Wendy Sibbison

Wendy Sibbison

Attorney
Location:
Greenfield, Massachusetts
Phone:
617-420-8482
Email:

Wendy Sibbison was born in Shaker Heights, Ohio, and grew up in Arlington, Virginia. She is a graduate of Barnard College (B.A. 1968), Columbia University (M.A. 1969), and the Rutgers School of Law-Newark (J.D. 1977). A Fellow of the American Academy of Appellate Lawyers, she has specialized in civil and criminal appeals since 1982, before which she had a general practice for five years in the firm of Lesser, Newman, Sibbison & Souweine in Northampton, Massachusetts. Her appellate clients come from all over Massachusetts and occasionally from other areas of New England. She is admitted to practice before the Massachusetts appellate courts, the United States Supreme Court and the United States Courts of Appeals for the First and Second Circuits. A frequent writer and lecturer on appellate practice, she is a member of the Appellate Bench Bar Committee of the Massachusetts Bar Association.


For seven years she served on the Board of Trustees of the Massachusetts Bar Foundation.  She presently serves on the Board of Directors of the Center for Public Representation, a nonprofit public interest law firm that advocates for the rights of people with mental disabilities.  She has also served as a Hearing Committee member for the Massachusetts Board of Bar Overseers. In 1999 she was appointed by former Chief Justice Herbert P. Wilkins to serve on the Supreme Judicial Court Ad Hoc Committee on Appeals in Cases of Murder in the First Degree, which drafted the amendments to Mass. R. App. P. 19(d) adopted by the Court.

In the area of appellate practice Attorney Sibbison has been listed as a “Super Lawyer” in Law and Politics and Boston magazines since 2006 and in the publication Best Lawyers in America since 2012.  She is the 2001 recipient of the Edward J. Duggan Private Counsel Award, given by the Massachusetts Committee for Public Counsel Services for zealous advocacy and outstanding legal services to the poor; was named a Lawyer of the Year in 1988 and again in 2010 by Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly; in 2011 received the Massachusetts Bar Foundation President’s Award for her dedication to the MBF’s mission and for tireless advocacy on behalf of the nonprofit legal aid providers of Western Massachusetts, and in 2014 became the first recipient of the Brownlow Speer Award, created by the Massachusetts Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers to recognize excellence in appellate advocacy in the defense of the accused.


Attorney Sibbison is noted for having represented the winning appellants in such precedent-setting civil appeals as Rowley v. Mass. Electric Co., 438 Mass. 798 (2003); Messing, Rudavsky & Weliky, PC, v. Harvard, 436 Mass. 347 (2002); Woods v. O’Neil et al., 54 Mass. App. Ct. 768 (2002), Douillard v. LMR, Inc., 433 Mass. 162 (2001), Rotkiewicz v. Sadowsky, 431 Mass. 748 (2000), Roberts v. Southwestern Bell Mobile Sys., Inc., 429 Mass. 478 (1999), Heins v. Ledis, 422 Mass. 477 (1996), Tatro v. Manor Care, Inc., 416 Mass. 763 (1994), and Deerfield Plastics Co. v. The Hartford, 404 Mass. 484 (1989).


She is also noted for her many successes on the criminal side, including reversals of ten first-degree murder convictions.  She was counsel of record for amicus curiae, the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, in support of the successful appellant in Richardson v. United States, 526 U.S. 813 (1999).

Attorney Sibbison has retired from appellate practice.  She now limits her professional activity to pro bono work for the ACLU Immigrant Protection Project of Western Massachusetts (www.ippwma.com), of which she is a founding member.

 

Areas of Practice

  • Civil and Criminal

Bar Admissions

  • Massachusetts, 1977
  • U.S. Federal Courts, 1983
  • U.S. Supreme Court, 1986
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 1st Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 2nd Circuit

Education

  • Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey School of Law - Newark, Newark, New Jersey
    • Doctor of Jurisprudence - 1977
    • Honors: Best Legal Skills
  • Columbia University Barnard College, New York, New York
    • M.A., Master of Arts - 1969
    • Honors: High Honors
  • Barnard College, New York, New York
    • B.A., Bachelor of Arts - 1968

Representative Cases

  • Commonwealth v. DiBenedetto, 475 Mass. 429 (2016)
  • Kitras v. Town of Aquinnah, 474 Mass. 132 (2016)
  • Zeghibe v. Zeghibe, 82 Mass. App. Ct. 614 (2012)*
  • Realty Resources Hospitality Lexington, LLC v. Ayushi, LLC, 82 Mass. App. Ct. 1104, 2012
  • Mass. App. Unpub. LEXIS 828 (June 26, 2012)
  • Commonwealth v. Badillo, 81 Mass. App. Ct. 1142, 2012 Mass. App. Unpub. LEXIS 765 (June 13, 2012) (second degree murder)*
  • Mystic Landing, LLC v. OMLC, LLC, 81 Mass. App. Ct. 1127, 2012 Mass. App. Unpub. LEXIS 445 (April 9, 2012)
  • McEachern v. Budnick, 81 Mass. App. Ct. 511 (2012)*
  • Commonwealth v. MacMillan, 81 Mass. App. Ct. 1125, 2012 Mass. App. Unpub. LEXIS 392 (March 30, 2012)
  • Commonwealth v. Velez, 81 Mass. App. Ct. 117, 2012 Mass. App. Unpub. LEXIS 226 (Feb. 29, 2012)*
  • Freidus v. Hartwell, 80 Mass. App. Ct. 496 (2011)
  • Smith v. The Soldier’s Home In Holyoke, 2011 Mass. App. Unpub. LEXIS 1026 (Sept. 27, 2011)*
  • Elliott v. Elliott, 2011 Mass. App. Unpub. LEXIS 992 (Sept. 6, 2011)*
  • Griswold v. Griswold, 2011 Mass. App. Unpub. LEXIS 291 (Mar. 8, 2011)*
  • N. Adams Ltd. Partnership v. N. Adams, 78 Mass. App. Ct. 602 (2011)
  • Woodside v. Woodside, 79 Mass.App.Ct. 713 (2011)
  • Commonwealth v. DiBenedetto, 458 Mass. 657 (2011)*
  • United States v. Persichilli, 608 F.3d 34 (1st Cir. 2010)
  • Staeb v. Mass. Mutual Ins. Co., 2010 Mass. App. Unpub. LEXIS 1354 (Dec. 16, 2010)
  • Commonwealth v. Sliech-Brodeur, 457 Mass. 300 (2010)*
  • Commonwealth v. Martin, 457 Mass. 14 (2010)*
  • Commonwealth v. Cohen (No. 1), 455 Mass. 600 (2010)*
  • Commonwealth v. Cohen (No. 2), 455 Mass. 634 (2010)*
  • Nickerson et al v. Huttinger et al., 2010 Mass. App. Unpub. LEXIS 1171 (2010)*
  • Altomare v. Altomare, 77 Mass. App. Ct. 601 (2010)*
  • Katzman v. Healy, 77 Mass. App. Ct. 589 (2010)
  • Lambert-Huber v. Huber, 2010 Mass. App. Unpub. LEXIS 1004 (2010)*
  • Time Terminals, Inc., v. Eastern States, 2010 Mass. App. Unpub. LEXIS 530 (2010)
  • Commonwealth v. Bacigalupo, 455 Mass. 485 (2009)*
  • Dahms v. Cognex Corp., 455 Mass. 190 (2009)
  • Anderson v. Hamel, Wickens, and Troupe Funeral Home, Inc., 2009 Mass. App. Unpub. LEXIS 1183 (2009)
  • Chaisson v. Chaisson, 2009 Mass. App. Unpub. LEXIS 1120 (Oct. 29, 2009)*
  • Sheppard v. Zoning Bd. of Appeal, 74 Mass. App. Ct. 8 (2009)
  • Commonwealth v. Eggleston, 453 Mass. 554 (2009)
  • Noonan v. Staples, Inc., 556 F.3d 20 (1st Cir. 2009)*
  • Campbell v. Nickerson, 73 Mass. App. Ct. 20 (2008)
  • Eyster v. Pechenik, 71 Mass. App. Ct. 773 ( 2008)*
  • DeFlaminio v. DeFlaminio, 2007 Mass. App. Unpub. LEXIS ___ (July 5, 2007)*
  • Redstone v. O’Connor, 70 Mass. App. Ct. 493 (2007)*
  • Kernan v. Morse, 69 Mass. App. Ct. 378 (2007)*
  • Gill v. United States, 471 F.3d 204 (1st Cir. 2006)
  • Commonwealth v. LaBelle, 67 Mass. App. Ct. 698 (2006)
  • Dellert v. Geryk, 66 Mass. App. Ct. 1117 (2006) (unpub.)*
  • Falk v. Peeso, 67 Mass. App. Ct. 1110 (2006) (unpub.)
  • Wong v. Wong, 67 Mass. App. Ct. 1107 (2006) (unpub.)*
  • Healy v. Spencer, 453 F.3d 21 (1st Cir. 2006)
  • Hanson v. Cadwell Crossing, LLC, 66 Mass. App. Ct. 497 (2006)
  • Bratsis v. McCourt, 65 Mass. App. Ct. 1123 (2006) (unpub.)*
  • Johnson v. Mahoney, 424 F.3d 83 (1st Cir . 2005)
  • Goldberg v. Board of Health of Granby, 444 Mass. 627 (2005)
  • Commonwealth v. Rosario, 444 Mass. 550 (2005)*
  • United States v. Martins, 413 F.3d 129 (1st Cir. 2005)
  • Foster v. Hurley, 444 Mass. 157 (2005)*
  • Gaw v. Sappett, 62 Mass.App.Ct. 405 (2004)
  • Sampson v. Sampson, 62 Mass.App.Ct. 366 (2004)*
  • Zaskey v. Town of Whately, 61 Mass.App.Ct. 609 (2004)
  • T.F. v. B.L., 442 Mass. 522 (2004)*
  • Seaboard Surety Co. v. Town of Greenfield, 370 F.3d 215 (1st Cir. 2004)
  • Matson v. Matson, 61 Mass. App. Ct. 1119 (2004)(unpub.)
  • Brower v. Brower, 61 Mass. App. Ct. 216 (2004)*
  • Socha v. Tavernier, 61 Mass. App. Ct. 1107 (2004)(unpub.)*
  • Kittredge v. Kittredge, 441 Mass. 28 (2004)
  • Wolfe v. Gormally, 440 Mass. 699 (2004)*
  • Custody of Kali, 439 Mass. 834 (2003)
  • Time Terminals, Inc. v. Eastern States Exposition, 58 Mass. App. Ct. 1110 (2003) (unpub.)*
  • Holland v. BLH Electronics, Inc., 58 Mass. App. Ct. 678 (2003)*
  • Rowley v. Mass. Electric Co., 438 Mass. 798 (2003)*
  • Commonwealth v. Berte, 57 Mass. App. Ct. 29 (2003)*
  • Commonwealth v. Ramirez, 55 Mass. App. Ct. 224 (2002)
  • Noonan Energy Corp. v. F.L. Roberts and Co., Inc., unpub. (Mass. App. Ct., 5/22/02)*
  • Woods v. O’Neil and NYNEX, 54 Mass. App. Ct. 768 (2002)*
  • Burke v. JAS Manufacturing, Inc. unpub. (Mass. App. Ct., 5/3/02)*
  • Commonwealth v. Sullivan, 436 Mass. 799 (2002)
  • C & S Wholesale Grocers v. Westfield, 436 Mass. 459 (2002)*
  • Commonwealth v. Garrey, 436 Mass. 422 (2002)
  • Messing, Rudavsky & Weliky, PC, v. Harvard,436 Mass. 347 (2002)*
  • Lyons v. Nutt, 436 Mass. 244 (2002)
  • Commonwealth v. Alcala, 54 Mass. App. Ct. 49 (2002)
  • Mello v. DiPaolo, 295 F.3d 137 (1st Cir. 2002)
  • Commonwealth v. Cruz, 53 Mass. App. Ct. 24 (2001)*
  • Dwight v. Dwight, 52 Mass. App. Ct. 739 (2001)*
  • DiBenedetto v. Hall, 272 F.3d 1 (1st Cir. 2001)
  • Commonwealth v. Johnson, 435 Mass. 113 (2001)*
  • Douillard v. LMR, Inc., 433 Mass. 162 (2001)*
  • Rotkiewicz v. Sadowsky, 431 Mass. 748 (2000)*
  • Commonwealth v. Hall, 50 Mass. App. Ct. 208 (2000)*
  • Commonwealth v. Whitman, 430 Mass. 746 (2000)
  • Commonwealth v. Labriola, 430 Mass. 569 (2000)
  • Thomas v. Massachusetts Civil Service Commission et al., 48 Mass. App. Ct. 446 (2000)*
  • Commonwealth v. Rivera, 429 Mass. 620 (1999)
  • Richardson v. United States, 119 S. Ct. 1707 (1999)(for amicus curiae National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers)*
  • Roberts v. Southwestern Bell Mobile Sys., 429 Mass. 478 (1999)*
  • Paixao v. Paixao, 429 Mass. 307 (1999)*
  • Commonwealth v. Kingston, 46 Mass. App. Ct. 906 (1999)*
  • Commonwealth v. D’Amour, 428 Mass. 725 (1999)*
  • Erickson v. Civil Service Comm’n., 46 Mass. App. Ct. 906 (1999)*
  • Bercume v. Bercume, 428 Mass. 635 (1999)*
  • Kittredge v. Kittredge, unpub. (Mass. App. Ct. 1998)*
  • Commonwealth v. Russell, unpub. (Mass. App. Ct. 1998)
  • Commonwealth v. Carrasquillo, unpub. (Mass. App. Ct. 1998)
  • United States v. Romano, 137 F.3d 677 (1st Cir. 1998)*
  • Commonwealth v. DiBenedetto, 427 Mass. 414 (1998)
  • Commonwealth v. DeCicco, 44 Mass. App. Ct. 111 (1998)
  • Commonwealth v. Zuluaga, 43 Mass. App. Ct. 629 (1997)*
  • United States v. Cunningham, 113 F.3d 289 (1st Cir. 1997)
  • Curtis v. Duval, 124 F.3d 1 (1st Cir. 1997)
  • Kolodziej v. Smith, 425 Mass. 237 (1997)
  • Commonwealth v. Fryar, 425 Mass. 237 (1997)
  • Commonwealth v. Perry, 424 Mass. 1019 (1997) (for amicus curiae)
  • Nylander v. Potter, 423 Mass. 158 (1996)*
  • Vickowski v. Polish American Citizens Club of Deerfield, Inc., 422 Mass. 606 (1996)
  • Heins v. Ledis, 422 Mass. 477 (1996)*
  • Noonan v. Thermo Consulting Engineers, Inc., 40 Mass. App. Ct. 905 (1996)*
  • Szalla v. Locke, 421 Mass. 448 (1995)
  • Commonwealth v. Green, 420 Mass. 771 (1995)*
  • Commonwealth v. Mello, 420 Mass. 375 (1995)
  • Commonwealth v. Gagnon, 419 Mass. 1009 (1995)*
  • Commonwealth v. Bui, 419 Mass. 392 (1995)
  • Commonwealth v. Curtis, 417 Mass. 619 (1994)
  • Tatro v. Manor Care, Inc., 416 Mass. 763 (1994)*
  • Hamilton v. Baystate Med. Educ., 66 F.3d 306 (1st Cir. 1995) (unpub.)
  • Commonwealth v. Fafone, 416 Mass. 329 (1993)*
  • Commonwealth v. Avellar, 416 Mass. 409 (1993)
  • Commonwealth v. Fryar, 414 Mass. 732 (1993)*
  • United States v. Santana, 6 F.3d 1 (1st Cir. 1993) (for amici curiae Nat’l. Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers and Mass. Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers)
  • United States v. Bianco, 998 F.2d 1112 (2nd Cir. 1993)
  • Commonwealth v. DiBenedetto, 413 Mass. 37 (1992)*
  • Commonwealth v. Lydon, 413 Mass. 309 (1992)*
  • Commonwealth v. Sires, 413 Mass. 292 (1992)
  • Waldman v. American Honda Motor Co., 413 Mass. 320 (1992)*
  • Canning v. Juskalian, 33 Mass. App. Ct. 202 (1992)*
  • United States v. Vasquez, unpub. (1st Cir. 1992)
  • Piccicuto v. Dwyer, 32 Mass. App. Ct. 137 (1992)*
  • Commonwealth v. Manrique, 31 Mass. App. Ct. 597 (1991)
  • Commonwealth v. Carney, 31 Mass. App. Ct. 250 (1991)
  • United States v. David, 940 F.2d 722 (1st Cir. 1991)
  • Springfield YWCA, Inc. v. Evers, 30 Mass. App. Ct. 921 (1991)*
  • United States v. Perkins, 926 F.2d 1271 (1st Cir. 1991)
  • United States v. Sutherland, 929 F.2d 765 (1st Cir. 1991)
  • Commonwealth v. Gilday, 409 Mass. 45 (1991)
  • Commonwealth v. Raffo, SJC No. 4804 (1st deg. murder, rev’d by motion for new trial)*
  • Commonwealth v. Chandler, 29 Mass. App. Ct. 571 (1990)
  • Frederick v. Frederick, 29 Mass. App. Ct. 329 (1990)
  • Laveck v. Pascoe Pizza, Inc., 29 Mass. App. Ct. 935 (1990)*
  • Commonwealth v. Cowie, 28 Mass. App. Ct. 742 (1990)*
  • Home-Like Apts. v. Arch. Acc. Bd., 27 Mass. App. Ct. 851 (1989)
  • Deerfield Plastics Co. v. The Hartford, 404 Mass. 484 (1989)*
  • Commonwealth v. Kirkpatrick, 26 Mass. App. Ct. 595 (1988)
  • Commonwealth v. Rondeau, 27 Mass. App. Ct. 55 (1989)
  • Commonwealth v. Cowie, 404 Mass. 119 (1989)*
  • Pederson v. Time, Inc., et al., 404 Mass. 14 (1989)*
  • Coombs v. Town of Deerfield, 26 Mass. App. Ct. 379 (1988)
  • Commonwealth v. Fickett, 403 Mass. 194 (1988)*
  • Lyons v. Lyons, 403 Mass. 1003 (1988)
  • Commonwealth v. Mandile, 403 Mass. 93 (1988)*
  • Bak v. Bak, 24 Mass. App. Ct. 608 (1987)*
  • Adoption of Abigail, 23 Mass. App. Ct. 191 (1986)
  • Hawkins v. Hawkins, 397 Mass. 401 (1986)*
  • Commonwealth v. Mandile, 397 Mass. 410 (1986)
  • Commonwealth v. Rhodes, 21 Mass. App. Ct. 968 (1986)*
  • Commonwealth v. Frisino, 21 Mass. App. Ct. 551 (1986)*
  • Commonwealth v. Walter, 396 Mass. 549 (1986)
  • United States v. Dawlett, 787 F.2d 711 (1st Cir. 1986)*
  • Kennedy v. Kennedy, 20 Mass. App. Ct. 559 (1985)*
  • Commonwealth v. Mendrala, 20 Mass. App. Ct. 398 (1985)*
  • Gearity v. Z.B.A. of Whately, 19 Mass. App. Ct. 1113 (1985)
  • Commonwealth v. Tuitt, 393 Mass. 801 (1985)
  • DiLuzio v. U.E. Local 274 et al., 391 Mass. 211 (1984)*
  • Kennedy v. Kennedy, 17 Mass. App. Ct. 308 (1983)*
  • Bezio v. Patenaude, 381 Mass. 563 (1980)*
  • Kennedy v. Kennedy, 10 Mass. App. Ct. 113 (1980)*

Classes/Seminars

  • Professional Education Program, Massachusetts Bar Association, Faculty
  • Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education, Director

Honors and Awards

  • Listed as “Super Lawyer” in Law and Politics and Boston magazines since 2006
  • Best Lawyers in America since 2012
  • Recipient of the Edward J. Duggan Private Counsel Award, Massachusetts Committee for Public Counsel Services, 2001
  • Named as Lawyer of the Year in 1988 and again in 2010, Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly
  • Received the Massachusetts Bar Foundation President’s Award, 2011
  • First Recipient of the Brownlow Speer Award, Massachusetts Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, 2014

Professional Associations and Memberships

  • Massachusetts Bar Association, Trainer Appellate Litigation, Committee for Public Counsel Services, 1983 - Present
  • Franklin County Bar Association, Member, 1983 - Present
  • Hampshire County Bar Association, Member
  • Hampden County Bar Association, Member
  • Town Council, Town of Greenfield, 1988 - Present
  • American Academy of Appellate Lawyers, Fellow
  • Massachusetts Bar Association, Appellate Bench Bar Committee, Member

Past Employment Positions

  • Lesser, Newman, Sibbison & Souweine in Northampton, Massachusetts
  • Chief Justice Herbert P. Wilkins, Supreme Judicial Court Ad Hoc Committee on Appeals, 1999

Pro Bono Activities

  • Board of Trustees, Massachusetts Bar Foundation
  • Board of Directors, Center for Public Representation
  • Hearing Committee Member, Massachusetts Board of Bar Overseers