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Michael Traynor

Board dates

1991 - 1994
1995 - 1997
1999 - 2002
2003 - 2005

Michael Traynor, senior counsel, consults about strategic directions and opportunities for clients and Cobalt.

Michael is President Emeritus of the American Law Institute, an adviser to Restatement Fourth of the Foreign Relations Law of the United States: Jurisdiction, and the recipient of the Institute’s Distinguished Service Award. He is a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts & Sciences, the American Academy of Appellate Lawyers, the California Academy of Appellate Lawyers, and the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit honored him with its John P. Frank Award, which recognizes a lawyer who has “demonstrated outstanding character and integrity; dedication to the rule of law; proficiency as a trial and appellate lawyer; success in promoting collegiality among members of the bench and bar; and a lifetime of service to the federal courts of the Ninth Circuit.” He holds an honorary LL.D from the University of South Carolina.

Michael currently serves on the boards of the Developmental Studies Center; the Berkeley Community Fund; and Heyday as well as on various advisory groups including the Earthjustice Council, the National Wildlife Federation’s President’s Advisory Council, and the Electronic Frontier Foundation’s Advisory Board. He also contributes to professional publications (his list of publications and selected speeches is linked here).

He received his B.A. in Economics from the University of California at Berkeley (1955) and his J.D from Harvard Law School (1960). His areas of expertise include appellate litigation, the First Amendment, restitution and remedies, and the conflict of laws.