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Leighton J. Yuen
  • Partner

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Biography

Leighton knows real estate.

His practice emphasizes resort, commercial, residential and mixed-use developments, and real estate and business-based financing.

As a member of the firm since 1983, Leighton has extensive experience that includes lead Hawai‘i counsel for the sale of the Island of Lana'i by Castle & Cooke, lead Hawai‘i counsel for the purchase of Tesoro Hawai‘i by Par Petroleum and lead real estate counsel for the sale by Kaneohe Ranch of its Kailua landholdings. Most recently, Leighton represented Hawaii Finance and Development in the sale of its portfolio of affordable housing projects, and Servco Pacific in its sale of prime industrial property within the Honolulu urban area to Amazon.

During the span of his career, Leighton has advised resort and planned community developers on the planning, completion and management of their projects, including the Waikoloa Beach Resort on the Island of Hawai‘i, the Manele and Koele resorts on the Island of Lana'i, and others. He currently represents Castle &Cooke Homes Hawaii with respect to its master declaration and development of its Koa Ridge Project on the Island of Oahu.

Leighton has also served as lead counsel for First Hawaiian Bank with respect to its financing of various projects, including Keauhou Place, Sky Ala Moana, and Keauhou Lane, all in the Kapiolani-Kakaako neighborhood in Honolulu.

Leighton currently serves as the real estate practice group leader for Goodsill and has been recognized by Best Lawyers and Chambers as a leading real estate lawyer in the State of Hawai‘i.

OUTSIDE THE OFFICE

Leighton devotes his time to the Hawai‘i Opera Theatre as board member and Chair of its Governance Committee. He is the former Chair of HOT's Finance and
Strategic Planning Committees. He also is a former officer and director of board member of the Hawai‘i LGBT Legal Association, NAIOP Hawai‘i and Gregory House Programs.

Education

  • Harvard University Law School, Cambridge, Massachusetts
    • J.D. - 1983
    • Honors: Member, Harvard Law Student Board of Advisors
  • University of California, Berkeley, California
    • B.S. - 1980
    • Honors: Phi Beta Kappa
    • Major: Business Administration (Emphasis in Accounting and Applied Economics)

Bar Admissions

  • Hawaii, 1983
  • U.S. District Court District of Hawaii, 1983

Professional Associations

  • Hawaii State Bar, Member, Sections on Real Property and Financial Services
  • American Bar Association, Member, Sections on Real Property, Probate and Trust Law
  • Hawaii State Bar, Member
  • American Bar Association, Member
  • National Association of Industrial and Office Properties, Member

Practice Areas:

  • Real Estate Development
  • Real Estate Financing

Honors

  • The Best Lawyers in America
  • The Best Lawyers in America, Lawyer of the Year in Honolulu, 2011, 2018
  • Chambers USA, ranked since 2005

Classes & Seminars

Pro-Bono Activities

  • Hawai‘i Opera Theatre Board, Governance Committee Chair, a Former Chair of Finance and Strategic Planning Committees
  • NAIOP Hawaii‘, Hawaii LGBT Legal Association and Gregory House Programs, Former Director and Officer
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