Joseph H. Flom
Joseph Harold Flom (December 21, 1923 – February 23, 2011) was an American lawyer. He was the last living named partner of the law firm Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom. He specialized in representing companies in takeover battles.
Flom was born in Baltimore, Maryland on December 21, 1923. He grew up in Brooklyn, New York. After graduating from Townsend Harris High School, he attended City College of New York for two years but did not graduate. Instead, Flom enlisted in the Army during World War II. When he returned, he enrolled at Harvard Law School despite not having a college degree. Flom graduated law school in 1948.
After law school, Flom joined a law firm run by Marshall Skadden, Leslie Arps, and John Slate. He eventually became a partner in 1954, effectively taking over leadership of the firm a couple years later.
Flom was appointed by Mayor Ed Koch as chairman of the New York City Commission on the Bicentennial of the U.S. Constitution in 1987, a post he held till the commission completed its work, issued its report, and was dissolved in early 1990. The commission's efforts included an extensive civic-education campaign and the creation of a celebratory re-enactment on 30 April 1989 of the inauguration of George Washington as the first president of the United States.
Flom died in New York City from heart failure.Malcolm Gladwell devoted a chapter to Flom in his book Outliers, crediting him with building out and diversifying the firm and anticipating the rise of mergers and acquisitions as a specialty. “For 20 years, he perfected his craft at Skadden,” Gladwell wrote. “Then the world changed and he was ready.”
- Joseph H. Flom's biography on Skadden, Arps's web site
- Petrie-Flom Center for Health Law Policy, Biotechnology, and Bioethics at Harvard University
- Harvard Law School obituary for Joseph H. Flom
- New York Times obituary for Joseph H. Flom
- Wall Street Journal obituary for Joseph H. Flom
- Forbes obituary for Joseph H. Flom
Read in another language
This page is available in 1 language