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Katherine H. Karl


Rochester, NY

(585) 258-2821


Kate is an active presence in both the preservation and development of our local community. As chair of our Commercial Lending Practice Group, her legal expertise extends to commercial real estate, development and finance. She works with commercial lenders to structure mortgage and asset-based loan transactions, and to handle environmental issues in a practical manner. She has broad experience representing commercial owners, developers and a national retailer in all aspects of acquisitions, sales, construction, development and lease negotiations.

Tackling zoning and land use issues and environmental concerns are a part of Kate’s everyday practice. She also represents institutional lenders in connection with a broad variety of loans, including real estate secured financing, transactions with industrial development agencies and with Small Business Administration involvement, term loans and lines of credit.

A former law clerk to the New York State Supreme Court, Appellate Division, Third Department, Kate has practiced law in Rochester since 1988.


Union University at Albany Law School, J.D. (cum laude)

Bucknell University, B.A.
(magna cum laude)


New York State


US District Courts - Western District of NY

​US Bankruptcy Court - Western District of NY


As an active board member for both The Landmark Society of Western New York, Inc., and Rochester Downtown Development Corporation, Kate remains involved in the vital decisions affecting the development of our region. Kate is also a board member of both Providence Housing Development Corporation and Family Promise of Greater Rochester (formerly known as Rochester Area Interfaith Hospitality Network (RAIHN)), which provides emergency housing services, eviction prevention, and aftercare management to families experiencing homelessness. In addition, Kate is a member of the Monroe County Bar Association.


Kate has been recognized in the 2013-2024 editions of The Best Lawyers in America® for her work in Real Estate Law, Banking and Finance Law, Commercial Finance Law, and Commercial Transactions/UCC Law. She was honored as the 2023 Best Lawyers® “Lawyer of the Year” for Banking & Finance Law and Real Estate Law in Rochester, NY and the 2018 Best Lawyers® “Lawyer of the Year” for Real Estate Law in Rochester, NY. Kate has also been selected as an Upstate New York Super Lawyers honoree from 2007-2013 and 2017-2023.

Kate was awarded the 2023 Legal Excellence Award for Leaders in Law by The Daily Record and Rochester Business Journal and was named one of the 2014 "Top Women in Law" by The Daily Record. The Top Women in Law award recognizes the outstanding accomplishments of women attorneys who are making notable contributions to the legal profession, while inspiring a positive change in the community.

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