Dallas Trial Lawyer David Elrod Joins Shackelford, Bowen, McKinley & Norton

David ElrodVeteran trial lawyer David Elrod has joined the business and entertainment law firm Shackelford, Bowen, McKinley & Norton, LLP, as a partner in the Dallas office, marking a significant expansion of the firm’s existing litigation practice, the firm announces.

Also joining Shackelford are partner Worthy Walker, of counsel Barbara Wohlrabe and associate Hayley Ellison. The attorneys all have substantial experience in complex commercial and energy disputes in Texas and around the country.

“It’s not every day that you have the opportunity to bring upper-tier litigators such as David and his team into your firm. Their addition strengthens our litigation and trial capabilities regionally and throughout the country, while also adding a robust energy litigation section.”

Read the firm’s announcement.



Survey Ranks Dallas Law Firm Bailey Brauer Among Most Feared by Opponents

The Dallas-based trial and appellate law firm Bailey Brauer PLLC has again earned a spot among an elite group of firms that corporate lawyers most fear facing in court.

According to a release from the firm, Bailey Brauer, founded in 2913, is among the youngest and smallest firms included on BTI Litigation Outlook 2018’s Honor Roll of the nation’s Most Feared Law Firms. This is the second time the firm has been recognized for its complex commercial litigation, class action and other litigation work. Selection is based upon interviews with general counsel and in-house litigation leaders nationwide who were asked which lawyers they would least like to face in litigation.

The release continues:

“To earn a place on the BTI list is an honor because it’s based on corporate counsel feedback,” said firm co-founder attorney Alex Brauer. “And what it tells me is that the businesses we represent appreciate how we handle their most important cases, and that is being noticed by those across the table as well.”

BTI Consulting Group, based in Massachusetts, is a national business research company that conducts independent research on how Fortune 1000 companies buy, manage and evaluate their professional service providers. A full list of its 2018 honorees is available at https://www.bticonsulting.com/litigation-outlook-fearsome-foursome.

“What BTI focuses on is client service,” said co-founder Clayton Bailey. “And from day one, serving clients has been at the very heart of what we do. To have that dedication recognized by BTI twice in the four years since we opened is validation that we are on target with providing Big Law quality representation in a much more nimble, responsive way.”

This represents the second year in a row that BTI has recognized Bailey Brauer, adding to honors the firm has collected from Benchmark Litigation. Most recently, Mr. Brauer and Mr. Bailey were named individually to the 2017 Texas Super Lawyers listing. Mr. Brauer also was named among the Best Lawyers in Dallas by D Magazine. Mr. Bailey was named among The Best Lawyers in America, The National Law Journal’s Elite Boutique Trailblazers list and to The National Trial Lawyers’ Top 100 civil plaintiff lawyers in Texas.


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National Asian Pacific American Bar Honors Munck Wilson Mandala’s Kelly Chen

Kelly Chen, a partner in the litigation section of Munck Wilson Mandala, has been selected by the National Asian Pacific American Bar Association to receive the 2017 Best Lawyers Under 40 Award (BU40 Award).

The BU40 Award recognizes talented individuals in the Asian Pacific American legal community who are under the age of 40 and have achieved prominence and distinction in their respective careers. Honorees include professionals in the practice of law, academia, business, civic and charitable affairs, the judiciary, or politics, who have demonstrated a strong commitment to Asian Pacific civic or community affairs.

Chen represents clients in intellectual property and commercial litigation and she has an impressive list of legal and business organizations she is involved with as a leader or participant. She most recently served on the board of directors for the Dallas Asian-American Bar Association and she is a recent graduate of Leadership Dallas, Dallas Regional Chamber’s leadership development program. Chen also serves as co-chair of NAPABA’s Diversity and Inclusion Committee and Programming Subcommittee co-chair for the Intellectual Property Committee.

Chen has studied in Shanghai, China, and she speaks fluent Mandarin Chinese. Prior to her legal career, Chen worked as a certified public accountant for Deloitte as well as an international waste management company overseas. She received her J.D. from Southern Methodist University School of Law and she graduated with majors in accounting and business (with honors) from the University of Texas at Austin.

Chen will be honored during the 2017 NAPABA Convention in Washington, DC, on Nov. 3, 2017. NAPABA is the national association of Asian Pacific American attorneys, judges, law professors, and law students. To learn more about NAPABA, visit www.napaba.org.



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DLA Piper Litigation Practice Recognized By BTI Consulting

DLA Piper has been recognized as a “powerhouse” law firm for class actions and complex commercial litigation by BTI Consulting Group in its recently published BTI Litigation Outlook 2018 report.

The firm was also named a “standout” in IP litigation, securities and finance litigation, complex employment litigation, everyday employment litigation, product liability litigation and everyday commercial litigation. DLA Piper was one of eight firms to be recognized as a “BTI Awesome Opponent,” a category that includes firms clients said they least hope to see on the other side of the table.

The annual report draws on more than 4,800 interviews with corporate counsel and other leading legal decision makers conducted over the past 18 years to recognize law firms that are leading the litigation market by providing clients with faster turnaround times and more innovative approaches. Special analysis for this year’s report was based on feedback received between February and July 2017.



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Former Assistant to the US Solicitor General Ilana Eisenstein joins DLA Piper Litigation Practice in Philadelphia

DLA Piper announced the addition of Ilana Eisenstein to the firm’s Litigation practice as a partner in Philadelphia.

Eisenstein joins DLA Piper after three years as Assistant to the Solicitor General in the US Department of Justice, where she briefed and argued extensively before the US Supreme Court. She also advised the Solicitor General regarding federal appellate litigation on civil, criminal and administrative law matters.

“Ilana’s experience before the Supreme Court and other outstanding efforts with the Solicitor General provides a tremendous addition to the firm’s strategic commitment to provide appellate capabilities to our clients at the highest level; and, her superb trial, case management and leadership experience adds a wonderful breadth to our complex litigation, white collar and investigations practices,” said James Brogan, co-chair of DLA Piper’s US Litigation group.

Before joining the Office of the Solicitor General, Eisenstein served as an Assistant U.S. Attorney in the District of Delaware for eight years. While there, she was the lead attorney on more than 100 cases and tried 11 jury trials to verdict. She was involved in a wide array of cases, including a three-year pharmaceutical pricing investigation, securities and financial fraud investigations, and cases involving bank and tax fraud.

“We are excited to add this talented trial and appellate lawyer to our office, which celebrated its 25th anniversary earlier this year and continues to grow,” said Joseph Kernen, managing partner of DLA Piper’s Philadelphia office. “Ilana has roots in the Philadelphia area, as she grew up here and has developed a strong reputation working in and around the region.”

Earlier in her career, Eisenstein clerked for Judge Edward R. Becker of the US Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit. She received her J.D., summa cum laude, from the University of Pennsylvania Law School, and her B.A., magna cum laude, from Harvard University.



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Sidley Welcomes Privacy and Cybersecurity Partner Wim Nauwelaerts in Brussels

Sidley Austin LLP announces that Wim Nauwelaerts has joined the firm as a partner in its Brussels office. He will be a member of Sidley’s global Privacy and Cybersecurity practice.

In a release, the firm says Nauwelaerts has almost 20 years of experience in privacy and data protection matters.

The release continues:

He advises companies on all aspects of EU and international data protection and privacy compliance, including preparation for the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), data transfer strategies, data security and breach requirements, and compliance training. He also assists clients with contract negotiations and represents them before supervisory authorities. While Mr. Nauwelaerts counsels clients in a variety of sectors, he has particular experience with life sciences, technology and new media clients.

“We have seen tremendous growth in our European data protection practice, which will continue as companies prepare for, and thereafter comply with, the GDPR,” said Alan Raul, founder and co-leader of Sidley’s global Privacy and Cybersecurity practice. “Adding Wim to our outstanding team of privacy practitioners in Europe, led by John Casanova and William Long, is a logical next step in ensuring we continue to provide clients with the highest level of service in developing and implementing privacy, data protection and cybersecurity programs around the world.”



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Boston’s Collora and Hogan Lovells Now Open for Business

The combination between global law firm Hogan Lovells and Boston-based law firm Collora is now effective. The new Hogan Lovells office in downtown Boston comprises 28 lawyers and 16 business services staff.

“Our new team of lawyers in Boston is renowned for advising in complex litigation and investigations, particularly in the life sciences and financial services sectors,” said Hogan Lovells CEO Steve Immelt. “Their addition strategically bolsters our services to clients, many of whom are already part of Boston’s dynamic and growing market.”

“We are thrilled to be a part of Hogan Lovells’ global team and collaborate with lawyers in the firm’s other offices,” said Bill Lovett, the former managing partner of Collora, who is now the Office Managing Partner of the Hogan Lovells Boston office.

“Our capability to offer global services in a wider array of practices is already extending our relationships with existing clients and establishing new opportunities both in and outside of the Boston area.”




Michael Best Welcomes Corporate & Securities Groups from KLMR in Salt Lake City

Michael Best announces the expansion of the firm’s Salt Lake City office with the addition of six attorneys from the law firm of Kruse Landa Maycock & Ricks, LLC (KLMR).

James Kruse, Kevin Timken, and Lyndon Ricks join as partners in the Corporate & Transactional Practice Group, alongside Betsy Voter who joins as senior counsel. Ellen Maycock and Jennifer Falk also join as partners in the firm’s Litigation Practice Group, and will continue to practice family law as well.

“Our Utah team is thrilled to welcome this group of exceptional attorneys to Michael Best who will continue to strengthen our corporate and broker dealer practice,” said Richard Ensor, Managing Partner of the Salt Lake City & Midvale offices. “The quality of the KLMR attorneys is well known throughout the Salt Lake Valley and Utah as a whole. The addition of this group is a notable assertion that our firm is committed to providing superior and impactful client service across a range of industries in our marketplace. ”

Michael Best’s hiring of Kruse, Maycock and Ricks, who are name partners of their previous firm, KLMR, comes on the heels of recent lateral Craig Stoehr, who in March of 2017 joined the firm’s Corporate & Transactional Practice Group. Other recent practice group growth this year includes three litigation partners in Chicago.

A release from the firm continues:

Kruse has more than 40 years of experience with corporate, securities law, and broker-dealer regulation. He concentrates his practice on advising clients through new equity financings, corporate acquisitions and reorganizations, representation of broker-dealers and investment advisers, and defense against disciplinary matters and enforcement actions from the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) and various state regulatory agencies. Kruse received his J.D. from George Washington University, where he was a member of the George Washington Law Review’s Comment Staff.

For more than 30 years, Ricks has advised clients on general corporate and commercial transactions, securities matters, domestic and international acquisitions and divestitures. His practice covers a wide span of industries as well, including automotive, electrical products, foreign exchange trading, equipment manufacturing, investment banking, software development and sales, health care, and real estate, among many others. Ricks earned his J.D., cum laude, from Brigham Young University’s J. Reuben Clark Law School, where he also served as Editor of the BYU Journal of Legal Studies.

One of the four founding partners at KLMR, Maycock brings more than four decades of commercial litigation and family law experience to her practice. Most of her time is spent on the latter, where she focuses on the long-term needs of families in transition during matters of marital estate mediation, complex custody issues, and divorce proceedings. Maycock received her J.D. from the University of Utah’s College of Law. During her time there, she also served as editor-in-chief of the Utah Law Review.

Timken focuses his practice advising public and private companies on various securities matters, equity financings, commercial transactions, and regulatory compliance. In addition, he also has extensive experience managing broker-dealer compliance, particularly regarding resales of restricted securities, and regulatory enforcement defense with the SEC and CFTC. Timken received his J.D. from the University of Utah College of Law, where he was Managing Editor of the Utah Law Review.

Falk divides her practice between family law and litigation matters. As an advocate of her family law clients, she represents them through complex divorces, division of property, alimony and custody matters. She also advises clients in both government and private sectors on complex labor and employment matters. Falk received her J.D. from the University of Utah’s College of Law and her Master of Philosophy from the University of Oxford’s Linacre College.

Voter focuses her practice on financial regulatory compliance and corporate securities law. Her experience includes advising clients on issues related to broker-dealer and investment compliance, enforcement actions and examinations in front of the SEC and FINRA. She served as in-house counsel to a broker-dealer prior to joining KLMR, thereby giving her a unique perspective on the issues related to that heavy regulation industry and insight into how to effectively advise and assist her broker-dealer clients. Voter received her J.D. from the University of Utah’s S.J. Quinney Law School.

“The decades of experience and leadership that this group brings to our firm and the diverse industry-sector expertise they represent, speaks to our recruitment platform in Utah and the western region,” said David Krutz, Managing Partner of Michael Best. “Culturally, they are a great fit and will help continue our growth and superior client service in Salt Lake City.”

“Our team is excited about this opportunity with Michael Best,” said Jim Kruse, a founding member of KLMR. “The motivation for this move was to provide us the capabilities to expand our regional clients by leveraging the national exposure and reach of the firm to deepen our relationships. I am impressed with Michael Best and look forward to what the future holds.”



Michael Best Adds Litigator James Fieweger as Partner in Chicago

Michael Best announced the addition of James Fieweger to the firm’s Litigation Practice Group as a partner in Chicago. His addition follows partners Michael Graham, Peter Huh, and Mircea Tipescu, all of whom have joined the office in the past few months.

Fieweger has more than 25 years of experience and focuses on matters involving commercial litigation, professional and product liability, corporate internal investigations, commercial disputes involving claims of fraud, breach of fiduciary duty, breach of contract, and mass tort cases for Fortune 100 corporations. He has represented clients across several industries, including healthcare providers, retail banks, and manufacturers of medical and industrial products, and has defended more than 50 long-term care facilities against breach of contract claims.

Earlier in his career, Fieweger served for six years as an assistant U.S. attorney in the Northern District of Illinois, where he managed a broad scope of government and white collar investigations, including international drug trafficking, money laundering, RICO violations, insider trading, wire fraud, and cases involving the False Claims Act.

“James brings a great track record of government experience and corporate investigations work,” said John Scheller, Chair of Michael Best’s Litigation Practice Group. “With more than two decades in the private and public sectors, he will be an outstanding addition and will enhance our litigation and investigations counsel for clients.”
Most recently before joining Michael Best, Fieweger was a founding partner of law firm Falkenberg Fieweger & Ives, where he focused on representing clients in commercial litigation as well as state and federal investigations.

“We’re delighted that Jim has joined us alongside some other recent and notable hires we’ve made here in Chicago,” said Kerryann Haase Minton, Michael Best’s Chicago Office Managing Partner. “He is an accomplished and respected attorney in the litigation and investigations space and we’re confident he’ll be a great fit for our culture of providing exceptional legal counsel for our clients.”

“I’m excited to be a part of such a motivated and successful team here in Chicago,” Fieweger said. “The firm’s credentials speak for themselves and I’m thrilled to be a part of the team in Chicago and to work with the other litigation partners across the firm’s national platform.”

Fieweger received his J.D., cum laude, from DePaul University College of Law and his B.A. from the University of Notre Dame. He received an “AV” rating from Martindale-Hubbell, the highest level peer review rating an attorney can obtain for both legal abilities and ethical standards.


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Barnes & Thornburg Adds Transactional Partner Salvador LaViña in Los Angeles

Barnes & Thornburg LLP has added Salvador LaViña as a partner in the Real Estate Department in Los Angeles. LaViña joins from Enenstein Ribakoff LaViña & Pham APC, where he was chair of the real estate and corporate departments.

LaViña focuses on complex real estate and corporate transactions, and has closed or supervised over $5 billion in deals in the last few years. He advises private clients – including investment companies, family offices, fund advisers and developers – in real estate, including acquisitions and sales, joint ventures, multifamily transactions, 1031 exchanges and tenant-in-common transactions, real estate fund formation, development, public-private and multistate matters.

On the corporate side, LaViña represents companies spanning a variety of industries, including e-commerce, oil & gas, music, entertainment, sports and marketing, as well as the areas where corporate and real estate deals intersect. His practice emphasizes middle-market M&A, stock and asset transactions, fund formation, syndication and private placements.

“Sal is a well-known and highly regarded real estate lawyer and brings to our firm a multifaceted transactional practice,” said David Allen, managing partner of the firm’s Los Angeles office. “Furthermore, Sal’s involvement in our community and commitment to civic organizations are examples for us all.”

Outside of his legal practice, LaViña is a board member and general counsel for the UCLA Alumni Association, a member of the Columbia University Alumni Association, and is on the Village Family Services board of directors. He is a former board member of the Para Los Niños and is a life member of American Mensa.

LaViña earned his J.D. from Columbia University Law School and his B.A., magna cum laude, from the University of California, Los Angeles. He is admitted to practice in California.


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Dallas Trial Lawyer David Elrod Joins Shackelford, Bowen, McKinley & Norton

Veteran trial lawyer David Elrod has joined the business and entertainment law firm Shackelford, Bowen, McKinley & Norton, LLP, as a partner in the Dallas office, marking an expansion of the firm’s existing litigation practice.

Also joining Shackelford are partner Worthy Walker, of counsel Barbara Wohlrabe and associate Hayley Ellison. The attorneys all have experience in complex commercial and energy disputes in Texas and around the country, the firm said in a release.

The release continues:

“Since 2002, this firm has grown steadily, with a focus upon what is best for our clients’ business interests. This group is a significant addition that will benefit all of our clients and position us for continued growth,” says founding partner John Shackelford. “It’s not every day that you have the opportunity to bring upper-tier litigators such as David and his team into your firm. Their addition strengthens our litigation and trial capabilities regionally and throughout the country, while also adding a robust energy litigation section.”

Elrod has nearly 40 years of experience trying bet-the-company cases and a variety of complex commercial lawsuits around the country. He was the founder of the successful litigation boutique Elrod PLLC, which he helmed for 15 years in Dallas. Among Texas’ most respected trial lawyers, Elrod represents clients in state and federal litigation involving energy, oil and gas, real estate, bankruptcy, and complex commercial litigation.

“I’m very excited about joining a dynamic regional firm where I can continue to service the litigation needs of my clients, with flexibility as to rates and billing arrangements, and also provide them access to the firm’s full-service resources. These considerations are important to all of our clients, whether Fortune 100 companies or small businesses,” says Elrod. “John and I completely agree on how to responsibly and carefully grow a law firm and how to represent clients in an efficient and effective manner. With its strong management structure, and collegial culture, Shackelford is a natural fit for us.”

Walker’s practice is focused on complex business litigation and appeals, representing individuals, small businesses and multinational corporations, primarily in energy and banking matters. His work also includes trade secret, non-compete, discrimination and other employment issues. Wohlrabe represents clients in contractual disputes, commercial torts and land use matters. Ellison represents international energy corporations on various litigation and appellate matters.

Shackelford, Bowen, McKinley & Norton, LLP is an aviation, general business and entertainment law firm with 51 attorneys and offices in Dallas, Fort Worth and Austin, Texas, and Nashville, Tennessee. The firm represents aircraft owners, operators and servicers, financial institutions, recording artists, real estate owners and developers, automobile dealerships, record labels, gas transporters, energy companies and other businesses in legal matters across the country.




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Ex-FCPA Prosecutor Returns to Foley’s Litigation Department in D.C.

Foley & Lardner LLP announced that former federal prosecutor Rohan Virginkar is returning to the firm as a partner in its Government Enforcement, Compliance & White Collar Defense Practice. Virginkar most recently served as a trial attorney in the U.S. Department of Justice’s Foreign Corrupt Practices Act Unit. He also served as counsel to the Assistant Attorney General of the Criminal Division.

At Foley, Virginkar will advise corporations and executives on government and regulatory actions; conduct internal investigations; lead corporate compliance matters; and defend individuals and corporations in white collar matters, the firm said in a release.

The release continues:

During his tenure as a federal prosecutor, Virginkar led some of the Justice Department’s most sophisticated white collar criminal investigations, focusing particularly on violations of the FCPA, health care fraud and securities fraud laws. Virginkar led numerous global investigations of complex, international, white collar criminal matters involving major international companies spanning countries on six continents. He also prosecuted a major global pharmaceutical company, which resulted in over $280 million in combined penalties and fines — the largest ever against a healthcare company for violations of the FCPA.

Virginkar also was a member of the DOJ’s Deepwater Horizon Task Force, where he investigated crimes related to the deadly 2010 disaster and resulting oil spill. For his work on the Deepwater Horizon investigation, which included helping to secure the largest criminal settlement in U.S. history, Virginkar earned the Attorney General’s Award for Exceptional Service, the highest award in the Department of Justice, as well as the FBI Director’s Award for Excellence, one of the FBI’s most prestigious honors.

“We are thrilled to have Rohan return to Foley,” said Scott Fredericksen, managing partner of Foley’s Washington, D.C. office. “Rohan is a perfect fit for our culture of providing excellent service to our clients as they navigate the increasingly complicated and international landscape of enforcement activity by criminal and civil authorities.”
“Rohan’s experience investigating and prosecuting complex international cases, along with his unique insights into the approach taken by government enforcement authorities, will enhance our team’s widely recognized expertise in anti-corruption compliance and internal investigations,” said Mike Gay, chair of Foley’s Litigation Department.

Before entering public service, Virginkar practiced at Foley from 2004 until 2011. He is a 2004 graduate of The George Washington University Law School and a 2001 graduate of the University of California, Los Angeles.


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Michael Fisco joins DLA Piper’s Finance Practice in Minneapolis

DLA Piper announced that Michael Fisco has joined the firm’s finance practice as partner in the Minneapolis office.

In a release, the firm said Fisco counsels clients, including banks, investment funds, debt purchasers and various creditors, on complex bankruptcy and restructuring matters. He works with distressed debt purchasers, indenture trustees and bondholders in restructuring corporate bond defaults, and he has successfully settled numerous high-value domestic claims.

“Multinational financial corporations continue to find themselves facing unclear, complex transactional matters that require strong and experienced counsel,” said John Cusack, global co-chairman of DLA Piper’s Finance practice. “Michael’s proven ability to manage high-profile transactions, debt restructuring and insolvency matters across the US and around the world will immediately strengthen our finance offerings to clients.”

Fisco has represented global asset management firms and leading U.S. banks regarding structured products in Asia and the United Kingdom, including the administration of a $2 billion claim in the Enron bankruptcy case.

“The Twin Cities are home to numerous Fortune 500 companies and global financial institutions,” said Kathleen Smith Ruhland, managing partner of DLA Piper’s Minneapolis office. “Michael’s strong experience combined with DLA Piper’s global platform will be an important value add for our clients.”

Fisco joins DLA Piper from Faegre Baker Daniels in Minneapolis, where he had served previously as the Finance and Restructuring practice leader and Financial Services industry team leader. He earned his J.D., with honors, from the Hamline University School of Law and his B.A. from the University of Minnesota.


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DLA Piper Adds Gislar Donnenberg to Corporate Practice in Houston

DLA Piper announced that Gislar Donnenberg has joined the firm’s corporate practice as a partner in Houston.

Donnenberg focuses his practice largely on capital markets matters in the energy sector, where he has more than 20 years of experience representing both public and private companies engaged in the exploration, production and distribution of natural gas, crude oil and refined petroleum products. He has represented dozens of clients in high-value deals, including IPOs, public equity and debt offerings and mergers and acquisitions, including “drop-downs” from MLP sponsors, according to a release from the firm.

The release continues:

“The energy markets continue to adapt to fast-changing economic conditions, and DLA Piper’s addition of leading lawyers like Gislar enable us to better serve our clients and expand our representation,” said John Gilluly, DLA Piper’s US chair of the Corporate practice. “We will continue to strategically grow our capabilities in the energy sector to further serve our clients’ needs and to help them achieve their goals.”

Donnenberg also advises clients on corporate governance issues, including those related to regulatory compliance, executive compensation, acquisition structuring and conflicts committees. He has experience in the real estate, aviation, chemicals and healthcare sectors in addition to his work in the energy industry.

“Gislar adds key energy experience to DLA Piper’s leading global energy and capital markets practices. He represents both issuers and underwriters and has significant experience advising public company boards and officers,” said Jack Langlois, DLA Piper’s Houston managing partner and US co-chair of the Energy sector. “Gislar’s extensive experience leading IPOs, MLPs and other capital markets transactions and his relationships with leading energy investment advisors will be tremendous resources for new and existing clients.”

DLA Piper is renowned for its deal-making prowess in the energy space, and I’m excited to join a team of this high caliber,” added Donnenberg.

Prior to joining DLA Piper, Donnenberg was a partner with Paul Hastings LLP. He received his J.D. from the University of Texas School of Law, and his Ph.D. and M.A. from the University of Innsbruck, Austria.



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Greensfelder Expands IP Practice, Adds Four Attorneys in St. Louis, Chicago Offices

Greensfelder, Hemker & Gale, P.C., announces a major expansion of the firm’s intellectual property Practice Group with the addition of four IP attorneys in the firm’s St. Louis and Chicago offices.

Mark E. Stallion joins as leader of the patent team. Based in the firm’s St. Louis office, he most recently was a partner with Husch Blackwell LLP. Susan Meyer joins in Chicago as leader of the trademark, copyright and media/advertising team. She also is a member of Greensfelder’s Franchising and Distribution industry group. Also joining the firm in Chicago are Richard C. Himelhoch and Joseph A. Fuchs. Ms. Meyer, Mr. Himelhoch and Mr. Fuchs all previously were with Nixon Peabody LLP.

A release from the firm continues:

“We are thrilled to welcome Mark, Susan, Joe and Richard to our expanding team of intellectual property law practitioners serving our clients throughout the Midwest and the nation,” said Welcome & Participant Introductions Kara E.F. Cenar , the firm’s Chicago-based leader of the Intellectual Property Practice Group. “Each brings a wealth of IP business services and solid patent protection knowledge, as well as experience in diverse industries including technology and start-ups, manufacturing, pharmaceutical, chemical and biochemical, media and advertising, franchising and transportation.”

Greensfelder Chief Executive Officer Timothy R. Thornton said, “This is an exciting time for our firm as we continue to enhance our bench strength in both St. Louis and Chicago to better serve our clients in key practice areas and help them achieve their business goals.”

The new additions continue the IP group’s rapid expansion over the past year. They include practice leaders and seasoned attorneys who provide core business and IP services, as well as serve as the outside IP department for clients.

Cenar added, “Our new IP attorneys also work closely with Greensfelder lawyers in other practice areas, which is critical for enabling us to provide a wide range of legal services to our clients in diverse industries in a cost-effective and efficient manner.”

Stallion’s practice encompasses all areas of intellectual property including patent, copyright, trademark, trade secrets, technology agreements, confidentiality/non-disclosure agreements, and employee/consulting agreements and licensing agreements. In addition, he has a focus on serving the start-up and incubator communities on IP needs involving emerging technologies. Prior to his law practice, Mr. Stallion worked as an engineer and engineering manager for more than a decade. He earned his law degree from St. Louis University School of Law and his Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering from Georgia Institute of Technology.

Ms. Meyer handles IP prosecutions, licensing and dispute resolution and has extensive experience in trademark law. She also focuses her practice on franchising and distribution. She draws on her experience as a former business owner to work with franchisors on compliance issues and serves as outside general counsel for clients on general business matters. Currently serving as president of the Chicago chapter of the Norwegian-American Chamber of Commerce, Ms. Meyer also advises companies on matters related to commerce between the United States and Norway. She earned her law degree from Chicago-Kent College of Law and her Bachelor of Arts from Stony Brook University.

Mr. Himelhoch practices in all areas of IP, including patent litigation and prosecution, and has extensive experience before the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. His work includes domestic and foreign patent prosecution, design around strategies, infringement and validity analysis, trademarks, copyrights, trade secrets and unfair competition, and IP due diligence. Mr. Himelhoch earned his law degree from the University of Wisconsin Law School and his Bachelor of Science from the University of Wisconsin.

Mr. Fuchs focuses his practice on patent prosecution and litigation in the pharmaceutical, chemical and biochemical industries. His clients have included Fortune 100 companies and sole inventors of products. He also has represented generic drug companies in patent infringement lawsuits brought under the Hatch-Waxman Act. Mr. Fuchs earned his law degree from Loyola University School of Law and his Bachelor of Science from the University of Illinois.


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Andrew Kopon, Jr. Becomes President of IADC

At its annual meeting in July, held at the Fairmont Le Chateau Frontenac in Québec City, Québec Canada, the International Association of Defense Counsel (IADC) elected Andrew Kopon, Jr. as its president for the 2017-2018 term.

In a release, the IADC said the organization is an invitation-only global legal organization for attorneys who represent corporate and insurance interests. The IADC’s approximately 2,500 peer-reviewed members hail from six continents, 51 countries and territories, and all 50 U.S. states. The core purposes of the IADC are to enhance the development of skills, promote professionalism and facilitate camaraderie among its members and their clients, as well as the broader civil justice community. Founded in 1920, the IADC is committed to respecting the rule of law and improving civil justice.

Kopon is a founding member of Kopon Airdo, LLC in Chicago. His trial practice focuses on complex civil litigation matters, including mass tort litigation, wrongful death and catastrophic injury cases, as well as pharmacy malpractice and coverage litigation matters. He currently serves as national counsel for a religious risk pooling Trust and a national retailer, overseeing its pharmacy malpractice litigation. He previously served as national litigation counsel for a commercial product manufacturer.

Kopon is Martindale-Hubbell® AV Preeminent™ rated and has been recognized by Illinois Super Lawyers and Leading Lawyers Network for multiple years. In addition to being heavily involved with the IADC and its Foundation, Kopon is an active member of Defense Research Institute and the Illinois Association of Defense Trial Counsel.

He received his B.A. from Providence College and his J.D. from The John Marshall Law School.


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Buchalter Adds Three New Health Care Litigators in Los Angeles

Buchalter announces that Andrew “Andy” Selesnick, Damaris L. Medina, and Suzanne Cate Jones have joined as shareholders in the Health Care Practice Group in Los Angeles. Selesnick and Medina joined the firm from Nixon Peabody, and Jones joined from Theodora Oringher.

A release from the firm continues:

Selesnick and Medina have successfully litigated a number of high-profile health care cases, many in the health care reimbursement arena. Their clients range from physicians and physician groups to hospitals and urgent care centers, pharmacies, dentists, and elective surgery centers. Selesnick and Medina also defend providers in government investigations for fraud and abuse, and routinely represent health care providers in complex business disputes. Both Selesnick and Medina were recipients of a California Lawyer of the Year (“CLAY”) award earlier this year for their California Supreme Court victory in Centinela Freeman Emergency Medical Associates v. Health Net of California, Inc. (2016) 1 Cal. 5th 994 where they successfully argued that Health Plans may be liable to providers of emergency services for negligently delegating their financial responsibility to IPAs.

Jones regularly advises and represents hospitals, medical staffs, and health systems in litigation involving a range of health care areas, including medical staff and peer review, antitrust, medical privacy/security breach, complex business and commercial contracting disputes, health regulatory issues, business torts, and the Federal False Claims Act. Jones also has successfully litigated and resolved health care related class action matters on behalf of hospital clients, including in the areas of medical privacy/security breach and unfair business practices, and is experienced in defending other types of putative class action lawsuits brought against corporate clients, including in the areas of wage/hour, consumer credit reporting, product liability and antitrust.

“Expanding our Health Care Practice is, and has been a priority for our firm. Andy, Damaris, and Suzanne are not only well-known and accomplished litigators, but also valuable assets to both our Health Care and Litigation Practices,” said Adam J. Bass, President and Chief Executive Officer of Buchalter.

Selesnick is currently a member of the California Society for Healthcare Attorneys, Health Care Law Section of the Los Angeles County Bar Association, and the American Cancer Society Race for the Cure. He earned his J.D., at the University of San Diego School of Law, and his B.A. at the University of California, Santa Barbara.

Medina serves as the Treasurer and on the Board of Directors for the Urgent Care Association of America, serves on the Board for the California Urgent Care Association, and is a member of the Los Angeles County Bar Association, Health Care Law Section, and the California Society for Health Care Attorneys. She earned her J.D., cum laude, at Suffolk University Law School where she earned a certificate in International Law, with distinction, and was also a member of Phi Delta Phi International Legal Honor Society. She earned her B.A. from Tufts University.

Jones has served on the board of the Health Law Committee for the California State Bar. She is also a member of the American Health Lawyers Association; American Bar Association, Health Law Group; and the Los Angeles County Bar Association, Litigation, and Health Care Law Sections. She earned her J.D. from Loyola Law School, Los Angeles where she was an editor of the International and Comparative Law Journal, her B.A. in History, Certificate in Russian Studies from the University of Southern California, and completed Russian Studies at the Pushkin Institute in Moscow, Russia.

“The addition of Andy, Damaris, and Suzanne is very complimentary to the transactional health care and life sciences work we are known for,” added Carol Lucas, Chair of Buchalter’s Health Care Practice Group. “We are thrilled to welcome the newest members of our team, and delighted to offer their impressive capabilities to our clients.”



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Freeborn Adds Matthew J. O’Hara as Litigation Partner

Matthew J. O’Hara has joined Freeborn & Peters LLP as a partner in the Litigation Practice Group.

“We are thrilled to welcome Matt to our vibrant Litigation Practice Group,” said Freeborn’s Co-Managing Partner Michael J. Kelly. “Matt brings deep experience as a trial lawyer in diverse commercial matters, particularly involving securities, shareholder and partnership litigation, and the full range of business disputes. Matt also brings substantial experience in professional liability matters for law firms, including legal malpractice, legal ethics, and disciplinary defense.”

A release from the firm continues:

O’Hara concentrates his litigation practice in complex commercial matters in federal and state courts. He has tried cases involving antitrust, the federal securities laws, breach of fiduciary duty, trade secrets, trademark infringement, breach of contract, license agreements, executive employment, the Uniform Commercial Code and criminal defense. He also litigates cases involving private shareholder and partnership disputes, legal malpractice, the Uniform Fraudulent Transfer Act and other commercial matters. He has represented clients in investigative proceedings before the Securities and Exchange Commission, Federal Trade Commission, and Illinois Attorney Registration and Disciplinary Commission. He also is experienced in briefing and arguing state and federal appeals.

O’Hara most recently was a partner at Hinshaw & Culbertson LLP, where he served as a member of the Executive Committee and as co-chair of the Lawyers Professional Liability practice group.

Active in providing pro bono legal services, O’Hara was one of the recipients of the Constitutional Rights Foundation Chicago’s Bill of Rights in Action Award in 2008. He earned his J.D. from Chicago-Kent College of Law and his Bachelor of Arts from Northwestern University.



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Michael Best Adds Litigation Senior Counsel

Michael Best announces that Steven J. Joffee has joined the firm’s Litigation Practice Group as senior counsel in the Salt Lake City – Midvale office.

“Steven is a respected trial attorney in and around the Salt Lake City region and will bring a wealth of knowledge and appellate experience to our litigation group,” said Richard Ensor, Michael Best’s Office Managing Partner in Salt Lake City. “He joins a team who is passionate about the work and their clients. I’m confident he’ll be a great fit for the firm.”

A release from the firm continues:

Joffee focuses his practice on representing clients in various matters in front of state and federal trial and appellate courts. He has substantial experience litigating matters in a variety of substantive areas, including civil and commercial disputes, product liability, contract disputes, eminent domain, employment issues, and personal injury. He has successfully represented clients in numerous jury trials and appeals, including in appeals before the United States Supreme Court and United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit.

“I’m excited to have made the move to Michael Best,” said Joffee. “The firm is recognized for its stellar litigation work, and I hope I’ll be able to elevate its presence through exceptional counsel and service to our clients.”

Joffee began his career clerking for Chief Justice Matthew Durrant of the Utah Supreme Court and for Judge Scott Matheson of the United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit. Following his clerkships, Joffee worked at the Washington, D.C. office of an international, full service, AmLaw “A-List” law firm, and later as a partner at a litigation and corporate law boutique in Salt Lake City.

Joffee earned his J.D. from the University of Utah S.J. Quinney College of Law, where he was executive editor of the Utah Law Review, and he received his B.S. from Brigham Young University.


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Labor & Employment PAGA Attorney Joins Blank Rome in Los Angeles

Blank Rome LLP announces that Laura Reathaford has joined the firm as a partner in the Labor and Employment group in the Los Angeles office. She joins from Venable LLP.

In a news release, the firm said Reathaford focuses her practice on management-side employment litigation, with special emphasis on representative actions under the Private Attorney General Act (PAGA) and other wage and hour collective and class actions. PAGA allows aggrieved employees to file lawsuits to recover civil penalties on behalf of themselves, other employees, and the State of California for Labor Code violations. The act represents a significant threat to California employers and is in a constant state of change, requiring the most experienced, creative defense counsel.

“We are very excited to welcome Laura to the Firm,” said Alan J. Hoffman, Blank Rome’s Chairman and Managing Partner. “Laura is well known to our labor and employment team for her leadership in the defense of wage and hour claims, especially claims brought under PAGA. She brings considerable strength to this essential labor and employment capability in California, and adds equally considerable strength more broadly across the spectrum of defense-side labor and employment law for our clients across the country.”

The release continues:

Reathaford is a distinguished litigator across the full range of employment disputes, including claims for wrongful termination, sexual harassment, unpaid wages, discrimination, and union grievances. She is also an experienced trial attorney having achieved favorable judgments in numerous PAGA actions, as well as FLSA actions and in single plaintiff retaliation matters. In addition to high-stakes litigation, Reathaford counsels clients on termination issues, employee handbooks, leave and disability rules, and California and federal wage and hour laws. She represents the management of public and private businesses in the manufacturing and grocery industries, as well as in banking, healthcare, and telecommunications, both in California and nationwide.

“Still a relatively new law, PAGA is constantly evolving and our clients in California need the most experienced counsel to respond creatively and effectively to a rapidly increasing number of claims,” said Scott F. Cooper, Partner and Co-Chair of the Firm’s Labor and Employment practice. “Just recently, the California Supreme Court approved class-action like discovery of employee contact information in representative PAGA cases. Laura has been ahead of the curve on PAGA since the beginning. And as we field a growing number of calls from clients regarding PAGA, they will quickly see the benefits of having Laura join our team.”

“The labor and employment group at Blank Rome offers clients an exceptional depth and breadth of talent that I am excited to join and help grow,” said Reathaford. “I also look forward to once again collaborating with Partner Howard M. Knee, with whom I have worked before, as well as contributing high-level client service and legal practice to the Firm as it continues to expand both locally and nationally.”

“Laura will be a tremendous resource to the Firm’s ongoing commitment to diversity and inclusion, particularly with regards to our Women’s Forum,” adds Brooke T. Iley, Partner and Co-Chair of the Firm’s Labor and Employment practice. “Her previous role and experience in leading women’s diversity initiatives at Venable will be instrumental in advancing not only Blank Rome’s affinity groups, but also our firm’s efforts in diversifying the legal profession at large. I am excited for the new insights that she will bring to the table, which will greatly benefit both our clients and Firm.”

Reathaford earned her J.D. from Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia, and B.Comm. from the University of Alberta.



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