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ARENT FOX Nancy Heermans, 55, has joined Arent Fox’s litigation group as a partner in the D.C. office. Her practice focuses on ERISA litigation and bankruptcy. Before rejoining Arent Fox, Heermans was the associate chief counsel for litigation at the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corp., a federal entity that insures the pensions of American workers and retirees. In her role she was responsible for the agency’s complex litigation in federal court. Her work included representing the agency in large bankruptcies, such as those of United Airlines, Enron, US Airways, and Raytech. Heermans received her J.D. from the University of North Carolina School of Law.
CANAM STEEL CORP. Ron Peppe has accepted a position at Canam Steel Corp. as general counsel and chief compliance officer in its Point of Rocks, Md., office. Canam Steel is an industrial company that operates 11 plants specializing in the design and fabrication construction of steel for large-scale facilities such as convention centers and professional-sports stadiums. Peppe, 44, previously served as vice president of law and technology for the Association of Corporate Counsel in Washington. He earned his J.D. from the University of Maryland School of Law.
NIXON PEABODY Nixon Peabody announced the expansion of its technology and intellectual property practice with the addition of three attorneys. Jeff Schwartz and Lawrence Sung joined as partners, and Mary Webster came aboard as counsel. The trio arrived from Schwartz, Sung & Webster. Sung, 40, is a professor of IP law at the University of Maryland School of Law as well as a writer and a speaker. He co-wrote the book Patent Infringement Remedies. Sung also recently chaired a session for the National Academy of Sciences on intellectual property and toxicogenomics. He received his J.D. from American University, Washington College of Law and his doctorate in microbiology from the Department of Defense, Uniformed Services University. Schwartz, who concentrates on IP patents and appeals, has litigated patent cases in U.S. district courts and has appellate experience before the Federal Circuit and the U.S. Court for Veteran Appeals. A registered patent attorney, he co-wrote The Patent Law Handbook. Schwartz, 48, earned his J.D. from Georgetown University Law Center. Webster, 45, practices biotech patent law for corporate and university clients. She received her J.D. from American University, Washington College of Law.
PROSKAUER ROSE Thomas Sjoblom has joined Proskauer Rose as a partner in the firm’s D.C. office and will also work out of its New York office. Previously a partner at Chadbourne & Park, Sjoblom, 57, specializes in working with financial institutions and officers, directors, and professionals at public companies in each stage of a criminal investigation by the Securities and Exchange Commission, the Department of Justice, state regulatory agencies, and self-regulatory organizations such as the New York Stock Exchange and the NASD (formerly known as the National Association of Securities Dealers). Before entering private practice, Sjoblom spent nearly 20 years at the SEC, where he prosecuted numerous white-collar cases. He earned his J.D. from William Mitchell College of Law.
ROSS, DIXON & BELL Jimmy Rock, 29, has been hired by Ross, Dixon & Bell’s D.C. office as an associate. Rock concentrates on litigation and corporate criminal defense and internal investigations. He moved over from Sidley Austin, where he was an associate for two years. He also served as a judicial law clerk for Judge Maurice Paul of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Florida. Rock earned his law degree from Emory University School of Law.
TROUTMAN SANDERS Michelle Leonhart has joined Troutman Sanders as an associate in the real estate finance practice group in the Tysons Corner, Va., office. Leonhart came to the firm from Snell & Wilmer in Tucson, Ariz., where she was an associate. At her former firm, Leonhart represented several national lending institutions. Specifically, she represented clients on real estate acquisitions, developing lines of credit, and multiline borrowing-base facilities. She also assisted clients with participations, syndications, loan workouts, and general real estate development matters. Leonhart, 31, received her J.D. from the University of Arizona James E. Rogers College of Law.
VEDDER PRICE Edward Gross, 49, formerly a partner at Ober Kaler Grimes & Shriver and chair of the firm’s lending and leasing practice, will join Vedder Price’s equipment finance group as a partner. Gross represents bank-affiliated and large independent equipment financing companies in aspects of equipment finance, especially business aircraft financing. His work in this area includes documenting, structuring, negotiating, syndicating, and enforcing equipment finance transactions. Gross earned his J.D. from the University of Baltimore School of Law. — Nathan Carlile
Please send notices of new D.C.-area hires or promotions to Nathan Carlile. Personnel notices should include new title and area of specialization, previous place of employment and title, education, and age.

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