Michael is a seasoned attorney and deal maker who advises Portale Randazzo's Real Estate, Finance, Securities, and Corporate practice areas.
As a former in-house counsel at Wall St. investment banks, Michael has experience providing counsel across a wide range of practice areas ranging from regulatory investigations to contract review and negotiation
Prior to joining Portale Randazzo, Michael was the Head of Legal and Portfolio Management at EasyKnock, a Series B real estate prop-tech company led By Blumberg Capital and QED Investors, where he pioneered nationwide real estate sale-leaseback structures, oversaw a $250 million+ property portfolio and advised on legal matters related to the company and multistate real estate matters.
Michael has served in legal and/or compliance functions in various capacities including Assistant General Counsel on Wall St. at powerhouses such as Cantor Fitzgerald, Deutsche Bank, and Bank of America, where he advised origination, lending, and trading business lines and successfully represented these banks in various regulatory and enforcement investigations.
Michael also currently serves as the Managing Principal at Cross Mountain Capital, a vertically integrated real estate sponsor, investor, and manager.
- Acted as General Counsel to a fintech startup across all business lines and handled day-to-day legal issues across a wide range of practice areas including: information security and privacy, vendor agreements, real estate, finance, and corporate.
- Represented investment banks in litigation and regulatory investigations by FINRA, the SEC, and CFTC.
- Represented investment banks and broker-dealers throughout SEC and FINRA examinations.
- Handled and prepared substantial written responses to regulatory inquiries and examination reports and resolved cases through AWCs and reductions of fines, as well as resolution of matters to Cautionary Actions
- Oversaw the legal and compliance function at a venture capital-backed real estate technology startup, providing the first nationwide residential sale-leaseback product, and successfully helped achieve a $25 million Series B capital raise from institutional investors. Advised on legal matters across every business function including but not limited to the following areas of law: real estate, corporate, capital raising, litigation, commercial agreements, and joint ventures.
- Developed novel structures for residential sale-leaseback transactions and developed custom real estate leases, purchase and sale agreements, and real estate option agreements to establish a multistate transaction document library enabling the company to transact nationwide
- Negotiated credit facilities, including structured credit facilities and forward flow agreements totaling over $500 million in lender commitments.
- Drafted and reviewed contracts including but not limited to vendors, advertising, electronic services, referrals, and marketing
- Provided primary real-time compliance advisory for origination, trading, and lending businesses including: ABS Banking (CLOs, warehouse lending, and securitizations), Distressed, Credit and Rates Trading (including credit and rates-based swaps), and Credit Solutions (special situations financing). Provided secondary compliance coverage for the Commercial Real Estate platform (balance sheet and conduit lending). Scope of regulatory coverage includes the '33 and '34 Act, Investment Advisers Act, Dodd-Frank, SEC, CFTC, SRO rules (FINRA, NFA, CME), as well as Federal Reserve and Fair Lending regulations.
- Reviewed and performed due diligence on compliance programs of investment funds.
- Served as subject matter expert in coordinating written responses to regulatory inquiries, exams, and audits.
- Advised on and drafted all offering documents in connection with private placements for real estate sponsors.
- Oversaw an Investment Bank's broker-dealer related regulatory matters across multiple lines of business including but not limited to Equities and Fixed Income Sales and Trading, Investment Banking, and Research.
Education & Personal Life
Michael holds a B.A. from Sarah Lawrence College and a J.D. from Brooklyn Law School, where he was a Carswell Scholar. Michael had held Series 7, 24, and 57 licenses while in the securities industry. Michael is also a licensed NYS real estate broker.
When he isn't working, Michael is spending time with his family or pursuing one of his many hobbies related to the outdoors, including but not limited to skiing, trail running, mountaineering, obstacle course races, and continuing his training in disciplines such as Krav Maga, Tae-Kown Do, and the Wim Hof Method. Michael is an avid supporter of environmental causes and a member of POW (Protect Our Winters). Michael is an avid reader and his favorite books are War and Peace, Crime and Punishment, the Glass Bead Game, and the Art of War.