Touro Law Center's Office of Development, Alumni Relations and Communications is proud to announce that Thomas O’Connor ’89 has been selected as the alum of the month for August 2010. Mr. O’Connor is a leader in his profession, was an active member of the Touro Law community while attending law school, was on the Touro Law Review, and remains engaged with the law school as a member of the Alumni Council and attends a number of programs for current students. His accomplished career is highlighted in the profile below. On behalf of the entire law school community, we extend our congratulations to Thomas O’Connor.
Thomas O'Connor is a partner in the Real Estate Group with the firm of Cooley LLP, in the business department. He serves as Chair of the Real Estate Group, Co-Chair of the Latin American Real Estate Group and Co-Chair of the Structured Real Estate Investments Group. Mr. O'Connor joined Kronish Lieb Weiner & Hellman LLP in 1997, which was merged into Cooley Godward Kronish LLP in 2006. He is resident in the New York office.
Mr. O'Connor practices in the area of commercial real estate transactions with particular emphasis on real estate finance, acquisitions and sales. He has extensive experience with both the lender and borrower side of real estate lending (including the origination, workout and restructuring of real estate debt). He represents several major institutional lenders and borrowers in originating and restructuring mortgage and mezzanine financing and in structuring preferred equity investments.
In the 1990s, Mr. O'Connor represented several clients in acquiring approximately $2 billion of distressed loans from the Resolution Trust Corporation and restructuring such debt. As a result of such experience, since the current downturn in the market commenced, he has again become active in liquidation of distressed assets and in loan workouts and restructurings (including deed- in-lieu transactions) for both lenders and borrowers.
Mr. O'Connor also has extensive experience representing clients in the acquisition of debt in the secondary market and the negotiation of complex co-lender, participation and intercreditor arrangements. He has represented several major institutions, including UBS, Arbor Realty Trust and Hypo Real Estate Capital Corporation with respect to large commercial real estate financing transactions. In addition to representing lenders, Mr. O'Connor also represents the Caribbean Property Group, a major owner and developer of commercial real estate in the Caribbean. This includes borrower representation in large securitized and structured loans as well as representation in acquisitions involving complex foreign and local law issues and compliance.
In addition to real estate financing, Mr. O'Connor has represented several real estate equity funds in the acquisition and sale of commercial real estate. In connection with those transactions, he has assisted clients in forming real estate funds and in structuring their ownership and management interests through sophisticated joint venture arrangements.
Prior to joining Kronish Lieb, Mr. O'Connor worked in the real estate group of Weil Gotshal for eight years. Mr. O'Connor was a high school teacher for ten years before becoming a lawyer.
Mr. O'Connor earned his J.D. in 1989 from Touro College Jacob D. Fuchsberg Law Center, where he was Valedictorian and editor of the Touro Law Review. He is a member of Touro Law Center’s Alumni Council and volunteers for programs and events for Touro Law students. He graduated in 1979 from Clark University with a B.S. in History with honors.
Mr. O'Connor is a member of the British American Business, Inc. and a member of the New York Executive Council's Financial Services Advisory Board. He also frequently speaks at industry conferences including Information Management Networks's (IMN) Borrowers' & Investors' Forum on Real Estate Mezzanine Loans and US Real Estate Opportunity and Private Fund Investing Forum.
Mr. O'Connor is admitted to practice in New York.