Shelter Rock Strategies


  • Expertise

    in all aspects of government relations

  • Relationships

    with all the key players

  • Results

    a proven track record of success for our clients

The Team

When you bring together the right strategy and the right talent, there’s almost no challenge that can’t be met. That’s why we've assembled this bold, energetic and talented team, dedicated to its clients' success.

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Marc Alessi

Marc Alessi is an attorney/lobbyist, as well as a serial startup tech entrepreneur. He serves as the Executive Director of the Business Incubator Association of New York State, Inc., a nonprofit trade association dedicated to the growth and development of startup and incubator-based enterprises throughout the state. Marc has helped launch and finance several early stage companies across a variety of industries, including biotechnology, IT, construction, and real estate. A founding member of the Hamptons Angel Network and former Executive Director of the Long Island Angel Network, Marc helped establish Accelerate Long Island, and currently serves as Chairman and Founding CEO of one of their portfolio companies, SynchroPET. The company has licensed patents from Brookhaven National Lab for a new way to build medical imaging.

Marc also serves as the Executive Director of the Tesla Science Center, a museum and science center that is opening next year at the historic site of the former lab of famed inventor Nikola Tesla, located in Shoreham, New York. Marc got involved years ago with other members of the local community in helping to preserve the site and has not dedicated more time to the effort utilizing his experience in the LI Start UP Ecosystem to assist the board in the planning and launch of the company.

Marc has a history of public service on Long Island and in New York State. While still a law student, he was appointed as the Downstate Director of Intergovernmental Affairs for the New York State Comptroller’s Office, charged with ensuring that each level of government operated in accordance with state law. Marc was subsequently elected to the New York State Assembly in 2005 and served three terms representing the First Assembly District, which included the Towns of Brookhaven, Riverhead, Southold, and Shelter Island. Marc naturally gravitated toward policy areas that would help create an incentive for investments in startup enterprises in New York State, serving as Chairman of the subcommittee on the emerging workforce as well as a member of the energy, labor, transportation, local government, agriculture, and aging committees and the subcommittee on alternative energy. Marc received his B.A. from the State University at Albany, and his J.D. from Touro College, Jacob D. Fuchsberg Law Center.

Boards, Associations, and Leadership
Executive Director of the Tesla Science Center
Executive Director, Business Incubator Association of New York State, Inc.
Founder, SynchroPET Inc.
Founding Member, Hamptons Angel Network
Member, Past Executive Director, and Past Board of Directors, Long Island Angel Network
Board of Directors, Peconic Bay Medical Center
Board of Directors, Northwell Health
Member, Advisory Council, East End Arts
Board of Advisors, Nassau-Suffolk Law Services
Former Board of Directors, Long Island Power Authority (LIPA)

2015 – Innovator of the Year Award, Innovate Long Island
2011 – Top 40 Under 40, Long Island Business News

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James D. Leonard

Prior to joining the Firm, James D. Leonard was the Controller of a national chain of upscale Italian restaurants for eight years where he managed all aspects of the restaurants’ operations. In 1992, Mr. Leonard was the Republican and Conservative party nominee for State Senate in Kings County. He served as the 1st Vice President for the 55th Assembly District Republican Club of Kings County.

Mr. Leonard received his accounting degree from Bernard M. Baruch College City University of New York and his Juris Doctor from St. John’s University School of Law. He is admitted to practice law in the State Courts of New York and the United States District Courts for the Eastern and Southern Districts of New York. Mr. Leonard is a member of the New York State Bar Association, Nassau County Bar Association and Suffolk County Bar Association.

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Steven R. Schlesinger

Steven R. Schlesinger provides general advice and counsel to telecommunications, real estate development, automobile dealerships, and construction companies. He has also acted as special counsel to numerous government agencies and served as a director of two publicly held corporations.

In addition, Mr. Schlesinger has extensive litigation experience involving Election Law. He currently serves as Law Chairman of the Nassau Democratic County Committee and has served as a member of the Special Committee of the New York State Bar Association on the Reform of the Election Law. He has acted as counsel to numerous political campaigns including Clinton/Gore ‘96 and McCarthy for Congress. Mr. Schlesinger was appointed by the Appellate Division, Second Department, as a member of the Character and Fitness Committee and served as the Chairman of the Professional Ethics Committee of the Nassau County Bar Association. In addition, Mr. Schlesinger has represented numerous businesses in bankruptcies and commercial matters and related litigation. He has been counsel in many Federal and State Court trials including numerous matters in The Delaware Chancery Court, the Commercial Division of the New York State Supreme Court and The Bankruptcy Courts. He has argued several hundred appellate cases including several in the New York State Court of Appeals.

Mr. Schlesinger has also had business interests involving real estate developments, car dealerships, automotive distributorships, oil reclamation systems, and restaurants among other businesses. Mr. Schlesinger is also a ranked professional poker player.

Mr. Schlesinger received his undergraduate degree from Queens College and his Juris Doctor from Hofstra University School of Law. He is admitted to practice law in the State Courts of New York, and before the Supreme Court of the United States and the Eastern and Southern District Courts of New York. Mr. Schlesinger is a member of the Litigation Committee of the American Bar Association, the New York State Bar and Nassau County Bar Associations. He currently serves as president of his synagogue and as head of The Kermit Gitenstein Foundation, LLC. Mr. Schlesinger is active in many other charitable and civic organizations.

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Dr. Richard Marsh

Dr. Richard Marsh has provided dynamic educational leadership at all academic levels, K-12, in addition to teaching graduate studies at various universities for over 40 years in public education, including his most recent positions as Superintendent of Schools and educational consultant on Long Island.

Many in the Bethpage community credit Dr. Marsh with taking a good school district and shaping it into a great one. Dr. Marsh served as the district's Assistant Superintendent for Instruction for almost six years before becoming Superintendent of Schools in 2004. During his tenure, Bethpage earned national recognition for its exemplary academic, athletic, arts and technological programs. Also, in May, 2009, Dr. Marsh was a recipient of the prestigious Nassau BOCES “Education Partner” Award, recognizing individuals who have had the greatest influence on improving education in Nassau County. Over the years he has served as a member of various advisory boards, including the New York State Council of Administrators of Music Education, the Bethpage Educational Foundation, and the Baldwin Teacher Center.

As a member of the executive board of the Nassau County Council of School Superintendents, Dr. Marsh advocated for the importance of building partnerships that will benefit students and the school community. In Bethpage, for example, he acquired hundreds of thousands of dollars in grants, payments in lieu of taxes, and contributions to the school district by partnering with corporations and elected officials, and secured internships for students with companies such as Northrop Grumman. The Cablevision Corporation remains one of the premier partners of the Bethpage School District.

Dr. Marsh holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees from New York University, professional diplomas from both St. John’s and Hofstra Universities, and a doctorate from Hofstra University. Of these five degrees, four are in the specialty areas of educational supervision, administration and policy.