Nelson A. Diaz, a partner in the law firm of Blank Rome Comisky and McCauley LLP, and former General Counsel for the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), was elected to the Board of Trustees of the Philadelphia Museum of Art on December 17, 1998. Raymond C. Perelman, Chairman of the Board, stated "Throughout his distinguished career, Judge Diaz has matched groundbreaking personal and professional accomplishments with a profound commitment to community and social improvement. On behalf of the Museum's Board of Trustees, I extend a warm welcome to Judge Diaz, and thank him for sharing his dedication and enthusiasm with us."
Born and raised in the Harlem section of New York City, Judge Diaz is a graduate of Saint Johns University, earned a law degree from Temple University School of Law, and received honorary doctorates from Saint Johns, La Salle University, Temple University, Albright College, and Lincoln University. He was the first person of Puerto Rican ancestry admitted to the Pennsylvania Bar, and was the first Latino judge in the Court of Common Pleas in Philadelphia. While General Counsel for HUD from 1993 to 1997, Judge Diaz oversaw the resolution of an extensive backlog of civil-rights cases, and revised the Department's regulatory programs. Judge Diaz joined Blank Rome Comisky and McCauley in 1997.
Active in community and civic affairs, Judge Diaz has served as co-chair of the Urban Affairs Partnership, and chair of The National Association for Hispanic Elderly. He is a board member with the William Penn Foundation, Temple University, Temple University Hospital, The Free Library, the White House Fellows Alumni Association, the Philadelphia Commission on AIDS, and the United States Hispanic Leadership Institute, among many other organizations.
A resident of Philadelphia, Judge Diaz is married and has three children and two grandchildren.