Carlino & Cohn, LLP (The Firm) recently acquired
the law practice of Ricca & Donnelly, P.C. (R&D),
continurng a growth strategy based on the merger of established
practices coupled with internal growth. Spearheaded by
Managing Partner Jeffrey D. Forchelli, who also runs the
firm's real estate and land use practice, this is the
fourth expansion undertaken by the firm in five years.
"The Firm's growth stems from a belief that maintaining
a robust firm requires the same level of confidence and
investment that stimulates a robust economy," stated Forchelli
in announcing the expansion in October of this year. "The
acquisition of R&D brings a roster of attorneys with
experience, talent and reputation, while broadening the
scope and the depth of the representation we offer our
Today, the full-service law firm at 330 Country Road
in Mineola, NY, founded by Forchelli in 1976, numbers
36 attorneys. The consolidation of four new attorneys
from R&D follows the 1999 merger with Curto, Barton
& Alesi P.C., and the addition of William C. Cohn,
Esq. in 1998, and Terence Smolev P.C. in 2001. In Spring
2002, Annand D'Amato, Esq., rejoined the firm as Of Counsel.
WORLD EVENTS AND The Firm
Recently, partners Anthony V. Curto, Barbara Shaheen
Alesi and Anthony Barton successfully managed the refinancing
of Photocircuits Corporation, a manufacturer and seller
of circuitry boards based in Glen Cove, NY The $95 million
debt reorganization allowed the company to compete more
effectively in the global automotive market.
According to Curto, who also serves on the Council of
Economic Advisors for Nassau County, the firm's corporate
and commercial practice has been accelerated by trends
in the business world. "Recent economic events as well
as industry changes from the high-tech plateau and the
dot.com fallout, have caused business leaders to re-examine
their focus," explained Curto. "FCSMCC is supporting our
clients internal business plans, handling mergers and
acquisitions, and matters of banking and debt reorganization,
financing, and transactional law."
Litigation Partner Donald Jay Schwartz notes that headline
news, from business ethics to matters of security since
September 11, have impacted the firm's area of practice.
"Questions of responsibility and negligence are center
stage. Companies are in the middle of crucial debates
revolving around issues such as insurance policies against
terrorism, the privacy and security of Internet use, possible
negligence in the oversight of corporate pension funds,
accounting, and more."
Adds Partner Barbara Shaheen Alesi: "In this current
climate, it is essential that the firm stay in front of
new legislation; for example, The Sarbanes-Oxley Act of
2002 that mandates SEC governance of accounting practices."
Terence E. Smolev, Partner-in-Charge of the firm's
Tax, Trusts and Estates Division reviews all aspects of
new Federal and State taxation issues, as well as simple
and complex estate planning.
The firm is also invested in matters of regional importance.
Partner John V. Terrana heads up the firm's Tax Certiorari
department and also chairs the Nassau County Bar Association's
Tax Certiorari committee. Earlier this year, Nassau County
announced its reassessment of all real property and Terrana
has shared his expertise with The Firm clients regarding
his expectations about the outcome, explaining how the
new estimates may result in more equitable assessments,
but may not result in lower taxes.
Jeffrey D. Forchelli, referred to as the "Norman Schwarzkopf'
of strategic real estate matters by an official of the
firm's long-time client, Northrop Grumman, works daily
with local zoning boards, municipalities and the courts
on all matters affecting the development of property.
Partner Brian Sahn, who is an expert source for reporters
on a range of environmental topics from super-funds to
indoor toxic pollutants, states: "Our clients encounter
a variety of issues in real estate transactions. Our task
is to identify and solve the problems efficiently and
decisively, while maintaining the integrity of the business
THE FUTURE AND The Firm
The Firm Partner Peter Mineo is known for his zoning
work, particularly with religious groups seeking to establish
houses of worship. Perhaps it's one reason he's a voice
for community service and the betterment of the legal
profession. Mineo brings this to bear in his participation
as a moderator of CLE-credited courses through the New
York State Bar Association. "One of the most effective
ways to tend to the welfare of our profession and our
nation, is to share our experience, our knowledge, and
even our doubts with students," states Mineo.
The events of 9-11 led to the firm's creation of a
"Family of Faith Fund" reflecting the diversity of the
firm, and the intention of working with Jewish, Methodist
and Catholic religious organizations to distribute the
firm's donations from the Fund to families most immediately
in need as a result of the tragic events.
The firm's partners are on Boards, committees, and
advisory groups for several not-for-profits and human
services associations, including Transplant Recipients
International Organization, Inc.; North Shore Animal League
America, Huntington Arts Council, and Community Mainstreaming
With the recent move of R&D, James Ricca and James
F. Cantanno became the newest partners at The Firm.
"We have retained our clients in the transition and I
am certain that many of our long-term clients, including
New York Community Bank, Atlantic Bank and Independence
Community Bank, will find benefit in the consolidation
of services," states Ricca.
Reprinted with permission of Long Island