Bertram Fields donates $5 million to Harvard Law School to create professorship

Bertram Fields ’52

Bertram Fields ’52

Harvard Law School has announced that Bertram Fields, one of the nation’s most renowned entertainment lawyers, has made a gift of $5 million to Harvard Law School to endow the Bertram Fields Professorship of Law. Fields, a native of Los Angeles, California, received his law degree from Harvard Law School, magna cum laude, in 1952.

“Bert Fields is legendary because he sets the standard for excellence and creativity as a litigator, teacher, and author.  It is with joy that we announce this superb expression of his generosity and vision, which reflect his inspiring commitment to Harvard Law School and deep understanding of the importance of world-class faculty to our missions of teaching, scholarship, and nurturing talented students to pursue professional excellence,” said Martha Minow, Morgan and Helen Chu Dean and Professor of Law at Harvard Law School. “What an enduring testament to Bert’s extraordinary work and his vibrant career in the entertainment industry! We are deeply grateful for his endowment of the Bertram Fields Professorship of Law.”

In explaining his gift, Fields said, “Harvard is an institution that over the centuries has contributed enormously to American thought, especially judicial thought. It changed my life dramatically and had a fundamental impact on me and my career.” In particular, he noted, his tenure on the Harvard Law Review, where he was an editor, was formative in writing skills essential to his success as a practicing lawyer.

During his distinguished career, Fields, a partner at Greenberg Glusker in Los Angeles, has tried many of the landmark cases in the entertainment and communications industries. His clients have included DreamWorks, MGM, United Artists, The Weinstein Company, James Cameron, Tom Cruise, Warren Beatty, Dustin Hoffman, Jeffrey Katzenberg, the Beatles, Sony Music, and many others. He has represented such major authors as Mario Puzo, James Clavell, Tom Clancy, Clive Cussler, and Richard Bach, as well as such diverse clients as Arizona cotton farmers, Las Vegas hotels and casinos, clothing designers, boxing promoters, and a Japanese bank.

Fields has lectured frequently on entertainment law at Harvard Law School and teaches an entertainment law course at Stanford Law School. He is the author, under a pseudonym, of two novels, and has written two non-fiction books under his name, a biographical work on Richard III, and an analysis of the Shakespeare authorship question, both published by ReganBooks/HarperCollins.

He earned his bachelor’s degree from UCLA, and, after graduating from HLS, served as a First Lieutenant in the U.S. Air Force during the Korean War. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, and he is a recipient of the Interest of Justice Award by the Legal Aid Foundation.