A native New Yorker -- raised in a Queens neighborhood the New York Times considered at the time to be the most diverse in the world -- Michael Friedman moved to Minneapolis in 1999 and joined the LRC staff as a part-timer in 2001, (following a few years in which he had helped Mid Minnesota Legal Assistance as a volunteer working on Community Legal Education). Initially hired to perform case research for LRC attorneys and handle other client support work, community needs pushed Michael to pursue special advocacy projects and committee work. In 2003, he was selected as the Chair of the (then) newly reformed Minneapolis Civilian Police Review Authority, serving in that capacity until chosen to be the LRC's fifth Executive Director in early 2006.
As Executive Director, Michael has given special attention to reorienting the LRC's restorative justice services, particularly in developing successful and innovative strategies for allowing restorative processes to prevent school to prison pipeline business as usual. He has continued his advocacy interests by publishing several StarTribune Op-eds and one article in Hennepin Lawyer, and has published many columns in community press as well. He continues to serve on several committees, including ones with the Hennepin County and Minnesota State Bar Associations.
Prior to his work with legal nonprofits, Michael was a fiction writer and college teacher, primarily at Trinity College in Connecticut. He holds an undergraduate degree from Oberlin College and a Master of Fine Arts from Cornell University.