In his LinkedIn account, business attorney William Ubert called himself a “professional problem solver,” reflecting the way he approached life, those who knew him said.
During a 30-year law career, the former Huntington resident rose to become a partner at Ruskin Moscou Faltischek PC in Uniondale before setting up his own practice, but what he prized most was being on the board of the Ronald McDonald House Long Island and the Long Island Forum for Technology, said his widow, Verla Ubert of Belgrade, Maine.
Ubert was 65 when he died July 22 of pancreatic cancer at home.
“He was very social-minded and community-minded,” Verla Ubert said.
When his 9-year-old grandson, Jacob, got sick and later died, Ubert was so grateful for a place to stay at the Ronald McDonald House in Portland, Maine, that he started raising funds for the New Hyde Park location and expanding the housing there, his wife said.
Restaurant owner Scott Waters, a client who became a friend, said Ubert went out of his way to do the right thing. Sick with cancer, he continued going into the office to finish clients’ cases, he said. When he could take advantage of the other side, he refused, Waters said.
“He was very honest,” said Waters, of Merrick. “It was an honor to be his friend.”
At work and home, no problem was too big for Ubert, his family and friends said.
Once, a lender balked at financing the purchase of a company with a lien from a long-shuttered business, but Ubert suggested setting up an escrow account, saving the deal, Waters said.
“He always had creative solutions,” his friend said.
Verla Ubert said her husband would always try to fix things first before calling the experts, like the time his beloved old truck wouldn’t start during a trip.
“I said ‘Oh my gosh, we’re never going to get out of this wilderness’ — we were in the woods,” she recalled. “He said ‘Nope, there’s a lawn mower here.’ He took the lawn mower apart, he found a part in the lawn mower, put it in the truck and voilà, the engine ran.”
The Queens native liked to work with his hands, and after earning an English literature degree in 1974 from Adelphi University, he started a 10-year career as a tool and die maker. He loved the challenge of developing from scratch what businesses needed, his wife said, but his career took a sharp turn when he attended a labor seminar.
“You think like an attorney,” Ubert said the instructor told her husband.
He got his law degree at St. John’s University in Queens in 1985, then worked for various law firms. He left Ruskin Moscou Faltischek in 2009 to set up his own practice.
Besides his wife, Ubert is survived by his son, Jeremy of Belgrade, Maine; and his mother, Ann Ubert of North Massapequa.
Donations may be made to the Ronald McDonald House in Portland, Maine, and New Hyde Park.