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Michael S. Greco

Of Counsel
+1.617.261.3232
Fax +1.617.261.3175

Mr. Greco is a commercial litigator, arbitrator, mediator and appellate lawyer with more than 40 years of experience in resolving complex business and other disputes throughout the United States and internationally, and in strategically advising business entities and individuals regarding internal and governmental investigations. Mr. Greco is former President of the American Bar Association.

He has represented a wide range of business clients in high stakes commercial litigation and arbitrations, and has served as litigator, arbitrator and mediator in disputes involving for example, national and international financial institutions, national accounting firms, bio-technology firms, architects, engineers, insurers, insureds, professional sports and athletes, intellectual property firms, consulting firms, contractors, real estate developers, national airlines, and corporations and key executives in governmental and internal investigations.

Professional Background

After law school Mr. Greco served as Law Clerk to the Hon. Leonard P. Moore of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit in New York, and as a Fellow at the Institute of Comparative Law, University of Florence, Italy. Prior to law school he was an English teacher at Phillips Exeter Academy, Exeter, N.H. He has been selected consistently by his peers for inclusion in the 2015 edition and past editions of The Best Lawyers in America (Litigation - Construction, Litigation - Environmental, Labor and Employment, Civil Rights Law, Arbitration, and Mediation), New England Super Lawyers, and Who’s Who in American Law. Martindale-Hubbell’s Peer Review Rating for Mr. Greco is AV® Preeminent™.

Publications/Presentations
Mr. Greco has lectured and has authored or co-authored numerous articles on litigation techniques, alternative dispute resolution methods, international arbitration, employment law, professional malpractice and ethics, state and federal environmental laws, and insurance coverage. Articles include “Getting to Yes Abroad: International Arbitration as an Effective Tool in Commercial and Political Risk Management,” ABA Business Law Section Journal; “The Credit Crisis and the Audit Committee,” Metropolitan Corporate Counsel; and “Regulation of the Legal Profession in a Global Economy,” Journal of the Professional Lawyer.

Recent presentations in Mr. Greco’s areas of law practice include the American Bar Association Spring  Symposium in New York, "ADR in Commercial Finance Transactions - A Colloquium of the ABA Business Law and Dispute Resolution Sections"; "International Arbitration: Managing Cross-Cultural Factors," at the K&L Gates LLP Symposium, San Francisco; "International Arbitration as a Tool in Effective Risk Management," K&L Gates LLP Symposium, London; and "International Arbitration Trends," UIA Annual Conference, in Salvador, Brazil, among others.

Mr. Greco as a leader of the bar has been invited to address judicial organizations, bar associations and other legal and public groups throughout the US and abroad on a range of subjects. Recent examples include Commencement Address, Temple University/Tsinghua University LL.M. Program, Beijing, China; Keynote Address, Reflections on the Legal Profession in the United States and China, Shenzhen Lawyers Association Meeting, Shenzhen, China; Keynote Address, Harvard University Kennedy School of Government Annual Dinner, Harvard Faculty Club, Cambridge, MA; Keynote Address, “Public Corruption,” to Kosovo Lawyers, Judges, Prosecutors and Government Officials, in Pristina, Kosovo; Keynote Address to Conference of State Court Chief Justices, “Regulation of the Legal Profession in a Global Economy,” Chicago, Illinois; Keynote Remarks to Kentucky Bar Association Annual Convention: “Is There a Right to Counsel?” Lexington, Kentucky; Remarks at World Justice Forum III, “Human Rights,” Barcelona, Spain; Remarks at ABA International Distinguished Guests Program: “Human Rights and the Role of the Lawyer in Society,” ABA Annual Meeting, Toronto, Canada.

To access complete texts of a number of Mr. Greco's professional presentations, ABA speeches, and published articles and interviews, please click here.

Professional/Civic Activities

Mr. Greco is a member of the American Law Institute. In addition to serving as president of the American Bar Association he also has served as president of the Massachusetts Bar Association, the New England Bar Association, the New England Bar Foundation, and the Board of Trustees of Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education, Inc. Mr. Greco currently serves a Chair of the American Bar Association Center for Human Rights Advisory Council and as Chair of the ABA Working Group on a Right to Counsel in Civil Matters. As Visiting Professor of the Practice of Law he teaches a course on international criminal law at Peking University Law School, Shenzhen, China.

Mr. Greco currently serves by appointment of the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court,on the Court’s Committee to Revise the Massachusetts Code of Judicial Conduct. He also has served as vice-chair of the Board of Bar Overseers of the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court, and as member of the Board of Overseers of the Newton-Wellesley Hospital, the Massachusetts Governor's Judicial Nominating Council, and the Commission on Federal Judicial Appointments. As a member of the board of directors of the New England (Business) Council (NEC) during 1998-2004 he served as chair of NEC's ground breaking Creative Economy Initiative, a regional economic/cultural development effort designed to attract investment in New England's Creative Economy.

Since 2011 Mr. Greco by appointment of Governor Deval Patrick has served on the Board of Directors of the Massachusetts Cultural Council, which funds cultural and arts programs throughout the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. He also currently serves on the board of directors of several nonprofit organizations including the Asian Community Development Corporation and the Asian American Justice Center.

To read about Mr. Greco’s priorities and initiatives as President of the American Bar Association click “Additional Biographies” at the top of this page.

Achievements

  • American Bar Association Robert F. Drinan Award
  • Best Lawyers in America (annually since 2004)
  • Boston College Law School St. Thomas More Award
  • Boston College Law School Founder’s Medal
  • California Western School of Law, Honorary Doctor of Laws Degree
  • Colegio de Abogados de Puerto Rico Honorary Award
  • Hinsdale (Illinois) Central High School Foundation Hall of Fame
  • Il Consiglio dell’Ordine degli Avvocati di Roma, Honorary Award
  • Kosovo Chamber of Advocates Award of Gratitude
  • Martindale-Hubbell Peer Review Rating - AV® Preeminent™
  • Massachusetts Bar Association Gold Medal Award
  • New England Bar Association Lifelong Commitment and Service Award
  • New England Super Lawyers
  • Northeastern University School of Law Honorary Degree
  • State of Hawaii Senate and House of Representatives Certificate of Recognition
  • Suffolk University School of Law Honorary Degree University of Akron School of Law Honorary Degree
  • Washington State Bar Leaders and Access to Justice Courage Award
  • Western New England College School of Law President’s Medallion
  • Who’s Who in American Law
  • Who’s Who in America

ABA Presidency
The over-arching theme of Mr. Greco’s ABA presidency was renaissance – a reaffirmation of the legal profession's core values and America's constitutional principles. His priorities included protecting constitutional rights of Americans, safeguarding the independence of the judiciary, advancing the rule of law and human rights in the US and abroad, providing for the legal needs of the poor, and advancement of women, people of color and persons with disabilities in the legal profession. During his term of office he appointed two ABA Commissions, five ABA Task Forces and several Special Committees to implement his presidential initiatives and address issues of concern to the public and the legal profession.

His ABA Commission on Civic Education and the Separation of Powers, led by honorary co-chairs US Supreme Court Associate Justice Sandra Day O’Connor and former US Senator Bill Bradley, and chair Robert H. Rawson, addressed the troubling but reliably documented fact that half of Americans do not know the basics about their constitutional democracy due to lack of adequate civics education and therefore are not knowledgeable enough to protect the institutions of their democracy, particularly an independent judiciary. The Commission worked for two years and had significant influence on a number of state school systems and legislative enactments that reintroduced the teaching of civics in the schools. The ABA continues its efforts to improve civics education in the nation’s school systems and to protect the independence of the judiciary.

In concert with the important civics education efforts of the ABA Commission on Civic Education and the Separation of Powers, Mr. Greco selected as the theme of Law Day 2006 “Liberty under Law – Separate Branches, Balanced Powers.” Hundreds of Law Day programs for young and adult Americans were conducted in communities and schools across the country to underscore the importance of the separation of powers in our democratic form of government and to remind all that democracy will not survive without a knowledgeable public that zealously protects it.

He also appointed the ABA Task Force on Hurricane Katrina as that hurricane was still raging in order that lawyers across America could provide free legal services to all victims of Katrina and other hurricanes that devastated the Gulf States in the fall of 2005. The Task Force coordinated an unprecedented effort by thousands of lawyers to provide desperately needed free legal services to many thousands of hurricane victims.

During his ABA presidency Mr. Greco also appointed two bi-partisan, blue-ribbon task forces – the ABA Task Force on Domestic Surveillance in the Fight against Terrorism, and the ABA Task Force on Presidential Signing Statements and the Separation of Powers Doctrine – both comprised of distinguished constitutional scholars and former government leaders and judges, to protect Americans' constitutional rights, the doctrines of separation of powers and checks and balances, and America's democratic form of government.

The Task Force on Domestic Surveillance carefully considered the US government's program of spying on American citizens and issued a unanimous report and unanimous recommendations urging the President to respect the roles of Congress and the Judiciary, and to comply with the Constitution and existing federal laws, and urged immediate corrective action by Congress and the Courts. The ABA House of Delegates at its February 2006 Midyear Meeting in Chicago adopted the bi-partisan Task Force's recommendations by a near-unanimous vote.

The Task Force on Presidential Signing Statements considered the use, and misuse, by a President of “signing statements” that indicate a President’s intention, despite signing them, not to enforce parts of new laws enacted by Congress. The bi-partisan Task Force issued a unanimous report and recommendation concluding that such misuse by a President of signing statements violates the Constitution, encroaches unlawfully on the powers of Congress, and poses a threat to the separation of powers doctrine and the system of checks and balances that have sustained our democracy for more than two centuries. The Task Force urged legislative action by Congress and judicial review by the Supreme Court of the United States to resolve the constitutional issues presented. At the August 2006 Annual Meeting in Honolulu the ABA House of Delegates adopted the Task Force's recommendations by an overwhelming vote.

During his presidency Mr. Greco also encouraged and co-sponsored two unprecedented diversity conferences, one organized by the ABA Commission on Racial and Ethnic Diversity and other partners that addressed the imperative of ensuring the flow of young people of color in the pipeline to the legal profession, and the other organized by the ABA Commission on Mental and Physical Disability Law and other partners that addressed the employment needs of lawyers with physical and mental disabilities.

He also supported efforts of the ABA Commission on Women in the Profession to ensure the continued advancement of women in the legal profession, particularly women of color whose discrimination and professional plight was documented in a several years-long survey and final report released at the Association's August 2006 Annual Meeting in Honolulu.

He also directed the ABA Commission on Immigration Law to develop new Association policies to help address the situation of America's twelve million undocumented immigrants. As stated by Congressional leaders, the Commission's report and recommendations, which were overwhelmingly approved by the House of Delegates at the February Midyear Meeting, helped Congress craft appropriate legislation.

Mr. Greco also created, and appointed the boards of directors of, three new ABA legal centers. The ABA Resource Center for Access to Justice Initiatives was created to assist efforts throughout the United States to improve ways by which legal services are delivered to our nation's poor, and to help implement a civil right to counsel, or "Civil Gideon." The ABA Center for Racial and Ethnic Diversity consolidated and coordinated the Association's many diversity programs. The ABA Center for Rule of Law Initiatives consolidated and enhanced the Association's growing and increasingly important international rule of law programs in Africa, Asia, Central Europe/Eurasia, and Latin America, which provide legal technical assistance and training to emerging democracies in more than forty countries on five continents, including former republics of the Soviet Union.

In his effort to unify the legal profession throughout the world to advance and protect the rule of the law and human rights in all nations, at a Paris conference of one hundred world bar leaders in November 2005 he authored and thereafter advocated the adoption and ratification of a Statement of Core Principles of the legal profession. The Statement was adopted unanimously by the world bar leaders meeting in Paris and by the ABA House of Delegates at its Midyear Meeting in February 2006, and since then has been adopted by many bars throughout the world.

During his term as ABA president Mr. Greco initiated, negotiated and executed on behalf of the Association “Memoranda of Understanding” or collaboration agreements between the ABA and the national bars of China, Russia and Japan in order to provide for mutually beneficial exchanges of lawyers, legal knowledge and expertise, to conduct joint legal education programs, and to advance justice and the rule of law in those nations. He has represented the ABA and the US legal profession in substantive meetings with leaders in some thirty countries, and has traveled to meet with lawyers and judges and government leaders in forty-seven states, Puerto Rico and the District of Columbia.

Following his ABA presidency Mr. Greco continues to be invited to address and meet with government officials, Supreme Court justices and leaders of the bar both in the United States and abroad on issues such as regulating lawyers in a global economy, advancement of the rule of law internationally, protection of human rights, elimination of corruption in justice systems, and access to justice for all. His recent addresses include those in Kosovo, El Salvador, Brazil, England, Austria, Spain and Canada, and he has met in the United States with high government officials and Supreme Court justices from Indonesia, Vietnam and China, among other countries.