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Palo Alto, Calif.-based Gary Cary Ware & Freidenrich is pumping up the ranks of its 10-month-old Washington, D.C., office with the transfer of Margaret Kavalaris, a senior partner in the firm’s Silicon Valley office. Kavalaris, a former managing partner of the Palo Alto office, will officially take the helm at the Washington, D.C., outpost in January. She already has a residence in D.C. Gray Cary opened its Washington, D.C., satellite earlier this year by absorbing Blumenfeld & Cohen, a nine-lawyer telecommunications and regulatory boutique. Since then, the firm has increased the ranks in the office to 13 lawyers. Co-chair of the firm’s corporate securities group and a member of the firm’s management committee, Kavalaris is a high-powered player in the Valley. Her transfer signals the firm’s commitment to the new outpost, said Chairman J. Terence O’Malley. Kavalaris said her first priority is to build the firm’s antitrust expertise in the office and tailor it to the needs of technology companies. She also plans to expand the firm’s capital markets expertise by hiring more corporate lawyers. “I want to exploit our antitrust and intellectual property capabilities and build the corporate transactional practice to increase our company-side representation,” Kavalaris said. “We are going to go big or stay home in East Coast,” Kavalaris said. “And we’re already there, so we’re going to go big.” Kavalaris won’t be the first homegrown partner to work in the new Washington, D.C., office. R. Allyn Taylor, another longtime Gray Cary partner in the office, had relocated to Washington, D.C., because of her spouse’s job and was telecommuting to the Palo Alto office until the merger. Kavalaris said her move is permanent, though her husband, Rene Navarro, a Santa Clara County Superior Court judge, will stay in California until he retires. O’Malley said Kavalaris is charged with bulking up the firm’s corporate expertise in the outpost, which is already heavy in intellectual property and regulatory expertise. “We did not start with a corporate finance capability there and decided that we really wanted to have the benefit of the Valley culture and the best way to do that was to transplant out existing partners,” O’Malley said. O’Malley added the firm is lucky that Kavalaris was willing to take on the challenge of building a new office. “Maggie’s practice over the last two decades has spanned both startups and large public companies,” O’Malley said.

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