Since founding Matsikoudis & Fanciullo, Bill Matsikoudis has successfully represented non-profits and a major city in compelling corporate polluters to remediate several former industrial sites; victims of sexual harassment and assault in the workplace; and individuals who have suffered serious harm from corporate indifference in personal injury actions. Mr. Matsikoudis also provides counsel to a variety of publicly-minded corporations. Leveraging his experience and relationships from a dozen years in government, Mr. Matsikoudis represents developers in urban areas: He successfully obtained approvals for a recycling facility and is representing an industrial developer that is remediating a Superfund site and creating hundreds of blue-collar jobs. Mr. Matsikoudis also litigates on behalf of corporations in the state and federal courts of New York and New Jersey.
Mr. Matsikoudis has dedicated 12 years of his professional life to public service, including nearly nine as the chief attorney for Jersey City, New Jersey. He was appointed Corporation Counsel and Director of the Law Department for Jersey City by Mayor Jerramiah T. Healy, and was confirmed by the City Council on November 23, 2004. During Mr. Matsikoudis’ tenure as Corporation Counsel, Jersey City compelled several corporations responsible for contaminating former industrial sites to remediate those sites, so that they could be used for productive purposes. This legacy of success has made Mr. Matsikoudis a de facto expert: He has frequently lectured on using affirmative litigation to clean up brownfields and on strategies to spur urban redevelopment.
Mr. Matsikoudis also led a Task Force that developed a comprehensive strategy for green initiatives, including environmental ordinances that require Jersey City to utilize sustainable procurement practices and green construction standards. Mr. Matsikoudis spearheaded a legal effort to stop a plan to cordon off a 32-acre superfund site on the Hackensack River behind barbed wire and away from the public: Ultimately, this led to a revised remediation plan for the property, whereby Jersey City acquired the site with more than $6 million in grants and converted it into natural waterfront park.
Prior to being appointed Corporation Counsel, Mr. Matsikoudis worked in various capacities in New Jersey State government. As a Senior Deputy Attorney General, he served as the special assistant to the Director of the Division of Law, which is responsible for all civil litigation to which the State is a party, the provision of legal advice to the Executive Branch and all State contractual transactions. Mr. Matsikoudis also worked in the Office of Governor James E. McGreevey as an Assistant Counsel, where he advised the Governor on legal and policy issues concerning pending legislation in the areas of labor and commerce, including offering recommendations to sign or veto bills. Mr. Matsikoudis prepared gubernatorial appointees for appearances before the Senate Judiciary Committee and assisted in the selection, screening and interviewing of judicial nominees and prosecutors.
Admitted to the New Jersey Bar in 1997 and the New York Bar in 1999, Mr. Matsikoudis worked a litigator at the law firm of Wilentz, Goldman and Spitzer before entering into public service. Before joining the Wilentz firm, he served as a law clerk to the Honorable Edward W. Beglin, A.J.S.C., the chief judge for Union County. Active in Democratic politics throughout his career, Mr. Matsikoudis has been named in the top 100 most powerful political figures in New Jersey on a number of occasions, he was a delegate for Barack Obama at the Democratic National Convention, he was a senior advisor to the mayoral campaigns of Jersey City Mayor Jerramiah Healy, and he ran for mayor of Jersey City in 2017.
Mr. Matsikoudis was born in Jersey City, where he presently resides. Mr. Matsikoudis received his B.A. cum laude from Seton Hall University in 1993 and his J.D. cum laude from Seton Hall Law School in 1997. His publications include “Tort Reform New Jersey Style: An Analysis of the New Laws and How They Became Law”, in the Seton Hall Legislative Journal, “New Jersey’s Redevelopment Law Process: Issues for Legal Consideration” in New Jersey Lawyer Magazine and “Using Municipal Affirmative Litigation to Turn Brownfields Green (In More Ways Than One) “in the Municipal Lawyer Magazine.
Whether it’s representing cities against corporate polluters, fighting for victims of sexual assault and harassment against their attackers and employers, or defending small- and mid-sized businesses against frivolous claims made by competitors, Derek Fanciullo is after one thing: Justice. A founding partner of Matsikoudis & Fanciullo, LLC, Mr. Fanciullo has helped his clients compel multiple large corporations to clean up lands they had contaminated and abandoned; force employers who enabled sexual assault and harassment to literally pay for their wrongs; and secure damages awards for severe personal injuries they have suffered as a consequence of corporate indifference.
Mr. Fanciullo has also crafted complex agreements for commercial clients: For example, he authored an intricate Purchase & Sale Agreement for an industrial developer attempting to acquire real property in a Superfund Site, and developed and implemented an alternative executive compensation program for a business seeking to reacquire common stock from its directors.
Mr. Fanciullo began his legal career as an Assistant Corporation Counsel for the City of Jersey City. Among his accomplishments as a government attorney, Mr. Fanciullo formulated and executed novel legal strategies in spearheading Jersey City’s fight against a dangerous natural gas pipeline, and compelled the federal the Pipeline Hazardous Materials and Safety Administration (PHMSA) to open its regulatory scheme to amendments to make pipelines safer.
For more than a dozen years prior to becoming an attorney, Mr. Fanciullo earned multiple Emmy® Award nominations as a television news reporter. Among his achievements as a broadcast journalist, Mr. Fanciullo raised awareness of the severe health risks jockeys must take to make weight before horse races, triggered changes in Kentucky state election law with an investigative series on voter fraud, and held a powerful insurance company attempting to evade payment accountable to the poor single father of a 10-year-old comatose boy. He and his work have appeared on CNN, Fox News Channel and the NBC family of networks. Beyond his Emmy® recognition, Mr. Fanciullo garnered roughly two dozen Associated Press and Society of Professional Journalists Awards for excellence in his craft.
Mr. Fanciullo is a graduate of the New York University School of Law and Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism.