Leni Morrison Cummins ’08 and Konstantine Tettonis 1L Evening are two of the state’s “rising stars” in city politics, according to City & State New York.
The magazine’s prestigious 2020 list spotlights “unsung heroes who are influencing policies on a number of fronts, whether it’s the coronavirus pandemic, the recession, police brutality, or climate change.”
Cummins, a Member at Cozen O’Connor, focused her NYLS studies on real estate law and graduated cum laude.
“Real estate is personal, real estate is tangible,” she told City & State. “There’s something about driving down Park Avenue and being able to see what you’ve worked on.”
After interning at Adam Leitman Bailey PC as an NYLS student, she joined the firm, made partner, and chaired its condominium and cooperative owner groups. She then took her practice to Cozen O’Connor, where she advises clients on plans for new construction and condominium conversions and negotiates issues related to construction, development, and statutory compliance. Skilled at settling contentious disputes, she has never taken a matter to trial.
During the pandemic, Cummins has provided key insights to her clients amid rapidly shifting state and local regulations. She also writes regularly for the “Q & A” column of The New York Times Real Estate Section and other legal and real estate publications.
Tettonis is a Senior Policy Analyst in New York University’s Office of Government Affairs by day. At night, the Brooklyn native is a member of NYLS’s 125-year-old Evening Division.
His experience before joining NYLS includes handling a wide range of policy and legislative matters during a fellowship with the New York City Fire Department.
He told City & State that working in local government taught him to “become a problem-solver” and illuminated the many ways in which budget informs governmental decision-making.
Before enrolling at NYLS, Tettonis also earned a master’s degree in public administration at NYU, where he sought to deepen his knowledge of funding and budget issues.
His graduate and legal education inform his daily work liaising between NYU and local government officials on funding, advocacy, and other critical matters.