Firm News Blog

O’Connell and Aronowitz Expands Business Law Group


O’Connell and Aronowitz has significantly expanded its Business Law and Commercial Litigation Department with the addition of five seasoned attorneys. Peter A. Pastore, Kevin Laurilliard, Francis J. Smith, Jr., and Paul C. Pastore, will join as Partners and the Honorable Leonard A. Weiss will join as Of Counsel. All five attorneys are coming from the McNamee Lochner law firm.

“As we enter our 95th year, we are extraordinarily pleased to have these five experienced practitioners join our Business Law and Commercial Litigation Department,” said Jeffrey Siegel, the head of the Business Law Group and the Managing Partner at O’Connell and Aronowitz. “I have known all of them for many years; they are well respected, terrific attorneys. Their addition further enhances our commitment to remain an Albany based law firm offering a breadth of services to the Capital District through our offices downtown and in Saratoga Springs,” Mr. Siegel added.

Peter A. Pastore’s practice concentrates on bankruptcy and banking and includes the areas of commercial litigation, creditors’ rights, and banking law. He represents secured lenders in Chapter 11 bankruptcies, as well as commercial landlords, financing companies, and unsecured creditors’ committees. Mr. Pastore is a graduate of Albany Law School and earned his B.A. at Stanford University, where he was Phi Beta Kappa.

Kevin Laurilliard practices in the areas of construction and surety law, commercial law, bankruptcy law, and creditors’ rights law. As a litigator, he has successfully litigated a variety of construction, bankruptcy, and commercial law matters in state and federal courts. As a construction attorney, he represented the design/builder for the GlobalFoundries chip fabrication project, the owner for the Rensselaer train station project, the owner for the Clifton Park green library project, and Albany County during its courthouse renovation project. Mr. Laurilliard previously served as an Appellate Court attorney with the New York Supreme Court, Appellate Division, Third Department; and for several years, he was an adjunct professor at Russell Sage College. Mr. Laurilliard is a graduate of Albany Law School and earned his B.A. at the State University of New York at Albany.

Fran Smith’s practice areas include appellate practice, commercial litigation, commercial mortgage foreclosures and workouts, and commercial bankruptcy. Mr. Smith handles all types of state and federal court litigation, representing creditors and lenders. He previously served as confidential law clerk to the Honorable A. Franklin Mahoney, Presiding Justice of Appellate Division, Third Department. Mr. Smith is a graduate of Albany Law School and earned his B.A. at Siena College.

Paul C. Pastore’s practice concentrates primarily on creditors’ rights and focuses upon bankruptcy, contract disputes, general commercial litigation and loan workouts. He represents various banks, financial institutions, lenders and creditors in both state and federal court, devoting time to the collection of consumer and commercial debts, and to the enforcement of money judgments. Mr. Pastore also has extensive experience in municipal law, including land use issues. He is a graduate of Albany Law School and earned his B.A. at the University of Notre Dame.

Judge Leonard A. Weiss is the former Presiding Justice of the Appellate Division, Third Department, having retired in 1994, and he concentrates his practice on alternative dispute resolution. Judge Weiss acts as a mediator and arbitrator and is a judicial hearing officer for the New York State Supreme Court. He is a charter member of the New York Academy of Mediators & Arbitrators (NYAMA), an association of mediators and arbitrators distinguished by their hands-on experience in the field of civil and commercial conflict. Judge Weiss is a graduate of Albany Law School and earned his undergraduate degree at the University of Oregon and the University of Buffalo.

“We have seen our Business Law and Commercial Litigation practice grow steadily over time, and adding Peter, Kevin, Fran, Paul, and Judge Weiss will allow us to accelerate that growth,” said firm President Michael McDermott. “By expanding our firm in this way, we can better serve our many business clients and the community at large,” added Mr. McDermott.

O’Connell and Aronowitz was established in 1925 and has offices in Albany and Saratoga Springs. More information on the firm is available by calling 518-462-5601.


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