Gibbons Revamps Litigation Department, Names Two New Co-Chairs


January 8, 2018

Gibbons P.C. is pleased to announce the combination and realignment of its business and white collar criminal litigation practices into the Commercial & Criminal Litigation Department, which will be co-chaired by two longtime Gibbons Directors: Peter J. Torcicollo, formerly of the Business & Commercial Litigation Department, and Lawrence S. Lustberg, former Chair of the Criminal Defense Department.

“By streamlining the administrative function of our former Business & Commercial Litigation and Criminal Defense Departments, we are increasing efficiencies that bring savings to our clients,” says Patrick C. Dunican Jr., Chairman and Managing Director of Gibbons, “while also widening the scope of services we can provide on demand, with little to no learning curve or ‘on-ramping,’ as needs arise in the course of litigation.”

The creation of the Commercial & Criminal Litigation Department gathers under one management umbrella numerous legal services and concentrations, many of which are required simultaneously in a given case, including securities litigation, antitrust and trade regulation, class action defense, white collar criminal defense, internal and audit committee investigations, crisis management, media law, and construction. The new department will also bring together the firm’s preeminent appellate attorneys to handle both criminal and commercial litigation appeals. These changes will allow the firm to marshal a wide, varied range of resources, all within one department, that might be required as a complex litigation matter unfolds – particularly if it is a matter where business and criminal concerns overlap.

In addition to broad, general commercial and criminal litigation, the new department will include more concentrated focus areas, such as:

Team Leader: Jennifer A. Hradil

Class Action Defense
Team Leader: Michael R. McDonald

Construction Law & Litigation
Team Leader: Damian V. Santomauro

Team Leader: Mark S. Sidoti

General Equity
Team Leader: Frederick W. Alworth

Team Leader: John T. Wolak

Media Law
Team Leader: Thomas J. Cafferty

Team Leader: R. Scott Garley

The co-chairs of the Commercial & Criminal Litigation Department are both members of the firm’s Executive Committee and are highly experienced in practice management, administrative oversight, and operational innovation.

New Commercial & Criminal Litigation Department Co-Chair Peter J. Torcicollo joined Gibbons in 1993 and has been a firm Director since 2000. He is a member of the firm’s Construction Law & Litigation practice, and he helped establish the Data Privacy & Security Task Force, which was designed to provide counseling, investigative, and litigation services to address the numerous privacy and cybersecurity issues that increasingly affect clients’ businesses. In addition, he served as the Director of Professional Development, Recruiting, Associate Retention, and Lateral Hiring at Gibbons from 2003 through 2017. He was instrumental in the overhaul of the firm’s recruiting program, which included eliminating its summer associate program in lieu of recruiting lawyers who had completed judicial clerkships, providing clients with valuable, firsthand insight into the practices and preferences of specific judges, in addition to well-developed knowledge of courthouse procedures.

Lawrence S. Lustberg will also co-chair the new Commercial & Criminal Litigation Department. In addition to leading the firm’s highly regarded criminal defense practice for many years, Mr. Lustberg is the long-serving Director of the John J. Gibbons Fellowship in Public Interest & Constitutional Law, a nationally recognized, award winning pro bono program that litigates historic, cutting-edge civil rights and civil liberties cases. After joining the firm as its very first Gibbons Fellow in 1990, Mr. Lustberg became a Director in 1994 and took over leadership of the Gibbons Fellowship. He is responsible for the scope of the Fellowship’s work and the breadth of issues it addresses, considering public interest and constitutional law projects and litigation from all sectors, public and private. Mr. Lustberg is the former president of both the Association of the Federal Bar of New Jersey and Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers of New Jersey – each of which has awarded him its highest honor – and has served on and chaired numerous court and government committees and nonprofit and philanthropic boards.

“In addition to being well-known and highly regarded attorneys in their respective fields, with reputations in the legal community that alone validate their leadership roles, Pete and Larry possess the business insight and executive know-how to successfully direct an operation as large and multi-pronged as the Gibbons Commercial & Criminal Litigation Department,” notes Mr. Dunican. “They also know each other well, have complementary management styles, and understand both the distinctions of and interplay between commercial and criminal litigation.”