Jack Nusbaum, chairman of Willkie Farr & Gallagher, has handed over the reins of the New York law firm he has long governed. Corporate partners Thomas Cerabino and Steven Gartner took over with the start of the new year following more than two decades of Nusbaum as the public face of the 700-lawyer firm.

The handover has been in the works since April 2008, when Cerabino, 53, and Gartner, 50, were promoted to vice chairmen, roles that put them in line to succeed Nusbaum. Both plan to maintain active practices, which was a consideration in naming two leaders instead of one chairman. “We just think operationally it makes sense to have two people at the helm when they have active practices,” Gartner said.

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