Philip Gitlen -

Attorney Biography

Philip H. Gitlen

Senior Counsel
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Attorney Biography

Philip H. Gitlen

Senior Counsel

Philip Gitlen has been practicing environmental law since 1974, first at the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, where he served as General Counsel from 1977-1978, and then in private practice. Mr. Gitlen joined Whiteman Osterman & Hanna LLP in 1981 where he has represented large and small corporations, government agencies and environmental organizations in environmental permitting, enforcement and siting and acquisition of solid waste landfills and hazardous waste management facilities. He also represents businesses in environmental due diligence for mergers and acquisitions and in negotiating and drafting the environmental provisions of various business agreements.  Mr. Gitlen was co-managing partner of the Firm from 2003-2017.

Representative Accomplishments

• Represented Eastman Kodak Company in connection with the environmental permitting of a state-of-the-art photographic film base manufacturing facility at Kodak Park in Rochester, New York. This project included creating a strategy for obtaining the permit within strict time-frames dictated by competitive business conditions, assisting in the preparation of permit application, assisting in the preparation of the Environmental Impact Statement prepared under the State Environmental Quality Review Act, and representing Kodak at an adjudicatory hearing which was resolved by negotiation with the intervenor.

• Served as lead outside counsel in connection with the Woodstock ‘94 and Woodstock ‘99 Festivals. These projects included assisting the client in obtaining local and State approvals required in connection with the festivals, including assisting in the creation of a transportation and traffic management plan.

• Represents Fortune 100 client in connection with suit to recover “natural resource damages” at a National Priorities List Superfund Site, including related Administrative Consent Orders. Manages environmental clean-up litigation for various large and small industrial and commercial clients under the federal and State Superfund statutes, New York State Navigation Law and related statutes, including precedent-setting litigation involving U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Municipal Settlement Policy and litigation involving “divisibility” issues.

• Assisted major shopping center developer in incorporating hazardous waste cell at site of proposed regional shopping center, including negotiating agreements with the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, consistent with the client’s construction schedule.

• Represented The Sierra Club in precedent-setting litigation in New York’s highest court establishing the right of recreational use of rivers previously used in commerce.


Mr. Gitlen was an adjunct professor of law at Albany Law School from 1994-1999.


Mr. Gitlen received a J.D. from New York University School of Law in 1972 and a Bachelor of Arts degree, magna cum laude, from Lehigh University in 1969.

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