FacultyFaculty/Author Profile
Michael A. Cardozo

Michael A. Cardozo

New York City Law Department
Corporation Counsel
New York, NY, USA

As New York City's 77th Corporation Counsel - and chief legal officer of New York City - Michael A. Cardozo serves as legal counsel to the Mayor, elected officials, the City and its agencies. Mr. Cardozo has served as Corporation Counsel since January 1, 2002, making him New York City's longest-serving  Corporation Counsel since the title was formally created in the early 19th Century.

The Law Department, headed by Mr. Cardozo, has more than 650 attorneys in 17 Divisions. It has offices in all five boroughs, as well as Kingston, N.Y., and has an active caseload of more than 80,000 lawsuits and legal matters.  

Working with Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg, Mr. Cardozo has spearheaded several key municipal legal initiatives, including working to eliminate illegal guns from City streets; seeking to prevent sales of untaxed cigarettes; encouraging progressive environmental and health care initiatives; lobbying to reform local and state tort laws (which has resulted in the City saving more than $65 million annually); and advocating for judicial selection reform, judicial pay raises and court efficiency.

As Corporation Counsel, Mr. Cardozo has personally argued several high-level cases on the City's behalf, including a matter involving unpaid property taxes by the U.N. missions of India and Mongolia, which he successfully argued before the U.S. Supreme Court in 2007. Mr. Cardozo also argued and won a major bond case in the New York Court of Appeals in 2004 that resulted in approximately $2.5 billion in additional funds being directed to New York City. 

Among the honors Mr. Cardozo has received are the Emory Buckner Award from the Federal Bar Council for outstanding public service; the Fund for Modern Courts Cyrus R. Vance Tribute for dedicated work towards judicial reform and the Columbia University Law School Lawrence A. Wien Prize for Social Responsibility.

Prior to becoming Corporation Counsel, Mr. Cardozo was a partner at Proskauer Rose LLP, where he was both an active trial lawyer and counsel to numerous sports leagues. He also served as co-chair of the firm's 150-person Litigation Department and as a member of the firm's Executive Committee. Long active in the public sector, from 1996 to 1998 Mr. Cardozo served as president of the 21,000 member Association of the Bar of the City of New York. 

Mr. Cardozo is a 1966 graduate of Columbia Law School, where he served as an editor of the Law Review, and received a B.A. in political science from Brown University in 1963. Mr. Cardozo is married to Nancy, his wife of more than 47 years. They have two daughters and two grandchildren.



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