DSO Training Events

Train the Trainers Workshop

Location: Cincinnati, Ohio
Date: October 24 - 26, 2019

The Train the Trainers (TTT) Workshop is designed to enhance training skills and expand the pool of experienced legal professionals available to serve as faculty at local legal education programs designed for Criminal Justice Act (CJA) panel attorneys and federal defender staff, as well as national Defender Services Office, Training Division (DSO-TD) events. Participants will learn, discuss, and apply principles of adult learning, effective training design, small group facilitation skills, and persuasive presentation techniques and methodologies. The workshop is open to CJA Attorneys, federal defender staff (Assistant Federal Defenders, Research and Writing Specialists, Computer Systems Administrators, Paralegals, and Investigators) and others who provide services under the CJA. All participants must bring a laptop loaded with presentation software to the workshop. Prior to the beginning of the program, each participant is required to provide an outline of a presentation. Registration is limited to a total of 40 people. Limited financial assistance may be available to non-federal defender registrants for travel expenses.


Location: Long Beach, CA
Date: November 07 - 09, 2019

In the digital era, knowledge about managing, reviewing, and analyzing electronic discovery or voluminous discovery is a critical skill for criminal defense attorneys.  In fact, the first principle of the national joint electronic discovery protocol developed by representatives of the Department of Justice, Federal Public Defenders, CJA panel attorneys, and the Defender Services Office reflects this trend in the law: "[l]awyers have a responsibility to have an adequate understanding of electronic discovery." (See ESI Protocol). This is a position that the ABA has adopted. See Commentary to Model Rule of Professional Responsibility 1.1.

The Law & Technology Series: Techniques in Electronic Case Management (TECM) Workshop exposes CJA panel attorneys and FDO staff to the legal, strategic, and technological considerations involved with electronic and/or voluminous discovery.  This two-and-a-half-day program uses a combination of plenary presentations and small group, hands-on instruction.  Besides gaining an understanding of the legal, practical, and technological considerations in these types of federal criminal cases, participants will learn basic and advanced features of three litigation support software programs (Adobe Acrobat Pro, dtSearch, and CaseMap/TimeMap suite).  Attendees will better understand how legal litigation support programs work, and how to coordinate thoughtful workflow processes with co-counsel, staff, and potential vendors. They will also improve their overall ability to master case information, in order to better prepare a defense.


Location: Oakland, California
Date: September 05 - 07, 2019

CRIMES DECODED:  Emerging Digital Technology Litigation Strategies

Trial Skills Workshop II focuses on Litigation Strategies for Emerging Digital Technology’s impact on Criminal Cases.  This is a brand new program that explores the intersection of digital technology and criminal investigations. We aim to increase understanding and inspire CJA lawyers and Federal Public Defenders to think innovatively about how to litigate issues surrounding the digital technology that increasingly permeates our cases. We want to build lawyers’ confidence to use traditional advocacy skills with a new understanding of the vulnerability of the technology that the government relies on.  Although criminal investigations are changing by using artificial intelligence-based decision making, the same skills and questions we have always utilized in criminal defense work can be adapted to emerging digital technology today.  This workshop will “decode” the technology and increase your advocacy skills.  The program is a skills-based workshop. The expectation is that participants spend most of the workshop on their feet practicing their advocacy skills. The skills learned are not limited to the trial setting; they are geared toward other hearings like bail hearings, evidentiary hearings, Daubert and SR violation hearings. Participants are divided into small groups to practice the skills necessary to effectively exclude, explain, and/or persuade a Judge or Jury about the technology utilized.  Lectures and demonstrations of these skills supplement and inform the small group workshops.

Attendance will be capped at 70 participants and each participant must apply to be accepted to the program.  Completed applications will be reviewed in the order they are received.

The Andrea Taylor Sentencing Advocacy Workshop

Location: Cincinnati, Ohio
Date: September 12 - 14, 2019

The Andrea Taylor Sentencing Advocacy Workshop focuses on a vital area of federal practice that has evolved since the Supreme Court declared the federal sentencing guidelines were advisory and no longer mandatory. Since approximately 97% of federal criminal cases continue to the sentencing phase, participation in the Sentencing Advocacy Workshop should not be missed. The Sentencing Advocacy Workshop teaches a comprehensive approach to sentencing where participants are trained to develop persuasive, fact-based, sentencing theories, and are provided with the advocacy skills necessary to advance their theories both in writing and during sentencing hearings. Presentations and demonstrations at the workshop include client relations and interviewing for mitigation, fact busting, developing persuasive theories and themes, storytelling at sentencing, persuasive writing, and persuasive presentation. The workshop consists of plenary sessions and small group breakout sessions. In the small group sessions, participants will use pending cases of their own to bust the facts, develop theories and themes, practice storytelling, persuasively write part of their sentencing memorandums and discuss how best to conduct sentencing hearings. Please note that due to the workshop format of this program, participation in all of the sessions is mandatory.

Enrollment for this program is limited to 65 participants – priority will be given to those people who have not attended this workshop in the past. Limited financial assistance may be available to non-federal defender registrants for travel expenses.