Venable Adds to New York Real Estate Practice

5 min

Continued expansion more than doubles practice group size

New York, NY (May 8, 2012) – Venable LLP announced today the addition of a team of high-profile real estate lawyers from Dewey & LeBoeuf in New York.

Venable will more than double the size of its New York Real Estate Practice with the addition of three partners, a counsel and two associates, effective immediately. Peter S. Britell, Gordon J. Davis and Suzanne St. Pierre join as partners; Susan E. Golden as counsel, and  Michael Phillipou and Ashley Dunn as associates.

Peter Koffler, leader of Venable’s New York Real Estate Practice Group, commented on the additions.  “We are extremely pleased to be adding to our existing New York real estate practice.  They bring a complementary set of skills – particularly in land use, zoning, and large development project expertise, which will be invaluable to our clients.  Additionally, Mr. Britell’s and Mr. Davis’s skills in advising cultural and not-for-profit organizations is an excellent fit with Venable’s robust practice in those important areas.  My colleague, Brian Gurtman, and I welcome them to Venable and look forward to working with them.”

Peter S. Britell, a former chair of Dewey’s Global Real Estate and Construction practice, is well known for advising clients on some of New York’s iconic cultural and performing arts institution projects, including projects of Lincoln Center, The New York Public Library, Cooper Union and Lower Manhattan Development Corp. (rebuilding the World Trade Center).  With Ms. St Pierre he is currently advising New York City Economic Development Corporation on the proposed Willets Point redevelopment project in Queens.  He has acted as lead counsel in many other prominent real estate and construction projects.  He is listed under Real Estate in Best Lawyers in America, New York Super Lawyers and The New York Area's Best Lawyers.  He is the author of "Green Buildings: Law, Contract and Regulation" (Law Journal Press), the first major treatise on the law of green buildings, and writes and lectures on the developing law of green buildings.

Gordon J. Davis's practice focuses primarily on land use development and related environmental matters.  He has advised public and private clients in connection with some of the most     significant development projects in New York City in recent years.  He counsels clients on zoning; environmental and planning matters; construction; landmarks and historic preservation; project finance and funding; building code; coastal zone and other special protection areas; federal, state and local agency permits and approvals; public review requirements and related litigation in both state and federal courts.  Mr. Davis's clients and projects have included the rebuilding of Ground Zero (the World Trade Center site), Lincoln Center, the New York Public Library, the Rockefeller Foundation, the rebuilding of Penn Station (Amtrak), Mount Sinai Medical Center, Viacom, Cooper Union, the American Museum of Natural History, the Lever House restoration and the United States Tennis Association Billie Jean King National Tennis Center, among others.

Suzanne St. Pierre has been advising U.S. and international clients on complex real estate transactions for almost two decades.  Her practice encompasses virtually all areas of transactional real estate, including development of cultural and mixed-use projects; formation of real estate partnerships and joint ventures; investments in real estate funds and other investment vehicles; all aspects of construction, including negotiation of construction and design contracts and dispute resolution; complex acquisitions and dispositions; real estate financing; New York City-funded capital projects; hotel management contracts; leasing transactions; and condominium transactions.  Ms. St. Pierre’s clients include The New York Public Library, Tides Foundation, Alberta Investment Management Company, and The New York City Economic Development Corporation.

Susan E. Golden handles land use development projects and commercial real estate transactions.  Sue counsels public, private and not-for-profit clients including the American Museum of Natural History, Jazz at Lincoln Center, and Mount Sinai School of Medicine, and advises on projects such as the redevelopment of the World Trade Center, construction of a municipal recycling facility, and the development of Moynihan Station.  Her work involves counseling compliance with zoning, landmarks and historic preservation requirements; public review and government approval of development proposals; negotiation of development, design and construction contracts; property acquisitions and conveyances, including the transfer of development rights; office and laboratory leasing; government and charitable funding agreements; negotiation of mixed-use condominium structures; and the formation and counseling of small or special purpose corporations, including tax-exempt, not-for-profit corporations and New York State public authorities. She is listed in New York Super Lawyers.

Venable has seen several important additions to its real estate practice nationwide recently.  In January 2012, Mr. Koffler joined the firm’s New York practice and in April 2012, Mitch Evall, Andrew Schmerzler and Valentin Aguilar II joined the firm to spearhead the growth of Venable’s newly established West Coast Real Estate Practice headquartered in Los Angeles.  Venable’s well-established national Real Estate Practice Group now includes more than 40 attorneys in six of the firm’s offices.

Ted Millspaugh, Chair of the Practice, echoed Koffler’s welcome.  “With the addition of these wonderful lawyers we are now better positioned than ever to meet the real estate needs of our clients, coast to coast.  We welcome them to our practice group which is truly one of the very best in the nation."


An American Lawyer Global 100 law firm, Venable serves corporate, institutional, governmental, nonprofit and individual clients throughout the U.S. and around the world.  Headquartered in Washington, DC, with offices in California, Maryland, New York and Virginia, Venable LLP lawyers and legislative advisors serve the needs of our domestic and global clients in all areas of corporate and business law, complex litigation, intellectual property, regulatory, and government affairs.