Peter C. Erichsen


  • JD, cum laude, Harvard Law School, 1981
  • AB, magna cum laude, Harvard College, 1978


  • Massachusetts, 1981
  • Former Director, Philadelphia Stock Exchange. Chair, Audit Committee
  • Trustee, Groton School, Groton, Massachusetts
  • Trustee and Secretary, New England Conservatory of Music, Boston, MA
  • Former Trustee, DeCordova Sculpture Park and Museum, Lincoln, MA
  • Former Director and Vice Chair, Recording for the Blind and Dyslexic, Inc. Chair, Audit Committee
  • Former Director, Performing Arts Center of Los Angeles County. Member, Executive Committee
  • The Best Lawyers in America (2009-2021)
  • Massachusetts Super Lawyers (2014-2016)

Peter C. Erichsen


Peter is head of the firm’s corporate department, co-head of its colleges & universities practice, and the firm’s hiring partner. He has extensive knowledge of the governance and compliance challenges of non-profit institutions, having represented organizations in internal and governmental investigations and audits, as well as other critical and highly publicized situations. Peter also has significant experience with the legal issues facing private foundations and museums, and in managing transactions, including bond offerings and institutional combinations. 

Peter worked at Ropes & Gray from 1981 to 1993 as a corporate transactional and securities lawyer, becoming a partner in 1990. 

Peter left Ropes & Gray in 1993 to serve as a deputy assistant attorney general in the United States Department of Justice. In 1996-97, he was an Associate Counsel to the President of the United States, working in the White House Counsel’s office. 

Peter then served for four years as Vice President and General Counsel of the University of Pennsylvania, where he was chief legal officer of both the University and its four-hospital health system. 

Before returning to Ropes & Gray, Peter served for six years as Vice President, General Counsel and Secretary of the J. Paul Getty Trust in Los Angeles.


  • Represented Marine Biological Laboratory in its affiliation with the University of Chicago.
  • Represented the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, in its disposition of the School of the MFA to Tufts University.
  • Conducted an independent investigation on behalf of Villanova University of submissions to the American Bar Association of false data by personnel at its law school.
  • Advised Harvard University on the first major changes to its governance structure in over 100 years.
  • Advised a leading private university and an independent research institute on their pending acquisition of major museum collections.


  • Panelist, “Gift Horses, White Elephants, and the Donors Who Send Them,” National Association of College and University Attorneys (June 2010)
  • Panelist, “Legal Ethics,” Legal Issues in Museum Administration (ALI-ABA) (April 2009)Speaker, “Governance and Conflicts of Interest,” and “Managing Conflicts of Interest,” Association of Donor Relations Professionals Annual Meeting (November 2008)
  • Panelist, “Learning from Presidential Crises,” National Association of College and University Attorneys Annual Conference (June 2008)
  • Panelist, “Governance and Conflict of Interest,” Non Profit Law Conference (MCLE) (March 2008)
  • Panelist, “Surviving an IRS Examination,” Tax Exempt Charitable Organizations (ALI-ABA) (November 2007)
  • Panelist, “The Lawyer’s Role in Crisis Management,” Legal Issues in Museum Administration (ALI-ABA) (March 2007)
  • JD, cum laude, Harvard Law School, 1981
  • AB, magna cum laude, Harvard College, 1978
Cookie Settings