FacultyFaculty/Author Profile

Hon. Stephen C. Robinson (Ret.)

Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP

New York, NY, USA

Stephen Robinson focuses on a range of litigation matters, including corporate internal investigations, government enforcement matters, commercial disputes and monitorships. Prior to joining Skadden in 2010, Judge Robinson served as a federal judge for the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York. He was nominated by President George W. Bush in 2003. While on the bench, Judge Robinson handled a full range of civil and criminal cases.

Judge Robinson is a member of Skadden’s Policy Committee, which is the firm’s governing body, and he serves as a co-chair of the global Diversity Committee. Judge Robinson also is a member of the Advisory Board of the Skadden Fellowship.

Prior to serving on the Southern District bench, Judge Robinson held several positions in government. In 1998, President Bill Clinton nominated Judge Robinson as the U.S. Attorney for the District of Connecticut, where he served for three years. Judge Robinson spent three years (1993-1995) as principal deputy general counsel and special assistant to the director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, where he participated in espionage matters and the Oklahoma City bombing investigation. From 1987 to 1991, Judge Robinson was an assis- tant U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York, where he prosecuted white collar matters, securities fraud and narcotics cases. In 1990, he was awarded the Department of Justice’s Director’s Award for Superior Service.

Judge Robinson also has extensive experience in the private sector. He began his legal career in 1984 at a corporate law firm in New York City. In 1991, he joined Kroll Associates, an international private investigations firm, as associate general counsel, and later became a managing director. While at Kroll, he investigated Iraqi war crimes for the government of Kuwait and allegations of corruption on behalf of the Brazilian Congress. In 1995, he joined Aetna, Inc. as counsel and later served as chief compliance officer at Aetna U.S. Healthcare.

Representative matters in which Judge Robinson has been involved at Skadden include:

  • lead litigation counsel for Toyota Motor Corporation and Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A., Inc. in the defense of individual and class action lawsuits in both federal and state courts arising from allegations of economic loss from alleged incidents of unintended acceleration;
  • counsel for Citibank, N.A. in defense of a RICO and class action lawsuit;
  • counsel for Capital One in a federal class action lawsuit; and
  • trial counsel for Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, Inc. in a patent litigation.

Judge Robinson was profiled in an article in The American Lawyer, which named the firm as a finalist for “Litigation Department of the Year” (January 2014). He also was included in Lawdragon 500 Leading Lawyers in America.

He serves on the board of directors of the Brennan Center for Justice and as a member of the Cornell University Council and Cornell Law School’s Dean’s Advisory Committee. From 2002 to 2003, he was the CEO of Empower New Haven, a nonprofit agency based in New Haven, Conn. Judge Robinson, who is a former Yale Law School Senior Research Fellow, has taught both an advanced seminar on white collar crime and in the trial advocacy program at Yale, and appellate advocacy at Cardozo Law School.


J.D., Cornell Law School, 1984 B.A., Cornell University, 1981

Bar Admissions

New  York

Government Service

Judge, U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York (2003- 2010)

U.S. Attorney, District of Connecticut (1998-2001)

Federal Bureau of Investigation, Principal Deputy General Counsel and Special Assistant to the Director (1993-1995)

Assistant  U.S.  Attorney,  Southern District of New York (1987-1991)

Other Experience

Chief Executive Officer, Empower New Haven (2002-2003)

Counsel and Chief Compliance Officer, Aetna U.S. Healthcare (1995-1998)

Associate General Counsel and Managing  Director,  Kroll  Associates (1991-1993)


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