Marsha Kazarosian

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Marsha V. Kazarosian
Marsha Kazarosian Portrait 2009 2.jpg
Born (1956-03-24) March 24, 1956 (age 63)
ResidenceHaverhill, MA
Alma materU. Mass at Amherst
Suffolk Law School in Boston
Years active30+
Home townHaverhill, MA
Parent(s)Paul Kazarosian
Margaret Kazarosian
Awards2016 Circle of Excellence[1]
Best Lawyers in America
Super Lawyers (2006-present)[2]

Marsha V. Kazarosian (Armenian: Մարշա Ղազարոսյան) is an American attorney in Haverhill, Massachusetts notable for handling high-profile cases in the New England area. Her handling of a gender discrimination case involving a country club brought her national recognition.[3][4] She represented one of the teenaged defendants in the 1990 murder of a young husband by his wife Pamela Smart, who conspired with her teenaged lover to murder her husband for insurance money;[5] the story became the basis of the subsequent movie To Die For starring Nicole Kidman, and the television movie Murder in New Hampshire starring Helen Hunt. Her legal skill was the subject of a cover story entitled The Power of Marsha Kazarosian in a publication geared to the legal community.[6][7]

Kazarosian's law practice focuses on civil litigation,[8][9] family law,[9][10][11][8] discrimination[6][12] personal injury,[9] police brutality,[9] gender discrimination,[4][13][14] ethics in government,[15] rape victims,[16] sexual harassment,[17][18] police misconduct,[19] and general litigation.[20][21][22][23][24] She has appeared on local television regularly to discuss legal matters.[25][26]

Kazarosian is the daughter of the late Armenian American lawyer Paul Kazarosian, and both of her parents were children of survivors of the 1915 Armenian genocide.[27] Since the age of four, Marsha Kazarosian wanted to be a lawyer like her father. She graduated from Phillips Academy in 1974, the University of Massachusetts Amherst in 1978, and earned a law degree from Suffolk University Law School in 1982.[6]

In 1996, women members of the Haverhill Golf and Country Club were dissatisfied with its treatment of women regarding membership, tee time availability and membership wait lists; Kazarosian represented them.[4] It became a high-profile case reported in the national media in which opposing lawyers described her as a "barracuda attorney" according to Sports Illustrated.[3] Kazarosian described how female club members felt excluded by the male-dominated club:

It's like an old high school football team that grew up together and moved to the country club. If you cross them, you're blacklisted...

— Marsha Kazarosian, in Sports Illustrated, in 1998[3]

Kazarosian earned a $3.9 million financial judgment for the women plaintiffs, and the judgment was upheld by a state appeals court which reviewed the case.[28] According to the New York Times, it was the first instance in which a state's public accommodations law was upheld by a state appeals court when applied to discrimination at a country club.[28] In addition, Kazarosian has been an active leader in bar associations at the county and state levels.[6][7] Her firm has offices in Haverhill and Salem.[8]

Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly listed her as a top lawyer in New England,[6][29] and she has been identified as a top Massachusetts attorney in the publication Super Lawyers for every year since 2006.[20][30] In 2014, she was president of the Massachusetts Bar Association.[8][29] Kazarosian serves on the Massachusetts Board of Bar Overseers, and she was appointed by the governor to serve on the Special Judicial Nominating Commission for the state's Supreme Judicial Court. In addition, she serves on the campus council of the University of Massachusetts at Amherst.


  1. ^ Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly, Top Women of Law, Retrieved October 28, 2016, "...Marsha V. Kazarosian, Kazarosian Costello LLP..."
  2. ^ Super Lawyers, MARSHA V. KAZAROSIAN, Retrieved June 13, 2019, "...Selected to Super Lawyers: 2006 - 2019..."
  3. ^ a b c John Garrity (March 2, 1998). "Willing To Go It Alone: Women are often forced to pay a painful price for demanding equality at their country clubs". Sports Illustrated. Retrieved 2012-03-23.
  4. ^ a b c MARCIA CHAMBERS (April 4, 2001). "GOLF; The High Price of Victory". The New York Times. Retrieved 2012-03-23.
  5. ^ CHRISTINE GARDNER (February 17, 1991). "Teacher allegedly had teen lover murder her husband". Houston Chronicle. Retrieved 2012-03-23.
  6. ^ a b c d e "Peers elect Kazarosian state bar secretary". The Haverhill Gazette. September 9, 2010. Retrieved 2012-03-23.
  7. ^ a b "Haverhill News in Brief: City lawyer elected VP of state bar association". Eagle-Tribune. September 28, 2008. Retrieved 2012-03-23.
  8. ^ a b c d Mary Moore, Sep 3, 2014, Boston Business Journal, New Mass Bar president is focused on making things easier for debt-saddled young lawyers, Retrieved Sept. 4, 2014, "...Kazarosian, who focuses on family law and civil rights in her general practice law office Kazarosian, Costello & O'Donnell, LLP. The firm has offices in Haverhill and Salem...."
  9. ^ a b c d, Advocating passionately for clients, Retrieved June 13, 2019
  10. ^ Stephanie Chelf (September 13, 2007). "Married couple blames city for damaged sexual relations". Eagle-Tribune. Retrieved 2012-03-23.
  11. ^ Rosemary Ford (May 29, 2011). "Politics, power and infidelity: Why do they cheat?". Eagle-Tribune. Retrieved 2012-03-23.
  12. ^ Staff writers (April 3, 2011). "Biz briefcase". Eagle-Tribune. Retrieved 2012-03-23.
  13. ^ Stephanie Chelf (July 1, 2007). "Methuen finds itself on both sides of sexual harassment case". Eagle-Tribune. Retrieved 2012-03-23.
  14. ^ Stephanie Chelf (August 5, 2007). "Both sides talk settlement in ex-solicitor's lawsuit". Eagle-Tribune. Retrieved 2012-03-23.
  15. ^ Russell Contreras (March 4, 2007). "DPW e-mail, relationship under a lens". The Boston Globe. Retrieved 2012-03-23.
  16. ^ Jill Harmacinski (October 5, 2011). "Ex cop's rape victim sues police, city". Eagle-Tribune. Retrieved 2012-03-23.
  17. ^ Jill Harmacinski and Brian Messenger (October 4, 2011). "Methuen would pay $250K in sexual harassment settlement". Eagle-Tribune. Retrieved 2012-03-23.
  18. ^ Jill Harmacinski (October 3, 2011). "Lariviere, Methuen settle sexual harassment case". Eagle-Tribune. Retrieved 2012-03-23.
  19. ^ Jill Harmacinski (June 23, 2011). "Federal jury rejects brutality claim against fired Lawrence cop". Eagle-Tribune. Retrieved 2012-03-23.
  20. ^ a b "Attorney Profile: Marsha V. Kazarosian". 2012-03-23. Retrieved 2012-03-23. Italic or bold markup not allowed in: |work= (help)
  21. ^ Yadira Betances (August 5, 2011). "City worker charged with making threats". Eagle-Tribune. Retrieved 2012-03-23.
  22. ^ James A. Kimble (March 21, 2009). "Hampstead woman has long history of 'huffing'". Eagle-Tribune. Retrieved 2012-03-23.
  23. ^ Jill Harmacinski (December 5, 2010). "Local agency fires CEO suffering from lung cancer". Eagle-Tribune. Retrieved 2012-03-23.
  24. ^ Mark E. Vogler (March 27, 2007). "Police: Ex-city worker may have had help taking computer files". Eagle-Tribune. Retrieved 2012-03-23.
  25. ^ "Haverhill community television program guide, Nov. 13 through 19". Haverhill Gazette. November 12, 2009. Retrieved 2012-03-23. ... Host Jay Cleary discusses litigation with attorney Marsha Kazarosian ...
  26. ^ Mark E. Vogler (April 13, 2007). "Police seek criminal hearing for two workers accused of stealing city records". Eagle-Tribune. Retrieved 2012-03-23.
  27. ^ Tom Vartabedian (February 26, 2010). "Poor Tom's Almanac: Kazarosian set the bar high, but reached even higher". Haverhill Gazette. Retrieved 2012-03-23.
  28. ^ a b MARCIA CHAMBERS (June 17, 2003). "GOLF; Damages Are Due, Appeals Court Says". The New York Times. Retrieved 2012-03-23.
  29. ^ a b Jennifer Rosinski, October 2008, Volume 16 Number 2, Massachusetts Bar Association, Lawyers Journal, MBA elects Marsha V. Kazarosian vice president for 2008-09 term, Retrieved June 13, 2019, Note: she was vice president of the Massachusetts Bar Association from 2008-2009
  30. ^ "Legal Services & Lawyers". Legal Information Institute. 2012-03-23. Retrieved 2012-03-23.

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