10 Things You May Not Know About T. Andrew Brown
President T. Andrew Brown has led an interesting life that includes playing football, starting his own law firm, and taking on leadership roles at NYSBA. But do you really know him? Let’s find out.
- Brown is an avid reader, mostly fiction. He is currently reading Stanford University professor Chang-Rae Lee’s new novel “My Year Abroad.”
- Isabel Wilkerson’s non-fiction, “The Warmth of Other Suns: The Epic Story of America’s Great Migration,” is a recent book he’s read that will have lasting impact. “It is a wonderful book for people to understand black life in America and how blacks have contributed and shaped cities as we know them today,” said Brown who has recommended the book to many people. “Most people, black and white, have had little opportunity to learn about black history in school. If we ignore history, we do so at our plight. The story of blacks in America is both sad and uplifting. That continues to this day. It can be uplifting because you see how blacks have persevered and found success despite the odds. There is cause for much celebration of black history in America. It should be known by everyone.”
- Ali, his 16-year-old daughter, is the love of his life. The avid equestrian can often be found at the stables most days. He spends as much time as possible with her. The soon-to- be high school junior looks forward to getting her driver’s license soon. “I enjoy the role of parenting, nurturing, and developing her so that she will be prepared to meet the challenges of life and hopefully take advantage of life’s opportunities,” said Brown. When not with Ali, Brown spends free time at the gym and doing anything outdoors.
- Brown’s mother, who passed away while he was in high school, was the greatest influence on him. “I continue to seek guidance from her on a daily basis,” Brown said. “I am who I am today largely because of her.”
- What’s the best piece of advice Brown has ever received? Be yourself. “People who are the most able to be themselves are able to achieve the most they possibly can,” said Brown. “Life can challenge us to remain true to who we are and how we navigate the world. People who live from the inside-out are more inspiring and fulfilled”.
- After having been in practice for 10 years, Brown started his own firm 27 years ago. He enjoys managing and leading the practice as well as working with clients. Prior to Covid-19 the firm had offices across New York. “It gives me the chance to both lead by example and bring out the best in others to serve clients,” said Brown. He values his firm’s independence and ability to pursue clients in addition to deciding the cases they want to handle. Because his firm represents many large national corporations, his team has the resources to also represent individuals who cannot afford to pay. The firm has handled human rights cases, discrimination lawsuits, cases stemming from policing actions and incarcerated individuals.
- Two weeks before the 2008 presidential election, Brown met Barack Obama at a private home in Philadelphia. “He was very approachable, very down to earth, very calm, very grounded and very sincere,” said Brown “He is the kind of person that you would want to spend time and become friends with.”
- Within the State Bar Association, Brown has chaired the Trial Lawyers Section and Finance Committee, co-chaired the Task Force on the Future of the Legal Profession, the Task Force on Racial Injustice and Police Reform, and the President’s Committee on Access to Justice. He has enjoyed the many opportunities to lead. Serving on the Trial Lawyers Section Executive Committee for years helped him develop and nurture many relationships that he will value for the rest of his life.
- NYSBA is not the first bar association Brown has led. He served as past president of the Monroe County Bar Association from 2008 to 2009. “I really enjoyed it. I made a lot of good friends in the association. We did a lot of exciting programing,” said Brown. “To that point, it was the highlight of my career. That prepared me well for my active role in NYSBA and will serve me well as NYSBA president.” Former Chief Judge Judith S. Kaye installed him as president of the Monroe County Bar Association; Chief Judge Janet DiFiore installed him as president of NYSBA. His daughter Ali was by his side each time.
- Brown is very excited to serve as the 124th president of the association. “I look forward to influencing our association and the practice of law as we examine post-pandemic life for ways to improve the profession, and also speaking to the issues of the day including those around social equity. I look forward to representing NYSBA in a way that heightens the brand and awareness of who we are as lawyers that make up the association. There will be a number of task forces and initiatives that we pursue to carry out the mission,” said Brown. “I will be a leader that will strive to bring out the best in our association and embrace opportunities to bring people together for the larger purpose of the association.”