NATIONAL CRIMINAL DEFENSE COLLEGE FACULTY
State Public Defender
William M. Ward is the State Public Defender for Minnesota. Previously, Bill served as Chief Public Defender for the Fourth District – Hennepin County, Minnesota (April 2009-June 2014) and as Chief Public Defender, Tenth Judicial District, Minnesota (January 2001- April 2009). Prior to moving to Minnesota, Bill worked in the Law Office of the Cook County Public Defender, Cook County, Illinois (1987 – 2001). While there, he practiced in Chicago as well as the 6th Municipal District as a Felony Trial Assistant and Trial Supervisor. Bill has served as an adjunct at Hamline University Law School, William Mitchell College of Law (now Mitchell Hamline School of Law) and DePaul University College of Law, instructing on trial advocacy. Bill is on faculty at the National Criminal Defense College, Illinois Extended Trial Advocacy Program, Wisconsin Trial Skills Academy, the Minnesota Public Defender Trial Advocacy Institute and has presented or coached on many topics in numerous jurisdictions. Bill previously served as Chair of the Systems Builders Committee for the National Association for Public Defense. Bill received his J.D. from DePaul University College of Law and his B.A. from the University of Illinois. Admitted to practice in Minnesota and Illinois.
DePaul University College of Law
Attorney at Law
Lisa Monet Wayne is an attorney in private practice in both state and federal courts around the country. She is also “Of Counsel” to Gerash and Steiner P.C.. She represents individuals and corporations in both the investigation phase and criminally accused capacity. Previously, Wayne was a Colorado State Public Defender for 13 years where she served as office head, training director, and senior trial attorney. She lectures nationally with NACDL, National Criminal Defense College, National Institute of Trial Advocates, Numerous Public Defender Organizations, American Bar Association, and many other legal organizations. Wayne is currently an adjunct law professor at the University of Colorado where she teaches trial advocacy, and she serves on faculty at the Trial Practice Institute at Harvard Law School, The National Criminal Defense College, and Cardoza Law School.
Ms. Wayne is an advocate in all venues of the media addressing important issues confronting the criminally accused. She is a legal analyst for numerous media outlets including, ABC, CBS, CNN, Al Jazeera, World Radio and Fox regarding high profile cases around the country. She is frequently quoted in print media such as the Wall Street Journal, New York Times, Washington Post, Detroit Free Press, and the AP wire. Ms. Wayne testified before the United States Sentencing Commission in 2012 against the implementation of the Federal Sentencing Guidelines as mandatory. In 2005, Wayne was honored with the Robert J. Heeney Award, NACDL’s most prestigious recognition. Wayne is the Past President of NACDL, President of the Foundation of Criminal Justice, and serves on numerous committees’ around criminal justice issues.
Wayne is a law graduate of Pepperdine University Law School in Malibu, CA, and an undergraduate degree in Psychology from the University of Colorado.
Recent Teaching History
Judge, Dane County Circuit Court
Judge Mario White was appointed to the Dane County Circuit Court bench in 2020 by Governor Tony Evers He handles both criminal and civil cases. Prior to being appointed to the bench, Mario was a Dane County Circuit Commissioner. In that role, he presided over an array of cases, including small claims, family law and criminal law. Before that, Mario was as an Assistant State Public Defender. As a trial lawyer, White was recognized for his abilities when the Wisconsin Law Journal named him a 2017 Leader in the Law. White has been on the faculty of the National Criminal Defense College in Bristol, Rhode Island and teaches at the Wisconsin Public Defender Trial Skills Academy. After graduating from the University of Wisconsin Law School in 2008, Judge White became an adjunct professor coaching mock trial. A 2005 graduate of Oklahoma State University, Judge White was named a 2018 OSU Outstanding Alum by the Oklahoma State University College of Arts and Sciences.
Recent Teaching History
Federal Defender – California Eastern
Ms. Williams has worked in the Office of the Federal Defender for the District of Arizona since 1994. Prior to her appointment as FPD in 2013, she had served as first assistant federal public defender since 2006. She led the Tucson Criminal Defense Unit and assisted in supervision of staff in district offices in Flagstaff, Phoenix, and Yuma, and an out-of-district office in Salt Lake City, Utah. Ms. Williams also helped manage the district’s Capital Habeas Unit. The Office of the Federal Defender for the Eastern District of California, which opened 1,966 new cases in fiscal year 2016, is headquartered in Sacramento and maintains a fully-staffed branch office in Fresno.
Ms. Williams began her career in public service in 1988 as an assistant public defender for Pima County Office of the Public Defender in Tucson, Arizona, where she handled felony cases including death penalty homicides, drugs, sex crimes, and child abuse. Prior to that, she worked as an associate attorney in San Diego, California, from 1986 to 1988. A Tucson native, Ms. Williams received her bachelor’s degree, summa cum laude, from Pittsburgh State University in 1982 and her J.D. from the University of San Diego Law School in 1985.”
Senior Assistant Public Defender; Houston County Public Defender Office
LaToya Simone Williams began her quest for excellence at an early age. She graduated as Valedictorian of the 2005 senior class of George Washington Carver High School in Columbus, GA. LaToya then continued her tedious journey through education at Albany State University, where she graduated Cum Laude with a Bachelor of Arts in English. She then went on to matriculate at Mercer University’s Walter F. George School of Law where she obtained her Juris Doctor and then an LL.M. (Master of Laws) in Federal Criminal Practice and Procedure.
LaToya is a servant leader who believes in providing her clients with zealous advocacy and compassionate service. LaToya is currently a Senior Assistant Public Defender in the Houston Judicial Circuit Public Defender’s Office in Warner Robins, GA. She is also an adjunct professor of paralegal studies and business technologies at Central Georgia Technical College and adjunct professor of criminal justice and business law Miller-Motte Technical College. She is a member of Georgia Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers where she has served as a faculty member of the Bill Daniel trial advocacy program, Faculty member of the National Criminal Defense College, Past-President of the Houston County Bar Association, Past-president of the Houston County Young Lawyers Division, member of the Macon Reentry Coalition, member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. and many more civic and social organizations. She is the owner of Vision Venture Consulting, LLC, a business consulting firm that specializes in personnel development and commodity building and branding. She is also the owner of The Dream Team Events and Planning, an event coordinating, catering, and design business.
LaToya believes that a curve in the road doesn’t mean the end of the road unless you fail to make the turn.
Recent Teaching History
2022 NCDC Trial Practice Institute (June Session)
2021 NCDC Trial Practice Institute (July Session)
Owner, Brett Willis Law LLC
Brett Willis has defending people since birth. His entire legal career has been dedicated to defending people who are accused of committing crimes. From 2005 to 2022 he worked as a Georgia Public Defender in Hall County. In 2022, he opened his own law firm.
He is a member of the inaugural class of Gideon’s Promise. At present, Brett serves as an instructor for: the Harvard Law School, the Georgia Public Defender Council, and GACDL’s Bill Daniel Program.
He is the author of Georgia’s only practice guide on defending against the charge of failure to register as a sexual offender. In 2008, Brett successfully challenged the constitutionality of the sex offender registration law as applied to homeless persons in Santos v. State, 284 Ga. 514 (2008).
In 2010, Brett was selected as one of ten Georgia lawyers under forty “On the Rise” in a review by The Fulton County Daily Report. In 2011, he was recognized for securing a dismissal for a woman accused of poisoning her husband with arsenic; the case had been slated to appear on TruTV. In 2013, he was featured in the HBO documentary Gideon’s Army. Also in 2013, he was awarded the prestigious Foot Soldier award by Gideon’s Promise. In 2014 Brett was named the Georgia Public Defender of the Year. He earned his J.D. from the University of Georgia (2003) and his Master of Laws from New York University (2004).
Recent Teaching History
Bronx Public Defender
Kathryn (Katie) Wozencroft is currently the Deputy Managing Director of the Criminal Defense Practice at The Bronx Defenders. She was previously the first ever Training Director of the office where she was responsible for developing and implementing substantive and skills trainings for over one hundred practicing attorneys. She is also a member of the homicide practice group and forensic practice group at the Bronx Defenders. Katie is currently the Director of Defenders’ Academy Trial College, an annual trial skills program held at CUNY Law School that teaches innovative litigation techniques to over 100 practicing criminal, family and immigration public defenders from across the country. She has guest lectured and taught at the Holistic Defense Clinic at Columbia Law School, the Criminal Justice Institute at Harvard Law School, the National Criminal Defense College and the New Jersey Public Defender. Prior to her work as a public defender, she clerked for the Hon. Eldon Fallon in Federal District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana. She received her J.D. from Harvard Law School in 2009.