After public service Katzenbach managed IBM's successful defense in a long, convoluted, and ultimately pointless antitrust trial filed by the Justice Department that he had previously led.
What native Alabamians remember is Katzenbach's "schoolhouse door" confrontation with Governor George Wallace at the University of Alabama in 1963. The confrontation was theatrical; everyone involved, including Wallace, knew that Vivian Malone and James Hood were going to be admitted to the University. Nevertheless, it took courage for a Yankee like Katzenbach -- whose non-British family name and patrician background were anathema in Alabama -- to play his role in the drama. It was a hateful time during which people were killed for doing less. Katzenbach was protected by U.S. Marshals, of course, but he was not invulnerable. His experience in war and his knowledge of theatrical politics steeled his nerves.
He was the right man in the right place at the right time. For that I am most thankful.