Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. O'Hara III

Robert J. O'Hara III

Attorney, Flaherty & O'Hara, PC

Robert “R.J.” O'Hara is president of Flaherty & O'Hara, p.c., a Pennsylvania-based boutique law firm with eleven attorneys and 20 support staff practicing exclusively in the alcohol beverage space. Mr. O'Hara received his J.D., cum laude, from the University of Dayton in 1989 and his B.A. in English in 1985 from the same school. He served as Articles Editor of the University of Dayton Law Review and is a member of the National Honors Society in History. He co-founded the Alliance of Alcohol Industry Attorneys and Consultants and is chair of its Board. He is an associate member of several national professional and alcohol regulatory organizations and is honored to be frequently invited to speak at national and regional conferences on alcohol-related topics, as well as on the legalization of marijuana for medical and recreational uses.

Mr. O'Hara represents members of all three tiers of the alcohol industry, representing clients on general liquor licensing matters, complex ownership changes, in litigation and hearings, on multistate license acquisitions, and on administrative citations. Mr. O'Hara's clients include numerous private equity funds and institutional investors in the hospitality, restaurant and alcohol manufacturing spaces, and addressing their unique concerns. Flaherty & O'Hara is national liquor counsel to numerous national and regional chain hotels, restaurants and grocers. The Firm's attorneys also often counsel on tied house and trade practice matters, advise clients on the legality of national alcohol promotions and marketing programs, and frequently draft legislation. Mr. O'Hara is also a shareholder in a PA craft brewery, Erie Brewing Company in Erie, PA, maker of Railbender Ale, an award-winning Scotch ale, among others.


Mr. O'Hara III can be contacted at 412-456-2001 or rj@flaherty-ohara.com

Coming up in May 2019...

Eco-Friendly Practices: Corporate Social Responsibility

The hotel industry has undertaken a long-term effort to build more responsible and socially conscious businesses. What began with small efforts to reduce waste - such as paperless checkouts and refillable soap dispensers - has evolved into an international movement toward implementing sustainable development practices. In addition to establishing themselves as good corporate citizens, adopting eco-friendly practices is sound business for hotels. According to a recent report from Deloitte, 95% of business travelers believe the hotel industry should be undertaking “green” initiatives, and Millennials are twice as likely to support brands with strong management of environmental and social issues. Given these conclusions, hotels are continuing to innovate in the areas of environmental sustainability. For example, one leading hotel chain has designed special elevators that collect kinetic energy from the moving lift and in the process, they have reduced their energy consumption by 50%  over conventional elevators. Also, they installed an advanced air conditioning system which employs a magnetic mechanical system that makes them more energy efficient. Other hotels are installing Intelligent Building Systems which monitor and control temperatures in rooms, common areas and swimming pools, as well as ventilation and cold water systems. Some hotels are installing Electric Vehicle charging stations, planting rooftop gardens, implementing stringent recycling programs, and insisting on the use of biodegradable materials. Another trend is the creation of Green Teams within a hotel's operation that are tasked to implement earth-friendly practices and manage budgets for green projects. Some hotels have even gone so far as to curtail or eliminate room service, believing that keeping the kitchen open 24/7 isn't terribly sustainable. The May issue of the Hotel Business Review will document what some hotels are doing to integrate sustainable practices into their operations and how they are benefiting from them.