David A. Nasatir has rejoined Obermayer Rebmann Maxwell & Hippel after nearly two years in the Philadelphia office of Thorp Reed & Armstrong, from which he is bringing a group of lawyers and staff, his new firm announced.
Nasatir is rejoining Obermayer Rebmann as chairman of its business and finance department, a group for which he served as vice chairman before leaving the firm. He is bringing with him Thorp Reed associates Karen M. Sanchez and Stephanie J. Sprenkle, marketing specialist Beth Dainoff and paralegal Annette Talerico.
Nasatir and partner Jonathan W. Hugg left Obermayer Rebmann in May 2011 to join Thorp Reed. Hugg, a litigator, is still with Thorp Reed. Prior to leaving the firm, Nasatir had been with Obermayer Rebmann for 14 years.
Nasatir said he was very happy at Thorp Reed but when The Legal Intelligencer broke the story in January that the firm was in merger discussions with Detroit-based Clark Hill, Nasatir began getting calls.
One of those calls was from Obermayer Rebmann management committee member Thomas A. Leonard. Nasatir said Leonard was "relentless" for about three weeks in selling Nasatir on the opportunity to lead and grow the firm’s business and finance practice.
One source familiar with Nasatir’s move said at the time of his departure from Obermayer Rebmann that "in the realignment of power within Obermayer," after the termination last year of management committee member Jeffrey Rotwitt, "it became clear that Dave wasn’t part of" the new management structure. The source said Nasatir had run for a management committee position a few times over the years, including this year, and lost.
Nasatir said in 2011 that he ran numerous times in the past, so the latest loss "was nothing unusual" and didn’t contribute to his leaving the firm. He had said he always thought his career would be spent at Obermayer Rebmann, but said the opportunity at Thorp Reed was just too good to pass up.
Nasatir had similar sentiments Monday in regard to his return to Obermayer Rebmann. He said he could have stayed at Thorp Reed for another 20 years but the chance to lead his old department at Obermayer Rebmann was an opportunity he couldn’t resist. The business and finance department had not had a sole chairman since Rotwitt was fired in 2010 in the wake of the revelation that he served in dual roles as tenant representative for the Philadelphia court system and as developer of a property the court was looking to develop into a new family courthouse building.
Nasatir focuses his practice on corporate, real estate and public finance work. He has spent the last few years handling a lot of lending work and workouts for financial institutions in the wake of the recession and economic recovery. He said almost all of the clients who followed him to Thorp Reed have rejoined him at Obermayer Rebmann.
Thorp Reed Philadelphia office leader Joseph M. Donley said in an emailed statement that "we appreciate the fact that Dave was presented with a tremendous opportunity that he could not pass up in returning to Obermayer. We wish him and the other attorneys continued success."
Donley also pointed out that Hugg and Nolan Shenai, who also joined Thorp Reed with Nasatir and Sanchez in 2011, "continue to have thriving commercial litigation and financial services litigation practices" at the firm.
Nasatir said he has plans to grow Obermayer Rebmann’s business and finance department. Leonard said in a statement that Nasatir is charged with helping to grow the firm’s real estate and corporate practices into national models.
Aside from his legal practice, Nasatir has been involved in the Montgomery County Democratic Committee, serving as its vice chairman from 2002 through 2006. He is currently the co-chairman of the party’s judicial screening committee. He was also director of visibility and volunteer activities for the Joe Hoeffel for Congress Campaign in 1996.
Nasatir’s addition follows Obermayer Rebmann’s hire in January of litigation partner Paige Macdonald-Matthes in Harrisburg, Pa., and former Philadelphia Housing Authority Deputy General Counsel Michael Eichert in Philadelphia.
When Nasatir and Hugg joined the Philadelphia office of Thorp Reed, it was with the goal of helping to expand the Pittsburgh-based firm’s presence in Southeastern Pennsylvania. Thorp Reed now has 12 attorneys in Philadelphia, according to its website, along with a few Pittsburgh attorneys who spend time in the office.
Nasatir’s departure comes on the heels of word that Pittsburgh-based Sarah Lockwood Church, head of Thorp Reed’s employee benefits and executive compensation practice, was leading a team of three other attorneys to Saul Ewing’s new Pittsburgh location.