Len Benowich
'79

Current Job: Benowich Law, LLP, Founding Partner

Len has more than 30 years of experience as a litigator in the practice areas of corporate and commercial law, partnership, real estate, employment and other business disputes. He also represents and counsels senior executives in employment matters including contract negotiations, separation agreements, termination, discrimination and compensation claims.

Since 1996, Len has maintained his own practice in Westchester and New York. In addition to his private practice, Len serves as a mediator for the U. S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, and is available to provide mediation services to parties in private disputes.

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Barbara Kolsun
'82

Current Job: Adjunct Professor of Fashion Law at Cardozo and co-director of Cardozo’s FAME program (Fashion, Art, Media and Entertainment).

Barbara is an adjunct Professor of Fashion Law at Cardozo and is the editor of Fashion Law: A Guide for Designers, Fashion Executives and Attorneys, now in its second edition and the soon-to-be-released first casebook on Fashion Law published by Carolina Press. With Lee Sporn, she is co-director of Cardozo’s newly minted FAME program (Fashion, Art, Media and Entertainment).

Barbara developed the first joint JD/MBA course in Fashion Law and Business at NYU Law and Stern Business School. She started the legal departments at three “startups”—Kate Spade, Seven for All Mankind and Stuart Weitzman—and was the first General Counsel at all three companies. She was Assistant GC at Calvin Klein Jeans and Westpoint Stevens and has probably been through more mergers than most lawyers in the fashion business.

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William Greenblatt
'82

Current Job: Founder and chairman of SterlingBackcheck

William is widely considered to be one of the pioneers of the background screening industry. As the founder and chairman of SterlingBackcheck, one of the world’s largest screening companies, he has fundamentally transformed the way companies, both large and small, hire and retain the best talent for their organizations.

SterlingBackcheck began as a mystery shopping service before evolving into a polygraph examinations company in 1975. By the mid-1980s, regulatory changes forced SterlingBackcheck to reinvent itself as an employment screening company. In the years that followed, Bill has led the company with a clear vision for disruptive transformation and a strong commitment to technology.

SterlingBackcheck has completed nine acquisitions in the past seven years and now has more than 3,000 employees in ten cities around the world. Most recently, Goldman Sachs and CDPQ made significant investments in the company, fueling its strategy of global expansion and industry leadership.

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Eric Cohen
'83

Current Job: Senior Vice President, Secretary and General Counsel of Terex Corporation

Eric is also a member of the senior executive leadership team responsible for the management of all global legal affairs, SEC matters, product safety, ethics and compliance, as well as participation in the general management, strategy, and administrative aspects of Terex’s business.

Terex Corporation is a Fortune 500 company whose shares are listed on The New York Stock Exchange. Terex is a global manufacturer of a broad range of lifting material handling equipment for use in various industries, including the construction, infrastructure, quarrying, light mining, shipping, transportation, refining, and utility industries.

Prior to joining the company, Eric was a corporate partner with the New York City law firm of Robinson Silverman Pearce Aronsohn & Berman LLP (now Bryan Cave LLP). Mr. Cohen’s practice was in the general corporate and corporate securities area.

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Ed Klaris
'92

Current Job: Managing Director at investment bank DeSilva & Philips and founder of advisory service Klaris IP

After graduating from Cardozo in 1992, Klaris worked as part of the much lauded media team at Davis Wright Tremaine, litigating cases involving BusinessWeek and Rolling Stone. His next stop was an in-house role at ABC news, where he advised broadcast legends like Peter Jennings, Barbara Walters and Diane Sawyer before being offered the senior legal role at the New Yorker. After 6 years as general counsel there, he was elevated to a senior vice president position at parent company Condé Nast, where he managed a team of 50, made deals in more than two dozen countries, bought and sold global media brands, and created entirely new digital platforms.

Ed teaches Media Law as an Adjunct Professor of Law at Columbia Law School and serves as Chairman of the Board of Pilobolus, a prominent arts organization.

 

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Andrew Hannibal
'12

Current Job: Counsel at Sesame Workshop

Two words that describe Andrew: tenacious and optimistic. He has held more than half a dozen diverse legal jobs in the three years since he earned his degree, culminating in his brand-new position as counsel at Sesame Workshop. The trajectory may not be traditional or linear, but Andrew has managed to convert what could be considered a liability into an asset.

“When I graduated, the legal industry was in a tough place,” he says. “In order to progress as a young attorney, I had to accept opportunities, whether they were temporary, low-pay, or no-pay, which I knew would allow me to amass practical, transferable skills.  During interviews, I emphasized this transferability of skills while explaining my legal career journey, which included several temporary contract and volunteer jobs.  In the end, experience is experience.”

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Tim Buckley
J.D., LL.M. '14

Current Position:  Trademark Associate, Cowan, Liebowitz & Latman

Undergraduate college:  State University of New York, Oneonta

Tim is a methodical guy with a sense of purpose. The Long Island native started law school in upstate New York but transferred to Cardozo because he wanted to practice in New York City and knew that at Cardozo he would have a better line into the New York job market.

Unsure of what he wanted to specialize in when he entered Cardozo, Tim proceed to find out methodically, by pursuing a variety of internships. He worked in corporate transactional law, family law, personal injury law, municipal law, and finally the field he decided to concentrate in, intellectual property. “Because I was considering a few different career paths, I wanted to gain diverse experiences during law school,” he says. “Narrowing my focus and choosing a practice area to pursue was largely a process of elimination.” 

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Debbie Silberman
'10

Current Job: Brooklyn Public Defender

Undergraduate College: Barnard College, Columbia University

As an undergrad at Barnard, Debbie played goalie on the Columbia varsity hockey team. In retrospect, that should have tipped her off about the kind of lawyer she’d turn out to be.

She entered Cardozo with the goal of becoming a courtroom litigator – probably a prosecutor – and interned for the Kings Country District Attorney during her second year at law school. As it turned out, however, an internship at a criminal defense firm during her final year made all the difference. She started her career at Brooklyn Public Defenders after graduation and has never looked back. “After working in defense for just a short period,” Debbie says, “I knew I had found the right practice area.”

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Waleed Diab
'04

Current Job: Senior Counsel for Music, Google Inc.

Waleed Diab is Senior Counsel for Music across Google products and services, which include YouTube and Google Play. He is primarily responsible for negotiating, drafting and advising in connection with Google's complex music licensing partnerships. He sets policies and guidelines in connection with a broad range of music and music-related initiatives.  Previously, Waleed spent 6 years at Viacom, Inc. in the Business & Legal Affairs department working on music, television production and general entertainment transactions. At Viacom, Waleed served as Senior Counsel for Music Strategy and Relations at MTV Networks, setting policies for the use of music in MTV Networks’ programs, including CMT, VH1, Comedy Central, Spike and a variety of other Viacom properties.

Diab is a board member of the FAME Center for fashion, arts, music and entertainment law at Cardozo Law.

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David P. Samson
'93

Current Job: President of the Miami Marlins

David Samson received his J.D. from Cardozo Law in 1993. He has been President of the Miami Marlins since 2002. As President, he played a key role in securing a public-private partnership to build a retractable roof ballpark in Miami, which opened in 2012. He was a force behind the team’s successful rebranding in 2011. In 2003, the Marlins won the World Series with Samson as President. He is one of just eight current team presidents to preside over a World Series Championship.

Previously, Samson was the Executive Vice President of the Montreal Expos from 1999 to 2002. Following his graduation from Cardozo, he founded News Travels Fast, which delivered The New York Times, Barron’s and The Wall Street Journal to Europe daily. In 1997, he joined Morgan Stanley as an investment advisor, and he held that position until he joined the Expos.

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