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Howard Gittis, Philadelphia Lawyer, Adviser to Ron Perelman, and Penn Law Benefactor
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Gittis was an academic whiz kid at Penn Law School. His team won the National Moot Court Championship for the first time in school history. After law school, Gittis served in the Air Force Reserve before receiving his first big break. He was offered a clerkship with Pennsylvania Supreme Court Justice Thomas McBride, who hired Gittis when he left the Court and founded his own firm. In 1962, McBride’s firm merged with Wolf, Block, Schorr & Solis-Cohen. Gittis became the youngest partner in firm history, later serving as chairman for more than a decade. He was chancellor of the Philadelphia Bar Association in the early 1980s and in 1985 the National Law Journal listed Mr. Gittis among the top 100 lawyers in America.

In an interview last year, Dick Frieder, L’58, a Law School classmate who remained one of Gittis’ best friends, described what made Gittis a first-rate lawyer. “One of Howard’s strengths is his ability to mediate and to make both sides of the issue realize that they both can come out a winner if they compromise and negotiate,” Frieder said. “Howard is the best that there ever was at that.”
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