He is also Adjunct Professor of Law at Fordham University School of Law, where he teaches a course called, “Gender, Sexuality & the Law.”
Before joining the Commission, Michael was founder and Executive Director of Transgender Legal Defense & Education Fund. During his tenure, TLDEF grew to national prominence by litigating cases of first impression in courts around the country, and developing volunteer legal programs like the Name Change Project to directly serve the needs of low-income transgender community members.
Michael began his career in private practice and immediately began to devote his volunteer efforts to LGBTQ rights. As a cooperating attorney with Lambda Legal, Michael worked on groundbreaking cases including Baehr v. Miike, one of the earliest challenges to restrictions on the freedom to marry, and Boy Scouts of America v. Dale. In that case, Michael represented a coalition of religious organizations opposed to the Scouts’ anti-gay policy, and his brief submitted to the United States Supreme Court on their behalf was cited in the opinion of the dissenting justices.
In 2000, Michael received a Georgetown University Law Center Women’s Law and Public Policy Fellowship, through which he taught in the law school’s domestic violence clinic and worked in the legal department at NARAL Pro-Choice America. He also worked for four years in New York Lawyers for the Public Interest’s Access to Health Care Program and Disability Law Center.
Michael is a graduate of Vassar College and The University of Michigan Law School.
WHAT: TLDEF’s Transgender Advocacy Awards: a night of cocktails, hors d’oeuvres and celebration.
WHEN: Tuesday, June 12, 6:30 – 8:30 PM
WHERE: Manhattan Penthouse, 80 Fifth Avenue, NYC
WHO: Honouring: Cecilia Gentili (Director of Policy and Public Affairs at GMHC) with TLDEF’s Community Leader Award; Michael Silverman (TLDEF Founder and Special Counsel at the New York City Commission on Human Rights) with TLDEF’s Legacy Award; Nico Lang (Acclaimed Journalist) with TLDEF Visibility Award; law firm, Arnold & Porter, with TLDEF’s Pro Bono Partner of the Year Award; insurance company, Chubb, with TLDEF’s Corporate Partner of the Year Award.