Elliot M. Stern, who was "of counsel" at Ruden, McClosky, Smith, Schuster & Russell PA until several months ago when he could no longer continue because of ill health, died of lung cancer April 30. He was 60 years old.
Mr. Stern, who worked in the Florida law firm's Fort Lauderdale office, concentrated his practice in the field of tax law and was a nationally recognized authority in the field of municipal finance.
Prior to joining Ruden, McClosky in 1989, Mr. Stern served as attorney-adviser in the Office of Tax Legislative Counsel at the U.S. Treasury Department from 1986 until 1989, where he was directly involved in the development and drafting of the tax-exempt bond provisions of the Tax Reform Act of 1986.
Mr. Stern also was the principal author of the arbitrage rebate regulations published by the Treasury in May 1989.
The "killing of the arbitrage rebate" made headlines just before Mr. Stern left the Treasury for private practice, said Michael Krul, a partner at Ruden, McClosky and chairman of the firm's corporate and finance department.
"That's how bond lawyers were trying to make a living," Krul said. "At first they called him public enemy number one, but ultimately the policy wasn't his, and he did what they wanted [to implement it]."
Krul described Mr. Stern as a very private and introverted person.
"He was a person who was very dedicated to his area of legal practice and as accomplished in that field as anybody in the country," Krul said. "He will be very missed by all of us."
Before going to work at the Treasury, Mr. Stern reviewed more than $5 billion of tax-exempt financings as a tax lawyer at Mudge Rose Guthrie Alexander & Ferdon in New York and Sherman & Howard LLC in Denver.
Mr. Stern was a long-time member of the National Association of Bond Lawyers.
A service was held Sunday in Farmingdale, N.Y.