Washington, DC (July 27, 2021) – Attorney Barry J. Pollack received the Robert C. Heeney Memorial Award from the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (NACDL) at the Association’s annual meeting held on July 24. The prestigious Robert C. Heeney Memorial Award is given annually to the one criminal defense attorney who best exemplifies the goals and values of the Association and the legal profession.
"It is an honor and a privilege to recognize Barry Pollack’s immense contributions to the profession with the Robert C. Heeney Memorial Award," said NACDL Immediate Past President Christopher W. Adams. "Barry’s unwavering commitment to his clients, the defense function, and the Constitution serves as inspiration to criminal defense lawyers across the nation."
Pollack is a Partner at Robbins, Russell, Englert, Orseck, & Untereiner in Washington, DC. He has served on the NACDL Board of Directors as well as President of the Association from 2016-17. He was previously a member of the Trial Penalty Recommendation Task Force and has served as a chair of the Association’s White Collar Crime Committee, Department of Justice Dialogue Committee, and National Security Committee.
Pollack represents individuals and corporations in criminal investigations and trials and in other government enforcement matters, such as Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) proceedings. Pollack also conducts corporate investigations. As a former certified public accountant (CPA), a substantial focus of his practice is the litigation of complex financial matters. Pollack’s criminal practice has included the representation of individuals in grand jury proceedings, trials, sentencings, appeals, post-conviction proceedings, pardon petitions, and independent counsel and congressional investigations. Pollack has extensive jury trial experience. He obtained acquittals on all counts on behalf of a former executive of Enron Corporation in a federal criminal case. His client was one of only two Enron executives to be acquitted by a jury.
Pollack also represented Martin Tankleff, whose double murder conviction was reversed and all charges against him dismissed. Pollack led a team of pro bono counsel that presented evidence that Tankleff was innocent of the crimes for which he spent 17 years in prison. The Mid-Atlantic Innocence Project honored Pollack with its Defender of Innocence Award and the New York State Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers honored Pollack with its Gideon Champion of Justice Award for his successful representation of Tankleff. Pollack also led a pro bono defense team on behalf of Fernando Bermudez, who had been serving a 23-years-to-life prison sentence for murder. The judge ruled for Bermudez, reversed his conviction, and dismissed the indictment.
Pollack was inducted as a Fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers in 2008, and in 2013 as a Fellow in the American Board of Criminal Lawyers. He serves on the Board of Directors of Rising for Justice and the Washington Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights and Urban Affairs. He is a past President of the Mid-Atlantic Innocence Project. He has been listed in Chambers USA, The Best Lawyers in America®, Washington, D.C. Super Lawyers®, Washington's Top Lawyers (Washingtonian Magazine), Legal 500, Ethisphere Institute's Attorneys Who Matter, the American Trial Lawyer Association's Top 100 Trial Lawyers in Washington, DC, and was named a Benchmark Litigation: Local Litigation Star in 2021. Pollack graduated with high honors from Indiana University and received his J.D. from the Georgetown University Law Center.