. . . of a seasoned commercial lawyer..
A Brief Biography. . .
Michael Barnas is a seasoned commercial lawyer, with experience both as in-house counsel and in law firm practice.
Mike spent most of his career a major multinational company, offering legal advice to business management and strategic guidance to transaction teams. He began his corporate career working in the field of union relations, negotiating with labor unions across the United States. After a brief stint with a domestic services business, Mike accepted a position with the international sales group. In that capacity he travelled extensively throughout Europe and the Middle East, with forays into South America and Asia as well, negotiating contracts for infrastructure projects in dozens of countries. Among his most significant accomplishments were the structuring of a complex series of contracts for the construction of a combined-cycle power plant in India, and conclusion of a $1.4 billion dollar contract for a power plant in Saudi Arabia.
Building on this global experience base, Mike was named counsel to the commercial operations team, which evaluated and reviewed every equipment-sale transaction for a multi-billion-dollar business. In that capacity he helped steer the business through a boom in the domestic energy infrastructure market in the late 1990s. In 2003 Mike was asked to assume responsibility for the legal affairs of his company’s newly formed renewable energy business, a position he held for nine years, during which his company became the leading supplier of wind turbines in the United States. Leaving his corporate home after 31 years, Mike joined a prominent Albany law firm as counsel, before striking out on his own in 2016.
Mike is a native of Buffalo, New York, where he graduated from Canisius High School. He began his academic career studying architecture at Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, and two years later transferred to Columbia University where he majored in English and Comparative Literature. After a year off, he entered the Fordham University School of Law. While at Fordham, Mike edited The Advocate, the student newspaper, and was awarded the prestigious Keefe Award for his contributions to the school. Since 1988 he has lived in Albany, New York with his wife Linda. Their adult daughter lives in Massachusetts. When not practicing law, Mike is an ardent supporter of the arts. Since 2013 he has been chair of the board of directors of the Musicians of Ma’alwyck, Inc., an award-winning chamber music ensemble. He is also a past trustee of Congregation Beth Emeth in Albany.