By ROB SULLIVAN (Bridgeport Banner)
On Tuesday, Dec. 13, Bridgeport Mayor Bill Finch recognized one of the city's and the state's most prestigious law firms with the stroke of a pen. The occasion was the 75th anniversary of Koskoff, Koskoff and Bieder, whose main offices are located at 350 Fairfield Avenue in downtown Bridgeport.
Finch proclaimed December 13th as Koskoff, Koskoff& Bieder Day in the City of Bridgeport and presented the signed proclamation to Michael Koskoff and other principals of the Bridgeport law firm in his office at City Hall Annex on Broad Street.
In a statement released by the Mayor's office, Finch said, "The law firm of Koskoff, Koskoff & Bieder has been a cornerstone in and staunch supporter of the City of Bridgeport for decades. The firms and its attorneys donate generously to scores of critical non-profit organizations and civil programs. The firm employs Bridgeport residents and its attorneys represent our Bridgeport Guardians. In recognition of this, and in celebration of the firm's 75th anniversary, today is Koskoff, Koskoff & Bieder Day."
Koskoff, Koskoff & Bieder is the creation of founder Theodore I. Koskoff, who opened the law firm's doors in 1936. That year marked the beginning of a long and prestigious career for the New Haven native, who passed away in 1989.
A nationally known trial lawyer, Theodore Koskoff graduated from Boston University's School of Law, and was also awarded an honorary doctoral degree by Suffolk University Law School in Boston. A former President of the American Association for Justice, he was widely known for the passion he brought to the practice of law.
Theodore Koskoff was a leading figure in a national drive for certification of specialists in civil and criminal trial advocacy. The Chairman and founder of the National Board of Trial Advocacy, he helped determine the standards for trial specialization and, in fact, wrote those standards. His pioneering efforts in the field of legal ethics are reflected in newly developing standards for the legal profession that are more responsive to the needs of both lawyers and the public. He was also a founder and past President of the Roscoe Pound Foundation, a founder and former chairman of the ATLA-sponsored National College of Advocacy.
The founder's legacy lives on in both the sterling nature of its reputation and in Koskoff, Koskoff & Bieder's community involvement. In fact, the Bridgeport firm has been described by the Hartford Courant as "reputedly the best plaintiff's law firm in the state."
As for community involvement, the law firm's charitable efforts are nearly unmatched. For example, earlier this year Koskoff, Koskoff & Bieder donated $100,000 to the Connecticut's Children's Medical Center in Hartford. The donation was earmarked for specialized medical equipment.
"We are thrilled to make this contribution to Connecticut Children's Medical Center, a world-class institution that treats over 288,000 children each year," Attorney Chris Bernard of Koskoff, Koskoff & Bieder said. "Our donation has enabled the hospital to purchase dedicated ultrasound equipment that will help in treating a painful and dangerous disease: sickle cell anemia."
Dr. Nathan J. Hagstrom, the Director and Division Head for Hematology and Oncology at Connecticut Children's praised the gift saying, "Childhood stroke is a devastating complication of sickle cell disease. We know that a specialized ultrasound test called transcranial Doppler (TCD) is tremendously helpful in identifying children who may be at risk for stroke. Until now, our hospital has not offered TCD screening on-site. This has allowed us to obtain the equipment needed to begin screening kids here at Connecticut Children's."
On its website, the firm lists nearly 70 organizations which it has supported, including dozens located in the Park City. Among the Bridgeport non-profits supported are the Bridgeport Child Advocacy Coalition, the Bridgeport Rescue Mission, and Beardsley Zoo.
For both its success in Connecticut courtrooms and its tireless involvement in the Greater Bridgeport community, last week's Koskoff, Koskoff & Bieder Day is certainly well-deserved.