WESTPORT– Michael P. Koskoff is the recipient of the Connecticut Law Tribune’s “Award for Professional Excellence.” Koskoff, whose firm Koskoff, Koskoff & Bieder has offices in Bridgeport, Danbury, and New Haven, is among about two dozen lawyers to be honored for outstanding service to the legal profession during his long career.
“Our panel of judges considered not only success in the courtroom, but law firm and bar association leadership, advocacy roles, pro bono contributions and service on state and federal bar panels, among other factors,” the newspaper said in its statement announcing the awards.
Among his many contributions to the bar, Koskoff has served a three-year term on the Connecticut State Judicial Selection Commission and is a former president of the Connecticut Chapter of The American Board of Trial Advocates.
He served for many years as co-chair of the Special Master’s Program of the Federal District Court and as chair of the Connecticut Trial Lawyer’s Continuing Legal Education Committee. Currently, he serves on the Connecticut Bar Association’s Federal Judiciary Committee.
One of Koskoff’s first pro-bono cases involved the defense of members of the Black Panther party in New Haven. He then went on to fight to end racial discrimination bringing class action lawsuits for Black and Latino applicants for jobs in municipal fire and police departments in Bridgeport and New Haven.
In 2008, he was the recipient of the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Connecticut Trial Lawyers’ Association. For work in promoting racial equality, he has received awards from the NAACP, the Afro-American Educators Association and the National Association of Black Police.
Koskoff’s handling of a complex malpractice case has been the subject of a book, Damages by Barry Wirth, which is used as a text in law schools throughout the country.
In addition to his legal career, Koskoff and his son, Jacob, recently completed a screenplay for a major motion picture about a trial conducted by Thurgood Marshall in Bridgeport. The film is currently is in production (see “Setting the Stage for Civil Rights: A Conversation with Michael Koskoff,” Jewish Ledger, Jan. 15, 2016).