As Counsel to Boston’s Zalkind Duncan & Bernstein LLP, Silverglate specializes in criminal defense, civil liberties, and academic freedom/student rights law. He has assisted students in trouble since 1969, when he represented student anti-war protesters on trial. He has taught at Cambridge Rindge & Latin School (a public secondary school), the University of Massachusetts College III (in Boston), and Harvard Law School. Silverglate has also served on the Board of the ACLU of Massachusetts for over three decades, including two terms as Board president. He is a long-time affiliate of Harvard College’s Dunster House, where he conducts student “law tables.”
A criminal law and civil-liberties columnist for The Boston Phoenix for nearly four decades, Silverglate now regularly contributes to WGBH News. He has been published in The National Law Journal, Inc. magazine, The Wall Street Journal, The Boston Globe, The Boston Herald, The Philadelphia Inquirer, Harvard Law Review, The New York Times Book Review, Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly,Harvard Civil Rights-Civil Liberties Law Review, Media Studies Journal, Cato Journal, Cato Supreme Court Review, Wilson Quarterly, The Chronicle of Higher Education, Reason magazine, and elsewhere. Silverglate is also the author of The Shadow University (with Alan Charles Kors, 1998) and Three Felonies a Day: How the Feds Target the Innocent (2009). He has lectured and debated at the Ford Hall Forum, the oldest independent forum in the nation devoted to free speech.
Silverglate chaired the Independent Privacy Board of Predictive Networks, Inc., from 2000 until 2002. Earlier, he was litigation counsel for the Electronic Frontier Foundation, advocating freedom in cyberspace. He is an Adjunct Scholar at the Cato Institute.
Silverglate lives with his wife, portrait photographer Elsa Dorfman, in Cambridge. Their son Isaac Dorfman Silverglate lives with his wife Annette Morales and their two children in New York City.