Partridge Snow & Hahn is pleased to announce that Steven Snow has been named Lawyer of the Year by Rhode Island Lawyers Weekly. This recognition comes as a result of Snow’s representation of Congregation Jeshuat Israel of Newport earlier this year. This victory will have a lasting impact on Newport’s Jewish history and will ensure that the nation’s oldest synagogue will continue to serve as a public place of worship.
The congregation that has worshipped at Touro Synagogue, the nation’s oldest synagogue, had been in a dispute with a New York City congregation over the ownership of the synagogue and colonial-era silver bells valued at $7.4 million. The bells, called “rimonim” in Hebrew, adorn Torah scrolls and were made by colonial silversmith Myer Myers.
In May, U.S. District Judge Jack McConnell awarded Congregation Jeshuat Israel, of Newport, control of Touro Synagogue, rejecting arguments from Congregation Shearith Israel that it is the synagogue’s rightful owner. Per this ruling, Congregation Jeshuat Israel will be legally able to sell the bells for the purpose of creating an endowment that will enable it to preserve the historic synagogue located in Newport, R.I. as a place of worship, while maintaining the structure and its historic purpose. The case has since been appealed to the 1st Circuit.
Snow is the first of three Rhode Island lawyers to be recognized by Lawyers Weekly over the next few weeks for their ability to prevail in cases that raised challenging issues and posed significant hurdles in Rhode Island.
Snow provides counsel to clients in complex civil trials including antitrust and trade practices, banking and consumer finance, intellectual property, employment and health care. He has over 100 reported federal and state court decisions to his credit, including a landmark constitutional case (Salve Regina College v. Russell) which he successfully argued to the United States Supreme Court. Steve has served as lead trial counsel in some of the region’s most notable civil cases, including precedent-setting antitrust, constitutional, and consumer class action litigation.