Delaware’s Skadden Arps’ Partner Voss Tries to silence Citizens Group to No Avail

I’ve been using my column as a soapbox to complain about Chancery Court Chancellor, Andre Bouchard, and what I view as the lame nonsense and bullying coming from his bench over the past few years, specifically from the TransPerfect case, among other things, which have been, in my opinion, levels of corruption, too hard to believe. His ties to law firm giant, Skadden Arps, have been well documented here and elsewhere over the past few years.

Well, folks, now we’re seeing what I think is a new low for even this group, new facts have come to light, according to the press release below that, Jennifer Voss, who is a partner in the Skadden Arps’ Wilmington office, was “purported to act on behalf of the Delaware Judiciary when she attempted to silence the advocacy group, Citizens for Pro-Business Delaware (CPBD).” The group is founded by TransPerfect employees and Delaware residents and is looking to help create transparency, accountability and diversity in Delaware courts. So why is Voss seemingly trying so hard to silence this group, in coordination with the Chancery Court? Is it because they’ve been critical of her colleague Robert Pincus? Something isn’t right here, folks.

As we all are, this Citizens group is protected by the First Amendment and no matter how hard attorney Voss tries, that isn’t going to change. Thank goodness our founding fathers created a Constitution that is designed to protect all of us, including free speech, which is one of the things that sets this country apart from others and makes America great! Authoritarian and corrupt people in all walks of life will attempt to skew the law and ignore the Constitution if you let them get away with it. The appearances of impropriety continue to be rampant, in my view, with what I further believe, between such law firms, the state’s courts, and the Bar Association.

Founder Chris Coffey doubled down on the group’s commitment to pursuing these changes and will continue to strive for these goals. Citizens for Pro-Business Delaware are willing to put their money where their mouths are. He said the group will be spending half-a-million dollars this year to put a spotlight on failures in Delaware’s courts while continuing their battle for reform.

He even plans to create a political action committee, dedicated to electing candidates at every level of Delaware’s government. As someone who has deeply cared about and influenced Delaware politics for years, I think that’s a perfectly good idea! No doubt with the dedication and capital this organization is willing to commit, Citizens for Pro-Business Delaware will be an effective political operation! Call me, Mr. Coffey, anytime. I’d be happy to advise you and your group on the ways of Delaware politics and how to get things done in America’s First State! I am happy to promote the changes you advocate because things are not right in Delaware these days in my opinion!

I think Ms. Voss’s attempts to silence Citizens is downright unconstitutional. The First Amendment, this Citizen’s Group, and our great state won’t go down so easily!

Let me know what you think about this, folks! Delaware is Rising!


Skadden Arps’ Jennifer Voss “Committed a Serious Breach of Ethics” in Attempting to Silence Citizens for a Pro-Business Delaware, TransPerfect Lawyers Say in Recently Filed Court Documents

Citizens for a Pro-Business Delaware pledges to spend $500,000 in 2020 highlighting the failures in Delaware’s courts, in addition to forming a Political Action Committee

May 07, 2020 10:00 AM Eastern Daylight Time

WILMINGTON, Del.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Following a series of recent filings in the Delaware Court of Chancery, new facts were released publicly that Jennifer Voss, a partner in Skadden Arps’ Wilmington office, was purported to act on behalf of the Delaware Judiciary when she attempted to silence the advocacy group, Citizens for Pro-Business Delaware (CPBD). CPBD, a grassroots organization founded by TransPerfect employees, advocates for transparency, accountability and diversity in the Delaware Judiciary has been subject to threats and hate mail from some of Delaware’s elite law firms.

“If Voss and Skadden would like to engage in a meaningful conversation about how to end corporate corruption and cronyism, and the overwhelming lack of diversity in the Delaware Chancery Court, we’ll meet them anytime and anywhere – we’re in this fight for the long haul.”

During a heated exchange of attorney correspondence, Voss is alleged to have publicly posted privileged settlement communications between attorneys representing TransPerfect and Skadden Arps in violation of ethical canons. The substance of the emails revealed that Voss sought to silence the CPBD movement by disallowing any public discourse that casts a negative light on Custodian Robert Pincus, Skadden Arps, the Chancery Court system, and the State of Delaware.

Said Citizens for a Pro-Business Delaware Campaign Manager Chris Coffey, “Our organization is made up of more than 5,000 Delawareans working to increase accountability, transparency, and diversity not just in the state’s judiciary, but the entire government. The First Amendment clearly protects our right to call out injustice where we see it. It’s unfortunate that Skadden would try to dictate the actions of our members without actually talking to us directly. But what we want to see happen should come as no surprise to anyone, as we have relentlessly advocated for our platform for increased judicial transparency, accountability, and diversity for the better part of a year. To demonstrate our commitment to stay in Delaware for the long haul, we will be spending over $500,000 this year to highlight the failures of transparency and diversity in Delaware’s courts and advocating for reforms to fix the broken status quo, and we’re planning to declare a political action committee dedicated to electing candidates at every level of the state government who support our cause.

“If Voss and Skadden would like to engage in a meaningful conversation about how to end corporate corruption and cronyism, and the overwhelming lack of diversity in the Delaware Chancery Court, we’ll meet them anytime and anywhere – we’re in this fight for the long haul.”

Citizens for a Pro-Business Delaware fight for commonsense and modern-day reforms to the archaic Chancery Court system, and for more diverse representation in courts, and government and in law. It supports the following legislative initiatives:

1.    Establishing an independent Office of Inspector General with a degree of jurisdiction over the Chancery Court, which would ensure a rigorous and regular review process for auditing the Chancery Court’s decisions.

2.    Ensuring that Delaware’s courts reflect the ‘broad diversity’ of Delaware’s citizenry.

3.    Introducing transparency to the judicial nomination process by making public the members of the judicial nominating commission and the names of the candidates they put forward to the Governor.

4.    Building awareness of the lack of diversity in Delaware’s legal industry and advocating for a diverse pipeline to Delaware’s elite law firms.

5.    Ensuring that appointed Members of Courts can’t serve on the Court of Judiciary, which has the power of judicial review.

6.    Ensuring that if a Justice of the Chancery Court appoints a custodian or a receiver to any Firm, Corporation or Officer of the Court for whom they were previously employed or shared business interests with, this conflict must be disclosed and consented to by both parties.

7.    Requiring that any custodian or receiver appointed by the Delaware Chancery Court itemize and make public a complete list of costs incurred because of acting in that capacity.

8.    Allowing a camera in the Chancery Court to ensure that a public record exists of the Court’s actions, allowing citizens and good government groups to audit the Court’s actions and deliberations to make sure they honor justice and transparency.

9.    Requiring ‘wheel spin’ in the Chancery Court so that Chancery Court

Chancellors cannot select cases based on their own self-interest.

10.  Requiring financial disclosure by Delaware’s judges so the public can see the income they receive outside their judicial salaries, including investments, business and charitable affiliations and gifts.

About Judson Bennett

Captain A. Judson Bennett was a life- long resident of Lewes, DE. He served the maritime industry for 33 years, primarily as a Delaware River Pilot, guiding large ships to the Port of Philadelphia. Captain Bennett has been an active and consistent entrepreneur over the years.

He was elected as a Lewes City Councilman for 6 years. Afterwards he ran for the Sussex County Council as a Republican, and with 20 thousand people voting, lost Delaware’s closest election by 3 votes to an 8 year incumbent. Abandoning his personal political ambitions, he became the Republican District leader, advocating conservative values. Captain Bennett became a lobbyist in the state legislature advocating among many ideas, financial literacy concepts in education. He managed several political campaigns, including one for Governor of Delaware and one for the US Senate against VP Joe Biden. He is now the owner, operator, and writer for the Coastal Network which communicates regularly with over 6000 people throughout the State of Delaware.

Captain Bennett is a graduate of St. Andrew’s School in Middletown, DE (where the movie “The Dead Poet’s Society was filmed) and also graduated “Magna Cum Laude” from the University of Delaware with a BA in Criminal Justice and an MA in Liberal Studies.

He is now a Widower, living in West Palm Beach, Florida. Captain Bennett has one son, three grandchildren, and one great grand-daughter, all who live in Richmond, Virginia.