E. Carter Corriston

e. carter corriston

March 21, 1935 ~ May 5, 2019

E. Carter Corriston, Sr., 84, of Englewood Cliffs passed away peacefully after a sudden illness near his winter residence in Boca Raton, FL, on May 5, 2019. Born on March 21, 1935, in Englewood to Edwin F. “Corky” and Gertrude Corriston, Carter was raised in Cliffside Park. He graduated from the Englewood School for Boys in 1953, obtained his B.A. from Rutgers University in 1957 and received his J.D. from Fordham University School of Law in 1960. Carter was a prominent practicing attorney in Bergen County for nearly 60 years. In the summer of 1958, he started as a law clerk at Breslin & Breslin, P.A. in Hackensack, where he ultimately rose to the position of Senior Partner and was actively practicing until the time of his passing alongside three of his sons together with his good friend and partner Donald Caminiti.

Public service was deeply important to Carter, who remained devoted to his community throughout his entire life. In 1967, Carter was first elected to the Borough Council in Englewood Cliffs, which had not previously elected a member of the Democratic Party. Carter continuously served as a councilman through 1993; serving as council president from 1974-1993. During his time on council, Carter served as Police Commissioner, and it was a testament to the esteem in which he was held that during his tenure, the Borough and the PBA concluded their negotiations with a handshake and without a written contract. After leaving the council, Carter served as borough attorney for Englewood Cliffs from 1996-2009, and again 2012-2015. Carter was also Special Defense Litigation Counsel for the Borough of Paramus from 1991-1997; Township Attorney for River Vale from 1977-1986; Township Attorney for Mahwah from 1968, 1974-1982, 1984-1989; and a trustee of Bergen Community College from 1993-2017, serving as chairman from 1997-2003, 2009-2017. Carter was the Englewood Cliffs Chamber of Commerce Citizen of the Year in 1971 and was honored by the Boy Scouts of America in 1996. In 2010, Carter was inducted as one of Ten Leaders of Civil Trial & Personal Injury Law, Northern New Jersey. Since 1976, Carter served as the attorney for the Housing Authority of Bergen County and also on various occasions as Special Litigation Counsel to the County of Bergen.

Over the years, Carter mentored many young lawyers who went on to become prominent judges and attorneys throughout the state. His compassion for people drove him to defend the defenseless; he was forever looking out for those who he knew were underserved. With him at their side, they could take on the largest corporations in the world to ensure that justice was served.

Carter was extremely active with Fordham University School of Law and served as the president of the Fordham Law School Alumni Association of NJ from 1988-2007 and as a director of the Law School alumni from 1984-2018. Carter truly espoused the core principles of Fordham Law, which he referred to as God, family and community. The school was especially important to him because of its night program, which permits students who have to make a living to pursue their dreams while putting food on the table. He received the Fordham University School of Public Interest Resource Center Public Service Alumni award in March 1992. He was honored by the Fordham Law School Alumni Association in 2008 for his presidency and efforts in building the New Jersey chapter of the Fordham Law alumni association.

In addition to his extensive experience in politics and governmental law, Carter was universally recognized as one of New Jersey’s preeminent Plaintiff’s trial attorneys and was the first lawyer in Bergen County to recover a Plaintiffs award in excess of $2M. During his career he handled many noteworthy cases resulting in six separate recoveries of over $2M, in addition to a landmark award of over $7M in favor of the Township of Mahwah in a tax appeal matter before the NJ Supreme Court. In addition to his professional achievements, Carter was an active baseball coach and was instrumental in the formation and supervision of many recreational sports programs in his hometown of Englewood Cliffs. Carter was also an avid golfer and served as president of White Beeches Country Club.

At the time of his passing, Carter was a member of the NJ State Bar Association; Bergen County Bar Association; American Bar Association; International Society of Barristers; and the Association of Trial Lawyers of America. He was also a Fellow of the American Board of Trial Advocates and a Director, Emeritus of the Fordham Law School Alumni Association.

Carter had far too many accomplishments to list, but he was proudest by far of his large and loving family who feel blessed God made him their patriarch. He is survived by his loving wife of 62-years Barbara (nee Perkins); his son Kevin, wife Deborah and their children Brian and Colleen; his son Terrence, wife Lina and their children Brennan, Julia, and Katie; his son Timothy, wife Robin and their children Kelsie Burnett, husband Nicko, Michele and Liam; his daughter Christine, husband Stephen Valkenburg and their children Olivia and Graham Valkenburg; and E Carter Corriston, Jr., wife Terri Ann and their children Victoria, Sean, and Claire. Carter was a loving husband, father and grandfather who cherished time with his family. He and Barbara always warmly welcomed extended family and friends into his homes in Englewood Cliffs, Brick Township, and Boca Raton. And he made the best (and strongest) margaritas known to man.

In lieu of flowers and in light of Carter’s generous and practical nature, the family requests that contributions in Carter’s memory be made either to the John and Barbara Costantino Fordham Law School Scholarship or to the Feerick Center for Social Justice at Fordham Law School. Contributions can be made online:

atlaw.fordham.edu/giving, by calling 212-636-7637 or by sending a check to: Dean’s Office, Fordham Law School, 150 West 62nd Street, New York, N.Y. 10023.

Services

Mass: May 10, 2019 10:00 am

Holy Trinity R C Church
2367 Lemonie Avenue
Fort Lee, NJ 07024


Visitation at Funeral Home: May 9, 2019 3:00 pm - 5:00 pm

Frank A. Patti & Kenneth Mikatarian Funeral Home
327 Main Street
Fort Lee, NJ 07024


Visitation at Funeral Home: May 9, 2019 6:00 pm - 9:00 pm

Frank A. Patti & Kenneth Mikatarian Funeral Home
327 Main Street
Fort Lee, NJ 07024


Final Resting Place:

Mary Rest Cemetery
25 Seminary Road
Mahwah, NJ 07430


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  1. My sincere and heartfelt condolences to the entire Corriston family. Carter was a true gentleman. He had such compassion for people, a heart of gold and a wonderful attorney. He would bend over backwards for friends that asked him for a favor. He was a great Police Commissioner and helped in our negotiations to the point that we trusted his guidance and knowledge. It was the prime reason why we always settled with a handshake. Carter will be missed by all that knew him. I know his kids will continue his legacy. God Bless and rest in eternal peace my friend.

  2. To the Corriston Family.
    There was no one like Carter. No one. He was one of a very special kind of friend. Kind, generous, empathetic, smart and fair minded. His skills as a Trial Attorney are evident, but it was Carter, the friend that was even more valuable. He set a fine example with his respect for the littlest of people. Carterxs public service in the Democrat Party transcended 'politics' Those were the days of non-partisan relationships/friendships/community, working together for the greater good. Carter was the epitome of Integrity. To say he'll be missed goes without saying. There will never be a finer gentleman. His lovely wife Barbara and his family were blessed with him as head of their family. May God Rest his soul and comfort his family with the wonderful memories.
    Sincerely,
    Lynn Liaskos

  3. I would like to extend my sincere condolences to the Corriston family. Carter was an amazing person and a true friend. He consistently worked for the betterment of the Community, always supporting the Police and Fire Departments. He constantly made time for those who needed his guidance.
    He was a real gentleman, who will be missed by all.

  4. My sincere condolences to the Corriston family. I grew up with the Corriston's family in Englewood Cliffs. I had a very bad accident in 1981 & thanks to Carter Corriston for representing me in my case. I will always remember him. May he RIP

  5. Sincere condolences to Terry and the family.

    Commissioner Alan Juszcyk, City of Passaic Housing Authority
    and Roseann Juszcyk

  6. Sorry to hear the loss of such a Legend Personality. God gives peace to departed Soul.

    Sharad Agarwal
    Housing Authority.

  7. To The Corriston Family,

    My sincere condolences to all of you. I had the honor and pleasure of working with Mr. Corriston for 38 years at Breslin and Breslin, P.A. Mr. Corriston was a wonderful man and had a "Heart of Gold". He was not only my boss but like a Father Figure to me. I always had the utmost respect for him. He will be dearly missed. May God Bless him and all of you. He is now at peace. Heaven has a new Angel.

  8. It was a privilege to know Carter and an honor to work with him in Englewood Cliffs. Words cannot describe how generous he was with his knowledge and kindness. He always did the right thing, a man of the utmost integrity. I will miss him and his wonderful stories of an extraordinary career.

  9. Terry and family, I am so very sorry to hear of your profound loss. Your Dad was a remarkable man. I have fond memories of him and hope that your memories sustain you through this very difficult time.

    My deepest and heartfelt condolences,

    Lisa

  10. carter was like family to me, and my entire family. he was a beautiful, good man. i am sure the entire legal field felt his passing. may god rest his soul and his family find peace and comfort.
    doretta auld


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