Prior to being named president, he served for three years as dean of Pace University School of Law.
Mr. Friedman is a former senior partner and co-chair of the Corporate Department of Debevoise & Plimpton LLC. He has served as Commissioner of the Securities and Exchange Commission, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Capital Markets Policy at the United States Treasury Department, and as executive vice president and general counsel of the Equitable Companies Incorporated and the E.F. Hutton Group Inc., and he was a U.S. Supreme Court law clerk for Justice William J. Brennan, Jr.
Mr. Friedman has written and lectured widely on regulation of the securities markets and of financial institutions. He is the editor of “An Affair with Freedom”, (Atheneum 1967), a collection of Justice Brennan’s opinions and speeches during his first ten years on the Supreme Court.
Mr. Friedman is chairman emeritus of the American Ballet Theatre. He serves as a trustee of New York Downtown Hospital and the Practising Law Institute, as a Board member of the National Museum of the American Indian in New York, and as a member-at-large of the executive board of the Coalition of Urban and Metropolitan Universities. Mr. Friedman also serves on the board of directors for the Alliance for Downtown New York, Inc., Westchester County Association, and Project Rebirth. He has previously served as a trustee of the Commission on Independent Colleges and Universities and on the board of directors for the New York Stock Exchange Regulation, Inc.
Mr. Friedman received his AB magna cum laude in 1959 from the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University, and his JD magna cum laude in 1962 from Harvard Law School, where he was an editor of Harvard Law Review and a recipient of the Sears Prize.