Dennis E. McKenna

Senior Partner

Litigation; Land Use/Land Use Litigation; Loan Restructuring & Workouts

Boston; New York

O: (617) 880-3454

F: (617) 692-3454

About Dennis

Dennis is the chairperson of the firm’s litigation department and he is also a member of the firm’s executive committee and co-general counsel of the firm.  Dennis’ practice is focused on land use litigation, construction disputes, and complex commercial litigation. He has extensive trial, appellate, and arbitration experience as lead counsel.

Dennis represents a wide spectrum of clients as both the plaintiff and defendant, including real estate developers, construction companies, national and local financial institutions, public and private corporations, and closely held corporations and partnerships in all manner of real estate, construction, and business disputes.

Dennis has tried numerous cases, both jury and non-jury, before the U.S. District Court, U.S. Bankruptcy Court, as well as the Superior Court, District Court and Land Court of Massachusetts.  Dennis also represents clients in courts across the United States. In addition, Dennis has successfully arbitrated many disputes and has significant administrative hearing experience.

Dennis also is a member of the firm’s real estate department with a focus on real estate development for commercial properties and multi-family housing in Boston and surrounding communities.

Representative Matters

  • Represented the majority stockholders in the landmark case of Brodie v. Jordan concerning duties among shareholders regarding the purchase of the shares of a minority stockholder, at trial, on appeal to the Massachusetts Appeals Court, and then on further appellate review to the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court
    Click here for a related story from the Boston Business Journal quoting Dennis McKenna.
    Click here for the full text of the SJC decision.
  • Represented a real estate developer/construction company in a two week jury trial in a successful defense of claims of fraud, breach of contract, and Chapter 93A violations
  • Represented the Applicant in a Superior Court trial which resulted in the successful appeal of a special permit denial by the Boston Zoning Board of Appeal enabling the opening of the first retail cannabis facility in South Boston
  • Represented the Owner of a mixed use property in a Superior Court trial in a successful defense to an adverse possession and prescriptive easement claim made by a commercial abutter
  • Obtained a dismissal of an abutter’s Superior Court appeal of a special permit and which dismissal allowed the redevelopment of 110,000 square feet of office space into a life science use
  • Represented developer in multiple simultaneous appeals before the Massachusetts Land Court, Massachusetts Superior Court, and administrative appeal before the Department of Environmental Protection regarding the development of an assisted living facility
  • Represented joint venture partner to a successful jury verdict in defense of a $13 million claim brought by partner
  • Represented European wine importing company and its stockholders in an arbitration brought by the disgruntled purchaser concerning alleged financial misrepresentations
  • Represented lender successfully in litigation involving a $98 million construction loan involving claims brought by the general contractor against the owner and lender for mechanic’s liens claims, as well as unjust enrichment and Chapter 93A violations
  • Represented many developers in zoning appeals brought by the developers as well as by competitors, neighborhood groups, and abutters
  • Represented purchaser of manufacturing company in a trial to recoup purchase price paid as a result of misrepresentations made concerning the finances of the company
  • Represented national bank in lawsuit against numerous individuals and corporations who had defrauded the bank in an elaborate scheme
  • Represented mall owner in appeal to the Massachusetts Land Court of decision denying site plan special permit approval for rehabilitation of an existing mall
  • Represented many purchasers in successful lawsuits brought to enforce their rights to purchase properties from recalcitrant sellers
  • Represented condominium developer in successful defense of a lawsuit brought by the condominium association alleging multiple claims related to creation of and construction of the condominium
  • Represented numerous lenders in successful defense of substantial lender liability claims
  • Represented businesses in prosecution and defense of trade secret, noncompete, and unfair trade practice cases
  • Represented financial institution in lawsuit against an accounting firm for negligent preparation of borrower’s financial statements

Cases of Interest

  • Homeowner’s Rehab, Inc. v. Related Corporate V SLP, L.P., et al. 479 Mass. 741 (2018).
  • Maureen Murphy v. Jennifer Dadmun, Massachusetts Appeals Court (2022).
  • Mary M. Brodie v. Robert J. Jordan, et al. 447 Mass. 866 (2006).
  • The Renovator’s Supply, Inc. v. Sovereign Bank, 72 Mass. App. Ct. 419 (2008).
  • The Bank of Western Massachusetts v. Justice Enterprise, Massachusetts Appeals Court (2008)
  • Beaconsfield Townhouse Condominium Trust v. David Zussman, et al., 49 Mass. App. Ct. 757 (2000).
  • Tuite & Sons, Inc., et al. v. Shawmut Bank, N.A., 43 Mass. App. Ct. 751 (1997).
  • Shawmut Bank, N.A. v. William J. Chase, 34 Mass. App. Ct. 266 (1993).
  • BayBank Connecticut N.A. v. Robert Kravitz, et al., 170 F.R.D. 343, 37 Fed. R. Serv. 3d (Callaghan) 685 (D. Mass. 1997).

In The News

  • City Council ordered to modify $300K mitigation order – A Massachusetts Land Court judge ordered the Woburn City Council to modify or reduce the mitigation payment a developer must contribute for a 41-unit townhouse project after Riemer & Braunstein’s Dennis McKenna filed an appeal.
    Daily Times Chronicle, March 15, 2019
  • Low income housing decision discussed in Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly – Dennis McKenna, a Senior Partner in Riemer & Braunstein LLP’s litigation department, is interviewed about a decision of the Business Litigation Session and the Stay granted to his clients during the pendency of an appeal to the Massachusetts Appeals Court.
    Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly, November 14, 2016
  • Luxury Condo Tower proposed at 171 Tremont Street, Boston – A joint venture between a Swiss investor and Boston-based Center Court Boston LLC is proposing a 31-unit luxury condo tower at 171 Tremont St. in Boston. The project would replace a five-story, 17,742-square-foot commercial building that is currently vacant with a 355-foot-tall tower overlooking Boston Common, according to Dennis McKenna, an attorney for Boston-based Riemer & Braunstein, which represents the developers.
    Banker & Tradesman – December 30, 2014
  • Judge rules in favor of bank in mechanic’s lien case – Dennis McKenna discusses his work that resulted in a recent Superior Court decision providing certainty to the lending community. The court’s decision makes clear for the first time that the mechanic’s lien statute will protect a lender’s mortgage position on a construction project after a mechanic’s lien has been filed.
    Banker & Tradesman, July 22, 2009


American Bar Association
Massachusetts Bar Association
New York State Bar Association


Commonwealth of Massachusetts
United States District Court, District of Massachusetts
U.S. Supreme Court
State of New York
United States District Court, Southern District of New York


Boston College Law School, J.D., cum laude, 1990
Stonehill College, B.A., summa cum laude, 1987