X

Thank you for sharing!

Your article was successfully shared with the contacts you provided.
John J. “Jack” Curtin, Jr., figured out how to combine a high-powered private practice and a rich public life. Curtin served as president of the American Bar Association, taught law for four decades at Boston College, his alma mater, and threw himself into public interest law, all while being one of Bingham McCutchen’s most successful litigators. But don’t expect him to reveal his ten secrets of success. “I just did it,” he says. “When things came along that I thought I ought to support, I just did it, and then juggled it all as I went along.” Curtin, 72, says he was drawn to pro bono work by the same desire to work in public service that first led him to law school and then to work as a prosecutor at the U.S. Department of Justice. Since then, he has lent his name, his time, and his energy to cases and causes involving immigration, homelessness, civil and human rights, and the death penalty. Curtin’s roots at Boston College run deep. He is a graduate of its high school, college, and law school. Four of his five children have earned degrees from the institution. In 1964, the year he started working at Bingham, Curtin began teaching a trial practice course at the law school that he still teaches today. A scholarship student himself, he helped create a scholarship fund to help inner-city students attend Boston College. He and his wife have also created a fund to provide support for public interest law students. Of the many public assignments in his career, Curtin particularly recalls his appointment as special assistant attorney general in Massachusetts in 1970. He successfully prosecuted small loan companies on charges that they had bribed public officials. On appeal, the defense argued that a corporation should not be held criminally liable for the unauthorized conduct of its agents. Curtin delivered over three hours of the seven-hour appeal argument. Ultimately the court affirmed the judgment, establishing a precedent for corporate responsibility in Massachusetts. More currently, Bingham McCutchen is involved in a pair of death penalty cases for which Curtin serves an adviser. Curtin, who is still practicing, yearns to spend more time with his family, which includes a dozen grandchildren. But he also plans to keep teaching and doing public service work for such groups as the Center for Human Rights. Looking back on his long career, Curtin says he found enjoyment in almost all that he did: “I think that’s a key to having a satisfactory life.” He does have one piece of advice for younger lawyers. “I tell my associates to do the right thing,” he says. Back to Main Story

This content has been archived. It is available exclusively through our partner LexisNexis®.

To view this content, please continue to Lexis Advance®.

Not a Lexis Advance® Subscriber? Subscribe Now

Why am I seeing this?

LexisNexis® is now the exclusive third party online distributor of the broad collection of current and archived versions of ALM's legal news publications. LexisNexis® customers will be able to access and use ALM's content by subscribing to the LexisNexis® services via Lexis Advance®. This includes content from the National Law Journal®, The American Lawyer®, Law Technology News®, The New York Law Journal® and Corporate Counsel®, as well as ALM's other newspapers, directories, legal treatises, published and unpublished court opinions, and other sources of legal information.

ALM's content plays a significant role in your work and research, and now through this alliance LexisNexis® will bring you access to an even more comprehensive collection of legal content.

For questions call 1-877-256-2472 or contact us at [email protected]

 
 

ALM Legal Publication Newsletters

Sign Up Today and Never Miss Another Story.

As part of your digital membership, you can sign up for an unlimited number of a wide range of complimentary newsletters. Visit your My Account page to make your selections. Get the timely legal news and critical analysis you cannot afford to miss. Tailored just for you. In your inbox. Every day.

Copyright © 2020 ALM Media Properties, LLC. All Rights Reserved.