Monroe H. Freedman

Monroe H. Freedman

Professor of Law

Monroe Freedman has received the American Bar Association’s highest award for professionalism, in recognition of “a lifetime of original and influential scholarship in the field of lawyers’ ethics.”

Professor Freedman has been described by the New York Times as “a pioneer in the field of legal ethics,” and in the Harvard Law Bulletin as “a lawyers’ lawyer,” and is frequently consulted by law firms throughout the country. He is the former Dean at Hofstra Law School and, for thirty years, he lectured annually on lawyers’ ethics at Harvard Law School. Since 2007 he has also been a Visiting Professor at Georgetown Law School.

His first ethics treatise, Lawyers’ Ethics in an Adversary System (1975), received the ABA’s Gavel Award Certificate of Merit. Reviews have called it “brilliant,” a “classic,” and one of the few “monumental contributions to legal education in the past generation.” His most recent book is Understanding Lawyers’ Ethics (4th ed., Matthew Bender, 2010), written with Georgetown Law Professor Abbe Smith. Writings by Professor Freedman are required reading at most law schools in the United States, and have been published in Canada, China, Great Britain, India, Japan, and Poland.

Professor Freedman was recognized by The Washingtonian as “one of [the District of Columbia’s] most highly regarded constitutional lawyers.” His clients have included William Kunstler, Roy Cohn, Alan Dershowitz, and several members of Congress, as well as hundreds of poor people, members of minority groups, and others that no one ever heard of. During the civil rights movement in the 1960s, he represented several civil rights organizations, and became the first volunteer general counsel of a gay rights organization. He has helped to change the law to benefit minority group members, poor people, people accused of crimes, gays, and victims of police abuse, and works with lawyers in death penalty cases and lawyers representing prisoners in Guantanamo.

Professor Freedman was also chosen by Nobel Laureate Elie Wiesel to be the first Executive Director of the United States Holocaust Memorial Council, and has received a Martin Luther King Award, for “decades of work to advance human dignity and social justice.”

He received his A.B., LL.B., and LL.M. at Harvard University, and is listed in Who’s Who in America, Who’s Who in American Law and Who’s Who in the World.

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