About ATB

Approach The Bench is a tri-weekly segment highlighting the unapproachable. Two law students have the conversations that give people a voice. Where others “tread lightly,” they fire on all cylinders making it informational, exciting, and personal. The Court is now in session, you may Approach The Bench! Browse our site for background on the team, social media posts, and more!

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Michael Pabon (@Mikey_Pabon)


Michael is a Bronx, New York native & proud graduate of The Pennsylvania State University where he studied criminology/business. He has embarked on his journey into the legal field at Pace Law & will specialize in Entertainment/Corporate Law. He currently serves on the board of the Latin American Law Student Association and Millennial Energy Project.

Madison Shaff (@Maddieshaff)


Madison is a South Florida native and proud alumna of Florida State University. She studied environmental science and hopes to use this background in the environmental legal field upon graduation from Pace Law. At Pace Law, she serves on Student Bar Association board and works on projects for the International Union for the Conservation of Nature.


Abigael Monahan Negron (@Abi_Mnv)

Debate Captain

Abigael was born in Lima, Peru but was raised in Ossining, NY. She is a proud alumna of Syracuse University, where she studied Political Science & Global Security Studies. Her first language is Spanish, and she hopes to use this as she pursues a J.D. from Pace Law, Immigration track. She serves on the board of the Latin American Law Student Association and is very active in her community.

Jay Cruger (@Counselor_Cruger)

Debate Captain

Jay was born in Brooklyn, New York and raised in The Bronx. He went to high school in Kingston, Jamaica for seven years, before returning to the States for college. He is an alumni of John Jay College of Criminal Justice, where he studied Political Science. A third year student at Pace Law, he has a passion for Criminal Law and serves as President of the Pace Law Criminal Justice Society.

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Matt Mastrangelo (@MattMastrangelo)

Executive Producer

Matt grew up in Westchester County, NY. He graduated from Ithaca College with a Bachelor of Science degree in Cinema & Photography. He will be returning to Ithaca to pursue his MBA in Entertainment & Media Management in August 2021.

Christine Morano (@Christine202)

Director of Research

Christine is from Westchester, New York and attended Ithaca College where she graduated with a Legal Studies degree in 2019. Christine is currently in her first year at Pace Law where she stands proudly as her class representative. Christine plans on focusing her legal career in corporate compliance and ethics, while working in the criminal sector to combat human sex trafficking.


William Acevedo-Hernandez (@Almostalawyer2021)

Director of Legal Affairs

Will is a 3L at Pace Law. Originally from Yonkers, NY, Will is studying Criminal Law and will work for a District Attorney’s office after graduation.

Evan Patton (@LaGeneralPatton)

Legal Affairs Associate

Evan is a 1L at Pace Law. He previously served in the Peace Corps in Central America and is currently exploring paths in International Law and Immigration Law.

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John Manna (@JohnnyManna)

Production Co-Chair

John is from Stormville, New York. He graduated from SUNY New Paltz in 2019 with a degree in Sociology with a Concentration in Criminology, he also minored in music. John is currently in his first year of Law School at Pace Law. Although interested in entertainment law, John also has a strong passion for political discourse and is excited to expand on that skill set with Approach the Bench.

Juliana Ruperto (@JulieRupertoo)

Research Associate

Juliana is a New Jersey native and a proud alumna from Rutgers University where she studied Criminal Justice along with Women and Gender Studies. Currently a first year student at Pace Law, with a passion for Criminal Law, she serves as a board member for the Latin American Law Student Association.

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Sean Jacoby (@sjacoby_)

Research Associate

Sean is from Long Island, New York. He graduated from Iona College in 2020 with a degree in Political Science and a minor in Media, Politics, and Society. Sean is a first-year student at Pace Law and hopes to pursue a career as a prosecutor in the future.



Chris Osorio (@chrisisbrown)

Production Associate 

Christian is a videographer from Dutchess County, NY. He currently works as a video editor for 2 Market Media in NYC, as well as a freelance videographer/video editor. Christian graduated from SUNY New Paltz with a bachelor’s degree in Political Science focusing on American Government. He is also a musician who has been playing and performing for the last 10 years.

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Chris Garino (@cgarino1106)

Production Associate

Chris is from Long Valley, New Jersey. He graduated from Rider University in 2018 with a major in communication studies and a minor in film studies. Chris is currently in his second year at Pace Law with an interest in international law, entertainment, and intellectual property. He is hoping to apply his experience as a creative, and his experience in TV/Film to make Approach the Bench the best it can be.