Bonnie Hoffman serves as NACDL’s Director of Public Defense Reform and Training. She focuses on addressing the needs of both public defense systems and the attorneys who provide representation to those accused. Overseeing NACDL’s commitment to public defense, Bonnie assists full-time public defenders, private assigned counsel, and contract counsel by developing and delivering training programs and materials, as well as working with local, state and national leaders to address reforms in our nation’s public defense delivery systems.
Bonnie is a career public defender. For 21 years prior to joining NACDL, she served as a public defender in Loudoun County, Virginia. Representing adults and juveniles charged with misdemeanor and felony offenses from drunk driving on a farm tractor to murder; her practice included both trial and appellate cases.
Bonnie is a graduate of the National Criminal Defense College. She earned her law degree George Mason University School of Law and her undergraduate degree from the University of Virginia. She served as chair of NACDL’s Federal Indigent Defense Task Force. The Task Force’s report, Federal Indigent Defense 2015: the Independence Imperative, highlighted the systemic problems in our nation’s federal public defense system and identified Seven Fundamentals of a Robust Federal Indigent Defense System. She was the primary author of “Gideon’s Champions,” a series of articles published in The Champion highlighting issues and challenges facing public defenders through the profiles of individual state and federal defenders from across the country.
Over her career Bonnie has served on numerous committees and work groups associated with public defense, the criminal justice system, and special populations including the Virginia Supreme Court’s Special Committee on Discovery Rules, Virginia’s Model Jury Instruction Working Group on Eyewitness Identification, and Loudoun County’s Disability Response Team and Juvenile Detention Alternatives Initiative Collaborative.
In 2013, Ms. Hoffman received the Robert C. Heeney Award, NACDL’s most prestigious honor. This award is given annually to a criminal defense attorney who best exemplifies the goals and values of the Association and the legal profession. Ms. Hoffman was the first active state public defender to receive this award.
Cross-Examination Trial Pack
NACDL’s new Cross-Examination Trial Pack includes three of our best-selling Cross-Examination resources: “Damage Control: Situational Cross-Examination Techniques Trial Guide”, "Ultimate Cross 2.0: Audio Recordings & Written Materials" and "Sample Cross-Examination Questions."
This masterful collection of cross-examination resources provide countless tips, techniques and strategies for a variety of criminal case-specific scenarios. Learn to cross-examine a variety of trial witnesses!
Death Investigation: Forensic Pathology in the Courtroom and Cause & Manner of Death (2022)
This unique program provides criminal defense lawyers with an accurate and clear overview of forensic pathology and the countless factors to consider in a death investigation and will methodically explain what happens during an autopsy to determine cause and manner of death.
You'll uncover the different types of medicolegal death investigations, what to request from your MDI expert, quality benchmarks for accreditation and certification, guidelines and standards, common terminology and frequently asked questions.
The Psychology of Persuasion & Storytelling for Criminal Defense Lawyers
This Trial Resource Guide is a masterful collection of practical tips, techniques and strategies focused solely on using the arts and sciences of persuasion to improve your storytelling skills at trial.
You'll learn how to master the ability to communicate with juries, deliver powerful openings and closings, perform convincing cross-examinations, use effective courtroom choreography and non-verbal communication, identify and develop the optimal theme and theory for your case, and offer compelling arguments during mitigation and sentencing.
Zealous Advocacy in Sexual Assault & Child Victims Cases (2022)
Defending charges of sexual assault and child abuse can be daunting — but with the right tools, it doesn’t have to be.
Every year, NACDL identifies the hottest topics and most pressing issues when defending these cases, and brings-in nationally-renowned lawyers and experts to help you prepare for battle. This year’s 13th Annual Defending Sex Cases training program is our best yet; packed with topics and speakers you won’t want to miss!