The law firm of Forchelli, Curto, Deegan, Schwartz, Mineo & Terrana, LLP celebrated its 30th anniversary this
year. Established in 1976 by founder and Managing Partner,
Jeffrey D. Forchelli, The Firm has grown from a three-member
Mineola-based firm to more than 40 attorneys with offices
in Nassau and Suffolk Counties. During this period, its
general practice has expanded to include a number of specialized
areas of law. The development was not accidental. Forchelli,
who specializes in complex real estate and land use matters,
explains, "Growth has always been a part of the firm's philosophy.
It allows us to establish new practice areas and strengthen
existing ones to best serve our expanding client base."
A Tradition of Growth
"When I joined the firm in 1978, Jeff Forchelli and I
were the only attorneys concentrating in land use and zoning,"
notes partner Peter R. Mineo. "Since then, The Firm has grown
to become the largest land use and zoning firm on Long Island."
Growth, as a means to provide a broad range of legal
expertise, can be seen in a number of recent key mergers
and partnerships. In 1998, William S. Cohn, a prominent
land use and zoning attorney, joined the firm. A merger
with Curto, Barton & Alesi, P.C. followed in 1999, expanding
the firm's expertise in mergers and acquisitions, along
with corporate and commercial matters.
Entering the new millennium, the firm strengthened its
Tax, Trust and Estates practice with the addition of Terence
E. Smolev in 2001. The next year, the firm added partners
James Ricca and James E. Cantanno to its roster through
the acquisition of Ricca & Donnelly, a well established
real estate and banking law firm with strong roots in Queens
New York State Senator John J. Flanagan joined as counsel
in 2003, providing the firm with increased presence, experience
and capabilities, particularly in the Suffolk County region.
The arrival of partner Gary M. Kushner in 2004 launched
the firm's practice in the areas of Bankruptcy, Insolvency and related litigation, while Robert F. Chicco's
partnership in 2005 provided specialization in co-op and
condo conversions to the firm's already well established
real estate practice.
True to its tradition of growth, The Firm announced its
most recent expansion on July 1, 2006 with Groman, Ross
& Tisman, P.C. By adding Robert H. Groman, Russell G. Tisman
and Richard A. Ross as partners, the firm strengthened its
existing practice areas, added expertise in employment and
labor law, and introduced new practices in the nursing home
and trade show industries.
The client list has grown along with the firm. Among
the firm's current clients are Cablevision Systems Corporation,
Northrop Grumman Corporation, HSBC Bank, Commerce Bank,
Broman Trucking, Austin Travel, Long Island Jewish Medical
Center, Adelphi University, Nassau Community College, Oak
Tree Farm Dairy, Inc., Photocircuits Corporation, Rainbow
Media Group, Lowe's Home Centers, Target Corp., Sleepy's,
Sunrise Assisted Living, Inc., Wells Fargo Home Mortgage,
T. & V. Rental Co., Inc., Freeman Decorating Services, Inc.,
GES Exposition Services, Inc., J&R Electronics, Inc., County
of Nassau, and the incorporated villages of Asharoken, Bayville,
Freeport, Lake Success and Laurel Hollow, among others.
Division of Labor
The firm today includes the region's top legal talents
specializing in such practice areas as land use and zoning,
real estate, environmental law, tax certiorari, litigation,
banking and financing, commercial and corporate transactions,
loan closings and bulk loan sales, trusts and estates, tax
and elder law, bankruptcy and insolvency, employment and
labor law, municipal law, and business and personal transactions.
According to partner Anthony V. Curto, the firm's practice
areas function both independently and as a collective unit.
"As partner-in-charge of our Corporate Transactional Department,
I find that our practice areas are similar to a production
team with a senior partner, associates, support staff, paralegals
and interns. Each individual is responsible for exercising
his or her own talents and skills, and of course, everyone
benefits from being able to obtain valuable input and expertise
from other departments. Inevitably, our clients profit from
having a one-stop law firm that can address all of their
In addition to celebrating its history, The Firm also
understands the importance of incorporating foresight and
vision into the culture of its business.
"We want all of our attorneys to embrace the firm's vision
so they can understand their role in working towards achieving
our goals," observes John V. Terrana, who is partner-in-charge
of the firm's Tax Certiorari Department and oversees workplace
The Firm's vision includes future growth opportunities
as the firm continues to attract new business and encourage
the next generation of legal talent.
"The Firm is committed to the advancement of its younger
associates," states partner Barbara Shaheen Alesi. "We work
closely with attorneys to help them develop the skills and
expertise necessary to serve our expanding client base."
Evidence of the firm's vision-in-action can be seen in
a number of strategic moves. In 2005, the firm acquired
an additional 6,000 square feet contiguous to its current
20,000 square feet of space located in Mineola. Along with
the Nassau headquarters, the firm maintains additional office
space located in Melville to accommodate clients located
in Suffolk County.
Looking ahead, Donald Jay Schwartz, partner in charge
of the firm's Litigation Department, explains, "We are enjoying
success and now is the optimum time to enter our next phase
of planning. We are progressively making decisions that
will lead to even further improvement and growth."
Regional Leaders & Advisors
Many different organizations and institutions have noted
the exceptional qualities of the attorneys of The Firm. The
firm earned great distinction in being named "Business of
the Year" by the Huntington Chamber Regional Business Partnership;
Jeffrey D. Forchelli is annually selected for "Who's Who"
listings by The Long Island Business News and recently celebrated
the Jeffrey D. Forchelli Conference Center being named in
his honor by Brooklyn Law School; Anthony V. Curto received
a Congressional Achievement Award, a Martin Luther King
"Living the Dream" distinction and has been honored by Telecare,
the television station of the Diocese of Rockville Centre;
John V. Terrana was selected for inclusion in Long Island
Business News' "40 Under 40"; and Barbara Shaheen Alesi
has twice been recognized as one of Long Island's "Top 50
Women" by the Long Island Business News.
Well known and highly regarded among the leaders of Nassau
and Suffolk Counties, members of the firm often serve in
important advisory capacities. Terence E. Smolev is a Trustee
of Hofstra University, Anthony V. Curto served on Nassau
County Executive Thomas Suozzi's Economic Advisory Board,
John V. Terrana has chaired the Nassau County Bar Association's
Tax Certiorari Committee for an unprecedented three consecutive
terms, Donald Jay Schwartz has recently been named Vice
Chairman of the Nassau County Bar Association's Grievance
Committee and was recognized as a 2006 Outstanding Pro Bono
Attorney by Touro Law Center, and Peter R. Mineo is on the
Board of Directors of The Long Island Home.
The firm's partners and associates serve as regular resources
to print and broadcast media and are frequently quoted on
matters regarding various areas of law, the Long Island
community and pertinent issues of the day.
To further ensure that clients are made aware of prominent
legal issues and their potential impact, The Firm publishes
a quarterly newsletter, The Counselor, which features highlights
on the firm's many departments and practice areas. Articles
range in subject matter and offer legal updates, advisories
and other important information to the firm's divergent
client base. (To add your name to the newsletter recipient
list, e-mail: email@example.com. Portions of the publication
are available on line at www.forchellilaw.com.)
With a team of attorneys who are supremely qualified
with the talent, experience and skill necessary to meet
the legal needs of any client, The Firm is well positioned
to continue its track record of success by providing exceptional
service, superb representation and outstanding results.
Reprinted with permission of Long Island