July 15, 2010


ALBANY - The New York State Bar Association today recognized the legacy of one its most respected leaders when it honored Past President S. Hazard Gillespie for his 100th birthday. The State Bar's Executive Committee recently adopted a resolution honoring Gillespie, whose birthday was July 12, for his extraordinary accomplishments on behalf of the legal profession and the public. State Bar President Stephen P. Younger of New York (Patterson Belknap Webb & Tyler LLP) presented Gillespie with a copy of the resolution today during a celebration held at the New York office of the law firm Davis Polk & Wardwell where Gillespie still serves as Senior Counsel.

"S. Hazard Gillespie is a lion of the legal profession and one of our most beloved and respected past presidents. As State Bar president, as U.S. Attorney and as one of the sharpest minds in our profession, Mr. Gillespie has been a role model for generations of attorneys, teaching us all what it means to be a leader and a mentor," said Younger. "On behalf of the State Bar Association, I proudly express our sincere appreciation to Mr. Gillespie for his many years of dedicated service to the Bar, to the legal profession and to the community. We wish him the happiest of birthdays."

Gillespie served as president of the State Bar from 1958-1959 and was the 2010 recipient of the Gold Medal, the State Bar's highest honor. As president of the State Bar, Gillespie was one of the first presidents to travel across the state in order to foster relationships with local bar associations while building the State Bar's membership. Other highlights include successfully advocating that the New York State Legislature pass legislation that streamlined state income tax paperwork and personally endorsing 347 young lawyers to be admitted to practice before the U.S. Supreme Court. Prior to his presidency, Gillespie chaired the Membership Committee during a period when State Bar membership dramatically grew from 11,000 to 15,000.

A graduate of Yale University and Yale Law School, Gillespie is senior counsel to Davis Polk & Wardwell. More than 75 years after he served as a summer clerk, Gillespie still comes to work every day at the firm's New York office, devoting his time to pro bono services. Gillespie served as U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York from 1959 to 1961.

Known for his devotion to community, Gillespie serves as president of the Tappan Zee Bridge Preservation Coalition. He is a past chairman of the American Skin Association where he remains a board member. He previously was vice president of the Yale Law School Association of New York and a director of the Legal Aid Society, the Union Settlement Association and the Hospital for Special Surgery.

The Executive Committee's resolution can be viewed at

Founded in 1876, the 77,000 member New York State Bar Association is the official statewide organization of lawyers in New York and the largest voluntary state bar association in the nation. The State Bar's programs and activities have continuously served the public and improved the justice system for more than 130 years.