In more than three decades since transitioning from primarily a teachers college to a liberal arts university, Eastern has of course produced several dozen alumni who went on to become attorneys. If Michael Endler ’81 is not the most accomplished of them, he is among a very small group vying for the title.
After distinguishing himself as Public Policy & Government and Communication student here and going on to Georgetown University’s law school, he has distinguished himself even more as a top government lawyer and partner in two law firms. He is currently a partner in the Albany office of Boies, Schiller & Flexner LLP, a national firm headed by one of the country’s most famous lawyers, David Boies. Boies is best known for representing Presidential candidate Al Gore in the controversial Bush v. Gore Supreme Court case in 2000.
Endler’s earlier career included successfully representing the U.S. government as a Special Counsel for the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation in another celebrated case, in which he helped the government recover more than $1 billion in cases involving the savings and loan scandal from the late 1980s and the infamous “junk bond” dealer Michael Milken and his firm Drexel Lambert. He currently specializes in highly complex commercial litigation, generally involving antitrust, banking, energy and insurance issues, and often Securities and Exchange Commission conflicts. He says these are commonly “bet the business” cases, meaning the stakes are so high that if he loses the case for his client, the business he represents may dissolve.
He has also renewed ties to Eastern recently in a couple of ways. Endler appeared as a panelist in a 2011 gathering at Eastern hosted by the University’s Pre-Law Society, a group helping guide Eastern students considering legal careers, the kind of guidance he regrets didn’t exist when he was considering law school as a student here. He is also leading the effort with his classmates to build the relatively new Class of 1981 Scholarship to the endowed level, so the scholarship can eventually be awarded annually on a permanent basis.
Endler lives with his wife Lise Hafner and two children in Loudonville, NY, and serves on the board of an area private school both children have attended.