Number of Years as a Member of the WCBA and contributions: I originally joined as a student member in 1998 and have maintained my membership ever since. I support the WCBA by being a regular contributor of articles to its publications including the Westchester Lawyer and the Westchester Bar Journal. I also always reach out to a Bar Association member first when referring a case outside of my practice area.
My current job and practice area are: I am the owner and Partner of Palumbo & Associates, PC. I practice speeding, moving violation, and auto crime defense anywhere in NY, CT & VT. My law partner, Mark Kosofsky, manages the no fault collections practice.
My legal mentor is: Chief Justice Janet DiFiore & Joe Villanueva. I have known Chief Justice DiFiore from when she was an ADA and I was a cop. I could always call her when I first started out as an attorney when I needed help. She always took the time to help and was instrumental in my career development. Joe Villanueva was my first supervisor when we both worked for Allstate Staff Counsel. He showed me the ropes and made sure I did not embarrass myself too much in those early days. I still did of course, but it wasn’t his fault.
One of my future ambitions is: I have a tremendous traffic ticket virtual attorney App called “NoTix,” that with the push of a button puts you in touch in real time with a lawyer licensed in the state you are in. I just completed the project, and you can find it on the Google Play Store by searching “NoTix.”
My ambition is to get my App on every cell phone in the United States to serve as a reminder to the general public that they can fight a traffic ticket rather then pay it.
If I were not practicing law I would be: I love being an entrepreneur and in business for myself. If I did not do this, I would own some other type of business.
People may be surprised to learn: I’m a US Navy veteran. I commissioned and served on the USS Stark, FFG-31. I was in the engineering department. I was a Petty Officer 2nd Class Gas Turbine Systems Electrician.
The best thing I did to improve my skill set as an attorney: For the first 4 years in practice I did insurance defense and was given a lot of discretion in how I managed my cases. I did not view it as a job. I viewed it as a place where I could learn how to practice law. I did as much work as possible. I would volunteer to do EBT’s, trials, and small claim matters. I took on responsibilities in prosecuting special proceedings. I practiced general negligence and No Fault defense in both litigation and arbitration. I volunteered to do appeals and perfected over a dozen. I burned a lot of midnight oil. This experience gave me the know how and confidence to go out on my own.
Favorite movies: Don’t have a favorite movie per se. I have a lot of favorite lines out of movies, such as Clemenza in the Godfather: “Leave the gun. Take the cannolis.” I bet you didn’t know that “take the cannolis” was ad libbed.
Favorite books: McKinney’s New York Vehicle & Traffic Law. Just kidding. You can laugh now.
Favorite songs: My favorite music is country and American standards. But if I had to pick an actual favorite song it would have to be Norman Greenbaum’s “Spirit in the Sky.”
Favorite meal: Anyone that has seen me in person knows that I don’t discriminate when it comes to food!
My favorite vacation: I find it relaxing to go to Albany when the Court of Appeals is hearing oral arguments and observe the proceedings. Just kidding again.
Best advice I ever got: “Fat, drunk and stupid is no way to go through life son.” Dean Wormer in “Animal House,” circa 1978.
My advice to new lawyers: In your first legal jobs you are not working for your firm or your boss, you are working for yourself. You are there to learn and build your skill set.
My favorite productivity hack: Delegation to employees. Case closed.
My favorite part of being involved with the WCBA: The leadership and staff could not be more helpful and engaging when you need their assistance. They also keep a full calendar of CLE’s and networking opportunities.