Ms. Jennifer B. Cona, managing partner of Melville based Cona Elder Law PLLC (Cona Elder Law), has been named among Long Island's 50 Most Influential Women for 2008 by the Long Island Business News. Ms. Cona is among Long Island’s most accomplished women, exemplifying leadership in business and community outreach.
Under Ms. Cona’s direction, Cona Elder Law has become one of Long Island’s leading Elder Law and Estate Planning firms. The firm has expanded its practice to include health care facility representation and currently represents over 50 nursing homes and assisted living facilities on Long Island and the metropolitan New York area, making Ms. Cona’s firm one of the preeminent law firms in this practice area.
The "Top 50 Women in Business" list is comprised of Long Island's elite women professionals who have demonstrated exceptional leadership as well as have made significant contributions to the Long Island business community. The winners were selected by a panel of business and community leaders from the region. The award will be presented at a signature gala which is to held on the evening of May 15th at 6pm at the Crest Hollow County Club in Woodbury, New York.
Ms. Cona’s work involves representing, counseling and assisting seniors and their families with a complex range of legal issues, including the preservation of assets, Medicaid planning, estate planning, wealth transfer strategies, administration of estates, estate litigation, guardianships and disability planning. Ms. Cona’s practice addresses the convergence of a client’s legal needs with social, psychological, medical and financial needs. Earlier this year, Ms. Cona successfully argued against healthcare budget cuts affecting the elderly, winning a Fair Hearing in NassauCounty and keeping 24 hour live-in home care benefits for a 94 year old woman with Alzheimer’s disease.
In 2007, Ms. Cona launched Cona Elder Law Charitable Events, a not-for-profit organization committed to enhancing the quality of life for the elderly and the underprivileged. She spearheads various community outreach programs including the Cona Elder Law AnnualMother’s Day Blossoms event in which students from local elementary schools bring hundreds of corsages to women in nursing homes across Long Island on Mother’s Day and the Cona Elder Law Elder Advocacy Scholarship Awards created to recognize local graduating students who have enriched the lives of seniors. Ms. Cona dedicates her time to raising money for charitable causes including Long Island’s Fight for Charity and Cona Elder Law’s annual Midnight Run relief mission to hand deliver food and warm clothes to New York City’s homeless.
Ms. Cona is a Supreme Court and Surrogate Court appointed court evaluator, guardian, Guardian ad Litem and counsel for incapacitated persons. She is an advocate for those with limited access to the legal system and has lobbied on Capitol Hill on behalf of the NOW Legal Defense Fund. Ms. Cona was the keynote speaker at the Long Island Alzheimer’s Foundation (LIAF) Coping and Caring Conference in 2004. Appointed to the Legal Advisory Board of the Long Island Alzheimer’s Foundation (LIAF), Ms. Cona provides legal advice and direction on the issues facing individuals afflicted with Alzheimer’s disease. She serves on the Board of Directors of the Visiting Nurse Association of Long Island and is the founder and chair of the New York Advanced Elder Law Focus Group. Ms. Cona’s firm is a member of the New York Health Facilities Association, Intercounty Health Facilities Association, and the Long Island Association.
Ms. Cona is the recipient of numerous prestigious awards for her business acumen and commitment to the community. In 2007, she was featured in Long Island Business News’ Who’s Who in Women in Professional Servicesand was recentlynamed by Long Island Business News as one of four attorneys in its Ones to Watch column. In 2003, she was named among Long Island Business News’ 40 Rising Stars Under 40. In 2004, Ms. Cona was honored by TouroLawSchool with the Outstanding Pro Bono Attorney award for her legal services provided to a severely disabled woman.
Ms. Cona has been featured in both local and national media and is frequently quoted in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Kiplinger’s Retirement Report, Long Island Business News, New York Law Journal, CPA Wealth Provider, Nassau Lawyer and Suffolk Lawyer and has been featured numerous times in Newsday’s Ask the Expert column. She has appeared as a legal expert on CNN, WNBC News, News 12 Television, News 55, Channel 21, WBLI Radio, WOR and WFAN.
Ms. Cona is a member of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys (NAELA), the Elder Law and Trusts and Estates Section of the New York State Bar Association, the Suffolk County Bar Association Elder Law Section, the Nassau County Bar Association Committee on Elder Law, the Committee on Surrogate’s Court, Estates and Trusts, the Estate Planning Council of Nassau County and the Senior Umbrella Network of Nassau. Previously, Ms. Cona served as a judicial clerk for the Office of Administrative Law in New Jersey where she prepared Medicaid regulatory decisions for 17 judges. Ms. Cona received her Juris Doctor Degree with honors from the University of Connecticut School of Law and received a Bachelor of Arts Degree cum laude with high honors in liberal arts from William Smith College.