The name Proskin stands above all others when it comes to the practice of law in and around the Capital Region. And it starts with Arnold Proskin, founder and lead attorney of the Proskin Law Firm, which he established in 1977. Along with his 40+ years as a practicing attorney, Arnold has served as Albany County District Attorney, Albany County Judge and New York State Assemblyman. Amidst all his achievements, titles and honors, Arnold Proskin remains one of the most respected and accomplished legal figures in NY State. It’s no surprise that he is the attorney the media seeks-out when looking for insight and expert opinion in major, national legal cases, and the attorney sought-out by those in need of sound and solid legal representation for themselves.
Arnold W. Proskin was born in Albany, New York . He was educated in the Albany public schools and studied pre-law at the State University of New York at Albany. In 1964, he received his Doctor of Laws degree from Boston College Law School where he was Editor of the Law Review and selected as a member of the National Legal Honorary Society, the Order of the Coif.
Arnold served in the United States Navy from 1956 to 1958. He was admitted to the Practice of Law in the State of New York in 1964 and is licensed to practice in all New York State Courts, Federal District Courts in New York State and the United States Supreme Court. He began his political career in 1968 when he was elected Albany County District Attorney. He served in that position from 1969 through 1973, having been re-elected in 1971. As District Attorney he personally prosecuted dozens of high-profile cases, including the last capital case in Albany County.
In 1973 Arnold was elected Albany County Judge and served on the bench until 1976, when he returned to the private practice of law. In 1984, he was appointed as a Judicial Hearing Officer, Acting Supreme Court Justice and served in that capacity until he became a member of the New York State Assembly in 1985. He was first elected to the New York State Assembly in 1984, and has represented several Capital District communities, including the Town of Colonie in Albany County and the Towns of Clifton Park, Halfmoon, Malta, Stillwater and Waterford in Saratoga County.
During his Assembly tenure, Arnold served as a member of the Assembly Standing Committees on Judiciary, Codes, Ethics and Guidance, Racing and Wagering, Insurance, Corporations, Authorities and Commissions, Election Law, Labor and Housing. In addition, he served on numerous Sub-Committees including Civil Practice, Property Rights, Estates & Trusts, Court Operations and Constitutional Amendments. He was a member of the Legislative Ethics Committee, the Court Facilities Capital Review Board, the Judicial Conference of the State of New York, the Legislative/Executive Task Force on Criminal Justice, the Minority Task Forces dealing with Crime Victims’ Rights, Hispanic Affairs, Economic Growth and the Future of SUNY. When he left the Assembly on December 31, 1994, he held the leadership position of Chairman of the Assembly Steering Committee for the Republican Conference. In 2001, he was appointed a Member of the New York State Juvenile Justice Task Force. In 2004, he became a Member of the Supreme Court Justices by Designation. He is also presently serving as a hearing officer for the New York State Comptroller.
In 1995, after completing ten years of service in the Assembly, Mr. Proskin returned to his law practice full-time and was reappointed as a Judicial Hearing Officer. As a Judicial Hearing Officer, he has divided his time between his private practice and serving in the Supreme Court and various Family Courts throughout the Third and Fourth Districts of the Third Judicial Department which encompasses all counties from Sullivan County to the Canadian Border as well as the Capital District west to Fulton County.
Mr. Proskin is the general counsel for the Maplewood Fire Department, W.K. Mansfield Fire Department, West Albany Fire Department 2, Delmar Fire Department, Bethlehem Ambulance Squad, the Colonie Chamber of Commerce and the West Albany Rod and Gun Club and former counsel to the Verdoy Fire District.
Arnold is a former faculty member of Schenectady County Community College, the Empire State College and a former Adjunct Professor of the State University of New York in Albany and is currently a member of the Albany County, Saratoga County, New York State and American Bar Associations, American Judges Association, Capital District Women’s Bar Association, Woman’s Bar Association of the State of New York, New York State District Attorneys’ Association, National District Attorneys’ Association, County Judges’ Association of the State of New York, American Legion Post No. 1256, B’nai B’rith-Gideon Lodge, a member of Congregation Ohav Shalom, former President of Congregation Beth Abraham-Jacob, Delmar Fire Department (Honorary), Colonie Elks Lodge No. 2192, former member of the Twin Rivers Council, Boy Scouts of America Advisory Board, Jewish War Veterans Post No. 105, Knights of Pythias-Albany City Lodge No. 540, Shaker Road-Loudonville Fire Department (Honorary), Washington Lodge No. 85 F & A.M., Shriners-Albany Scottish Rite, West Albany Athletic Association (formerly St. Francis de Sales), Honorary Parishioner of St. Francis de Sales (now Christ Our Light), Roman Catholic Church, Loudonville, New York, and a member of and legal counsel to the Colonie Chamber of Commerce. In 2010, the Colonie Chamber of Commerce awarded Mr. Proskin the First Annual Spirit of the Chamber Award ever presented by the Chamber for his “many years of dedicated service provided to both the Chamber and our Community.”
In 1972 Arnold was named New York State Jaycees Outstanding Young Man of the Year. He was named International Order of the Alhambra, Vega Caravan No.. 13 Man of the Year in 1975 and Independent Order of Odd Fellows, Member of the Year in 1985. He also received the New York State Vocational Schools Award in 1971 and the Histradrut Public Service Council Award in 1973. In September of 2000, he was elected and designated as an Honorary 33rd Degree member of the Scottish Rite Order of Freemasonry of the United States of America and an Honorary Member of the Supreme Counsel. This is the highest recognition and award given in Freemasonry.
Arnold is married to the former Martha Pollack of Nassau, Rensselaer County and resides in the Village of Menands in the Town of Colonie. The Proskins have four children, Lisa, Heath, Wendy and Michael and seven grandchildren, Hannah, Daniel, Rachel, Petra, Tova, Orli and Graham.