Law, Policy & Markets

Alex Forger at 100: “Justice, Justice Shall You Pursue”

June 21, 2023 Milbank Season 4 Episode 6
Law, Policy & Markets
Alex Forger at 100: “Justice, Justice Shall You Pursue”
Show Notes

The justice gap represents the difference between the civil legal assistance available to low-income individuals and the assistance that they need. Alexander (“Alex”) Forger, former Chairman and retired partner at Milbank, has spent much of his career ensuring that working-class people have equal access to legal representation and that the federal Legal Services Corporation (LSC) – which he headed – can thrive as an essential resource to fund pro bono legal services nationally.  Now 100 years old, Alex remains outspoken about what it takes to make the justice system fair.  Host Allan Marks talks with Alex about his longstanding dedication to helping others and what drives this top Wall Street trusts and estates lawyer to fight for those less privileged.  Topics they cover include: 

  • Successfully challenging opponents in Congress to preserve the LSC – what it means to protect equal access to legal representation for poor people
  • The critical role of lawyers in expanding justice and democracy – and why it is morally imperative to do so 
  • The value of pro bono work – both to volunteer or public interest attorneys and to the indigent clients they serve
  • Career advice – for younger lawyers and for retired lawyers alike

 About the Speakers
Alex Forger is a World War II veteran and renowned trusts and estates lawyer who has represented several well-known clients, including Jacqueline Onassis, Rachel “Bunny” Mellon, as well as the Johnson, Duke and Rockefeller families. Under his leadership as Chairman, Milbank was the first law firm in New York City to offer same-sex partner benefits in 1992. Alex served as President of the New York State Bar Association, as director, president and chair of the New York Legal Aid Society, and on countless committees for minority advancement, gay rights and HIV anti-discrimination initiatives, legal services for the poor, and campaign finance reform. He institutionalized Milbank’s pro bono program, which has set a model for other top law firms nationally. After four decades in private practice, Alex went to Washington to serve under President Bill Clinton as president of the Legal Services Corporation, a federally funded program that gives poor people meaningful access to the courts and qualified legal representation. 

Podcast host Allan Marks is one of the world's leading project finance lawyers. He advises developers, investors, lenders, and underwriters around the world in the development and financing of complex energy and infrastructure projects, as well as related acquisitions, restructurings and capital markets transactions. Many of his transactions relate to ESG and sustainability, innovative clean technologies, and sophisticated contractual risk allocation. Allan serves as an Adjunct Lecturer at the University of California, Berkeley at the Law School and

For more information and insights, follow us on social media and podcast platforms, including Apple, Spotify, Amazon Music, iHeart, Google and Audible.