Condo Media - March 2012 - (Page 26)

VOLUNTEER SPOTLIGHT He Still Gets a Charge from Litigation And a Boost from CAI Volunteer Work om Moriarty is argumentative. “You’re dealing with land and buildThis is not a criticism, but a job ings and what happens, or doesn’t description. A partner happen, to them, and I find in Marcus, Errico, that very satisfying.” Emmer & Brooks (MEEB), His first exposure to condoMoriarty is a litigator — a minium law came early in his career choice that, he career, doing condominium admits, may have been collections work for the firm genetically determined. he joined after graduating Political debates were stanfrom law school. After a brief dard at the dinner table stint with this firm, he moved Thomas O. Moriarty when he was growing up, to MEEB, where condominiMoriarty recalls, “so arguing um law became a focus of a is in my blood.” practice that includes real property, land Like many litigators, Moriarty says, he use and development. was drawn to the area, at least in part On the Cutting Edge because, “I misunderstood completely He has worked on “cutting edge” what it involved. You think about the issues in the field, both through his time in the spotlight, arguing cases in practice and through his involvement court,” he says. “But you actually with CAI nationally and locally. spend only about two percent of your Active participation in the institute is time in the spotlight.” The other 98 expected and encouraged by the firm, percent consists of the decidedly Moriarty says. “That was made clear to unglamorous behind-the-scenes prepame from the beginning. It’s a way for ration required for any trial. us to contribute to the industry, but “It’s like climbing Mt. Everest,” he it’s also a way for us to stay informed says. Most of the climb is grueling and painful, leading to “the 20 seconds you about the industry. You get back at least as much, if not more, than you stand up on top changing your oxygen give,” he has found. bottle.” But he’s been a litigator for CAI is “a focal point” for many connearly two decades now, he notes, “So dominium-related specialties, he adds, I must be getting some kind of drawing professionals involved in condemented value out of the process. It’s struction, insurance, finance and a little like running a marathon,” he accounting, among other areas. “They suggests. “It’s not the feeling you have all come through CAI,” Moriarty notes. during the race [that makes you want “If you want to serve this industry, you to run]; it’s the feeling you have when have to be involved in the institute.” you’ve finished the course.” Given his litigation practice and his Moriarty knew in law school that he interest in politics, serving on the wanted to be a trial attorney. He also Massachusetts Legislative Action gravitated early toward real property law, because he found “something tan- Committee (MALAC) “seemed a natural way” for him to become involved gible” about it. “You’re not dealing with ephemeral concepts,” he explains. in CAI-NE. He served on the MALAC for several years and then chaired it for five, relinquishing the post last year. He says he is happy to “just to be a committee member” once again. T MALAC Achievements Among the issues the committee tackled during his tenure as chairman, Moriarty cites two as particularly significant: • The Legislature’s approval of a measure making it easier for community associations to renew expired development rights. “This dealt with a lot of the carnage from the last crash,” Moriarty says. “It allowed condominiums to get back on a solid footing.” • The MALAC’s successful (thus far) opposition to a measure requiring community associations to arbitrate construction defect claims before filing suit against the contractor. About that measure, Moriarty says, “Associations might as well put up a banner telling the builder, ‘please go ahead and make yourself judgment proof before we go to court.’” At the national level, Moriarty has served for more than 10 years on CAI’s National Amicus Team, working on national and state issues that may have broader implications for the condominium industry. His contributions were recognized recently by his election to CAI’s prestigious College of Community Association Lawyers — “a great honor,” Moriarty says, “and much appreciated.” “The Right Thing to Do” He describes his work on national CAI issues like his involvement in CAI-NE, 26 CONDO MEDIA • MARCH 2012

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Condo Media - March 2012

Condo Media - March 2012
From the CED’s Desk
Editorial Board
CAI News
CAI Regional News
Asked & Answered
Homeowner’s Corner
Volunteer Spotlight
Vendor Spotlight
Self-Managed Association Boards
2012 CAI-NE Spring/Summer Service Directory
Advertisers Index
Classified Service Directory

Condo Media - March 2012