Ready to 'Do Justice,' Carter Assumes Helm at Law Department

, New York Law Journal


Zachary Carter speaking alongside Mayor-elect Bill de Blasio
Zachary Carter, left, speaking at a press conference alongside Mayor-elect Bill de Blasio, who chose Carter as Corporation Counsel on Sunday.

Carter said he comes to the Law Department with a perspective on New York City from several different positions. He has been a state criminal court judge, Eastern District U.S. Attorney—the first black in that position, a federal magistrate judge, and in private practice, a partner with Dorsey & Whitney. Carter said his varied experience will be an asset.

Zachary Carter, 63

Incoming New York City corporation counsel

Other Legal Experience:

Partner, Dorsey & Whitney, 1999 to 2013
U.S. attorney for the Eastern District of New York, 1993 to 1999
U.S. magistrate judge for the Eastern District of New York, 1991 to 1993
New York City Criminal Court judge, 1987 to 1991
Executive assistant district attorney, Brooklyn, 1982 to 1987
Associate, Patterson Belknap Webb & Tyler, 1980 to 1981
Assistant U.S. attorney, Eastern District, 1975 to 1980; deputy chief of the criminal division


J.D., New York University School of Law, 1975;
B.A., Cornell University, 1972

Other Professional Affiliations:

Chair, Mayor's Advisory Committee on the Judiciary
Member, board of trustees, New York University School of Law
Member, board of directors, VERA Institute of Justice
Member, board of directors, Prisoners' Legal Services
Past vice president, New York City Bar
Past vice president, Federal Bar Council

"The sheer breadth of the issues that the corporation counsel has to address and advise on makes it a demanding job," he said. "I think I have the advantage of being a neutral, being a judge for several years in both the state and federal systems. I have the opportunity to draw on everything I've done."

Carter said the job is unlike any other because he is not only providing counsel to the mayor, but also representing every city agency.

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