Julian’s parents taught him from an early age that education was the most effective way to progress in life. His mother was born in Alabama, his father in Brooklyn, and as a family, they are mindful that they are four generations removed from slavery. Initially inspired by his mother’s role as the VP of their local NAACP branch, Julian is now a lifelong member of the civil rights advocacy group and he takes the organization’s aims as guiding principles for the way he lives his life:
I’m conscious that we all need to play our part in creating a fairer society for all and take every opportunity we can to ‘extend our hand’ to those less fortunate so that they can reach, or surpass, what we have achieved.
After graduating from Harvard and receiving his law degree from Columbia Law School, Julian began his career as a law clerk to the Hon. Kim McLane Wardlaw of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. He then went on to work in both public and private practice, including serving as Deputy Attorney General for New York State, Deputy Chief of Investigations for the Moreland Commission to Investigate Public Corruption, and Assistant U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York (SDNY). Whilst there, he was a lead prosecutor in the largest financial crime in history – the investigation of the Bernard L. Madoff Ponzi Scheme. “As one of only a few Black lawyers in the Southern District, I was acutely aware of the importance of my voice and perspective being shared, particularly when determining whether or not to prosecute a case. By serving in the role of a federal prosecutor, I was able to have an impact in so many people’s lives. Indeed, representation matters.” In 2014, Julian decided to return to the private sector and is now a partner in the Investigations and Litigation practice at A&O. He represents companies, officers, directors, and executives in white-collar criminal cases, anti-corruption and internal investigations, and compliance matters.
He considers himself fortunate to have access to so many opportunities brought about by his professional success, and in turn, supports numerous causes that are close to his heart. “I have the ability and the will to help bring about positive change. I’m proud to be a gay, African-American lawyer, and I want to take every opportunity to represent those whose voices aren’t heard.” Among the many organizations he supports, Julian was humbled to be elected Vice Chair of the Trevor Project, a national organization that provides, 24-hour, confidential suicide prevention services for LGBTQ+ youth. He introduced the organization to A&O, and they have in turn become active supporters of the cause through various initiatives.
In the turbulent times brought about by the deaths of George Floyd and many others, Julian swiftly engaged his formidable network and invited speakers to share their stories to the A&O network in a series of sessions focused on race and ethnicity. “Sometimes we need to stop and listen to others and expose ourselves to the issues that we’re not familiar with. Now is that time. We need to have those difficult conversations and use our influence to make a difference.”
More recently, Julian was one of a number of A&O attorneys who volunteered their time with the nonpartisan Voter Protection “Get out the vote” Program during the 2020 presidential election. He answered questions on a dedicated voter hotline, and spent time on the front lines observing the voting booths to ensure voters felt safe and protected. “As an American citizen, it’s so important to me that everyone knows their vote counts. I wanted to support the cause and ensure that voting process was straight forward.”
Julian reminds us of the importance of being able to bring your whole self to work by supporting causes important to him. Being a part of a firm that shares his mindset and values helps fulfill the mutual desire to make a real impact in the local and global communities served.