- Staff Profiles
Richard C. Glazer
Richard Glazer, Esq. has been the Executive Director of the Pennsylvania Innocence Project
since its inception in 2009, having served as a member of the working group that turned the idea
of an innocence project serving the state of Pennsylvania into a reality. His leadership has
been integral to the early success of the Project in furthering its four-fold mission
Mr. Glazer is a founder of the law firm of Cozen O’Connor, one of the 100 largest law
firms in the United States, where he served as Regional Managing Partner and Department Chair
from 1972 through 2003. Mr. Glazer served as Senior Advisor to the City of Philadelphia's
Managing Director from 2004 to 2006, providing strategic oversight of special projects for
Philadelphia's chief administrative officer. He now serves as the first elected Chair of
the newly created Philadelphia Board of Ethics, an independent board focused on ethics and good government.
Mr. Glazer's commitment to public service and the law began with his service as a volunteer
with the United States Peace Corps in Malawi, from 1964 to 1966, where he worked on a tuberculosis
control project that served as a prototype for similar programs designed to detect and treat
infectious diseases, and work towards their eradication.
Mr. Glazer's service has included serving as a board member, from 1987 to 2006, and as
board Chair, from 1994 to 1996, for the Public Interest Law Center of Philadelphia, and as a member
and leader of the Committee of Seventy, a non-partisan political watchdog organization focusing
on election, school, police and judicial reforms, from 1996 to 2006.
Mr. Glazer is a graduate of Tufts University (B.S.) and Temple University School of Law (J.D.).
He clerked for the Hon. James H. Gorbey, of the United States District Court for the Eastern
District of Pennsylvania from 1970-72.
Marissa Boyers Bluestine
Marissa Boyers Bluestine, Esq. joined the Pennsylvania Innocence Project on April 1, 2009 as its first Legal Director.
Ms. Bluestine has worked in both the private and public service – as a litigation associate at Duane Morris and as an Assistant Defender with the Defender Association of Philadelphia for over 10 years. At the Defender Association, Ms. Bluestine tried innumerable cases representing clients accused of crimes where eyewitness testimony was central to the evidence against them. She was also instrumental in preserving issues for appeal aimed at changing the law within the Commonwealth to allow for the presentation of expert witnesses at trial on eyewitness and false confession issues. In addition, Ms. Bluestine has been involved in advocating for the expansion of voir dire, more detailed jury instructions and improved lineup procedures to avoid the occurrences of wrongful convictions. A member of the Board of Directors for the Pennsylvania Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, Ms. Bluestine lectures across the state on issues related to criminal defense.
Ms. Bluestine is a graduate of Trinity College in Hartford, Connecticut (1989) and a cum laude graduate of Temple University School of Law (1995), where she served as Managing Editor of the Temple Political & Civil Rights Law Review and was a national quarterfinalist in the National Trial Competition.
Nilam graduated from Columbia University in 1999 and received her J.D., cum laude, from the Georgetown University Law Center in 2002. At Georgetown, Nilam was on the executive board of the American Criminal Law Review and was a member of the Appellate Litigation Clinic. After law school, Nilam clerked for the Honorable William B. Shubb in the Eastern District of California and the Honorable Thomas L. Ambro on the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit. Nilam has practiced at law firms in New York, Washington, D.C., and Philadelphia, where she was a partner in the litigation services department at Schnader Harrison Segal & Lewis LLP. While at Schnader, Nilam received the firm's Earl G. Harrison Pro Bono Award and was named a Rising Star in Civil Litigation Defense by Super Lawyers and a Lawyer on the Fast Track by the Legal Intelligencer. Most recently, Nilam was a supervising attorney and clinical teaching fellow at the Georgetown University Law Center Appellate Litigation Clinic and received her LLM in Advocacy from Georgetown in 2013. In addition to her work at the Pennsylvania Innocence Project, she is an adjunct professor at the University of Pennsylvania Law School, where she teaches Appellate Advocacy. Nilam also serves as a trustee of the Philadelphia Bar Foundation and the co-chair of the Board Observer Program.
Shaina Tyler began working with the Pennsylvania Innocence Project on May 31, 2011 as a full-time staff investigator. Ms. Tyler received her BA in Anthropology from San Diego State University in 2005. Following graduation, she went on to complete a year-long certificate program in Forensic Technology. Ms. Tyler began her career at the San Diego County Public Defender’s Office as a Criminal Defense Investigator, where she worked for over three years. After moving to Philadelphia in 2010, she was employed as an Investigator with the Federal Defender’s Office.
William Babcock is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania and Boston University School of Law. Prior to joining the Pennsylvania Innocence Project in September 2011, as Director of Development and Communications, he was the Community Court Coordinator for the Center City District for 13 years. Mr. Babcock managed the planning phase for the creation of the Court, including raising the funding to renovate the physical plant and staff the Court, and subsequently oversaw the administration of the Court following its opening in 2002.
Mr. Babcock also served for ten years as a special master to the U.S. District Court in Philadelphia, monitoring implementation of two consent decrees in Harris v. City of Philadelphia, and spent four years as executive director of the Pennsylvania Prison Society. Prior to moving to Philadelphia, he served as a monitor for the U.S. District Court in Houston in Ruiz v. Estelle, as a mediator for the Center for Dispute Resolution in Washington, as a clinical supervisor at the Antioch School of Law where he earned a masters degree in teaching, and as a staff attorney with the Florida Legal Services Prison Project.
Mr. Babcock’s public service has included one year as a VISTA volunteer, appointments to the Board of Trustees of the Philadelphia Prison System and the Mayor’s Task Force on Homeless Services, and board membership with the Pennsylvania Innocence Project, Pennsylvania Prison Society, Eastern State Penitentiary Historic Site, and National Clearinghouse for the Defense of Battered Women. He is also an adjunct professor in Temple University’s Department of Criminal Justice.
Richard C. Glazer
Marissa Boyers Bluestine
Board of Directors
David Richman, President
David Rudovsky, Vice President
Jennifer R. Clarke, Secretary
Anthony B. Creamer, Treasurer
Paul D. Brandes
Caroline Goldner Cinquanto
J. Gordon Cooney, Jr.
Robert B. Dunham
Patrick J. Egan
Thomas J. Innes III
Kevin V. Mincey
Richard P. Myers
Louis M. Natali, Jr.
Edward D. Ohlbaum
Riley H. Ross, III
Howard D. Scher
Samuel W. Silver
Joseph A. Sullivan
John S. Summers
Hon. Phyllis W. Beck