Aug 20, 2020

The Best Lawyers In America 2021

Phillips Lytle Among Highest Ranked Law Firms in Buffalo with Seven Top Listed Awards in the Best Lawyers in America© 2021

Sixty-one attorneys from five Phillips Lytle offices, including 46 from its Buffalo office, are ranked on the prestigious 2021 list

Firm Top Listed for New York State in Commercial Litigation and Product Liability Litigation – Defendants

Nine Phillips Lytle Attorneys Named to Inaugural Best Lawyers Ones to Watch List

Buffalo, N.Y. – Phillips Lytle LLP is pleased to announce 61 of the firm’s attorneys have been ranked in The Best Lawyers In America© 2021. Additionally, the firm was Top Listed in New York State for Commercial Litigation (16 attorneys) and Product Liability Litigation – Defendants (eight attorneys).

Phillips Lytle also received the following Top Listed City Awards:

  • Total Lawyers in Buffalo: 52 attorneys
  • Banking and Finance Law in Rochester: Four attorneys
  • commercial litigation in Buffalo: 13 attorneys
  • Product Liability Litigation – Defendants in Buffalo: Eight attorneys
  • Real Estate Law in Buffalo: Five attorneys

The following Phillips Lytle attorneys are cited as “Lawyer of the Year”:

  • James R. Grasso, Buffalo – Labor Law – Management
  • David H. Kernan, Buffalo – Employee Benefits (ERISA) Law
  • Kenneth A. Manning, Buffalo – Bet-the-Company Litigation
  • Sharon L. Wick, Buffalo – Litigation – Trusts and Estates
  • Linda T. Prestegaard, Rochester, NY – Employment Law – Individuals
  • Richard E. Honen, Albany, NY – Corporate Law

The 46 attorneys from the Buffalo office in the 2021 Best Lawyers in America© include:

  • Frederick G. Attea (Corporate Law)
  • Raymond H. Barr (Employee Benefits (ERISA) Law)
  • Holly A. Beecher (Trusts and Estates)
  • Cindy Kaplan Bennes (Product Liability Litigation – Defendants)
  • Edward S. Bloomberg (Commercial Litigation)
  • Glenn J. Bobeck (Corporate Law)
  • William J. Brennan (Commercial Litigation)
  • William J. Brown (Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights / Insolvency and Reorganization Law; Litigation – Bankruptcy)
  • William D. Christ (Mass Tort Litigation / Class Action – Defendants; Personal Injury Litigation – Defendants; Product Liability Litigation – Defendants)
  • James J. Contino (Real Estate Law)
  • Douglas W. Dimitroff (Real Estate Law)
  • James D. Donathen (Employment Law – Management; Labor Law – Management; Litigation – Labor and Employment)
  • Deborah A. Doxey (Banking and Finance Law)
  • Kevin J. English (Commercial Litigation)
  • Robert E. Glanville (Environmental Law; Product Liability Litigation – Defendants)
  • Morgan G. Graham (Environmental Law; Litigation – Environmental; Litigation – Land Use and Zoning)
  • James R. Grasso (Employment Law – Management; Labor Law – Management)
  • Robert Michael Greene (Health Care Law)
  • Tamar P. Halpern (Commercial Litigation; Product Liability Litigation – Defendants)
  • Martha M. Harris (Product Liability Litigation – Defendants)
  • Kevin M. Hogan (Environmental Law; Litigation – Environmental)
  • Paul F. Jones (Commercial Litigation; Product Liability Litigation – Defendants)
  • William P. Keefer (Health Care Law)
  • David H. Kernan (Employee Benefits (ERISA) Law)
  • Gary F. Kotaska (Corporate Law; Employee Benefits (ERISA) Law)
  • Craig A. Leslie (Personal Injury Litigation – Defendants)
  • Kenneth A. Manning (Bet-the-Company Litigation; Commercial Litigation; Litigation – Labor and Employment; Litigation – Municipal; Litigation and Controversy – Tax; Personal Injury Litigation – Defendants)
  • Lisa McDougall (Health Care Law)
  • David J. McNamara (Commercial Litigation; Litigation – Banking and Finance)
  • Sean C. McPhee (Commercial Litigation)
  • Angela Zwirecki Miller (Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights / Insolvency and Reorganization Law)
  • Paul Morrison-Taylor (Personal Injury Litigation – Defendants)
  • David J. Murray (Corporate Law)
  • John A. Pappano (Real Estate Law)
  • Michael B. Powers (Personal Injury Litigation – Defendants)
  • John G. Schmidt Jr. (Commercial Litigation)
  • Ronald S. Shubert (Litigation – Real Estate; Real Estate Law)
  • Lisa L. Smith (Product Liability Litigation – Defendants)
  • James W. Smyton (Corporate Law)
  • Adam S. Walters (Real Estate Law)
  • James W. Whitcomb (Commercial Litigation; Personal Injury Litigation – Defendants)
  • Sharon L. Wick (Litigation – Trusts and Estates; Trusts and Estates)
  • Alan M. Wishnoff (Personal Injury Litigation – Defendants)
  • Thomas S. Wiswall (Commercial Litigation)
  • Preston L. Zarlock (Commercial Litigation)
  • Paul B. Zuydhoek (Bet-the-Company Litigation; Commercial Litigation; Product Liability Litigation – Defendants).

The 10 lawyers from the Rochester office included on the list are:

  • Richard M. Beers, Jr. (Banking and Finance Law; Real Estate Law)
  • Thomas R. Burns (Corporate Law)
  • David L. Cook (Commercial Litigation; Environmental Law; Litigation – Environmental; Litigation – Real Estate)
  • Victoria L. Grady (Banking and Finance Law)
  • Ryan A. Lown (Real Estate Law)
  • Albert M. Mercury (Corporate Law)
  • Mark J. Moretti (Commercial Litigation; Construction Law; Litigation – Construction; Litigation – ERISA; Litigation – Real Estate)
  • Linda T. Prestegaard (Employment Law – Individuals; Employment Law – Management)
  • Raymond L. Ruff (Banking and Finance Law)
  • Robert F. Zogas (Banking and Finance Law; Corporate Law)

Albany Partner Richard E. Honen (Commercial Litigation; Corporate Law; Venture Capital Law); Jamestown Partner Gregory L. Peterson (Real Estate Law); and New York City Partners Kenneth R. Crystal (Real Estate Law), Eric M. Kraus (Mass Tort Litigation / Class Actions – Defendants), and Milan K. Tyler (Public Finance Law) are also included on the list.

The following attorneys were named in the new category, “Ones to Watch”:

  • Joanna J. Chen, Buffalo (Mass Tort Litigation / Class Actions – Defendants)
  • Erin E. Connare, Buffalo (Product Liability Litigation – Defendants)
  • Andrew P. Devine, Buffalo (Litigation – Real Estate)
  • Catherine N. Eisenhut, Buffalo (Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights / Insolvency and Reorganization Law)
  • Patrick T. Fitzgerald, Buffalo (Real Estate Law)
  • Kimberly R. Nason, Buffalo (Environmental Law)
  • Heather H. Kidera, New York, NY (Commercial Litigation)
  • Jillian M. Dunbar, Rochester, NY (Banking and Finance Law)
  • Alson James McKenna, Rochester, NY (Banking and Finance Law)

Since it was first published in 1983, Best Lawyers® has become universally regarded as the definitive guide to legal excellence. Best Lawyers lists are compiled based on an exhaustive peer-review evaluation. Almost 108,000 industry leading lawyers are eligible to vote (from around the world), and Best Lawyers has received over 13 million evaluations on the legal abilities of other lawyers based on their specific practice areas around the world. For the 2021 Edition of The Best Lawyers in America©, 9.4 million votes were analyzed, which resulted in more than 67,000 leading lawyers being included in the new edition. Lawyers are not required or allowed to pay a fee to be listed; therefore, inclusion in Best Lawyers is considered a singular honor. Corporate Counsel magazine has called Best Lawyers “the most respected referral list of attorneys in practice.

Phillips Lytle LLP is a preeminent law firm that is recognized nationally for its legal excellence. With offices across New York State and in Chicago, IL; Washington, D.C.; and Canada, our attorneys serve a multinational client base, including Fortune 1000 companies, global and regional financial institutions, not-for-profit organizations, middle-market companies, startups, entrepreneurs and individuals on important matters affecting their businesses and personal wealth. For more information, visit


Press Contact:

Tracey L. Mancini