Editorial Board   

Mr. Wildes

Michael Wildes

Partner , Wildes & Weinberg

Michael Wildes, born and raised in Queens, New York, is the Mayor of Englewood, New Jersey, an immigration lawyer and a former federal prosecutor. As partner of NYC-based preeminent immigration law firm Wildes & Weinberg, established by his father, Leon Wildes, in 1960, Wildes has become internationally renowned for having represented the United States Government in immigration proceedings, for the successful representation of several defectors who have provided hard-to-obtain national security information to the United States and, most recently, for obtaining an injunction to prevent Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi from residing in New Jersey during the 2009 UN Summit. Elected Mayor of Englewood in November of 2003 and to a second term in November 2006, Wildes is recognized by the Democratic Party as a leading fundraiser for congressional and senate candidates throughout the United States, including Senators Hillary Clinton, Edward Kennedy, Joseph Lieberman and many others. He was voted one of the “100 National Up and Coming Leaders to Watch” by the Democratic Leadership Council (DLC), and the late Senator Kennedy said he had "high expectations" that Wildes would soon be joining him in the United States Congress. Wildes is frequently a legal commentator/analyst for network television, called upon to offer insight and expertise on crucial matters affecting the global community, from terrorism to the Patriot Act. He and his wife, Amy, live in Englewood and are the proud parents of four children. Affiliations: Of Counsel to the International Law Firm of Pavia and Harcourt; The National Police Defense Foundation; and the New Jersey State Law Enforcement Asian-American Advisory Committee. Guest lecturer/panelist at many distinguished forums and institutions including, Yale University, New York University, The Benjamin N. Cardozo, and Brooklyn Schools of Law. Member of the acclaimed Committee on Present Danger (where he serves with former CIA Director, James Woolsey and Senator Joseph Lieberman); Chair of the American Jewish Congress' Committee on International Terrorism; a member of the Advisory Board for the Urban League of Bergen County; and member of the Board of Directors of Boys Town of Jerusalem. Wildes is a certified EMT, a Member of the Hatzoloh Volunteer Ambulance Corps in New York; the Englewood Volunteer Ambulance Corp (EVAC) and has served over 10 years with the NYPD as an Auxiliary Police Officer. Sample High Profile Cases • Saudi Arabian diplomat (Mohammed Al-Khilewi) who defected after walking off with incriminating evidence of international terrorism and espionage. • Secured the cooperation of accused terrorist (Hani Al-Sayegh) implicated in the Khobar Towers bombing in Saudi Arabia - an atrocity in which 19 U.S. servicemen lost their lives. • Shoebomber Hero (Kwame James) who subdued Richard Reid, saving 197 passengers and crew members on American Airlines Flight 63.

Mr. Wildes can be contacted at 212-753-3468 or mwildes@wildesweinberg.com

Coming up in December 2019...

Hotel Law: A Labor Crisis and Cyber Security

According to a recent study, the hospitality industry accounted for 2.9 trillion dollars in sales and in the U.S. alone, was responsible for 1 in 9 jobs. In an industry of that scope and dimension, legal issues touch every aspect of a hotel's operation, and legal services are required in order to conform to all prevailing laws and regulations. Though not all hotels face the same issues, there are some industry-wide subjects that are of concern more broadly. One of those matters is the issue of immigration and how it affects the ability of hotels to recruit qualified employees. The hotel industry is currently facing a labor crisis; the U.S. Labor Department estimates that there are 600,000 unfilled jobs in the industry. Part of the problem contributing to this labor shortage is the lack of H2B visas for low-skilled workers, combined with the difficulty in obtaining J-1 visas for temporary workers. Because comprehensive immigration reform is not being addressed politically, hotel managers expect things are going to get worse before they get better. Corporate cyber security is another major legal issue the industry must address. Hotels are under enormous pressure in this area given the large volume of customer financial transactions they handle daily. Recently, a federal court ruled that the Federal Trade Commission had the power to regulate corporate cyber security, so it is incumbent on hotels to establish data security programs in order to prevent data breaches. The lack of such programs could cause hotels to face legal threats from government agencies, class action lawsuits, and damage to their brand image if a data breach should occur. These are just two of the critical issues that the December issue of Hotel Business Review will examine in the area of hotel law.