Vito Gagliardi
Vito Gagliardi (Carmen Natale)

Porzio, Bromberg & Newman has expanded its New Jersey footprint, opening an office in Ocean City to serve clients in the southern part of the state.

The firm has recently grown its client base in that region, managing principal Vito Gagliardi said, particularly when it hired partner William Hughes Jr. from Cooper Levenson in April. Hughes has already spent a lot of time in the Ocean City office, Gagliardi said, and will increasingly work out of that location.

Hughes’ practice focuses on white-collar defense and investigations. Other partners who will likely spend time in Ocean City are bankruptcy partner Warren Martin, who has clients in Atlantic City, and John Patrick Oroho, whose practice focuses on life sciences compliance and regulatory counseling. The firm also recently added a real estate and land use attorney who has matters as far south as Cherry Hill, Gagliardi said. Taking cases in that region without a nearby office forces the firm to rent out space for trial preparation, he said.

“It was clear that we’re doing more and more work in southern New Jersey,” Gagliardi said. “While it is technically an investment, it’s actually going to be cost-effective.”

Ocean City is the sixth location for the 81-lawyer firm, which has offices in Morristown; Princeton; New York; Washington, D.C.; and Westborough, Massachusetts. The new office is located at 15 East 8th St. in Ocean City. The move appears to make Porzio the largest law firm with an Ocean City office.

Gagliardi said he envisions the office growing, but that will depend on the amount of work it brings in. Porzio may eventually seek a larger space in Atlantic City, Gagliardi said, but the partnership saw Ocean City as “a good place to get started.”

Since launching as a litigation boutique in 1962, Porzio has “greatly diversified” in the last 15 years or so, Gagliardi said. Its geographic expansion has allowed the firm to better represent those practice areas in various regions, he said.

Porzio recently shook up its leadership structure, including the appointment of Gagliardi as managing principal. He took over for D. Jeffrey Campbell, who had held the position since 1997, and the firm created a management committee, to which Gagliardi can delegate day-to-day management responsibilities.