Historic law firm trades Brooklyn Heights for Wall Street and Albany
Absorbs bankrupt Dewey & LeBoeuf offices
By Ryan Thompson
Brooklyn Daily Eagle
MONTAGUE STREET — After decades as Brooklyn Heights’ preeminent law firm, Cullen & Dykman LLP has left the building – almost.
As of yesterday, the lawyers and office workers from Cullen & Dykman’s main office on Montague Street found themselves surrounded by the skyscrapers of Lower Manhattan rather than the historic brownstones of Brooklyn Heights. They looked out their new windows on Wall Street and saw bankers and brokers, rather than birds and baby strollers.
The Wall Street office is not new for Cullen & Dykman, which has had offices on the 17th and 19th floors for years. But the Wall Street location is expanding to the 14th and 15th floors at 44 Wall St., where the Brooklyn staff will be consolidated.
Yesterday, an employee at the historic law firm said Cullen & Dykman will retain an office at 188 Montague St. in Brooklyn Heights, which will be used occasionally, but lawyers will not be staffed there. Their main office across the street at 177 Montague St., above the Chase bank, has closed and the lease has expired.
This all comes on the same day that Cullen & Dykman announced that it is expanding to Albany, as well.
Following last week’s historic collapse of the Dewey & LeBoeuf law firm, Cullen and Dykman announced yesterday that it has opened a new office in Albany, to help implement its ongoing Upstate New York strategic growth initiative.
It was also announced that Brian T. FitzGerald, formerly of Dewey & LeBoeuf, has joined Cullen and Dykman LLP as partner-in-charge of the Albany office. With the addition of FitzGerald’s group, Cullen and Dykman adds to its status as a preeminent utility and energy law firm in the state and the region.
“In addition to our energy and utility clients, the banking, litigation and other services provided to our downstate clients will now be available to those seeking an innovative and unparalleled level of legal services upstate,” FitzGerald said. “I’m looking forward to working with my new colleagues to help build long-term, mutually beneficial client relationships in upstate New York.”
A full-service law firm, Cullen and Dykman LLP is focusing its growth in the Albany region in the areas of energy law and utility regulation, banking, education, construction law, bankruptcy and litigation.
“Establishing an office in the state capital is an essential part of Cullen and Dykman’s approach to future opportunities and continued growth,” said Thomas Douglas, the firm’s managing partner.
In addition to New York, attorneys in the Albany office are admitted to practice in Connecticut, the District of Columbia, Massachusetts and Rhode Island. Cullen and Dykman has New York offices in Manhattan, Garden City and Brooklyn, as well as offices in Washington, D.C. and Newark, New Jersey.
Prior to joining Cullen and Dykman LLP, FitzGerald led Dewey & LeBoeuf LLP’s Albany energy practice group. His practice concentrates on energy regulation, rate-making, telecommunications and water-related issues. FitzGerald was recognized by the leading energy publication, “Public Utility Fortnightly,” as one of its Groundbreaking Lawyers of 2010.
Last week, Dewey & LeBoeuf, which once had over 1,000 lawyers worldwide, shut down and declared bankruptcy, making it the biggest American law firm to do so in history.
FitzGerald earned his law degree from the University of Virginia School of Law in 1990 and his bachelor’s degree from Siena College in 1987, where he graduated summa cum laude. FitzGerald lives in Clifton Park, N.Y., with his wife and son.
“Brian FitzGerald’s strong background and demonstrated record of providing his clients with creative and expert legal services will provide the firm with an outstanding base in Albany as it expands to provide integrated legal services throughout the region,” added Robert Sorge, head of Cullen and Dykman’s corporate department.
June 4, 2012 - 6:09pm