Mr. Schafer, an attorney with Lippes Mathias’ Corporate Practice Team and Co-Leader of the firm's Cannabis Practice Team, assists clients with mergers & acquisitions, business formation and structuring, licensing, contract review, and other general matters. Mr. Schafer works across industries with a particular focus on sports transactions, representing leagues and teams at the major and minor league levels in a variety of corporate matters, including team acquisitions and sales, joint ventures, governance, licensing agreements, and other commercial transactions. As a former Division I athlete, coach, and administrator, he also advises colleges and universities, athletes, and sponsors on Name, Image and Likeness (NIL) deals and related NCAA compliance issues. Prior to joining Lippes Mathias, Mr. Schafer gained extensive experience in commercial litigation, including breach of contract, antitrust, business disputes, cannabis, class action defense, and employment disputes. 
 
As a member of the firm’s Cannabis Practice Team, Mr. Schafer advises clients on the full spectrum of New York State's cannabis program (medical, cannabinoid hemp, and adult-use) and has prepared adult-use applications for conditional cultivation, processing, and retail dispensary applicants. He also negotiates and drafts agreements for both plant-touching and non-plant-touching businesses and regularly consults on the ever-changing regulatory landscape facing cannabis entrepreneurs in New York and across the country.  


Articles & Publications


ADMITTED TO PRACTICE
  • New York
  • U.S. District Court, Western District of New York

Education:
  • University at Buffalo, School of Law, The State University of New York, J.D., 2018
    • Buffalo Law Review, Articles Editor
  • Davidson College, B.A., 2013

Community Involvement 
  • University at Buffalo School of Law, Adjunct Professor, Sports Law
  • United States Tennis Association 
    • Eastern Junior Competition Rules Committee 
    • Tennis on Campus National Committee, 2021 
  • United Way of Buffalo & Erie County, Next Generation United 
    • Advisory Board, Co-Chair 
  • UB Law Sports Forum, Co-founder and Contributor 
 
Honors & Awards 
  • The Best Lawyers in America: Ones to Watch©, 2024
  • Upstate New York SuperLawyers®, Rising Star, 2021-2023
  • Pro Bono Honor Roll, United States District Court, Western District of New York, 2021
  • New York State Bar Association Empire State Counsel® Program for Pro Bono Work, Honoree, 2020
 
Past Activities 
  • Daemen College Athletics Department, NCAA Compliance Extern & Assistant to Athletics Director 
  • United States Tennis Association, Professional Tennis and 2016 U.S. Open, Legal Intern
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