About the Firm
Michael Wm. Lebron
For over 22 years, New Yorkers and tri-staters alike have recognized the name Lionel, an Emmy® Award winning talk radio pioneer and television commentator and legal analyst, as an unabashed champion of individual liberty, privacy, free speech and a fair and just legal system. But in addition to that incarnation, Michael Lebron is a trial lawyer with 35 years experience as a former prosecutor and, as he's wont to describe it, a MASH-unit trial warrior. He's been an educator and author and teacher, making the arcane world of the law approachable and accessible to the law's public. He's licensed to practice in New York, New Jersey and Florida as well as the Supreme Court of the United States. And what he thoroughly enjoys more than anything is guiding clients through the maze that is the courtroom and judicial process. It's at times hand-holding, it requires compassion and an understainding of how terrifying the process can seem to those newly invested through an untoward event. And let's face it, no one goes to court or retains the services of a lawyer unless something bad has happened.
Out of law school he was asked by the State Attorney to join his office for the Thirteenth Judicial Circuit in Tampa and Hillsborough County, Florida, and there he prosecuted cases on and at every level – misdemeanor, traffic, DUIs, juvenile, dependency, termination of parental rights, drug trafficking, general felonies, armed robbery and murder. The experience was invaluable and the education in being a part of the front line in criminal justice prosecution gave him a perspective and a frame of reference that can only be learned and attained in the trenches. After leaving the prosecutor's office, he went into a private trial practice representing personal injury plaintiffs and defendants charged with crimes. He also represented parents falsely accused of child abuse and abuse, neglect and abandonment. The public, who by and large never see the injustice exacted by a cold and detached system with little regard for the misapplication of justice, would be amazed if they knew what happens daily. And through the medium and significant bully pulpit of talk radio and television commentary, Michael Lebron through his nom de plume of sorts began an odyssey that has proved to be more fulfilling and instructional than he could have ever imagined. The law has as its theoretical goal justice and as Alexander Hamilton said, “I think the first duty of society is justice.”
In June of 1994 the landscape of legal commentary and the public's perception of criminal justice changed dramatically with arrest of O. J. Simpson. Michael Lebron as Lionel began what amounted to daily tutorials on 77 WABC, New York's heritage talk radio giant, which later resulted in a ratings success the station has yet to see since. His commentary and tutorials took a no holds barred approach to what was happening daily and audiences grew exponentially as he would explain to a rapt audience the elements of hearsay, trial strategy, negotiation and tactics, cross-examination and impeachment strategies and the like. Simultaneously Court TV became the go-to network for all that was juridically front page. Later, as Lionel, Michael Lebron hosted his own show "Snap Judgment," again teaching and showcasing to the law public the rudiments and basics of our trial system. Nothing the public imagined through television and cinema was in any way as interesting as real life courtroom drama.
Many great friendships were forged during that time. Charles Grodin contacted Lionel immediately and had him on his CNBC show on numerous occasions after Grodin’s pal Jack Paar, a Lionel hero, heard him on WABC and suggested Grodin listen. Thereafter Lebron became great friends with O. J.’s lawyer, Johnnie Cochran, and they both appeared weekly on Court TV discussing legal cases of note.
Teaching law to audiences or teaching the law of a particular case to a jury, human interaction and communication and connection are at the heart of legal trial practice. Every decision, every award and ruling, every sentence and punishment are all the product of human tribunals acting upon the facts of a case and the applicable law as applied and explained by the lawyer, the trusted citizen advocate.
BROADCAST & MEDIA
Talkers Magazine, the talk radio industry journal, listed him in the HEAVIEST HUNDRED: The 100 most important radio talk show hosts of all time. He’s also a pioneer podcaster and was also included in Talkers Frontier Fifty as an outstanding talk media webcaster and is the author of “Everyone’s Crazy Except You and Me . . . And I’m Not So Sure About You” (Hyperion).
Newsweek noted that Lionel is “[a]n intellectual known for his irreverent political and social humor.”
And this quote from the legendary record producer Jerry Wexler perhaps says it best.
He wears the mantle of Lenny Bruce, with Lenny’s own tropisms: The Oblique, The Irreverent, The Tangential, The Concupiscent, The Polymorphous Perverse, The Arcane, The Numinous. And yet Lionel brings to the table his own savory: A love of the mother tongue and a gonzo vocabulary that puts his logo on all his works, whether talk-show hosting, standup-comic spritzing, or hanging out – with himself a minor art form.