For K&L Gates, the week began with a Crain’s Chicago Business story about the state of the firm’s “shrinking” Chicago office three years after it was established via a merger with Bell Boyd & Lloyd. K&L Gates chairman and global managing partner Peter Kalis told Crain’s via email that despite its reduced size, the Windy City office has seen its revenue increase 13 percent so far this year.
Next came an anonymously sourced law360 story (“Expect More Exits From K&L Gates, Ex-Partners Say“; subscription required) that painted a portrait of a firm in crisis. (Kalis declined to comment to law360.)
That story was then subjected to a critical analysis—i.e, evisceration—on Above the Law. Finally, at 5:36 a.m. EDT Friday, Kalis blasted out a three-page, ten-point, firmwide email in which he trumpeted how well he says K&L Gates is faring amid what recent reports have described as challenging times for large law firms. (Above the Law was the first to report on and publish the memo, a copy of which The Am Law Daily obtained and converted into a PDF. A K&L Gates spokesman said Kalis had no comment beyond what was contained in the memo.)
Amid all that, the firm announced that it had added a total of six partners this week. Four of them—MATTHEW DUNCAN, THERESA KRADJIAN, PAUL MATTHEWS, and SEAN CROSKY—joined K&L Gates’s finance practice in London. Duncan, Kradjian, and Matthews were previously with Sidley Austin; Crosky arrives from Norton Rose.
Duncan advises clients on finance matters including residential mortgage–backed securities and lending platforms. Kradjian’s practice includes structured finance transactions and securities lending arrangements. Matthews focuses on derivatives and Crosky counsels on a wide range of securitization and finance transactions.
The other new arrivals come from Alston & Bird. STACY ACKERMANN and NACHAEL BRIGHT have joined K&L Gates’s Charlotte office as partners in the real estate investment, development and finance practice. Ackermann advises clients on financial and credit market transactions, while Bright’s experience includes capital markets transactions, corporate transactions and commercial leasing.
In other Churn news…
WILLIAM ROSOFF has joined Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld and will head the firm’s Beijing office. Rosoff, an international corporate transactions partner, was previously at Cozen O’Connor. He handles mergers and other corporate and China-related matters.
Two partners have left Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer for Allen & Overy. KENT ROWEY and DOLLY MIRCHANDANI join A&O’s global energy and infrastructure practice in New York. Both have extensive experience handling infrastructure matters, and Rowey was head of energy and infrastructure for the Americas at Freshfields.
Securities lawyer KAMAL JAFARNIA has joined the New York office of Alston & Bird. Jafarnia, whose expertise includes compliance and regulatory matters, will serve as counsel in the financial services and products group. He was previously counsel at American Realty Capital and chief compliance officer at an affiliated broker dealer, Realty Capital Securities.
Alston & Bird has also added an environmental litigator from ManattJones Global Strategies. MARK JOHNSON, a partner based in Los Angeles, joins Alston & Bird’s environmental and land development practice group. His practice includes handling petroleum contamination cases, toxic torts, and matters relating to the California Coastal Act.
Barnes & Thornburg has hired AARON WATSON in Atlanta as of counsel. Watson, who will serve in the governmental services and finance department, is an Atlanta city councilmember at large and previously practiced at his own firm. He has also served on the Board of Education and the Atlanta Housing Authority board of commissioners.
Cooley welcomes back GEOFF WILLARD, who left the firm in 2005. Willard, who will be a partner in Cooley’s Reston, Virginia, office, handles mergers, debt financings, and other corporate matters. Since leaving the firm, he has practiced as a partner at DLA Piper and, most recently, at VLP Law Group. He joins Cooley’s business department.
Crowell & Moring has expanded its public policy group with a new partner from Goldman Sachs. ERIC EDWARDS, who will be based in Washington, D.C., was previously vice president of Goldman Sachs Group’s office of government affairs. He has experience advising on government affairs, business and finance, and has held senior staff positions in the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate.
JAMES KIPLING, formerly the chief legal officer of toymaker Hasbro’s Kenner division, has joined the IP department at Dinsmore & Shohl as a partner. Kipling, who will be based in the firm’s Cincinnati office, has experience handling IP protection, enforcement, and negotiations.
IP litigator TRACEY DAVIES has joined Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher in Dallas. Davies, previously at Vinson & Elkins, focuses on patents in the life sciences, pharmaceutical, and biotechnology industries.
Hodgson Russ has recruited JANE BELLO BURKE from Albany law firm O’Connell and Aronowitz. Burke will be a partner in Hodgson’s health law practice group in Albany and has experience with regulatory and compliance matters related to health care.
Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe have gained five real estate lawyers in Frankfurt who are moving over from Simmons & Simmons. MARTIN MEISSNER, formerly the head of Simmons’s Frankfurt office, will be a partner in Orrick’s real estate group. He is joined by two of counsel, HARALD HELLER and SABINE WIEDUWILT, and two associates. Meissner focuses his practice on project development and transactions, commercial real estate portfolios, and related matters.
MARK BARNES rejoins Ropes & Gray as a partner in the health care practice, where he previously served from 2001 to 2008. Barnes went on to become chief research compliance officer and senior associate provost for research at Harvard University. Barnes, who will be based in Boston, handles health care and higher education clients.
Sedgwick has added three partners and three associates to its Austin office from Texas firm Smith, Robertson, Elliott, Glen, Klein & Douglas. ALAN GLEN, MICHAEL KLEIN, and LISA MICHAUX MAGIDS are joining as partners. Glen focuses his practice on environmental permits and matters including endangered species. Klein handles fair housing litigation and premises liability cases, including construction site accidents. Magids is a litigator whose expertise ranges from business disputes to securities and trade secret matters.
Squire Sanders has added an of counsel in Washington, D.C. ORLANDO CABRERA, who held the same title at Nixon Peabody, will lead the firm’s new housing, tax credits and community development industry group. His practice focuses on housing regulation and related matters.
Squire Sanders has also recruited a partner from Hunton & Williams. CHRIS AMANTEA joins the environmental, safety and health practice group in Los Angeles. He handles air, water, solid and hazardous waste regulation, product liability, and toxic torts.
JENNIFER SICKLER has left Gardere Wynne Sewell to join Thompson & Knight in Houston. Sickler, who joins as a partner in the IP practice group, handles litigation, arbitration, and mediation related to patent, trademark, copyright, trade secret, and licensing matters.
The Churn is compiled from law firm releases and announcements. Moves based on our own reporting will note this. Please send all announcements and news to firstname.lastname@example.org.