CEO Power Breakfast Discussion: Public-Private Partnership: How To Achieve Infrastructure Improvements
The event is sponsored by Bilzin Sumberg & Banco Sabadell.
Albert E. Dotson, Jr. Esq., Partner, Bilzin Sumberg
Albert E. Dotson, Jr., Bilzin Sumberg’s Land Development & Government Relations Practice Group Leader, handles federal and local government procurement contracts and compliance. He also represents real estate developers in securing land use, zoning, and other government approvals and permits for large-scale real estate developments. Al routinely negotiates economic development incentive programs on behalf of major U.S. corporate clients.
Al’s work includes representing developers in Public-Private Partnerships (P3) that have included the redevelopment of municipal property by a private developer with the infrastructure, other public improvements and tax abatement provided by the local governing body. Al’s work also includes representing developers and contractors in complying with the government procurement procedures of various agencies of the Federal government, State of Florida, Miami-Dade County and the cities of Miami, Coral Gables, and Miami Beach. This representation includes responding to procurement solicitations through defending against or prosecuting quasi-judicial bid protests. He represents commercial, industrial, residential and mixed-use developers throughout the land development process, including development permit challenges, zoning, concurrency, platting and permitting.
Since 2009, Al has been a member of the Florida Federal Judicial Nominating Commission for the Southern District, a panel charged with selecting finalists for presidential appointments to district judgeships, U.S. attorneys and U.S. marshals. He was reappointed in 2015 to a fourth, two-year term. In
2014, Al was appointed by President Barack Obama to the President’s Advisory Commission on Educational Excellence for African Americans, to advise the President and the Secretary of Education on ways to advance federal programs that improve educational opportunities for African Americans, increase participation of the African American community in federal agency programs and engage stakeholders in a national dialogue on the mission.
Al received his law degree from Vanderbilt University and earned his undergraduate degree from Dartmouth College. While at Vanderbilt, he was awarded the Bennett Douglas Bell Memorial Prize, an honor awarded to “the student of the senior law class who is not only well-versed in the law, but who shows the highest conception of the ethics of the profession.”
He has been consistently recognized by Chambers USA and The Best Lawyers in America for his work in land use and zoning law, and in 2017 was named “Attorney of the Year” by the Daily Business Review.
Eric Zichella, Principal, P3 Management
Eric Zichella is a skilled and experienced government and business strategist whose expertise resides at the intersection of infrastructure development, finance, government and politics. As a principal of P3 Management Mr. Zichella advises clients from a broad cross section of markets including finance, engineering and construction, technology providers, real estate development and property owners, and municipal services. While Mr. Zichella primarily services the private sector, he is a respected advisor to government officials on an array of issues, such as public private partnerships (P3) for infrastructure.
Prior to founding P3 Management, Mr. Zichella served as a Vice President for one of the world’s largest infrastructure development concessionaires and contractors, where he routinely initiated and managed public projects involving private financing in excess of one billion dollars. Mr. Zichella had key responsibilities in the growth of the firm, both organically and through mergers and acquisitions. He continues to nurture his widespread relationships throughout the engineering, construction, and investment banking industries.
Mr. Zichella also previously served as an executive of a public affairs consultancy that advised members of the U.S. Congress, the Florida Legislature, and various businesses on regulatory, political and fundraising matters. He represented multiple real estate development firms on major zoning and permitting issues before a variety of regulatory bodies.
Mr. Zichella is distinguished in the political world. He has organized fundraising events benefitting elected officials that featured the former President and Vice-President of the United States. He is active in supporting candidates for office in the municipalities he services.
Prior to his endeavors in the private sector, Mr. Zichella worked as a top staff person for a key legislator in the Florida House of Representatives, and a Speaker of the Florida House of Representatives where he directed fundraising and political initiatives in every corner of the state of Florida. Mr. Zichella got his start in government when he served as a staff assistant in the Office of General Counsel for Governor Jeb Bush.
Neal Sklar, Partner, Peckar & Abramson
Neal Sklar’s primary area of practice is focused on the representation of general contractors, construction managers and infrastructure contractors in a variety of construction related matters. These matters include providing counsel on state and federal government projects as well as Public Private Partnerships (P3s) involving transportation, commercial, heavy and social infrastructure, energy and multifamily residential projects. Mr. Sklar’s services include the preparation and negotiation of construction contracts as well as the negotiation, mediation, arbitration and litigation of construction contract disputes, construction lien claims, construction-defect claims, design-defect claims, bond claims, insurance claims and related matters.
A substantial portion of Mr. Sklar’s practice involves providing on-site counsel and day-to-day guidance to clients on small, midsize and some of the nation’s largest construction projects. Mr. Sklar’s practice is unique in that he employs alternative dispute resolution procedures whenever possible to solve problems and resolve disputes before crises occur. Through regularly scheduled meetings with project management staff, Mr. Sklar identifies potential pitfalls, helps maintain contractual compliance, assists in statutory/regulatory compliance issues, and recommends methods to solve problems and avoid risk. He advises clients in litigation and transaction matters providing sound business advice and legal strategies calculated to advance their goals in a tactical manner.
When litigation is required, Mr. Sklar vigorously represents his clients in assorted litigation proceedings. He has successfully handled a wide range of matters before state courts, federal courts, arbitration tribunals, mediation panels and administrative boards as well as in out-of-court negotiations and appellate arenas.
John Tercek, VP New Business Development, Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd.
Since 1999 John Tercek has created shoreside infrastructure projects and ventures to support Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd.’s strategic growth objectives, including the development of port and commercial facilities
John Tercek was a partner in a Wall Street real estate investment firm in the 1980s before becoming a principal in several property development firms in the 1990s. His professional career includes financing and developing over US$1.5 billion of retail, residential and commercial properties, co-generation power projects and port infrastructure projects in America, Europe and the Caribbean.
Tercek holds a degree in economics from the University of Pennsylvania, and a J.D. degree from Fordham University Law School. He is a licensed attorney in New York State.
Alicia Cuervo, EI, GA-C, Vice President, OHL USA
Prior to entering the public construction arena, Alicia’s administrative career was forged through her education as a Civil Engineer and experience of more than 20 years with Government as a Senior Administrator. She now holds the role as Vice President for OHL Arellano and OHL Building. Upon finishing her education, she was selected for the state training program with the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT D6) where she was trained to balance multi-modal transportation systems that included major capital project oversight. She later became City of Homestead Assistant City Manager where she oversaw the City’s capital program after hurricane Andrew and the Building and Public Works Departments. There, she aided with private and public partnerships in planning for future development, and to provide economic development. She also represented the City as the Executive Director of the Community Redevelopment Agency (CRA).
She later moved on to Miami-Dade County as the Assistant County Manager where she was responsible for the oversight and administration of the County’s Capital Improvement Program and the County’s Building and Building Code Compliance Departments. She finished her career in government as the Chief of Operations and Assistant City Manager at the City of Miami, where she again was responsible for managing the City’s Capital Improvement Plan, Building and Zoning, and Public Works Departments. In her role as Vice President, she has brought in over $400M worth of construction contracts, and been instrumental in the coordination of important project aspects relating to permitting and government approvals. She has worked on multiple successful P3 ventures throughout the state of Florida and has taken a unique approach towards the success of public-private partnership.
Rafael Villergas,Director, Structured Finance Americas, Banco Sabadell
Rafael began his career at Caja Madrid Bank 12 years ago in the Acquisition Finance Team covering the European Market. 2 years later he joined the Project Finance group structuring energy and infra transactions in the Spanish and European Markets. In 2010 he was relocated into the US to lead the Energy Project Finance activities for Caja Madrid in the US. Later, in 2013 he joined Banco Sabadell in Miami responsible for the LATAM Project Finance Team structuring energy and infrastructure deals in Chile, Peru, Colombia and other countries in Central America. He currently leads the Structured Finance Team for Banco Sabadell in Americas.
Rafael holds two Degrees, in Economics and Law, by Universidad Complutense de Madrid and an Executive Program by Instituto de Empresa (IE Business School)