Christie Chief Counsel Goes to Private Practice; Joined by 6 from McElroy

Christie Chief Counsel Goes to Private Practice; Joined by 6 from McElroy

Thomas Scrivo, chief counsel to Republican New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, announced Thursday that he is leaving the administration to rejoin private practice.

Scrivo will join the law firm headed by Republican state Sen. Kevin O’Toole, of O’Toole Fernandez Weiner Van Lieu in Cedar Grove to form what will be known professionally as O’Toole Scrivo.

Scrivo has been chief counsel to Christie since 2014. Before joining the governor’s office, Scrivo was the managing partner at the Newark office of Morristown’s McElroy, Deutsch, Mulvaney & Carpenter and was co-chairman of the firm’s commercial litigation practice group.

At the same time, six lawyers from McElroy, Deutsch – five partners and one of counsel – will be leaving that firm to join O’Toole Scrivo, which currently has 29 lawyers in total.

 The partners leaving McElroy, Deutsch to join O’Toole Scrivo are Craig Compoli Jr., Robert Gifford, Joseph McGlone, Robert Scrivo and Joshua Zielinski. Also joining O’Toole Scrivo will be Alexandra Gallo, who is of counsel to McElroy, Deutsch.

Compoli focuses his practice on general defense, commercial litigation, premises liability, products liability, labor and employment, higher education and contract disputes.

Gifford’s practice focuses on negligence, premises and products liability, insurance services, contract disputes, insurance fraud and the New Jersey Tort Claims Act.

McGlone is an appellate practitioner who also focuses on insurance defense, personal defense and premises liability defense.

Robert Scrivo, who is Thomas Scrivo’s brother, practices in criminal and municipal defense law, domestic violence law, complex commercial litigation, insurance defense, premises liability, civil rights litigation and expungements. He also handles cases involving the False Claims Act and the New Jersey Tort Claims Act.

In his criminal practice, Scrivo represents defendants charged with a wide variety of crimes including health care fraud, vehicular homicide, aggravated assault, aggravated sexual assault, criminal sexual contact, child pornography and endangerment, as well as theft and related offenses.

Zielinski focuses his practice on corporate law, financial institutions and real estate.

Gallo is an appellate practitioner who works in banking and financial services.

Edward Deutsch, managing partner at McElroy, Deutsch, wished the attorneys well.

“They’re all good people,” Deutsch said. “We certainly understand someone making a move that they believe is going to be positive for their career.”

Christie last month appointed O’Toole, who could not be reached for comment, to serve as a commissioner on the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey. In January, O’Toole announced that he would not run for another term as senator from Essex County. He has been in the Senate since 2008 and previously served in the state Assembly.

O’Toole focuses his practice on toxic torts, environmental law, risk management, class actions, complex litigation and corporate investigations.

Also joining the new firm will be Christie’s senior counselor, James DiGiulio, the governor’s office said.

Effective dates for all of the moves were not immediately available.

Replacing Scrivo as chief counsel in Christie’s office will be Gregory Acquaviva, the vice president of state government affairs at United Health Group and former chief of staff to Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno. Acquaviva also previously served as assistant counsel to Christie.

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