with Judi De Marco)

  • Court of Appeals Bashing: a Reality Check, 69 (no. 5) New York State Bar Journal 10 (1997) (with Judi De Marco)

  • State Constitutional Jurisprudence: Decision Making at the New York Court of Appeals (State Constitutional Law: Adjudication and Reform) (Panel Discussion), 13 Touro Law Review 3 (1997)

  • Court Bashing and Reality: A Comparative Examination of Criminal Disposition at the New York Court of Appeals and Neighboring High Courts, 36(no.1) The Judges' Journal (American Bar Association) 8 (1997) (with Judi A. DeMarco)

  • Yes: Litigants Deserve a Justice with an Open Mind (A Right to Talk: Has Justice Scalia Compromised His Objectivity with a Public Remark?), 83 ABA Journal 72 (February 1997)

  • Editor's Foreword, State Constitutional Commentary, (special annual issue), Albany Law Review (vol. 60-, 1997-continuing)

  • Editors' Note, State Constitutional Commentary, (special annual issue), 59 Albany Law Review 1540 (1996) (with J. Dormer Stephen)

  • Editor, State Constitutional Commentary, (special annual issue), Albany Law Review (vol. 59-, 1996-continuing)

  • Professional Responsibility, 1994-1995 Survey of New York Law, 46 Syracuse Law Review 765 (1995)

  • New York and the Supremes: State Constitutional Law on the Rebound at the Court of Appeals, 5(no. 4) State Constitutional Commentaries and Notes 19 (1995)

  • New York's Chief Judge Kaye: Her Separate Opinions Bode Well for Renewed State Constitutionalism at the Court of Appeals, 67 Temple Law Review 1163 (1994)papers.cfm

  • Court of Appeals - State Constitutional Law Review, 1991, 14 Pace Law Review 353 (1994)

  • Changing Course at the High Court, 20 (no.3) Empire State Report 55 (1994) (with John Powell)

  • The New York Court of Appeals: An Old Tradition Struggles with Current Issues, 22 Perspectives on Political Science 149 (1993)

  • Professional Responsibility, 1992 Survey of New York Law, 44 Syracuse Law Review 453 (1993)

  • Religious Liberty as American History, 17 (no. 2) Update on Law-Related Education (American Bar Association) 41 (1993)papers.cfm

  • Foreword: Dedication to the Honorable Stewart F. Hancock, Jr., 9 Touro Law Review 545 (1993)

  • The Duty of Fair Representation Under the Taylor Law: Supreme Court Development, New York Adoption, and a Call for Independence, 20 Fordham Urban Law Journal 1 (1992)papers.cfm

  • Fair Representation Under the Taylor Law: Federal Development, State Adoption, and Prospects for Independence, in TAYLOR LAW: 25 YEARS OF PUBLIC SECTOR COLLECTIVE BARGAINING (Government Law Center, Albany Law School, 1992)

  • Tilting the Scales of Justice, 18 (no.6) Empire State Report 21 (1992)

  • State Constitutional Adjudication at the Court of Appeals, 1990 and 1991: Retrenchment is the Rule, 56 Albany Law Review 119 (1992)

  • Professional Responsibility, 1991 Survey of New York Law, 43 Syracuse Law Review 505 (1992)

  • State Constitutional Recession: The New York Court of Appeals Retrenches, 4 Emerging Issues in State Constitutional Law 1 (1991)

  • Court of Appeals - State Constitutional Law Review, 1990, 12 Pace Law Review 1 (1991)

  • Police Powers and the State: National Security, Freedom and Amendments II & III, in MORE THAN MERE PARCHMENT - THE BILL OF RIGHTS (New York State Bar Association, 1991)

  • Professional Responsibility, 1990 Survey of New York Law, 42 Syracuse Law Review 697 (1991)

  • Professional Responsibility, 1989 Survey of New York Law, 41 Syracuse Law Review 475 (1990)

  • Beyond the Reemergence: "Inverse Incorporation" and Other Prospects for State Constitutional Development, 53 Albany Law Review 403 (1989)papers.cfm

  • State Constitutionalism in New York: A Non-reactive Tradition, 2 Emerging Issues in State Constitutional Law 31 (1989)papers.cfm

  • Professional Responsibility, 1988 Survey of New York Law, 40 Syracuse Law Review 527 (1989)

  • A Classical Constitution: Ancient Roots of Our National Charter, 59 (no.8) New York State Bar Journal 10 (1987)

  • An Alternative to the Privilege Against Compulsory Self-Incrimination, 49 Brooklyn Law Review 31 (1982)papers.cfm

Forthcoming Publications

Selected Achievements

  • Professor Vincent Bonventre, Justice Robert H. Jackson Distinguished Professor of Law, presented on U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia's legacy at Green Mountain Academy in Dorset, Vermont, on October 18, 2016.

  • ​Professor Vincent Bonventre, Justice Robert H. Jackson Distinguished Professor of Law, co-moderated the Justice Jackson Lecture titled "The Path to the Federal Prosecutor's Office" at Albany Law School on September 26, 2016.

  • Professor Vincent Bonventre, Justice Robert H. Jackson Distinguished Professor of Law, delivered the Constitution Day keynote at Siena College on September 21, 2016.

  • Professor Vincent Bonventre presented at the New York State Bar Association CLE "U.S. Supreme Court and New York Court of Appeals Round-Up" on July 20, 2016.

  • Professor Vincent Bonventre presented ​to the New York State Bar Association Committee on the State Constitutional Convention on the Bill of Rights in the state constitution on July 14, 2016.

  • ​Professor Vincent Bonventre gave the opening plenary session talk "Court of Appeals Review: Transition to the DiFiore Court" for the New York State Judicial Institute's 2016 Summer Regional Program in Rochester, N.Y. on June 14, 2016.

  • Professor Vincent Bonventre​ presented on U.S. Supreme Court decision-making in the aftermath of Justice Scalia's death at the 2016 Joint Seminar for the First, Second, Third and Fourth Judicial Departments held at the Second Department in Brooklyn, N.Y. on May 11, 2016.

  • Professor Vin Bonventre presented “Constitutional law issues pertaining to criminal cases” at the Criminal Law Symposium presented by the Schenectady County Bar Association Civil and Criminal Litigation Committee and Anelli Xavier, P.C. on April 1, 2016.

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