American College of Commercial Finance Lawyers

The American College of Commercial Finance Lawyers is a professional organization dedicated to promoting the field of commercial finance law through education, legislative reform and the recognition of distinguished practitioners, jurists and academics. The College’s mission is to bring together into an association those highly qualified members of the legal profession who, by reason of their character, skill and ability, will contribute to the goals, accomplishments and good fellowship of the College.  Additional information about the College is available at https://www.accfl.com. The College offers a venue to promote and recognize outstanding achievement and advances in the field of commercial finance law.

Upcoming Events
             The College’s 2020 Annual Meeting & Dinner has been CANCELLED.
         Fellows, see your email from the College, dated 3/10/2020, for more details. 

Each year College Fellows gather for their Annual Meeting & Dinner where they are updated on the business of the College.  This year, the event was to be in Boston, MA.  The College's Annual Meeting & Dinner is held following the ABA's Business Law Section Spring Meeting.  This ABA meeting has been cancelled due to the contagiousness of the coronavirus, Covid-19.  Additionally, many Fellows have been informed by their law firm, financial or education institution, or other entity, that new policies have been put in place that restrict all unnecessary travel.  Importantly, the CDC has recommended that large gatherings be rescheduled or cancelled.  Therefore, the College has determined that it will follow the lead of these institutions, and not put our Fellows at further risk by meeting together in-person on March 28th.  Each of us, and our families, friends, and colleagues will be at enough risk in our daily lives.

Note, however, that new Fellows have been admitted, and all Fellows have been sent an email with information about this new class of Fellows, and they will be posted here in the near future.  The 2024 Class of members of the Board of Regents, and the new Executive Committee, will be introduced in future emails to the College Fellows, and will soon be posted on the website.  

Fellow Professor Stephen L. Sepinuck has been awarded the College's Grant Gilmore Award for his article The Various Standards for the “Good Faith” of a Purchaser, 73 ABA Bus. Lawyer No. 3, 581-626 (Spring 2018).  At this time, we hope to honor Steve at the Fall Dinner, in Chicago, on September 12, 2020.

Further information will be shared with Fellows in the future.  Please watch your email, and this space, for updates!

More information about past Annual Meetings & Dinners can be found on the Past College Events page.  Fellows will be sent updates on this year's event and registration information by email.  

Click here to access information about the College’s Fellows Briefings. 

2020 Fellowship Dues

Notices for the College's 2020 dues have been sent to Fellows in good standing.  These dues support the ACCFL services and activities during the upcoming calendar year.  If you are a current Fellow and do not have Emeritus, Judicial, or Academic status and did not yet pay your 2020 dues, or have outstanding dues from 2019 but wish to be considered an active Fellow of the College, please contact our administrative office at [email protected] and we will be happy to assist you.  

ACCFL Fellows' Recent Outstanding Achievements and College News

For more detailed information click here to go to Fellows in the News, College Activities, and the Briefing Calls for Fellows. . 

The College's best wishes go out to our Past President, Fellow Kenneth (Kenny) Greene (Carruthers & Roth) who was recently honored as the recipient of the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Bankruptcy Section of the North Carolina Bar Association (NCBA).  The Lifetime Achievement Award recognizes a bankruptcy practitioner who, for not less than 25 years, has contributed to the betterment of the NCBA Bankruptcy Section and the profession, and who has set an aspiring example for those who follow. Greene is the ninth recipient of the award and it was presented at the 42nd Annual Bankruptcy Institute on November 22, 2019 in Wilmington, NC. For more information about Kenny, see Fellows in the News

It is with great pleasure that the College announces that Fellow Kenneth Chin has been selected as the recipient of NYSBA’s 2020 John E. Higgins Diversity Trailblazer Award.  Kenneth was approved by distinguished nominees from both the Committee on Diversity & Inclusion and the Committee’s Trailblazer Award Nomination Review Subcommittee.

The personalized award will be presented prior to the Association’s “Opening Night Reception Celebrating Diversity”, on Monday, January 27, 2020, during the NYSBA Annual Meeting. The venue will be the New York Hilton Midtown and the ceremony itself will start at 6:00 p.m.  We hope you will be able to attend and support Ken. 

On November 15, 2019, the College Co-sponsored two programs at the ABA BLS Commercial Finance Committee’s CLE Fall Forum.  The Forum was held in connection with the Secured Financing Network’s (formerly, the Commercial Finance Association) 75th Annual Convention. The College excellent programs were on the new provisions in loan documentation called “Are your Loan Documents up to Date?—Divisions, Registered and Protected Series and the Like”  (Presenters: Fellows, Norm Powell, Greg Fox and Jane Summers) and about ethics and professionalism, which was entitled “Ethics and Professionalism in the Transactional Context: Ruminations Part 9.5” (Presenter Fellow Marshall Grodner). 

The College congratulates our ACCFL President Norman M. Powell, who has been appointed to a two-year term on the Board of Directors of the Working Group on Legal Opinions Foundation.  Norm is a partner in the Delaware law firm of Young Conaway Stargatt & Taylor, LLP, and has been a College Fellow since 2006. 

WGLO's mission is to bring together all constituencies concerned with giving and receiving legal opinions in order to foster a national opinion perspective, broaden the consensus that exists, and provide a continuing forum for discussion of opinion issues. Twice each year WGLO brings together the heads of Law Firm Opinion Committees, representatives of Bar Associations and other attorney groups as well as representatives of opinion recipients and issuers to discuss current issues confronting the legal opinion bar.

Congratulations also goes to our ACCFL Vice President, R. Marshall Grodner for his recent election as the Chair of the American Bar Association (ABA) Business Law Section’s Commercial Finance Committee, one of the section’s largest committees. Marshall is a partner in McGlinchey Stafford PLLC in Baton Rouge, LA.  He was inducted as an ACCFL Fellow in 2006. 

The ABA BLS Commercial Finance Committee provides cutting‐edge, practical knowledge and guidance for commercial finance, real estate finance, and restructuring lawyers, focusing on new developments and industry practices in commercial finance, real estate finance, and restructurings, and facilitating the development and evolution of commercial finance, real estate finance and restructuring laws. 

The College proudly announces the honor bestowed on our Past President Sylvia Fung Chin (2017-2018), and her firm White and Case, at the 40th Anniversary celebration of the Women's World Banking, for "their tremendous support of Women's World Banking and leadership in women's financial inclusion."  Women's World Banking is an organization that designs and invests in the financial solutions, institutions, and policy environments in emerging markets to create greater economic stability and prosperity for women, their families and their communities.  Sylvia was honored for her nearly 40 years of service to Women’s World Banking, offering the organization pro bono legal and governance advice. She also served on the board of Women's World Banking as Board Secretary from 1990 to 2008.

The College also congratulates Fellow Doneene K. Damon, who was elected as Richards Layton & Finger, PA's first female President!   A recent article in Law360 notes that as an African-American woman, Doneene “concedes it has been a ‘struggle’ closing the racial and gender gaps….”  Clearly, her perseverance, knowledge, and commitment to her craft have been recognized, and stand as an example to many young female lawyers. 

An ACCFL fellow since 2012, Doneene has been busy practicing law as a partner in her firm, while holding a variety of leadership roles in the American Bar Association, the Delaware State Bar Association, and other professional groups.   At the same time, she has been breaking barriers, winning awards, and demonstrating that “diversity of thought” is important to the fabric of the legal community. 

The College sponsored a report entitled “Uniform Commercial Code Opinions in Real Estate Finance Transactions” that has been published in the Real Property, Probate and Trust Journal. Our Fellows, Steve Weise and Marshall Grodner, were Contributing Reporters. The Report can be downloaded by clicking here.

History of the College

The American College of Commercial Finance Lawyers was founded a quarter century ago, through the foresight, insight and perseverance of our co-founders Maury Poscover, David Willenzik and Earnest Bland Williams III.  Over the succeeding years, this College has inducted nearly 300 preeminent practitioners and scholars as Fellows and has firmly established itself not only as a prominent honorary society of remarkable collegiality, but importantly also as a learned, active and influential participant in the field of commercial finance law.  And now, through the labors and invaluable recollections of many, the history of the College has now been written and is available for your enjoyment.  Please click here to read the History of the American College of Commercial Finance Lawyers online or to download a copy.  

2019 Fall Dinner & Advanced Seminar
September 14 and 15 
Washington, D.C. 

The College's 2019 Fall Dinner was held on Saturday, September 14 at the University Club of Washington D.C., following the ABA Business Law Section Annual Meeting.  The Fellowship and their guests took advantage of the Club’s ambiance and renowned culinary fare with a well-deserved "time out", and filled the evening with camaraderie and relaxed interaction, after a week of business and learning at the ABA meetings.  The dinner was very well attended, and registrations for the Advanced Seminar a comment on the topic, the times, and the presenters!

This year’s Fall Advanced Seminar, Distributed Ledger Technology and the UCC, features Professor and Fellow Charles W. “Chuck” Mooney, Jr., University of Pennsylvania Law School, and Professor Carla L. Reyes, Michigan State University College of Law.  The topic is particularly timely as the American Law Institute and the Uniform Law Commission launch their Joint Study Committee on the UCC and Emerging Technology.  Through the kindness of Fellow Scott A. Lessne, Sunday morning, September 15, Fellows gathered at at the Washington, DC offices of Crowell & Moring LLP, 1001 Pennsylvania Avenue NW (at Tenth Street; about 10 blocks from ABA BLS meeting hotels) for the three-hour seminar. 

The College gratefully acknowledges     for its significant support of all of College's mission and programs throughout the year!  College appreciation also extends to the other sponsors of the College, and this event in particular: Borden Ladner Gervais LLP,  Fellow Buzz Guida (of Duffy Sweeney)CSC Global, Fennemore Craig, P.C.Sidley Austin LLPWhite & Case LLP, and Young Conaway Stargatt & Taylor, LLP .  Logos and links for various sponsorship level recognition can be found on the "College Activities & Events" page of the website by clicking here. 

If you, your firm, company or organization is interested in learning more about sponsorship opportunities, please click here to review and/or download the 2019-2020 Sponsorship Program Prospectus.  You may also contact the administrative office at [email protected] if you have any questions or comments. 


 

2020 Annual Meeting & Dinner
March 28, 2020 
Boston, Massachusetts

THIS EVENT HAS BEEN CANCELLED.

The College is pleased to announce its 2020 Annual Meeting & Dinner will be held on Saturday, March 28, 2020 at the Harvard Club in Boston on Commonwealth Ave.  It will be held following the ABA Business Law Section Spring Meeting, and the Club is a short distance from the ABA host hotel.  The Club goes back more than a century. Learn about the Club’s deep-rooted history in Boston, from its founding in 1908 to its transformation into the thriving community it is today by clicking here.  Registration information will be sent directly to ACCFL Fellows!

 

The College gratefully acknowledges       and for their significant support of the College's mission and programs throughout the year, along with other sponsors who have already pledged support for the 2020 Annual Meeting & Dinner:  Patrick (Buzz) Guida (of Duffy & Sweeney), Cassels Brock & Blackwell LLPFennemore Craig, Lane Powell, and Young Conaway Stargatt & Taylor, LLP.

If you, your firm, company or organization is interested in learning more about sponsorship opportunities, please click here to review and/or download the 2019-2020 Sponsorship Program Prospectus.  You may also contact the administrative office at [email protected], if you have any questions or comments.