Kenneth W. Africano

Partner
  • Buffalo
  • 716.844.3739
  •   •     •  

Ken Africano’s litigation practice is focused primarily in the areas of complex commercial litigation, intellectual property litigation, and unfair competition claims. He has handled numerous jury and judge trials in state and federal courts and has extensive experience in arbitration.

Ken has handled a wide variety of commercial litigation cases including general breach of contract claims, shareholder disputes and corporate dissolutions, antitrust suits, securities fraud claims, and unfair competition matters. He also has substantial experience in obtaining or defending restraining orders and injunctions in federal and state courts on a variety of commercial matters.

In 2005, Ken led a team of litigators defending the Erie County Executive and the Erie County Legislature in a dozen suits that arose from the 2005 budget crisis. More recently, he won two commercial litigation trials delivering close to $2 million to his clients and, serving as lead counsel, successfully resolved a complex construction/engineering malpractice case involving tens of millions of dollars in potential damages. He also obtained a judgment declaring unconstitutional a New York State policy that would have required private landlords that lease to state agencies to pay prevailing wages.

In the area of intellectual property, Ken served as lead litigation counsel for a major motion picture studio in the defense of a copyright infringement action regarding the film "Backdraft." He also represented three major motion picture studios on a copyright infringement action venued in the Central District of California involving the film “Shakespeare In Love.” Ken also teaches a course in intellectual property litigation at the University at Buffalo Law School.

PROFESSIONAL & CIVIC AFFILIATIONS

  • Board Member, American Heart Association, Buffalo Niagara Division
  • Former Board Member, University at Buffalo School of Law Alumni Association
  • Chairperson, Lawyers for the Arts, 2014
  • Member, The John Lord O'Brian Society for the University at Buffalo School of Law, 2014
  • University at Buffalo School of Law Alumni Hyman Society, 2014
  • Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra Carnegie Committee, 2013

HONORS & AWARDS

  • Selected by his peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America© in the field of Commercial Litigation
  • Selected to the Upstate New York Super Lawyers list, 2010-2016
  • Legal Elite of Western New York, Buffalo Business First/Buffalo Law Journal, 2014
  • Who's Who in Law, Business First of Buffalo/Buffalo Law Journal, 2007, 2010, 2011, 2012
  • Martindale-Hubbell Distinguished℠ Peer Review Rated

PRESENTATIONS

  • Ken has spoken at dozens of seminars in the areas of intellectual property, trial technique and e-discovery, including presentations for the Niagara Frontier Corporate Counsel Association, Erie County Bar Association, Health Care Industries Association, the Business Owners and Managers Association, the Greater Buffalo Niagara Partnership and the Buffalo Claims Association.
  • Adjunct Lecturer, State University of New York at Buffalo School of Law (bridge course on Intellectual Property Litigation), 2005-2014
  • Presenter, New York State Bar Association’s CLE program on trial skills, 2001-2010
  • Keynote Speaker, Buffalo Computer Convention

PRACTICE AREAS

ADMISSIONS

  • New York
  • U.S. District Court: Western District of New York
  • U.S. District Court: Southern District of New York
  • U.S. District Court: Eastern District of New York
  • U.S. District Court: Northern District of New York
  • Bankruptcy Court Western District of New York
  • Second Circuit Court of Appeals

EDUCATION

  • SUNY Buffalo Law School, J.D., cum laude, 1985
    • Articles Editor, Buffalo Law Review
  • University of Notre Dame, B.A., 1982