Michael Hess
Michael Hess ()

Michael Hess, New York City’s corporation counsel under Mayor Rudy Giuliani, is joining Dorf & Nelson, a 16-attorney Westchester firm.

Hess, who was a senior counsel at Holland & Knight, will hold that same position in Dorf & Nelson’s Manhattan and Rye offices.

Hess, 75, focuses on civil litigation, including real estate, tax, administrative and regulatory disputes. He also works with Giuliani at consulting firm Giuliani Partners.

Hess served as corporation counsel in 1998 through 2001. He said he responded to several urgent legal issues in the wake of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, such as helping to determine what portions of the city and public transportation could reopen and working with the city’s health department to issue death certificates so families could collect life insurance.

After leaving the city office, Hess became a founding member and senior managing director of Giuliani Partners, but returned to practicing law in 2011 when he joined Holland & Knight.

Hess said he knew several people at Dorf & Nelson, including founding partners Jon Dorf and Jonathan Nelson, as well as senior counsel Daniel Kaplan, whom Hess has known for the past 40 years. He said “the idea of working with experienced senior lawyers” was an incentive to join Dorf & Nelson.

Before serving as corporation counsel, Hess was a litigation partner at Weil, Gotshal & Manges, White & Case and Chadbourne & Parke and was chief of the civil division at the Southern District U.S. Attorney’s Office from 1970 to 1973.

He was a former chair of the board of trustees of the Horace Mann School. He was then among the school’s emeritus trustees, an honorary position, but the titles were eliminated in 2013 amid reports that the school ignored sex abuse complaints in previous decades.

Michael Hess, New York City’s corporation counsel under Mayor Rudy Giuliani, is joining Dorf & Nelson, a 16-attorney Westchester firm.

Hess, who was a senior counsel at Holland & Knight , will hold that same position in Dorf & Nelson’s Manhattan and Rye offices.

Hess, 75, focuses on civil litigation, including real estate, tax, administrative and regulatory disputes. He also works with Giuliani at consulting firm Giuliani Partners.

Hess served as corporation counsel in 1998 through 2001. He said he responded to several urgent legal issues in the wake of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, such as helping to determine what portions of the city and public transportation could reopen and working with the city’s health department to issue death certificates so families could collect life insurance.

After leaving the city office, Hess became a founding member and senior managing director of Giuliani Partners, but returned to practicing law in 2011 when he joined Holland & Knight .

Hess said he knew several people at Dorf & Nelson, including founding partners Jon Dorf and Jonathan Nelson, as well as senior counsel Daniel Kaplan, whom Hess has known for the past 40 years. He said “the idea of working with experienced senior lawyers” was an incentive to join Dorf & Nelson.

Before serving as corporation counsel, Hess was a litigation partner at Weil, Gotshal & Manges , White & Case and Chadbourne & Parke and was chief of the civil division at the Southern District U.S. Attorney’s Office from 1970 to 1973.

He was a former chair of the board of trustees of the Horace Mann School. He was then among the school’s emeritus trustees, an honorary position, but the titles were eliminated in 2013 amid reports that the school ignored sex abuse complaints in previous decades.