Swidler Berlin is losing some wattage. Last week, 14 energy attorneys announced they were leaving for 650-lawyer Alston & Bird. The group is led by one of Swidler’s founding partners, Steven Agresta, and Kenneth Jaffe. Along with four other partners, they’ll depart with two sizable utility clients: National Grid USA and California Independent System Operator Corp.

Alston & Bird’s Washington, D.C. managing partner Frank Conner says the firm is “thrilled” with the acquisition, particularly since the recently passed energy bill is expected to spur investment in that sector. The move is a significant blow to Swidler: Not only do the departing attorneys account for roughly 10 percent of the lawyers at the firm but they leave Swidler with just a single energy regulatory partner.

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