Peter J. Kiernan

Senior Counsel
Peter Kiernan

Peter Kiernan focuses his practice on infrastructure development, construction, public law, public pension, public finance, and government relations. He has spent more than 40 years in government service, private law practice, and real estate development. Peter has acted as lead counsel for commercial transaction financings, primarily involving enterprise, project, structured, and municipal finance, as well as international joint ventures.

Peter has considerable experience advising both companies and government officials on a wide range of matters. He was CEO of a waterfront development and investment firm from 1991 to 2001, during which he negotiated resort development projects in the United States, Mexico, and Europe, and created joint ventures and financing vehicles. He served as counsel to the governor (New York), overseeing the governor’s legislative program, managing major litigation, managing state financings, and directing relations with the state's Indian Nations. He coordinated the Westway State Park Project under the administration of Governor Mario Cuomo and served as counselor for infrastructure initiatives for Governor Andrew Cuomo. As counsel to the deputy mayor for finance of New York City during the infamous New York City Fiscal Crisis, Peter acted as the primary liaison to the Emergency Financial Control Board and the U.S. Treasury regarding the Federal Government/City of New York revolving loan program, and authored the Shinn Commission Pension Reform legislation, which completely restructured New York City's five actuarially funded pension systems.

Related Industries


Government Experience

  • Chair, New York State Law Revision Commission, 2011 – Present
  • Special counselor for infrastructure initiatives, New York Governor, 2017 – 2018
  • Counsel to the Governor (New York), 2008 – 2010
  • Counsel to the Minority New York State Senate, 1978 – 1981
  • Counsel to the Deputy Mayor for Finance (New York City)
  • U.S. Army Reserve, 394th MI Det.




  • M.B.A. Cornell University Johnson School of Management 2009
  • M.P.A. Harvard University, John F. Kennedy School of Government 1981
    • Littauer Fellow
  • J.D. Cornell Law School 1968
  • A.B. John Carroll University 1965

Bar Admissions

  • New York

Professional Memberships and Activities

  • Lecturer, CUNY Graduate School of Journalism, Ravitch Fiscal Reporting Program
  • Chair, New York State Law Revision Commission, 2011 – Present
  • Member, New York State Bar Association, House of Delegates
  • Former chair, New York City Bar Association, New York City Affairs Committee
  • Member, Medical Malpractice Insurance Association, Board of Directors, 2000 – 2005
  • Member, Watermark Associates, Inc., Board of Directors, 1989 –2002
  • Member, Brooklyn Arena Local Development Corporation, Board of Directors, 2008 – Present
  • Member, New York State Job Development Authority, Board of Directors, 2007 – 2008
  • Trustee, Citizens Budget Commission
  • Chair, Brooklyn Sports Foundation, 1998 – 2006
  • Member, New York City Convention Center Operating Corporation, Board of Directors, 1980 – 1982
  • Visiting fellow, Nelson A. Rockefeller Institute of Government, 2016 – 2018