Rick Collins is a Founding Partner at Collins Gann McCloskey & Barry PLLC and a well-known figure in the bodybuilding, health, fitness and nutrition communities. A former Nassau County Assistant District Attorney, he has been awarded the highest accolades for legal abilities and ethical standards (AV-rating) from the prestigious Martindale-Hubbell directory of lawyers, and is listed in the Bar Register of Preeminent Lawyers.
An internationally recognized legal authority on the non-medical use/abuse of anabolic steroids and other performance-enhancing substances, Mr. Collins has been involved in the legal defense of countless criminal cases involving the possession or sale of these compounds. He has personally defended individuals in a variety of jurisdictions from New York to California and at the borders of Canada and Mexico. His high-profile cases have included professional bodybuilders and the chemist in the BALCO case, and he has handled athletic doping cases involving the NCAA and professional sports. He has been consulted by amateur and professional bodybuilders, wrestlers, physicians, pharmacists, military servicemen, police departments, and various business entities and is frequently retained to assist and consult with other criminal lawyers on the subject.
In addition to his leadership role in the area of steroids and the law, Mr. Collins has built an active national law practice catering to clients in the bodybuilding, fitness and dietary supplement communities. He spearheads the firm’s bi-coastal dietary supplements division to provide legal counsel to the supplement industry, and serves as the official legal advisor to the International Federation of Bodybuilding and as General Counsel to the International Society of Sports Nutrition.
Over the past few years Mr. Collins has become a legal trailblazer as the co-chairman of a proposal to conditionally seal certain low-level criminal records in New York. As a result of the efforts of his committee and many others, the State laws were changed in 2017 to allow judges the discretion to seal the criminal records of certain non-violent ex-offenders. In addition, he was appointed to serve on a New York State Bar Association Special Committee created to address the issue of prisoner re-entry, to examine problems that formerly incarcerated individuals face upon release from prison or jail and the kind of services needed to help them lead productive lives. He also serves as Co-Chair of the American Bar Association Criminal Justce Section Committee on Reentry and Collateral Consequences.
Mr. Collins, who has been recognized by Long Island Business News as one of Long Island’s “50 Around 50” and was selected as a recipient of the 2013 “Leadership in Law” award, has been interviewed as a legal authority in the film “Bigger, Stronger, Faster” (2008) and on national television talk and news shows, in talk radio interviews and by numerous online and print publications. The author of two popular books, he has contributed chapters to two texts on sports nutrition and co-authored a textbook chapter on adolescent use of performance-enhancing drugs. He frequently writes for various fitness and bodybuilding publications on issues where health and fitness overlap with law and policy, and has been a monthly columnist for the nationally circulated Muscular Development magazine and a member of their Advisory Board since 2001. He is also a blogger for the Huffington Post Crime section where he writes on a number of issues surrounding criminal law.
Mr. Collins currently serves as President-Elect of the Nassau County Bar Association. An active member of the Nassau County Bar Association for more than 25 years who was honored with the NCBA’s 2001 President’s Award, he also is a member of the Advisory Board of the We Care Fund, part of the charitable arm of the Nassau County Bar Association which helps raise funds to improve the quality of life for children, the elderly and others in need throughout Nassau County. In addition to his role at NCBA, Mr. Collins is active in a number of other professional organizations and philanthropic groups, including the United Mavericks. He is a past president of the Criminal Courts Bar Association of Nassau County and the Former Assistant District Attorneys of Nassau County, as well as an officer or member of numerous other state and national professional organizations including the New York State Bar Association, the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, the New York State Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers and the New York State Defenders Association. He is an annual faculty member for the National Institute of Trial Advocacy and is on the Adjunct Faculty of Hofstra University Law School.
Mr. Collins was elected to Phi Beta Kappa as an undergraduate at Hofstra University. After attending Hofstra law school on a full academic scholarship and serving on the Law Review, he was admitted to the New York Bar and served as an assistant district attorney for five years. Mr. Collins is a past Editor-in-Chief of the Nassau Lawyer, the journal of the Nassau County Bar. He has also worked as a stage and film actor, and is a member in good standing of the Screen Actors Guild.
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