Louis J. Lefkowitz

Louis J. Lefkowitz

Louis J. Lefkowitz, Attorney General of New York
59th Attorney General of New York
In office
January 10, 1957  January 1, 1979
Governor W. Averell Harriman
Nelson Rockefeller
Malcolm Wilson
Hugh Carey
Preceded by Jacob K. Javits
Succeeded by Robert Abrams
Personal details
Born (1904-07-03)July 3, 1904
Manhattan, New York, U.S.
Died June 20, 1996(1996-06-20) (aged 91)
Manhattan, New York, U.S.
Political party Republican
Spouse(s) Helen Schwimmer
Children 2
Profession Lawyer, judge, politician
Religion Judaism
The Louis J. Lefkowitz State Office Building

Louis J. Lefkowitz (July 3, 1904 – June 20, 1996) was an American lawyer and politician. He served as the Attorney General of New York State for 22 years.

Personal life

Lefkowitz was born to a Jewish family in Manhattan, New York City, the son of Samuel Lefkowitz and Mollie (Isaacs) Lefkowitz, and brother of Leo Lefkowitz and Helen (Lefkowitz) Schlesinger. On June 14, 1931, he married Helen Schwimmer (1908–1986). They had a son, Stephen Lefkowitz, and a daughter, Joan Lefkowitz Feinbloom.

Political career

Lefkowitz was a member of the New York State Assembly (New York Co., 6th D.) in 1928, 1929 and 1930.

In 1935, he became a municipal judge. In 1957, he was elected by the New York State Legislature as New York Attorney General, to succeed Jacob K. Javits who resigned after his election to the U.S. Senate. Lefkowitz was re-elected in 1958, 1962, 1966, 1970 and 1974, holding the office for 22 years, the longest tenure since the office was established in 1777.

In 1961, he was the Republican candidate for Mayor of New York City, but lost to Democrat Robert F. Wagner, Jr.

Lefkowitz was a delegate to the 1944, 1948, 1960, and 1964 Republican National Conventions, and an alternate delegate to the 1956 Republican National Convention. He was a moderate or even liberal Republican and part of the Thomas E. Dewey and Nelson A. Rockefeller faction of the New York Republican Party.

Lefkowitz died from Parkinson's disease at his home in Manhattan.

The Louis J. Lefkowitz State Office Building at 80 Centre Street in the Civic Center district of Manhattan was named for him.[1]



  1. "Louis J. Lekfowitz State Office Building" on the New York City Department of Citywide Administrative Services website
New York Assembly
Preceded by
Morris Weinfeld
New York State Assembly
New York County, 6th District

Succeeded by
Irving D. Neustein
Legal offices
Preceded by
Jacob K. Javits
Attorney General of New York
Succeeded by
Robert Abrams
Party political offices
Preceded by
Robert Christenberry
Republican Nominee for Mayor of New York City
Succeeded by
John V. Lindsay
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