News & Updates 2021

News & Updates 2021

On Behalf of | Dec 26, 2021 | News & Updates

C&G Attorneys Awarded for Community Service & Volunteerism

Lori Grumet Schapiro | Angelo D. Catalano

C&G is honored to announce that C&G attorneys Lori Schapiro and Angelo Catalano recently received awards at the Broome County Bar Association’s (BCBA) Annual Law Day Dinner, held on September 23, 2021.

Attorney Lori Schapiro was awarded the COMMUNITY SERVICE AWARD. This honor is awarded each year “to a member of the BCBA in recognition of his/her service to our community.”

On the same date, Angelo Catalano received the YOUNG LAWYER OF THE YEAR AWARD, which is awarded to an attorney “who has shown an exemplary combination of active service to the BCBA and service/volunteerism within the local community.”

Coughlin & Gerhart, LLP proudly congratulates Attorneys Schapiro and Catalano for their honors and service to the community and legal profession.

Proud to Sponsor Race for Justice to Benefit Legal Aid Society


The countdown is on for the 2021 Coughlin & Gerhart Race for Justice 5K! For this year’s race, runners/walkers have the option to race in person on Sunday, October 31, at 11 a.m. OR you can choose to race VIRTUALLY and submit your time. Proceeds from the race will go to the Legal Aid Society of Mid New York. The Legal Aid Society of Mid New York is a not-for-profit organization that provides legal aid to those less fortunate right here in our community.

  • Any participants who pre-register will receive a FREE Race T-shirt
  • Halloween Attire is “Admired but not Required”
  • Sign-up INDIVIDUALLY or as a TEAM of 4-7.
  • Justice Cup Awarded to Fastest Team
  • Awards for 1st, 2nd, 3rd, in Men’s and Women’s, plus under 18 awards.
  • Refreshments & Water Stations

Where do you register? Follow the link below:

Sixteen C&G Attorneys Listed in Upstate New York Super Lawyers


Coughlin & Gerhart, LLP is proud to announce that Mark S. Gorgos, Paul J. Sweeney, Robert R. Jones, Beth E. Westfall, Jeffrey A. Brown, Rachel A. Abbott, Kurt Schrader, and Joseph J. Steflik, Jr. have been included in the 2021 Upstate Edition of New York Super Lawyers. Only 5% of attorneys practicing in the Upstate New York region meet the criteria to be named to this prestigious list.

Brady L. Begeal, Keith A. Gorgos, Zachary D. Morahan, Angelo D. Catalano, Nicholas S. Cortese, Nathan D. VanWhy, Michael C. Perehinec, Jr., and Shannon E. Kane have also been named as 2021 Upstate New York Rising Stars.

New York Super Lawyers magazine publishes this list annually, and bases its evaluations on information gathered from a variety of sources, including peer recognition and professional achievement.

Mr. Gorgos, whose primary areas of practice include commercial transactions, education & municipal law, credit union law, and creditor rights, has been with Coughlin & Gerhart since 1980 and currently serves as Managing Partner. Mr. Sweeney joined the firm in 1992, following active duty as a Marine Corps judge advocate. He is chair of our firm’s Labor & Employment Practice Group. He concentrates his practice in labor & employment law and commercial litigation. Mr. Jones joined Coughlin & Gerhart in 1990 and is a member of the firm’s Executive Committee. He limits his law practice to representing people who have been seriously injured in motor vehicle and construction site accidents. Mrs. Westfall joined the firm in 1986 and is former co-chair of the firm’s Trusts & Estates Practice Group. She focuses her practice in the areas of estate planning and administration, elder law, municipal law, land use & zoning, and real estate transactions. Mr. Brown joined the firm in 1986 and practices in the areas of workers’ compensation law, social security disability and insurance defense. Mr. Steflik joined Coughlin & Gerhart in 1999 and was a former chair of the firm’s Labor & Employment Practice Group. He focuses his practice in the areas of labor, employment, and construction law. Ms. Abbott, a partner in the firm and member of the firm’s Executive Committee, focuses her practice in the area of plaintiff’s litigation. Mr. Schrader joined Coughlin & Gerhart in 2019 and is of counsel with the firm, focusing his practice on family law, criminal law, and general civil litigation.

Mr. Begeal, a partner with the firm and chair of its Business & Banking Practice Group, focuses his practice in the areas of business & banking law and municipal law. Mr. Keith Gorgos, a partner with the firm, focuses his practice in the areas of business law, banking & credit union law, creditor rights, and litigation. Mr. Morahan is a partner with the firm and focuses his practice in the areas of energy & resource law and trusts & estates law. Mr. VanWhy is a partner with the firm and focuses his practice in the areas of business/corporate and municipal law. Mr. Catalano is a partner with the firm and focuses his practice in the areas of labor & employment law, litigation & trial, and public, municipal, & education law. Mr. Cortese is an associate with the firm and focuses his practice in the areas of municipal law, land use & zoning, labor & employment law, and litigation. Mr. Perehinec is a partner with the firm and focuses his practice in the areas of litigation & trial, trusts, estates, & elder law, real estate law, and family law. Ms. Kane is special counsel with the firm and focuses her practice in the areas of labor & employment law, and litigation & trial.

Coughlin & Gerhart, LLP, which was founded in the 1890s, has grown to be a multi-service law firm, consisting of more than 50 lawyers and a professional support staff. The firm’s main office is located at 99 Corporate Drive, Binghamton. It has convenient branch offices located in Bainbridge, Cortland, Hancock, Ithaca, Owego, and Walton, New York, and Montrose, Pennsylvania.

C&G Attorney Honored by Community Foundation’s Door Opener Society

Of Counsel Attorney, Anna Holmberg

Congratulations to Coughlin & Gerhart’s Of Counsel Attorney, Anna Holmberg, who was inducted into the Community Foundation’s Door Opener Society, which recognizes professional advisors who have contributed significantly and substantially to philanthropic estate planning. Thank you, Anna, for providing this valuable service to our clients and to the people of Tompkins County.


Mark S. Gorgos, Esq. Honored with the Binghamton Chamber’s Civic Leader of the Year Award

Mark S. Gorgos

On May 13, 2021 the Greater Binghamton Chamber of Commerce held their 57th Annual Dinner and Meeting where they announced the 2021 award recipients. The Chamber named Coughlin & Gerhart attorney Mark S. Gorgos as the 2021 Civic Leader of the Year. The Chamber details that “The Civic Leader of the Year shows evidence of having had a long-term beneficial impact on the community. They demonstrate civic engagement by using a combination of knowledge, skills, values and motivation to make a difference in our communities.”

Mark was nominated for the award by Michael Grasso, the Executive Director of the ‎Roberson Museum and Science Center, along with other supporting nominations.

As the nominations and the Chamber conveyed, Mark has been practicing law in our community since 1980. As the Managing Partner of the firm, Mark’s responsibilities involve overseeing and coordinating the firm’s donations, sponsorships, and public service events in the community. In 2019, Coughlin & Gerhart received the NYS Bar Association President’s Pro Bono Award in the mid-size firm category. Arlene Sanders, Director of Pro Bono Programs for the Legal Aid Society of Mid-New York, said “Under Mark’s leadership, Coughlin & Gerhart makes pro bono service a strong priority within the firm.” Mark and Coughlin & Gerhart have been supporters of Legal Aid’s annual fundraiser, the Race for Justice 5K Run/Walk, which has raised over $50,000 to benefit its programs.

The nominations also detailed that a large part of Mark’s time is dedicated to the community. For example, Mark currently volunteers as the Board President for the Roberson Museum and Science Center, a position he has held since 2017. When unusual issues arise, Mark has been there to assist, such as in 2019 when, over a Holiday weekend, a pipe burst! Mark was there to lend a hand with clean up and restoration. Mark’s impact and influence spread throughout the community in various positive ways, with the examples Mark sets for Board service being passed on by other Roberson Board trustees as they move on to serve other organizations.

Outside of the office, for more than thirty years, Mark has been a fixture in the area’s local youth sports leagues. He has coached soccer, baseball, softball, and basketball. He was even recognized for his accomplishments in youth soccer by being one of four finalists for the National Youth Soccer Coach of the Year.

Elizabeth Woidt, Director of Parks, and Recreation and Youth Services for Broome County pointed to the “Broome Bands Together,” free summer concert series presented by Coughlin & Gerhart which takes place at Otsiningo Park. Since 2013, the series have provided a safe, free, and family-friendly event for residents and visitors. She noted that “Mark is an outstanding ambassador for Coughlin & Gerhart as well as Broome County Parks. He has a burning desire to promote the quality of life in Broome County.”

In addition, he has been a member of the Community Foundation for South Central New York Board of Directors since 2016. Mark serves as chair of their Planning Committee and is a member of the Personnel Committee. Executive Director Diane Brown jokes that being a member of their Board is a “lifetime commitment.” She says Mark is exactly the person she looks to for leadership… “he is knowledgeable, thoughtful and unflappable.”

The firm extends a big “Congratulations!” to Mark Gorgos, and a “Thank You” to the Greater Binghamton Chamber of Commerce, and all those individuals listed above who nominated Mark for this award in recognition for his years of service to our communities.

Legal Update: New York State Legalizes Adult-Use Cannabis

On March 28, 2021, New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo announced that he had reached a tentative agreement for comprehensive legislation that would, among other things, legalize the recreational use of cannabis products for adults. Three days later, he signed the legislation into law. Although certain cannabis possession and use was decriminalized in 2019, the new law comes after years of failed attempts at legislative legalization. Read more…

Coughlin & Gerhart, LLP Named a 2021 Best Law Firm

U.S. News & World Report and Best Lawyers in America® have named Coughlin & Gerhart, LLP as a Metropolitan Tier 1 Best Law Firm for the Binghamton, New York region in the areas of Banking and Finance Law, Family Law, Litigation-Trust & Estates, Personal Injury Litigation-Defendants, Real Estate Law, and Trusts & Estates Law. The Firm has also received the Best Law Firms distinction as a Metropolitan Tier 2 Best Law Firm in the areas of Business Organizations (including LLCs and Partnerships), Litigation-Labor & Employment, and Personal Injury Litigation-Plaintiffs.

Firms included in the 2021 “Best Law Firms” list are recognized for professional excellence with persistently impressive ratings from clients and peers. Achieving a tiered ranking signals a unique combination of quality law practice and breadth of legal expertise. To be eligible for a ranking in a particular practice area, a law firm must have at least one lawyer who is included in The Best Lawyers in America®, which recognizes the top 4 percent of practicing attorneys in the United States. Fourteen C&G attorneys are included in this list for 2021. Receiving a tier designation reflects the high level of respect a firm has earned among other leading lawyers and clients in the same communities and the same practice areas for its abilities, its professionalism, and its integrity.

“Law firms perform a vital role in American life, and ranking them is a key extension of our overall mission to help individuals and companies alike make important life decisions,” says Tim Smart, Executive Editor of U.S. News.

C&G Attorney’s Novel Named a Best Book of 2020


Congratulations to Tom Bouman, whose third novel, The Bramble and the Rose, was named to the WALL STREET JOURNAL’s list of THE BEST BOOKS OF 2020! This is quite the accomplishment and Coughlin & Gerhart, LLP is honored to count Tom as one of our litigation and trust and estates attorneys.

This third installment of his mystery series follows Officer Henry Farrell on another investigation in Wild Thyme, Pennsylvania, a fictional town just south of the Binghamton area. At first it looked like a bear attack–an open-and-shut case. Then Henry discovers that the victim was an out-of-town investigator, and the evidence points in troubling new directions. As the story unfolds, Farrell’s past collides with his present as an ex-flame reappears, and his own nephew disappears into the hills.

In 2015, Tom was awarded an Edgar Award for Best First Novel by An American Author and a Los Angeles Times Book Prize in the Mystery/Thriller Category for his first novel, Dry Bones in the Valley.

To see the recent list and learn more about Tom’s book, check out the link below:

Coughlin & Gerhart Attorneys Honored in Best Lawyers® List

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Coughlin & Gerhart, LLP is proud to announce that fourteen of its lawyers were recently selected by their peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America© 2021. The lawyers recognized are Mark S. Gorgos (Educational Law, Commercial Transactions/UCC Law, Municipal Law, Banking & Finance Law, Bankruptcy & Creditor Debtor Rights/Insolvency & Reorganization Law, and Business Organizations (including LLCs and Partnerships)), Paul J. Sweeney (Labor Law-Management and Litigation-Labor & Employment), Robert R. Jones (Litigation – Trusts & Estates), James P. O’Brien (Personal Injury Litigation-Defendants and Product Liability Litigation-Defendants), Robert J. Madigan (Real Estate Law), Rachel A. Abbott (Personal Injury Litigation-Plaintiffs), Beth E. Westfall (Trusts & Estates),Kristen K. Luce (Trusts & Estates), Joseph J. Steflik, Jr. (Labor Law-Management and Employment Law-Management), Gordon E. Thompson (Banking and Finance Law and Real Estate Law), Bruno Colapietro (Family Law), Richard B. Long (Arbitration and Personal Injury Litigation-Defendants), Mary Lou Conrow (Litigation-Labor and Employment), and Jeffrey A. Brown (Workers’ Compensation Law-Claimants).

Since its inception in 1983, Best Lawyers has become universally regarded as the definitive guide to legal excellence. Best Lawyers is based on an exhaustive peer-review survey in which almost 50,000 leading attorneys cast nearly 5 million votes on the legal abilities of other lawyers in their practice areas, and because lawyers are not required or allowed to pay a fee to be listed, 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.”