Number of Years as a Member of the WCBA, positions held and awards received: Approximately 13 years as a WCBA member. I received the WCBA New Lawyers Leadership Award in 2013 for attorneys practicing 10 years or under. I was named a “Super Lawyer” from 2013-2016 and was a recipient of the Rising Star award from the Business Council of Westchester.
My current job and practice area: Partner at Cuddy & Feder LLP. Transactional Practice Group which includes real estate, financing, leasing, corporate and industrial development agency financing.
How I decided to become a Real Estate Attorney: I got lucky. Cuddy & Feder had an opening in their real estate department and I needed a job so I took the offer. Have not looked back since.
One of my favorite legal success stories: Closing a complicated quarter of a billion dollar development project in downtown White Plains where I was one of the lead attorneys on the transactional side of things (I was only out four years from law school). It involved acquisition of land from the City of White Plains and getting IDA approval.
My Legal Mentor: Joseph P. Carlucci is a senior partner at Cuddy & Feder. I refer to him as Grandpa Joe. When I first started at the firm, he took me everywhere he went (client intake meetings, closings, business transactions) and showed me the ropes. He helped develop my practice at the Firm. I learned everything I know about the IDA from him.
If I were not practicing law I would be: dead or retired. I can’t see myself doing anything else.
People may be surprised to learn: that I was born in Guyana and spent the first 8 years of my life there.
The best thing I did to improve my skill set as an attorney: work hard and listen. Effective listening is a such an important skill. I pride myself on not making the same mistake twice.
The best thing I did to improve marketing my practice and me: getting involved in the Community. I have been on the Board of Directors of the African-American Men of Westchester, Inc. and have been a Member of the Board of Governors for the YMCA of Central and Northern Westchester since 2015.
What I splurge on: I love dining out. Some of my favorite restaurants include River Market
(Tarrytown), Purdy’s Farmer’s Fish (Purdy’s) and Le Bernardin in New York City.
The best hour of my day is: the quiet time in the evening with my wife especially now since she is over 9 months pregnant with our first child!
Favorite movies: I am a big time movie buff—so too many to name—but love science fiction (Star Wars, Matrix) and gangster movies (City of God, The Godfather, Scarface).
Favorite Books: I love science fiction books (anything by Ray Bradbury) and history books. I recently read The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich.
Favorite songs: I am a big time music lover especially reggae music. Some of my favorites include Natural Mystic by Bob Marley and Alton Ellis’ songs.
Favorite meal: Big Eye Tuna at Purdy’s Farmer and Fish. Rare Tuna over a shrimp fried rice—heavenly. I can’t forget good Korean BBQ at Korea Garden in Yonkers.
My favorite vacation spots: I try to never go to the same place twice but if I had to pick, I would say Guyana—my original home. Some of my favorites places visited include Amsterdam, Napa Valley and Turks and Caicos.
Three things I can’t live without: Food, alcohol, music and good company. That’s four things but that combination is my driving force in life.
One of my favorite things to do in Westchester: Sit on my deck for hours and just meditate and do nothing.
Best advice I ever got: My mom told me that organization is the key to success.
My advice to new lawyers: Focus on finding out what’s your niche. Put in the time and learn what skill set suites you the best.
Last time I was out of my comfort zone: Right now—my wife is expecting in mid-December and no matter how organized I am or how much I plan—I think I am in for the unexpected.
One of my future ambitions is to: I would love to be involved in the reggae music industry.
My favorite part of being involved with the WCBA: The Bar keeps me well informed as to the legal profession and the legal community in Westchester.