Michael Bleier

Michael E. Bleier

Senior Counsel


  • Georgetown University Law Center, 1965, J.D.
  • University of Tulsa, 1962, B.A., cum laude, History, Economics

Professional Admissions / Qualifications

  • District of Columbia
  • Pennsylvania

Court Admissions

  • U.S. District Court - District of Columbia
  • U.S. Court of Appeals - District of Columbia Circuit
  • State Supreme Court - Pennsylvania

Michael is a member of the Financial Industry, Financial Services Regulatory, and Hedge Fund Groups.  Michael joined Reed Smith after serving for nearly 14 years as General Counsel for Mellon Financial Corporation and Mellon Bank, NA, and as manager of legal affairs.  Prior to joining Mellon in 1982, he was in the Legal Division of the Federal Reserve Board in Washington, DC for 11 years; when he left the Federal Reserve he was Assistant General Counsel, responsible for the bank holding company area. At Mellon, Michael was actively involved in its expansion, both in the banking and nonbanking areas and in its dealings with the federal and state bank regulatory authorities, as well as with the Congress and the state legislatures. He played a key role in Mellon's growth and transformation into primarily a fee-based business. He was intimately involved in Mellon's Pennsylvania statewide expansion, the creation and implementation of Mellon's good bank/bad bank transaction, the transformative and groundbreaking Boston Company and Dreyfus acquisitions, and in dealing with the federal regulators and Congress on the Basel II risk-based capital rules.

At Reed Smith, Michael has counseled General Counsel clients, filed expansion applications with the Federal Reserve, the Comptroller of the Currency and the FDIC, and also advised financial institution clients on an array of regulatory matters.

Employment History

  • 2007 - Reed Smith
  • 1982 - Mellon Financial Corporation and Mellon Bank, N.A.
    • General Counsel and Executive Vice President (since 1992); Responsible for the day-to-day operations of Mellon’s Legal Department, which employed a staff of 70 lawyers at 12 locations worldwide
  • 1971 - Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (Washington, D.C.)
    • Assistant General Counsel; Responsible for the bank holding company areas in the General Counsel’s office

Honors & Awards

  • Recognized in Chambers USA in as one of America's leading banking and finance lawyers (2011-2015)
  • Recipient of the Frank Simpson III Award by the American Bar Association’s Banking Law Committee (presented to individuals who have served the Banking Law Committee in the tradition of Frank Simpson III, the committee’s former chair, who died in 1993)

Professional Affiliations

  • American Bankers Association – Vice Chairman of the Bank Counsel Committee
  • American Bar Association – Co-Chairman of the Banking Law Committee Task Force on Regulatory Restructuring
  • Lawyers Council of The Financial Services Roundtable (a national trade association representing major financial service organizations) – Chairman (1994-1998)
    In that capacity he chaired and actively promoted a number of regulatory and legislative proposals that were eventually implemented


Michael has always been active in his communities. Over the years he has been PTA president for three schools; made presentations before local governmental authorities and coached local children’s teams at various levels in soccer, basketball and baseball. A member of the board of trustees of the Pittsburgh Symphony and a member of its Artistic Committee, Michael is also a director of the Pittsburgh Civic Light Opera Company and a member of its Executive Committee and Production/New Works Committee. He was a long-time director of Pittsburgh First Night.

Michael and his wife, Carol, reside in Mt. Lebanon, a suburb of Pittsburgh. They have three children and eight grandchildren.