Attorney Profile:

David D. Cleary



David D. Cleary is Chair of the firm's Phoenix Restructuring & Bankruptcy Practice. He focuses his practice on business restructuring and reorganizations, distressed asset dispositions and financings, debt restructurings and workouts, and litigation. David regularly represents distressed companies, financial institutions, secured and significant creditors, noteholders and bondholders, hotel/resort owner/operators, boards of directors, debtors, official and ad hoc committees, and insurance and surety portfolios.

Areas of Concentration

•Corporate reorganization, restructuring and refinancing
•Mergers and acquisitions involving financially distressed entities and/or assets
•Bank lending/financial institutions
•Counsel to boards of directors and management
•Health care
•Tax-exempt restructuring

Awards & Recognition

•Listed, The Best Lawyers in America, Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights / Insolvency and Reorganization Law; Litigation - Bankruptcy, 2012-2017
•Listed, Super Lawyers magazine, Southwest Super Lawyers, 2011-2016
• Top 50 Super Lawyers in Arizona, 2015-2016
Illinois Super Lawyers, 2005-2009
•Member, Winning Team, M&A Advisor's Turnaround Awards, Restructuring of the Year (Over $500mm to $1 Billion) for the restructuring of FriendFinder Networks, 2015
•Member, Winning Team, ACG New York Champion's Awards, Technology, Media, Telecom (over $100mm) for Restructuring of FriendFinder Networks Inc. - Senior Secured Notes and Second Lien Notes, 2014
•Member, Winning Team, Media & Entertainment Turnaround of the Year” for the reorganization of FriendFinder Networks Inc., Global M&A Network's Turnaround Atlas Awards, 2014
•Member, Winning Team, ACG New York Champion's Awards, Corporate/Strategic Acquisition of the Year (Over $250mm) and Consumer Services categories for Indianapolis Downs, LLC - Sale of Indiana Grand Casino and Indiana Downs Racetrack, 2013
•Team Member, a U.S. News - Best Lawyers , Law Firm of the Year in Bankruptcy and Creditor-Debtor Rights / Insolvency and Reorganization Law and Litigation - Bankruptcy, 2013
•Listed, Illinois Leading Lawyers
•Rated, AV Preeminent 5.0 out of 5

AV , AV Preeminent , Martindale-Hubbell Distinguishedand Martindale-Hubbell Notable are certification marks used under license in accordance with the Martindale-Hubbell certification procedures, standards and policies.

Articles, Publications, & Lectures


•Speaker, Modern-Day 363 Sale Best Practices, ABI Winter Leadership Conference, Phoenix, AZ, December 5, 2015
•Speaker, Navigating Bankruptcy Options, 2010 IAGA/IAGR International Conference, Washington, D.C., October 9-13, 2010
•David has participated in speaking engagements relating to restructuring and reorganizations for many organizations, including the Chicago Bar Association, Association of Insolvency Accountants, American Bar Association Section of Litigation, The Beard Group and various corporate counsel series.


•Contributing Author, The Chief Restructuring Officer's Guide to Bankruptcy , American Bankruptcy Institute, 1st ed., April 2013


•Co-Author, Weighing UK Pensions Regulator's Moral Hazard Powers, Law360, August 26, 2011
•Co-Author, European Sovereign Debt - Why We Should Care, Law360, July 14, 2011
•Co-Author, When Rights Offerings Go Wrong, Law360, June 14, 2011
•Co-Author, The Latest in Exit Financing Structures, Law360, May 19, 2011
•Co-Author, The Courtroom of the Future, Law360, April 13, 2011
•Co-Author, Where Bankruptcy and Real Estate Collide, Law360, March 16, 2011
•Co-Author, Uncertainty For Prepackaged Bankruptcies In Mexico, Law360, February 23, 2011
•Co-Author, Don't Gamble With Your Gaming Case, Law360, January 11, 2011
•Co-Author, Restructuring Challenges of Tax Exempt Bond Financing, American Bankruptcy Institute Journal, December 2010/January 2011
•Contributing Editor, Bankruptcy: Text Statute, Rules , Ginsberg and Martin, Prentice Hall Law & Business
•Contributing Author, Advanced Chapter 11 Bankruptcy Practice , Aspen Law Publications

Associated News & Events

Press Releases

08.17.16 22 Greenberg Traurig Phoenix Attorneys Listed in 2017 Edition of Best Lawyers in America

04.11.16 17 Phoenix Greenberg Traurig Attorneys Recognized as 2016 Southwest Super Lawyers

11.30.15 Greenberg Traurig's David D. Cleary and Nancy A. Peterman to Speak at ABI's Winter Leadership Conference

09.30.15 Greenberg Traurig's Nancy Peterman to Speak at the Turnaround Management Association's The Annual Conference

09.09.15 Greenberg Traurig's Howard Steinberg to Speak at American Bankruptcy Institute's Southwest Bankruptcy Conference

08.19.15 23 Greenberg Traurig Arizona Attorneys Recognized in 2016 Best Lawyers in America

02.27.15 Greenberg Traurig Receives 4 M&A Advisor Turnaround Awards

11.19.14 Greenberg Traurig Wins Five M&A Advisor Awards

06.30.14 Greenberg Traurig Receives Multiple Honors at 2014 Turnaround Atlas Awards

06.20.14 Greenberg Traurig Named Winner in Three Categories at Fourth Annual ACG New York Champion's Awards

Published Articles

08.26.11 Weighing UK Pensions Regulator's Moral Hazard Powers

07.14.11 European Sovereign Debt --- Why We Should Care

06.14.11 When Rights Offerings Go Wrong

05.19.11 The Latest In Exit Financing Structures

04.13.11 The Courtroom of the Future

03.16.11 Where Bankruptcy and Real Estate Collide

02.23.11 Uncertainty For Prepackaged Bankruptcies In Mexico

01.11.11 Don't Gamble With Your Gaming Case

12.01.10 Restructuring Challenges of Tax-Exempt Bond Financing for Health Care Facilities


02.13.13 Lock Up Your Creditors - Court Gives Broad Protection to Binding Plan Support Agreements

(Also at Chicago, Illinois Office)

Areas of Practice (1)

  • Restructuring & Bankruptcy

Education & Credentials

Contact Information:
602.445.8579  Phone
602.445.8646  Fax
University Attended:
Arizona State University, B.A., cum laude, 1984
Law School Attended:
DePaul University College of Law, J.D., with honors, Article and Note Editor, DePaul Law Review, 1987
Year of First admission:
1988, Arizona; 1990, Illinois; U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit; U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit; U.S. District Court for the District of Arizona; U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois

Professional & Community Involvement

•Master, Arizona Inn of Court
•Member, Board of Directors, YWCA, Maricopa County
•Past Co-Chair, American Bar Association, Litigation Section, Bankruptcy and Insolvency Committee
•Past Chair, Chicago Bar Association, Rules Sub-Committee of the Bankruptcy Committee
•Past Co-Chair, ABI Asset Sales Committee, Successor Liability Subcommittee
•Past Co-Chair, ABI Healthcare Committee, Legislative Subcommittee

Birth Information:
May 9, 1962
Reported Cases:
Represented bondholder committee in Conseco Finance bankruptcy case.; Represented City of Chicago in United Airlines bankruptcy case.; Represented leading American automotive OEM in its pre-bankruptcy reorganization and corporate restructuring.; Represented significant creditors in Kmart bankruptcy cases.; Represented credit enhancers in ATA, Delta and Northwest Airlines.; Represented Richie Risk-Linked Strategies Trading (Ireland) Ltd (Life Settlement) as debtor in its Chapter 11 case.; Acted as restructuring and bankruptcy counsel for Mercury Finance Company in its out-of-court restructuring efforts and subsequent Chapter 11 filing involving in excess of $2 billion indebtedness.; Represented retiree committee in Florsheim Shoes.; Counsel to bondholder committee in restructuring and Chapter 11 case involving an energy facility in Alabama.; Counsel to bondholder committee in Chapter 11 case involving a waste to energy facility in Illinois.; Represented indenture trustee of approximately $600 million of senior subordinated notes in National Gypsum Chapter 11 case.; Represented major manufacturing company in connection with several acquisitions in and out of bankruptcy cases.; Represented indenture trustees in defaults and bankruptcy cases.; Represented bondholders, indenture trustees and credit enhancers in both tax-exempt and taxable issues for energy, health care, airline and municipal-related transactions.; Provided restructuring and dispute resolution counsel as national coordinating counsel for insurance and surety companies (asbestos, construction and mass tort).; Represented numerous receivers and other parties-in-interest in ancillary proceedings and credit enforcement engagements. The above representations were handled by Mr. Cleary prior to his joining Greenberg Traurig, LLP.

Peer Reviews

  • 5.0/5.0
  • A Martindale-Hubbell Peer Rating reflects a combination of achieving a Very High General Ethical Standards rating and a Legal Ability numerical rating.

*Peer Reviews provided before April 15, 2008 are not displayed.

Client Reviews


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