The Second Annual Niagara Law Center Holiday Party and Toy Drive CLE, held each year at the Castellani Art Museum of Niagara University, is one of the larger toy drives in Western New York.

The Niagara Law Center combined a unique recipe of holiday party, legal seminar, swearing-in ceremony and toy drive last Thursday, Dec. 8, at the Castellani Art Museum of Niagara University.

Judging by the impressive turnout and vast collection of toys piled up in the middle of the museum’s main gallery, the event was a major success.

“We were thrilled to see the enthusiasm and generosity of this year’s participants,” said Niagara University Assistant General Counsel Ryan Thompson, who operates the Niagara Law Center in collaboration with the Bar Association of Niagara County.

The Niagara Law Center – while broadening its mission to help NU students find internships, as well as have more local lawyers and judges involved through the recent creation of the NLC Advisory Board – will still operate primarily in the realm of Continuing Legal Education (CLE). And this holiday party was no different; it was immediately preceded by a CLE titled “Santa Who? Identity Theft and How to Keep Your ‘Toys’ Safe.”

Admission to the event was $50 worth of new, unwrapped toys. The toys are being distributed to children in Niagara County.

Following the seminar, the Bar Association of Niagara County swore in its new officers and directors.

“To be sworn in as president alongside my fellow officers and directors at this festive and charitable event just makes it all the more special,” said Patricia McGrath, the new president of BANC.

The event was sponsored by Chicago Title Insurance CompanyHarter Secrest & Emery LLPBuffalo Marriott Harborcenter, Niagara Falls attorney Jim Faso Jr., and Paramount Settlement Planning LLC.

For more information on Niagara University’s Continuing Legal Education programs, please visit, or contact Ryan Thompson at ude.aragain@yttacg or 716.286.8324.

Photos by NU communication studies major Emily Kernin.

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