Robinson+Cole recognized four lawyers for their initiative and outstanding dedication to the community at a reception, celebrating the firm’s summer legal intern program, on August 7, 2014. Managing partner John B. Lynch Jr. announced the Community Service Awards, which went to Thomas P. Cody and Britt-Marie K. Cole-Johnson, while pro bono partner Edward J. Heath presented the firm’s Pro Bono Awards, which went to Peter R. Knight and Evan J. Seeman. Read more about the honorees and their work in the press release here.
Robinson+Cole labor and employment lawyer Matthew T. Miklave was once again recognized by LawDragon.com and Human Resources Magazine as being one of "The Nation's Top 100 Most Powerful Employment Attorneys." Mr. Miklave first earned this recognition in 2010, making this the fifth consecutive year he has earned this honor. Selections are based on LawDragon's editorial research as well as by submissions from firms and other visitors to Lawdragon.com. Information about LawDragon's selection process can be read here.
Robinson+Cole's Education Law Group has launched a LinkedIn Group as a forum for discussions on news and legal developments affecting institutions of higher education. The group, HigherEdWire – News for legal counsel, can be found at http://www.linkedin.com/groups/HigherEdWire-News-legal-counsel-7464519.
"Colleges and universities face legal issues in a variety of areas that continually change," said Megan R. Naughton, co-chair of the firm's Immigration Group. "Our education team monitors the pressing developments faced by educational institutions, and we wanted to create a source to share those updates on developing stories and trends that also encourages dialogue with those in the industry. LinkedIn provides that platform."
Robinson+Cole was again recognized as having the highest number of Connecticut lawyers selected by their peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America© 2015 (Copyright 2014 by Woodward/White, Inc., of Aiken,SC). Across the firm's practice groups and offices, 56 lawyers were named to this year's list, including 46 in Connecticut.
Additionally, the following six lawyers were named the Best Lawyers® 2015 "Lawyer of the Year" in Hartford, Connecticut, in the noted practice areas: Dennis C. Cavanaugh in Construction Law; Gregory R. Faulkner in Litigation – Construction; Judith M.Keppelman in Litigation – Trusts and Estates; Craig A. Raabe in Criminal Defense: Non-White-Collar and Litigation – Antitrust; William T. Sellay in Corporate Law; and Theodore J. Tucci in Health Care Law.
See the full list of included lawyers in the press release here.
Junior Achievement of Southwest New England has elected Christine E. Bromberg chair of its Board of Directors. Ms. Bromberg has been elected to a two-year term, following her one-year term as vice chair of the board for 2013–2014. She has served on the JA of Southwest New England board since 2007. Ms. Bromberg is a partner in Robinson+Cole'sTax Group where she chairs its federal tax practice and co-chairs its nonprofit organizations practice. Read more in the press release here.
Benchmark Litigation has named Robinson+Cole lawyers Linda L. Morkan and Rhonda J. Tobin among its Top 250 Women in Litigation for 2014. In this national list published on July 15, 2014, they represent two of the four female litigators chosen in Connecticut.
Benchmark Litigation's Top 250 Women in Litigation recognizes the accomplishments of America's leading female trial lawyers from all 50 states plus the District of Columbia. The decision to feature a distinguished female litigator is based primarily on targeted research completed during the U.S. Benchmark Litigation review process, with peer review and overall depth of the individual's litigation career important factors. Read more in the press release here.
Andrew S. Roffe, a partner and chair of the Administrative Law Group at Robinson+Cole, has been elected to serve a four-year term on the Alumni Council of Colgate University. The Alumni Council is charged with helping maintain Colgate’s position as one of the leading liberal arts universities in the country while staying committed to its long-standing values and traditions. The group comprises 56 alumni leaders who have distinguished themselves through their commitment to Colgate and who represent the diverse backgrounds of the greater Colgate alumni community. Read more here.
In five short years, Robinson+Cole has turned a small office into a thriving force in the Providence business community. Since the firm opened its office at One Financial Plaza in April 2009, the team of lawyers has doubled, and all of them are deeply connected to the community.
"From the beginning, being part of the thread of the Providence community, working with other business, civic, and community leaders, was important to us. But beyond those working relationships, it was also important for us to give back and support the local community," said Patricia J. Igoe, a partner in the firm's Providence office. "Supporting the local arts community is part of that focus, and all of the new artwork we have purchased since opening has been from local artists."
Robinson+Cole is pleased to welcome to the firm five new associates and one counsel across its practice areas. The lawyers join the firm's Boston, Hartford, and Stamford offices and their arrival corresponds with that of Matthew T. Miklave, who, as previously announced, joined the firm as a partner to head Robinson+Cole's labor and employment practice in the firm's Metro New York offices.
The Legal 500 United States has included Robinson+Cole in its 2014 rankings in the category M&A: Middle Market (sub-$500 m). This is the third consecutive year the firm has earned this national ranking. Published for more than 25 years, The Legal 500 series provides comprehensive worldwide coverage of legal services providers in over 100 countries. Read more in the press release here.
ACG® New York and The M&A Advisor have announced the winners of the 4th Annual ACG New York Champion's Awards, and Robinson+Cole won in the category of Leveraged Buyout of the Year by a Financial Buyer (over $100 Million) for representing Nielsen Holdings N.V. (NYSE: NLSN) in its sale of Nielsen Expositions to Onex Corporation (TSX: OCX) for $950 million.
The winners were announced at the 4th Annual ACG New York Champion's Awards Gala on Thursday, June 19, before a sold-out crowd at the Metropolitan Club. In addition to winning this award, Robinson+Cole was named a finalist in the categories of Technology, Media, Telecom (over $100mm) and Deal of the Year (over $500mm). Read more here.
Construction lawyer Joseph A. Barra served as a panelist at a program sponsored by the New England Chapter of the Construction Management Association of America (CMAA) on September 16, 2014. The session, entitled "Overview of Resiliency and Massachusetts Implementation Plans," addressed the need in Massachusetts to emphasize resiliency in design and construction and to modify the Commonwealth's infrastructure in order to cope with the challenges of climate change. Mr. Barra, along with the other panelists from the Massachusetts Port Authority and UMASS Memorial Hospital, spoke about the progress that has been made so far and the challenges that lie ahead.
Environmental and utilities lawyer Emilee Mooney Scott has been appointed to chair the Special Committee on Young Lawyers of the ABA's Section of Environment, Energy, and Resources (SEER) for the 2014–2015 year. In this position, Ms. Scott will work to increase young lawyer membership in SEER and to help young lawyers find participation opportunities within the section. Last year she was the committee's vice chair for education.
In addition, Ms. Scott has been selected to participate in the ABA's Leadership Development Program (LDP) for 2014–2015. The LDP supports members of SEER in broadening current leadership roles and preparing for future ones. The focus of the program is for participants to increase awareness of the section's operations and available leadership opportunities.
Land use lawyer Dwight H. Merriam's edited the book At the Cutting Edge 2014: Land Use Law from "The Urban Lawyer," recently published by the ABA's State and Local Government Law Section. The target audience of the book includes practitioners, planning professionals, and students. Mr. Merriam's edited collection of articles written by others and previously published in The Urban Lawyer addresses relevant 2014 issues such as the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act, Koontz v. St. Johns River Water Management District implications, neoliberal hegemony, and eminent domain in public use, among others. To learn more about the book, please click here.
Land use partner Edward V. O'Hanlan has been asked to serve as a director of the Connecticut Veterans Legal Center (CVLC), effective September 18, 2014. This new leadership role, combined with Mr. O'Hanlan's experience as a Navy veteran and civil trial lawyer, reflects the deep commitment of Robinson+Cole to CVLC's valuable mission to provide legal services to veterans across Connecticut. R+C lawyers frequently handle cases referred by CVLC to help veterans recovering from homelessness and mental illness overcome the legal barriers to housing, health care, employment, and service-connected benefits.
Land use partner Michael S. Giaimo has been appointed to the Board of Directors of the Friends of Minuteman National Park. The mission of this nonprofit organization is to preserve the birthplace of the American Revolution and to inspire visitors to learn the causes, events, and continuing impact of the Revolutionary War and its principles of liberty and democracy. Like other nonprofit groups that partner with various national parks throughout the country, the Friends organization focuses on improving education and the visitor experience at the park, preserving and restoring the park's cultural landscapes and historic structures, and supporting and advocating for the park and its mission. R+C partner Dwight H. Merriam's ancestral home, the 300-plus-year-old Meriam House, is located along the Battle Road Trail and was recently restored with funding from the Friends of Minuteman National Park.
Stamford business litigation lawyer Thomas J. Donlon has been appointed co-chair of the Amicus Curiae Briefs Committee of the ABA Section of Litigation. The committee reviews all requests that the Section of Litigation file amicus briefs in any litigation in federal and state courts across the country. It also coordinates the preparation of briefs after filing is authorized. Last year, the committee was responsible for overseeing more than a dozen amicus briefs in the U.S. Supreme Court alone. Mr. Donlon previously served as co-chair of the Appellate Practice Committee. He authored an article in the Summer 2014 issue of the Appellate Practice Journal on an appellate advocacy program that the committee presented to the Section of Litigation Annual Conference last spring.
Labor and employment partner Matthew T. Miklave presented the program "An Overview of the New York State and City Human Rights Law" on August 22, 2014. In this online CLE webinar, Mr. Miklave examines the New York Human Rights Law that prohibits discrimination in employment, housing, credit, places of public accommodations, and nonsectarian educational institutions. He explains similarities and differences between the state (NYSHRL) and city (NYCHRL) versions of the law in terms of protected classes, remedies, statutes of limitations, and defenses as well as delves into substantive rights under the laws, including a hostile work environment, disability discrimination, and retaliation. The session is now available through Lawline.com for On Demand viewing.
Mr. Miklave represents employers and management in all areas of civil rights, employment relations, and traditional labor law, focusing on federal and state antidiscrimination, noncompete and restrictive covenants, labor, wage and hour, and family leave statutes, among others.
Finance lawyer Norman H. Roos moderated the Connecticut Mortgage Bankers Association (CMBA) Legislative Update Seminar, held in New Britain, Connecticut, on August 20, 2014. Speakers included Fritz Conway, CMBA lobbyist and principal with Gaffney, Bennett and Associates; Philip DeFronzo, president of Norcom Mortgage; Richard Leibert, founding partner at Hunt Leibert Jacobson; Stacey Valerio, staff attorney at the Connecticut Department of Banking; and Jeremy Potter, general counsel and chief compliance attorney at Norcom Mortgage. The seminar showcased current legislative, regulatory, and litigation developments of concern to Connecticut's mortgage lending community, and also featured a lively discussion of industry initiatives with implications for residential mortgage lenders and homeowners alike.
Mr. Roos is chair of Robinson+Cole's Finance Group and counsel to the CMBA.
Hartford lawyer Bradford S. Babbitt has been appointed co-chair of the American Bar Association's (ABA) Content Management Committee (CMC) of the Section of Litigation for the 2014–15 bar year. The CMC oversees all electronic and print content generated by the section's 40 committees. The co-chairs act as liaisons between senior leadership and membership of the section with respect to publications.
Labor and employment partner Matthew T. Miklave presented the online CLE webinar "U.S. Labor and Employment Implications of International Business Transactions," produced on July 23, 2014. In the presentation, Mr. Miklave discusses the implications of American labor and civil rights laws for U.S. businesses operating in foreign countries, as well as the implications of foreign-based mergers, acquisitions, and restructurings on U.S. employees. The webinar is now available through Lawline.com for On Demand viewing.
Mr. Miklave represents employers and management in all areas of civil rights, employment relations, and traditional labor law, focusing on federal and state antidiscrimination, noncompete and restrictive covenants, labor, wage and hour, and family leave statutes, among others.
Real estate litigation lawyer Clive D. Martin was quoted in the July 31, 2014, edition of Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly. The article "SJC kills 'economic loss rule' in condo construction lawsuits" delves into the ruling by the Supreme Judicial Court (SJC) that removes the obstacle of condominium associations suing developers in negligence over construction defects. In addressing the economic loss doctrine, which limits damages to a manufactured item to contract damages only, if nothing beyond the item itself is harmed, Mr. Martin says, "I don't say that's a bad doctrine; it serves a very good purpose. But it was really taking away a remedy [from condominiums] to tell the trustees they don't have a case in negligence…."
Mr. Martin's practice includes all types of litigation in the area of real estate, from title problems to development disputes, with a particular focus on condominium law.
The chair of the American Bar Association's Section of State and Local Government Law has selected environmental and utilities lawyer Alexander W. Judd to chair the Telecommunications and Land Use Planning Subcommittee of the Land Use Planning and Zoning Committee. The ABA's Section of State and Local Government Law has over 12,000 combined lawyer and student members. The Land Use Planning and Zoning Committee focuses on current developments in the field of planning, zoning, and land use.
Land use lawyer Dwight H. Merriam is co-author of the book Group Homes: Strategies for Effective and Defensible Planning and Regulation, published in May 2014 by ABA Book Publishing. Along with Brian J. Connolly, land use lawyer of Otten Johnson Robinson Neff & Ragonetti in Denver, Colorado, Mr. Merriam discusses discrimination against people with disabilities in the area of housing. The authors began writing this book on the 25th anniversary of the passage of the Fair Housing Amendments Act, enacted to give those with disabilities protection in finding fair and equal housing opportunities. They discuss the legal obligation to provide fair housing for people with disabilities as well as the practical policy reasons for doing so. To find out more about the book, please click here.
Eric J. Dale, chair of Robinson+Cole's Business Transactions Group, was quoted in HartfordBusiness.com, a publication of the Hartford Business Journal (HBJ), on August 11, 2014. The article "After a slumber, CT venture capital roars again" offers positive news on venture capital's investment revival in Connecticut. Mr. Dale reflected on this phenomenon in the venture capital market, saying, "It's not that there are so many more deals as it is that the dollar volume is up so much." He added that the state may be experiencing the beginning of a growth cycle. Please click here to view the entire article. In addition to his practice at Robinson+Cole, Mr. Dale is president of the Crossroads Venture Group.
Hartford lawyers Gregory R. Faulkner, Edward J. Heath, Nicole H. Najam, and Kathleen E. Dion presented to a class of University of Hartford doctoral students on July 30, 2014. The students are candidates in the university's Doctorate in Education Leadership program. The session's purpose was to provide an overview of higher education law, including hot topics and possible pitfalls. The class, "Education Law: When to Call Outside Counsel," covered a variety of legal issues that the students may confront in administering at institutions of higher learning. Topics ranged from contract drafting and negotiating to investigations and employment. Please click here to view the session's outline.
Real estate litigation lawyers Kendra L. Berardi and Danielle Andrews Long participated in the Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education (MCLE) program "Litigating Residential & Commercial Real Estate Disputes" on February 13, 2014, in Boston, Massachusetts. Ms. Long chaired the panel and presented "Where Are We Now Three Years after Ibanez," and Ms. Berardi presented "The Politics and Practicalities of Smoke-Free Condominiums." Ms. Berardi also presented "Litigating in the Land Court," together with Judge Robert Foster of the Massachusetts Land Court.
Please click here to view the video of "The Politics and Practicalities of Smoke-Free Condominiums."
Robinson+Cole hosted a cocktail networking hour for clients and guests from the ABA Sections of Real Property, Trust and Estate Law; State and Local Government Law; and Litigation on August 9 during the 2014 ABA Annual Meeting in Boston. Held on Griffin's Wharf at the Boston Tea Party Museum, the event provided a unique venue for guests to mix, mingle, and explore an authentically restored tea ship, from which a R+C flag was flown to mark the occasion. The event was spearheaded by Candace M. Cunningham, with J. Michael Wirvin, Kendra L. Berardi, Karla L. Chaffee, Thomas J. Donlon, Jerome L. Garciano, Jonathan R. Hausner, Charles E. Janson, Matthew J. Lawlor, Dwight H. Merriam, Carla M. Moynihan, Sorell E. Negro, Emilee Mooney Scott, and Elizabeth K. Wright also attending.
Land law partner Brian W. Blaesser was recently featured in the Summer 2014 issue of Westlaw Key Authors ePublished, an electronic newsletter published by Thomson Reuters. Mr. Blaesser was profiled in an interview conducted by Patrick Fong, senior attorney editor for the newsletter. Please click here to view the profile.
Mr. Blaesser is a member of Westlaw Key Authors, a group of thought leaders that includes distinguished judges, practitioners, and academics who provide "expert analysis and cutting-edge practice advice." He is the author and co-author, respectively, of two books published by Westlaw: Discretionary Land Use Controls: Avoiding Invitations to Abuse of Discretion (Thomson Reuters – West 2013) and Federal Land Use Law & Litigation (Thomson Reuters –West 2014).
Construction lawyer Elizabeth K. Wright was recently named to the Board of Directors of the Connecticut Chapter of Professional Women in Construction (PWC-CT). Founded in 1980, PWC has over 600 members and reaches a constituency of more the 8,000. The Connecticut Chapter includes over 250 members. Presenting the very latest in current industry topics and providing networking and business development opportunities for its members and guests, PWC-CT programs attract men and women from senior ranks of AEC (architecture, engineering, and construction) firms in Connecticut, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and beyond. In addition, the program sponsors scholarship and mentor programs and supports the ACE (Architecture, Construction, and Engineering) Mentor Program. Please click here to learn more about the Connecticut Chapter of PWC.
Ms. Wright's practice focuses on construction law, commercial litigation, and surety and fidelity law. She counsels building owners, contractors, subcontractors, material suppliers, and sureties on construction contract issues and construction-related litigation.
Tax lawyer Felicia S. Hoeniger spoke at the Connecticut Business & Industry Association's (CBIA) 2014 Connecticut Tax Conference on June 13, 2014, in Farmington, Connecticut. Her presentation, "Sales and Use Taxes for the Construction Industry," addressed state tax issues for property owners, contractors, and subcontractors. Please click here to view her PowerPoint presentation.
Ms. Hoeniger also presented at the National Business Institute's (NBI) Sales and Use Tax in Connecticut Conference on Connecticut tax issues on June 17, 2014, in Cromwell, Connecticut. Her primary presentation addressed sales and use tax exemptions and credits. Click here to view her presentation. Additionally, she jointly presented on compliance and appeals issues for the Connecticut sales tax.
Bradford S. Babbitt, chair of the Business Litigation Group, has been elected to the Board of Directors of Church Home of Hartford Incorporated (CHHI), a charity affiliated with the Episcopal Church in Connecticut that was formed in 1876 to provide shelter for the aged and infirm. Today, CHHI owns and operates Seabury Retirement Community, providing unparalleled housing and health care services to 340 residents on 66 acres in Bloomfield, Connecticut. Seabury set the standard for an active retirement community when it was built in 1992 and has continued to achieve that standard as it has expanded to include assisted living, skilled nursing, and memory care services.
Energy and utilities lawyer Joey Lee Miranda has been elected treasurer of the Board of Directors of Lawyers for Children America. A Connecticut-based nonprofit, the organization provides pro bono legal representation to protect the rights of children who are victims of abuse, abandonment, and neglect. Its goals include implementing services to help children who are victims of abuse and neglect, improving the child welfare system, and increasing public awareness of youth and violence issues.
Ms. Miranda has been a board member of Lawyers for Children America since 2012.
Lawrence P. Heffernan, chair of the Real Estate Litigation and Title Insurance Group, participated in the Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education (MCLE) live seminar and webcast "The 25 Critical Cases Every Real Estate, Title, Land Use, and Environmental Lawyer Must Know" on March 17, 2014, in Boston. Mr. Heffernan presented on a broad array of critical case law and trends in leasing and landlord liability, the enforceability of purchase and sale agreements, condominium development rights, and title insurance coverage.
In addition, Mr. Heffernan spoke to The Abstract Club on "More challenges to the foreclosure process: the Massachusetts appellate courts giveth and taketh away" on May 19, 2014, in Boston. He discussed recent decisions by the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court and the Massachusetts Appeals Court on Housing Court jurisdiction over foreclosure challenges, the authority of the Mortgage Electronic Registration System (MERS) to assign mortgages, and so-called "robo-signing" and its impact on Massachusetts lenders and real estate practitioners. The Abstract Club is a voluntary association of experienced lawyers that is limited, according to its bylaws, to 100 lawyers, almost all of whom practice exclusively in real estate. Most members practice in Boston and its suburbs.
William T. Sellay, partner in the firm's Business Transactions Group and head of its International Group, represented the US legal perspective as a speaker and panelist at the Transatlantic Business Forum in Cambridge, England, on June 24, 2014. The program focused on the business and legal issues encountered by UK companies entering or expanding their businesses in the US. Mr. Sellay's presentation, "Taking your Technology to America – How to do it Right," addressed solutions to the most critical legal issues, based upon his more than 20 years of experience representing foreign companies in the US. Other speakers included representatives from KPMG Europe, Lloyds Banking Group, and Mills & Reeve; the Director General of the Institute of Directors; and Matthew Barzun, the US ambassador to the UK. The program also included case studies of US market entry by the managing director of ArmadilloLED, makers of LED lighting, and the CEO of CityJet, a UK regional airline.
Health law lawyer Meaghan Mary Cooper, business litigation lawyer Amanda E. Gordon, labor and employment lawyer Susan N. Masters, and land use lawyer Evan J. Seeman were elected to the Connecticut Bar Association's (CBA) Executive Committee of the Young Lawyers Section (YLS). The goals of the YLS are to promote justice, encourage public service, and promote diversity and education of young lawyers and newly admitted practitioners. The section, made up of 1,200 members, organizes and sponsors continuing legal education and professional development sessions for both junior and senior members of the CBA.
All four lawyers hold leadership positions in the CBA. Ms. Cooper co-chairs the Health Law Section, Ms. Gordon co-chairs the Litigation Section, Ms. Masters chairs the Labor & Employment Law Section, and Mr. Seeman chairs the Planning & Zoning Section.
Cynthia R. Christie, employee benefits and compensation lawyer, was quoted in Law360's Employment Section on June 26, 2014. In the article "Lawyers Weigh in on High Court's ERISA Ruling," several lawyers addressed the significance of Fifth Third Bancorp v. Dudenhoeffer, where the US Supreme Court decided that a fiduciary's decision to permit the investment of retirement plan assets in employer stock is not entitled to a presumption of prudence. Ms. Christie stated that "[a]lthough the court's ruling will have a seismic impact on the [employee stock ownership plan] community, it is not clear how dramatically the fiduciary landscape will be altered once the dust settles." Please click here to view the article.
Law360's Employment Section reports on the latest news in labor and employment law, legislation, and regulation. It also follows employment-related litigation concerning major domestic and international companies in US federal courts, government enforcement actions, and arbitration proceedings.
Dana M. Horton has been named chair of the Rhode Island Bar Association's Superior Court Bench/Bar Committee for the 2014-2015 term. Ms. Horton has been a committee member for over ten years and will now lead the committee and collaborate with judges to improve the practice of law in Rhode Island.
The Superior Court Bench/Bar Committee works with the Superior Court to improve facilities, practices, procedures, rules, and other matters that affect the bench/bar and the public.
Paralegals around the state marked the 20th Anniversary of Connecticut's Paralegal Day, presented by the Connecticut Alliance of Paralegal Associations. Held at Anthony's Ocean View in New Haven on June 6, 2014, the event featured speakers, networking, a vendor fair, and a luncheon, along with an auction to benefit the Connecticut Veterans Legal Center and a Dress for Success handbag collection. Robinson+Cole paralegals Michelle Finnegan, Lori Gizzi, Christine Welch, Sharon Cianfarani, and Meredith O'Neill attended the event, along with Lisa Vooys of Legal Recruiting and Professional Development.
Governor Dannel P. Malloy officially declared June 6 this year as Paralegal Day in the State of Connecticut. The governor's statement, which appeared in the June 2, 2014, edition of the Connecticut Law Tribune, proclaims, among other things, that paralegals provide an array of important legal services, play a vital role in the legal profession, and are "committed to upholding and advancing the highest standards of excellence and integrity within the profession." The announcement was sponsored by the Connecticut Alliance of Paralegal Associations. Robinson+Cole was a publication sponsor.
Please click here to view the statement as presented in the Connecticut Law Tribune. Click here to view the R+C staff who attended the event.
Land use lawyers Dwight H. Merriam and Sorell E. Negro took part in a national webinar for the International Municipal Lawyers Association (IMLA) on June 9, 2014. Mr. Merriam moderated the program, which dealt with vacant properties. Ms. Negro, a presenter, discussed tools for dealing with vacant properties, including antiblight ordinances, vacant property registration ordinances, and land banks. The other speakers were Alan Mallach of the Brookings Institution and Michael Braverman, deputy commissioner of Baltimore Housing's Code Enforcement. Daniel Mandelker of the Washington University School of Law co-moderated the webinar.
Norman H. Roos, chair of Robinson+Cole's Finance Group and counsel to the Connecticut Mortgage Bankers Association (CMBA), moderated the CMBA "2014 Connecticut Legislative Update" webinar with Fritz Conway of Gaffney Bennett & Associates on June 11, 2014. The program focused on mortgage-related issues addressed in the past legislative session, including CMBA initiatives enacted in 2014, legislation that did not pass, and major areas of concern. Please click here to view the program's PowerPoint presentation.
The CMBA, a nonprofit association formed in 1984, promotes the welfare of the mortgage lending industry, encourages sound ethical business practices in the origination and servicing of mortgage loans, and serves as a forum for industry-related ideas. Its members support Connecticut communities "by opening doors for literally thousands of homeowners each year."
Bernard Mulka was convicted in 2003 and 2004 for his involvement in two bank robberies. He was sentenced to 20 years in prison, with execution suspended after 12 years in the Judicial District of Hartford. He also received a consecutive 5-year sentence in the Judicial District of Tolland.
In 2013, while an inmate at the Osborn Correctional Institution, Mr. Mulka was informed that his cancer, for which he had received treatment a decade earlier, had returned and that his prognosis was poor. Robinson+Cole assisted Mr. Mulka with his application for medical and/or compassionate parole, a statutory provision in Connecticut that offers early release to inmates who are terminally ill and who do not pose a threat to society.
Over approximately eight months, Mr. Wade and Mr. Spinelli argued Mr. Mulka's case. This included initially submitting an application for medical and/or compassionate parole with the Connecticut Board of Pardons and Paroles (Board), who denied Mr. Mulka's application on January 16, 2014. Thereafter, Mr. Wade and Mr. Spinelli sought modification of Mr. Mulka's sentence to time served in the original sentencing courts in Hartford and Tolland, which was also unsuccessful. Finally, they brought a habeas corpus action in the Connecticut Superior Court, alleging violations of his constitutional rights and seeking compassionate and/or medical parole. After one day of trial, the Board agreed to hold a second hearing on Mr. Mulka's application, at which time the Board granted him compassionate parole. He was released on May 12, 2014, after spending 10 years in prison.
Unfortunately, Mr. Mulka passed away on May 26, 2014, spending the final two weeks of his life at his father's house with his family by his side.
More information about Mr. Mulka's case can be found here.
Robinson+Cole's Education Law Group has launched its HigherEdWire - News for Legal Counsel group on LinkedIn, serving as a platform and news aggregator for legal counsel at colleges and universities. Members of the group can view articles and exchange ideas on current news issues relevant to institutions of higher education. To join the group and discussion, click here.
The Education Law Group serves as outside counsel, providing advisory, transactional, and litigation services to meet the needs that are unique to educational institutions, from large universities and midsize colleges to independent schools. Members of the group provide legal services to educational institutions in a broad range of practice areas that shape the student, faculty, and employee experience.
Congratulations to our Providence office on being selected the number one best place to work in the small business category of the "Best Places to Work in Rhode Island" by the Providence Business News. A celebratory dinner was held on June 12, 2014, to announce the winners, who were featured in the June 16 edition of the Providence Business News. Best Places to Work is a statewide survey and awards program that honors the best places for Rhode Island employment. The winners are selected through a two-part process. The first part considers the workplace policies, practices, and demographics of each nominated company. The second part involves an employee survey to measure the employee experience. The combined scores determine the top companies and the final ranking.
The Providence office is celebrating its fifth anniversary this year. Since its opening in April 2009, the team of lawyers has doubled, and the staff has expanded to accommodate their needs. With a deep community connection, the office is committed to mentoring, pro bono work, community service, and diversity. The firm was profiled in the Providence Business News under the heading of "Partners, staff on equal footing at Robinson & Cole." Please click here to view the article.
Land use lawyer Sorell E. Negro published an article in the 2013-2014 edition of the Albany Law Review on emerging issues in the regulation of natural gas activities with regard to water resources. The article, "The Thirst of Fracking: Regulating to Protect the Linchpin of the Natural Gas Boom," was part of the Albany Law Review's 2013-2014 symposium "Fractured Communities: Hydraulic Fracturing and the Law in New York State." To view the article, please click here.
Environmental and utilities lawyer Pamela K. Elkow has been appointed chair of the Environmental Transactions and Brownfields Committee of the Section of Environment, Energy, and Resources (SEER) for the 2014-2015 American Bar Association (ABA) year. A forum for lawyers who work in areas that concern the environment, natural resources, and energy, SEER offers its members opportunities to strengthen their professional skills and stay informed on related trends, court decisions, legislative initiatives, and statutes.
Among her responsibilities as committee chair, Ms. Elkow will work to develop section programming, to update the section's social media outlets, to summarize legal developments in the committee's subject area, and to find content and authors for the section's publications. Her term begins in August.