New York, February 6, 2017 – This afternoon, the New York State Senate announced the confirmation of Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP partner Rowan D. Wilson to serve as an Associate Judge of the New York State Court of Appeals, the state’s highest court.  Judge Wilson was nominated by Governor Andrew M. Cuomo on January 15, 2017.

Judge Wilson joined Cravath in 1986 and became a partner 1992.  He is highly regarded as one of the country’s leading litigators in the area of complex litigation.  In addition, as the partner responsible for overseeing the Firm’s pro bono work, he has been a strong advocate for the expansion of civil rights. Beyond his work at Cravath, for more than 20 years, Judge Wilson served as Chair of the Neighborhood Defender Services of Harlem, which provides high quality legal representation to inner city residents in Upper Manhattan, and is a board member of Wide Horizons for Children, an organization dedicated to the well-being and security of vulnerable and orphaned children worldwide.  Upon his confirmation, Judge Wilson retired as a partner from Cravath.

“Rowan is an outstanding trial and appellate litigator, who will bring to New York’s highest court extensive experience in complex commercial matters, coupled with a lifelong commitment to civil rights and social justice,” said Cravath’s Presiding Partner, Faiza J. Saeed.  “He joins a long line of Cravath partners who have been called on for important public service roles throughout our history.”

Throughout its 200-year history, Cravath has had a distinguished tradition of public service that began with one of the Firm’s founders, William H. Seward. Mr. Seward served as President Lincoln’s Secretary of State, as well serving in the New York State Senate, the U.S. Senate and as Governor of New York.

Other Cravath attorneys who have gone on to become judges include: the late William O. Douglas (the longest serving Justice in the history of the United States Supreme Court); the late Bruce D. Bromley (Associate Judge of the New York Court of Appeals); Deborah A. Batts (U.S. District Judge for the Southern District of New York);  Valerie E. Caproni (U.S. District Judge for the Southern District of New York); the late John T. Elfvin (U.S. District Judge for the Western District of New York); Katherine B. Forrest (U.S. District Judge for the Southern District of New York);  and John Gleeson (former U.S. District Judge for the Eastern District of New York).
Judge Wilson received an A.B. cum laude from Harvard College in 1981 and a J.D. cum laude from Harvard Law School in 1984, where he was a member of the Civil Rights/Civil Liberties Law Review. After graduation, Judge Wilson served in a two-year clerkship with Hon. James R. Browning, Chief Judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. 

Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP was founded in 1819 and is widely recognized as one of the world’s premier law firms. The Firm has 518 lawyers in New York City and London.