Governor Mario M. Cuomo is of counsel to the Corporate and Financial Services Department and Litigation Department, specializing in litigation, corporate transactions, and special corporate investigations.
In 2013 The New York Law Journal named Governor Cuomo recipient of its "Lifetime Achievement Award" in recognition of his career accomplishments and the profound impact he has made on the law, in New York’s legal community and as New York State’s Governor.
Prior to joining the firm, Mr. Cuomo was elected New York State’s 52nd Governor in 1982 and won re-election in both 1986 and 1990, setting records for popularity in both contests. He was the longest serving democratic governor in the modern history of New York State and won the two largest electoral victories ever. In twelve years at the helm of the nation’s most populous state, Mr. Cuomo steered the state through two recessions, balanced 12 consecutive budgets and created more than half a million jobs. He launched the largest economic development initiative in New York history, spurring private sector growth through billions of dollars of public investment in infrastructure enhancements and the creation of an unparalleled network of high-tech research facilities. During Mr. Cuomo's tenure, foreign investment in New York almost doubled and thousands of new export opportunities were created for New York firms. He furthered the national debate on economic policy and trends through the findings of the Cuomo Commission on Trade and Competitiveness -- The Cuomo Commission Report (1988) and America’s Agenda: Rebuilding Economic Strength (1992).
A March 2007 Marist College poll of 641 registered voters were asked whether they thought various governors were good. Mr. Cuomo, a Democrat, received a 74 percent favorable rating above those received by Governors Pataki, Carey and Rockefeller.
Mr. Cuomo entered private practice in 1958 with the firm Corner, Weisbrod, Froeb & Charles. He served thirteen years as an adjunct professor at St. John’s University School of Law and clerked for New York State’s highest court, the Court of Appeals, under Judge Adrian P. Burke. Mr. Cuomo continued to practice law until 1975 when he was appointed by Governor Hugh Carey as New York’s Secretary of State. In 1978, he was elected Lieutenant Governor, a position he held until going on to win the governorship in 1982.
Mr. Cuomo reentered private practice at Willkie in 1995. He is the former Co-Chairman and a former member of the Board of Directors of the Partnership for a Drug-Free America.
Mr. Cuomo continues to pursue his wide-ranging interest in public policy. He accepts a limited number of lecture engagements each year, as well as some television and radio appearances. In his newest book, Why Lincoln Matters, Today More Than Ever, published in 2004 by Harcourt, Inc., Mr. Cuomo brings to life the contemporary relevance of Lincoln's message for today's hot-button issues. Mr. Cuomo also authored Reason to Believe, published in 1995, and republished in an updated version in 1996, describing the challenges facing us today and pointing the way to workable answers. Additional publications authored by Mr. Cuomo include More than Words (1993), a collection of some of his most famous speeches; The New York Idea: An Experiment in Democracy (1994), the success story of the Empire State; Lincoln on Democracy (1990), a volume Mr. Cuomo co-edited that brings together for the first time all of Abraham Lincoln's speeches, writings, and conversations on the central theme of American political life; Diaries of Mario Cuomo (1984), which describes his first campaign for Governor; and the Forest Hills Diary (1974), a description of the experiences that led him into public life. Editions of Lincoln on Democracy have appeared in Polish, Japanese and Hebrew.