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Dean M. Roberts Elected as Chair of Charitable Innovation Fund for Cooperatives

Posted on April 4th, 2011

New York, NY (April 5, 2011) – Dean M. Roberts, a Member of Norris McLaughlin, P.A., has been elected as Chair of the Cooperative Innovation Fund, part of family of funds of the Cooperative Development Foundation (“CDF”), which provides grants to community developers to improve communities through innovative cooperative enterprise.

“The funds distributed by the CDF help to maintain the growth of our local communities. I am honored to serve as the Chair and hope to guide the Fund to continue its positive impact on New York and surrounding areas,” stated Roberts.

A resident of Maplewood, New Jersey, Roberts practices in condominium and co-op law, real estate and land use matters, and commercial litigation. He is based in the firm’s New York City office. Roberts’ area of focus is real estate litigation with a sub-specialty in the representation of cooperative housing corporations and condominiums. At the time his prior firm merged with Norris McLaughlin, P.A., he was the managing director and had been working in the condo/co-op area for more than 18 years.

Roberts has handled all facets of condominium and cooperative ownership from sponsor/purchase and conversion to representing well-established tenant-shareholder Boards of Directors. A substantial portion of his practice consists of representing cooperative corporations and moderate income co-ops in all areas of litigation, including landlord-tenant litigation.

Outside of the office, Roberts is active in court reform efforts and the cooperative movement through his involvement with the Coordinating Council of Cooperatives (CCC). He has also led special focus seminars on legislation effecting co-ops on behalf of the CCC. He is a member of the National Cooperative Business Association and the author of “Limited Garage Spaces, Very Attractive Rates,” which was published in the New York Times.

Roberts earned his J.D. from Rutgers School of Law – Newark in 1987 and his B.A. from Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, Rutgers College, in 1982.

By way of merger with Szold & Brandwen, P.C., Norris McLaughlin, P.A. has a long and illustrious history working with housing corporations. Members of the Norris McLaughlin, P.A. Cooperative and Condominium Law Group worked with the establishment of middle income and Mitchell Lama government-assisted cooperative housing. They also helped to develop New York’s legislation for cooperatives constructed with government assistance for persons of moderate income. The Group has represented one of the major developers of this type of housing, dealing with all relevant government agencies in the planning stage, with contractors in the construction stage, and drafting documentation governing the relationships between the cooperatives and shareholders.

Today, Norris McLaughlin, P.A. represents cooperative and affordable housing corporations as both general and special counsel, as well as luxury cooperatives and condominiums, dealing with the Boards of Directors, officers, and managers. The firm brings to its cooperative & condominium practice expertise in real estate, financing, corporate, general commercial, trusts and estates, and employment law drawn from the other practices of the firm.

The mission of the Cooperative Development Foundation, a 501 (c) 3 charitable family of funds, is to promote community, economic, and social development through cooperative enterprises. The Cooperative Development Foundation was created in 1944 in the wake of World War II and helped in the reconstruction and development of overseas cooperatives in Europe in the post-war era. In the 1980s, the focus of the organization turned to domestic cooperative development. The CDF provides ongoing support for a wide range of cooperative development activities. While CDF engages in educational programming and public outreach activities, a substantial amount of its work involves management of grant and revolving loan funds. The Cooperative Innovation Fund provides grants to community developers to encourage innovative cooperative development..

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