Immanuel (Ike) Kohn, lawyer and former chairman of the executive committee at the New York law firm of Cahill Gordon & Reindel LLP, died at home in Princeton, New Jersey on Monday, March 4, 2013 of lung cancer. He was 86 years old.
Born in Palestine, he spent his early childhood in Cairo, Jerusalem, and Central Europe. His father, Hans Kohn, was a newspaper correspondent, historian, and writer who moved his family permanently to the United States in 1934, when Ike was seven years old.
He attended nursery school in Vienna, kindergarten in Cairo, first and second grades in Jerusalem and third grade at Smith College Day School. He graduated from Deerfield Academy in 1944, served as an Ensign in the U.S. Maritime Service from 1944 to 1946, and earned his BA Summa Cum Laude from Harvard College in 1949. He was awarded a Sheldon Traveling Fellowship, which took him to Western Europe and the Middle East from the autumn of 1949 through the spring of 1950. He received his LLB Cum Laude from Yale University in 1953, and went to work for Cahill Gordon, where after doing some litigation, he specialized in corporate law, primarily representing investment banks and insurance companies. He became a partner in 1962. In 1972, at the age of 46, he was invited to join Cahill’s executive committee, and in 1990 he became its chairman, a role in which he served until his retirement in 2006.
He was a trustee of the Institute for Advanced Study from 1997 to 2006, and after that he served as Trustee Emeritus. He belonged to the Metropolitan Opera Club, the Harvard Club of New York City, the Bedens Brook Club, the Nassau Club and the Princeton Old Guard. Prior to retirement he belonged to various New York City clubs including the Downtown Association, Recess Club, Lunch Club, and Sky Club.
He is survived by his wife of 62 years, Vera Sharpe Kohn, four children, Gail Kohn, Peter Kohn and wife Margaret, Sheila Kohn, Robert Kohn and wife Susan Hendrickson, and six grandchildren, Megan Alrutz, Emily Alrutz, Michael Kohn, Jason Kohn, Sarah Kohn, and Katherine Kohn.
Burial services will be private. The family requests that any gifts in his honor be sent to the Institute for Advanced Study, 1 Einstein Drive, Princeton, New Jersey 08540.