The 2017 Honorable Clifford Scott Green Lectureship
Redefining Liberty: The Pendulum Swings Again!

Presented By Alphonso David

APRIL 5, 2017 @ 4:00 PM



Alphonso B. David is an attorney, law professor and policy advisor with significant litigation and management experience in the public, private, and not-for-profit sectors.

In 2015, Mr. David was appointed by Governor Andrew Cuomo to serve as Counsel to the Governor. In this role, he functions as the Governor’s chief counsel and principal legal advisor, and oversees all significant legal and policy deliberations affecting New York State including evaluating proposed legislation; implementing laws and policies; and formulating the State’s posture in both affirmative and defensive litigation.

Prior to his appointment as the Governor’s Chief Counsel, Mr. David served for four years in the Governor’s cabinet as the Deputy Secretary and Counsel for Civil Rights, the first position of its kind in New York State. In this capacity, he was responsible for a full range of legal, policy, legislative, and operational matters affecting civil rights and labor throughout the State. Mr. David also previously served as Special Deputy Attorney General for Civil Rights for the Office of the New York State Attorney General, where he managed up to a dozen Assistant Attorneys General on a variety of investigations and affirmative litigation, including employment and housing discrimination, fair lending, reproductive rights, and anti-bias claims. Further, he previously served as Deputy Commissioner and Special Counselor at the New York State Division of Human Rights.

Prior to working in the public sector, Mr. David served as a staff attorney at the Lambda Legal Defense and Educational Fund. At Lambda Legal, Mr. David litigated precedent­ setting civil rights cases across the nation affecting lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender individuals as well as those living with HIV. He handled both affirmative and defensive matters relating to marriage, parenting rights, discrimination in schools, and access to health care. In addition, Mr. David served as a litigation associate at the law firm Blank Rome LLP. He began his legal career as a judicial clerk to the Honorable Clifford Scott Green in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania.

For the past decade, Mr. David has served as an Adjunct Professor of Law. He began his work in academia with Fordham University Law School and is currently at Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law, where he teaches “Constitutional Law: Sexuality and the Law.”

Mr. David is a graduate of the University of Maryland and Temple University School of Law.




This event is open to the general public and all Temple Law alumni, friends, students, faculty and staff. Registration is NOT required, but if you let us know you’re coming using the form below it will help us plan. We’ll also email you a reminder before the event so you don’t forget!




The Honorable Clifford Scott Green Lectureship was established in 2003 to perpetuate the civil rights legacy of Judge Clifford Scott Green LAW ’51 and to honor his distinguished service to Temple University.Judge Green was described as “an inspiration, a mentor, a teacher, a role model, and a friend to innumerable minority and non-minority law clerks, interns and students.” Clifford Scott Green grew up in Philadelphia in a poor but close and supportive family. He fulfilled their aspirations for him by being the first in the family to finish high school, then college and law school. As a law student he distinguished himself with honors for the highest grades in constitutional law and conflicts of laws, and as an associate editor of the law review. In 1952, Judge Green joined the first African-American law firm in Pennsylvania, which later became Norris, Schmidt, Green, Harris, Higginbotham and Brown.

Judge Green received numerous awards for his community service, integrity and professional excellence, including the first Judge William Hastie Award from the NAACP Legal Defense Fund in 1985. In 2002, he was awarded the Spirit of Excellence Award from the American Bar Association Commission on Racial and Ethnic Diversity. He was appointed judge of the County Court of Philadelphia in 1964, and President Richard M. Nixon named him to the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania in 1971, where he assumed senior status in 1988.

During 36 years on the federal bench, Judge Green presided over a number of notable cases, and was regarded as one of the most popular judges in the district. Green was a long-time adjunct professor at the law school, teaching evidence, criminal law and criminal procedure. In the early 1970s, he was instrumental in creating the Temple-LEAP mock trial competition for high school students. He was a founding member of the law school board of visitors and a member of the university’s board of trustees and, in 1997, he was awarded an honorary doctor of laws degree by the university.