Tuesday, October 18, 2022 from 12:30 PM to 1:30 PM EDT
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This is an online event.
It is free and open to the public. Direct link and password to the Zoom meeting will be emailed to all registrants ahead of time.

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In partnership with


This session will explore the 1902 landmark decision Roberson v. Rochester Folding-Box Company. 17-year-old Abigail Roberson went to court to stop a company from using her face in ads for its flour. She asserted an inherent right to privacy and called on the courts to shield her (and others) from this sort of commercial exploitation. The State Supreme Court and Appellate Division agreed. But the Court of Appeals rejected her plea: there was no inherent right to privacy in the constitution and the court could not bestow it. That was up to the legislature. In 1903, in response, the legislature passed the first state privacy law, which is still on the books. The Roberson case explores privacy issues that reverberate today and illustrates the powerful role of the courts in our lives.

This program is co-sponsored by the Historical Society of the New York Courts. Attorneys who are members of the Historical Society of the New York Courts and would like to obtain CLE credits for this program, please register here.

About The speakers

Dr. Bruce W. Dearstyne is a former professor at the University of Maryland and program director at the New York State Archives. He has written dozens of articles on archives, history, and related topics and is the author nine books, most recently the second edition of The Spirit of New York: Defining Events in the Empire State’s History and The Crucible of Public Policy: New York Courts in the Progressive Era.

Henry M. Greenberg, Esq., is a shareholder at Greenberg Traurig LLP & Vice Chair of the Historical Society of the New York Courts. Hank is also Past President of the New York State Bar Association, the largest voluntary state bar association in the nation. A former Counsel to the New York State Attorney General, General Counsel to a major New York State agency and federal prosecutor, Hank has handled numerous high-profile matters. He concentrates his practice on civil litigation, criminal and civil investigations, and regulatory and administrative law. 

More Event Details

A direct link and password to digital meeting space will be emailed to all registrants ahead of time. Contact aptrust@nysed.gov with questions or in need of assistance.