ALBANY, NY (01/27/2017)(readMedia)-- Judges Lawrence K. Marks, William C. Thompson and Milton Mollen have been honored by the Judicial Section of the New York State Bar Association. The jurists received their awards January 27 at the State Bar Association's Annual Meeting in New York City.

"The Judicial Section is thrilled to be acknowledging the accomplishments of three legal luminaires-

extraordinary people who have contributed beyond measure to the profession," said state Supreme Court Justice Marsha Steinhardt, who serves as the section chair.

Marks, who was appointed New York's chief administrative judge in July 2015, received the Distinguished Jurist Award. He oversees the day-to-day operations of the statewide court system, which has a $2.5 million budget, 3,600 judges and 15,000 nonjudicial employees in 300 locations.

Marks previously served as first deputy chief administrative judge, administrative director of the Office of Court Administration and special counsel to the chief administrative judge. Prior to joining the state court system, Marks was senior supervising attorney with the Legal Aid Society in New York City and a litigation associate with Hughes Hubbard and Reed.

Thompson received the award for Advancement of Judicial Diversity. Thompson served more than 20 years as an associate justice of the Appellate Division before retiring from the bench in 2001. He was a member of the state Senate from 1965 to 1968.

Thompson is co-chair of the nonprofit Blacks and Jews in Conversation and takes jurists to tour Israel. He is a founder and director of the Bedford Stuyvesant Restoration Corp. and a former regional director of the NAACP. He is also treasurer of Judges and Lawyers Breast Cancer Alert.

Mollen, who spent seven decades as a judge and lawyer, was honored with Lifetime Achievement Recognition. Mollen spent 24 years on the bench, 12 serving as presiding justice of the New York State Appellate Division, Second Department. After retiring from the bench in 1990, he served New York City in various roles including as deputy mayor for public safety. In that role he chaired the "Mollen Commission," which investigated corruption in the New York City Police Department.

Mollen founded the New York office of Judicial Arbitration and Mediation Services (JAMS), a private alternative dispute resolution provider. Prior to becoming a judge in 1966, Mollen worked in the mayor's office, including stints as an assistant corporation counsel and chair of the mayor's Housing Policy Board.

The 72,000-member New York State Bar Association is the largest voluntary state bar association in the nation. It was founded in 1876.