Laurence Tribe Will Work Closely With Massey & Gail

University Professor Laurence H. Tribe ’62 has agreed to work closely on a variety of legal issues with law firm Massey & Gail and its clients.

Back at the Law School after a nine month stint in the Obama administration, Tribe is planning to teach a seminar at the Law School in the fall.

At Massey & Gail, he is offering his legal services—litigation, counseling, and strategic advice—both for pay and pro bono.

Despite frustrations with budgetary constraints and the limited authority in his position at the Justice Department, Tribe said he now looks favorably upon his time spent serving the administration.

“I learned a great deal and got started a number of good programs that I hope will continue into the future,” Tribe said.


Tribe has not accepted any formal position with the firm Massey & Gail, as doing so would violate Harvard’s rules regarding professors and outside affiliations.

It is the Law School’s policy to restrict faculty members’ involvement in outside projects to an average of one day a week in order to keep faculty members focused on their responsibilities within the University.

“Harvard wisely limits attachments to other institutions,” Tribe said. “More outside links means that, apart from draining hours, one’s soul might migrate away from academics.”

Many Law School professors also pursue a broad range of activities outside of being faculty members, serving on various boards and legal committees that then inform their roles at the Law School.

Providing outside legal services, Tribe said, introduces him to ideas that feed into how he sees the law and formulates his legal thinking.

“It shapes what I teach,” Tribe said.

Tribe has argued dozens of cases before the U.S. Supreme Court, has helped to draft the constitutions of South Africa, the Czech Republic, and the Marshall Islands, and has been described by the New York Times as “arguably the most famous constitutional scholar and Supreme Court practitioner in the country.”

“We’re thrilled to be working with him,” said Massey & Gail founding partner Jonathan S. Massey ’85.

Massey, who has worked on and off with Tribe for 25 years, said he is delighted by the chance to work with him again and benefit from the skills that Tribe brings to the table.

“Law is really about thinking creatively to solve problems,” Massey said. “And Larry does this better than anyone.”