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Program Staff

Jill Backer, Esq., Director

Jill Backer was a criminal defense attorney in Chicago before going into legal sales. Upon return to her native NY in 2002, she took a job at Brooklyn Law School where she built one of the first employer outreach programs in the nation at a law school. Jill spent 12 years at Brooklyn Law School. She has been the Chair of the NALP employer outreach section. She is also the Director of the New Directions Attorney Re-entry program at Pace Law School. Jill has been the Assistant Dean at Pace Law School’s office of Career and Professional Development since 2014. Jill is a graduate of Marquette University and Quinnipiac University School of Law.

Kathryn (Katy) Gutowski, Esq., Associate Director

Kathryn (Katy) Gutowski graduated from the University of Washington and Boston University School of Law. After law school, she returned home to Seattle and practiced commercial litigation with Perkins Coie. After four years there, she moved to the New York area and practiced commercial litigation and insurance law with Simpson Thacher. Following the birth of her second child, Katy left Simpson Thacher and joined Seton Hall Law School as an adjunct professor teaching Insurance Law and New York Practice. Katy left Seton Hall Law School when she gave birth to twins. After a number of years as the full-time caregiver of her four children, Katy completed the New Directions program in December of 2009. Under the auspices of that program, she externed at Rutgers-Newark Law School where she drafted a proposal to revise the law school’s orientation and academic support programs. Katy also worked at Pace Law School’s admissions office as a volunteer and conducted mock interviews for the New Directions program. She is a member of the Association of the Bar of the City of New York’s Committee on Career Advancement and Management.