North­eastern Uni­ver­sity Pres­i­dent Joseph Aoun has appointed Ralph Martin, JD ’78, to be the University’s senior vice pres­i­dent and gen­eral counsel. A highly accom­plished attorney and civic leader with more than 30 years of expe­ri­ence in the public and pri­vate sec­tors, Martin will lead a broad port­folio of legal, reg­u­la­tory and non-​​legal responsibilities.

Ralph Martin brings a unique and pow­erful com­bi­na­tion of strengths to North­eastern,” said Pres­i­dent Aoun. “He has a pen­e­trating legal mind, expe­ri­ence as a leader, and a com­mit­ment to civic engage­ment. As the uni­ver­sity expands glob­ally, we remain deeply con­nected to our sur­rounding com­mu­ni­ties. Ralph’s many skills will be tremen­dous assets on this exciting journey.”

Cur­rently the man­aging partner of the Boston office of Bingham McCutchen LLP, Martin will manage a broad range of legal issues that typ­i­cally come before a major research uni­ver­sity. He will also oversee addi­tional uni­ver­sity pri­or­i­ties such as com­mu­nity affairs, master plan­ning, com­pli­ance and risk man­age­ment, and the Office of Insti­tu­tional Diver­sity and Equity.

North­eastern rep­re­sents many of the ideals I have spent a life­time pro­moting: edu­ca­tion, civic engage­ment, and lead­er­ship,” said Martin. “As a long­time member of the North­eastern com­mu­nity, I have watched the uni­ver­sity trans­form itself from a local insti­tu­tion into a global enter­prise. I look for­ward to working with Pres­i­dent Aoun and the senior lead­er­ship team to take North­eastern to even greater heights.”

Martin is an accom­plished trial lawyer and pros­e­cutor with exten­sive expe­ri­ence in reg­u­la­tory affairs, white collar inves­ti­ga­tions, cor­po­rate law and gen­eral civil lit­i­ga­tion. Before joining Bingham, where he is co-​​chair of the firm’s National Diver­sity Com­mittee, Martin served as the first African-​​American dis­trict attorney in the his­tory of Suf­folk County. His work as a pros­e­cutor was rec­og­nized by former Pres­i­dent Bill Clinton and former Attorney Gen­eral Janet Reno.

As a partner at Bingham, Ralph has con­tributed a great deal to our firm, locally and nation­ally,” said Chairman Jay S. Zim­merman. “I am not sur­prised that North­eastern approached him, and given Ralph’s broad array of legal, busi­ness and civic inter­ests, it is a great fit for both North­eastern and Ralph. We will miss him and we wish him success.”

Beyond his many pro­fes­sional accom­plish­ments, Martin is very active in the civic life of Boston and the Com­mon­wealth of Mass­a­chu­setts. He is a former chair of the Greater Boston Chamber of Com­merce and serves on the boards of Children’s Hos­pital Boston and Blue­Cross BlueShield of Mass­a­chu­setts. He is also member of the Boston Bar Asso­ci­a­tion, the Mass­a­chu­setts Bar Asso­ci­a­tion, a Life Member of the Mass­a­chu­setts Black Lawyers’ Asso­ci­a­tion, and the New York State Bar Asso­ci­a­tion. He serves as chairman of the Supreme Judi­cial Court’s Court Man­age­ment Advi­sory Board, which advises the court’s jus­tices on admin­is­tra­tion and management.

Martin will work closely with Vin­cent Lembo, BA ’73 JD ’76, who has served as Uni­ver­sity Counsel for more than 25 years. Lembo will con­tinue to play a crit­ical role at the uni­ver­sity, as vice pres­i­dent senior counsel within the Gen­eral Counsel’s office and as a top adviser to Pres­i­dent Aoun. Lembo will also con­tinue to be sec­re­tary to the University’s Board of Trustees.

In addi­tion to earning his law degree from North­eastern, Martin earned his bachelor’s degree from Bran­deis Uni­ver­sity, where he also served as a member of the Board of Trustees.

A member of the North­eastern Board of Trustees since 2009, Martin will resign from the Board before assuming his new posi­tion in March.