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ST&R Welcomes Former Rode & Qualey Customs Attorneys

Wednesday, January 07, 2015

Four experienced international trade attorneys from customs law firm Rode & Qualey have joined Sandler, Travis & Rosenberg, P.A.’s New York office. The attorneys—Michael S. O’Rourke, William Maloney, R. Brian Burke and Patrick Gill—will continue to provide import, export and international trade litigation services to clients in the footwear, apparel, medical devices, food, electronics, retail and other industries. O’Rourke, Maloney and Burke joined ST&R as Members of the firm, while Gill joined as Of Counsel.

O’Rourke, a retired USMC Captain, is a former trial attorney in the office of the Assistant Attorney General of the United States, Department of Justice, Customs Section. A past president of the Customs and International Trade Bar Association (CITBA), he is an active member of the customs and trade community. He represents a diverse group of clients on all aspects of customs and international trade law, appearing regularly before U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), the Departments of Treasury and Commerce, the Consumer Product Safety Commission, and the Food and Drug Administration. An active trial attorney, O’Rourke represents clients in the U.S. Court of International Trade (CIT) and the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (CAFC).

Maloney began his career in the customs field as an import specialist with the U.S. Customs Service in Boston, where he served as district textile fraud coordinator and as a member of the Northeast Region Intelligence Unit. He has extensive experience advising clients on all aspects of customs and trade law, including tariff classification, valuation, penalties, U.S. Customs audits, country of origin criteria, and labeling and invoice requirements. An experienced litigator, Maloney has represented clients in matters connected with antidumping and countervailing duty laws, patent and trademark actions and textile labeling, among others.

Burke, formerly an attorney in the Office of Regulations and Rulings at CBP, focuses his practice on import and export trade law, trade regulations and customs law. Drawing from his expertise in tariff classification, valuation, county of origin marking and utilization of preference programs, to name a few, he regularly represents clients before CBP as well as other government agencies with responsibilities over import and export transactions. He also regularly assists companies in developing internal compliance programs.

A seasoned litigator, Gill represents clients before the courts and administrative agencies in matters pertaining to customs and international trade. A former trial attorney in the office of the Assistant Attorney General of the United States, Department of Justice, Customs Section, Gill is a two-term past president of CITBA and has served as a member of the Special Advisory Committee on Rules and Practice of the U.S. CIT, as well as other committees of that court and the CAFC. He is a frequent lecturer before various industry trade groups and professional associations.

“Mike O’Rourke, Bill Maloney, Brian Burke and Pat Gill represent some of the most seasoned and established attorneys in customs and trade,” ST&R founding Member Lee Sandler said. “We are pleased to welcome them to Sandler, Travis & Rosenberg and to play a part in preserving their former firm’s rich legacy.”

That legacy dates back more than 125 years. Rode & Qualey’s now-retired senior partner John D. Rode is a third generation customs attorney. His grandfather Henry J. Rode joined the New York-based customs law firm Comstock & Brown in the 1890s, establishing a family profession that would be passed down from father to son for three generations. Comstock & Brown changed ownerships and names over the years, becoming known as Puckhafer, Rode & Rode and, eventually, as Rode & Qualey.

“My colleagues and I are looking forward to a long and fruitful association with Sandler, Travis & Rosenberg,” O’Rourke said. “Leaving a firm with such a rich history is bittersweet, but the transition is easy because we are joining a firm that shares our values and enjoys a top reputation in our field,” he adds. “We know that at ST&R we will continue to offer our clients small-firm personal attention while enjoying the resources that come from ST&R’s global presence.”

Founded in 1977, Sandler, Travis & Rosenberg, P.A. and its affiliated Global Trade Compliance Management firm STTAS comprise the largest customs and international trade services provider in the world. The firms operate offices throughout North America, South America, Asia and Europe. Their cadre of more than 750 international trade attorneys and analysts assist companies of all sizes and in all industries with the importation and exportation of merchandise into and out of more than 70 countries.

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