Update, 4/23/2013, 6:07 p.m. EDT: News of a seven-shareholder team joining Littler Mendelson has been added to the first paragraph below.
Labor and employment firm Littler Mendelson announced Tuesday that is has hired a seven-lawyer team from Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Stewart. The new hires, led by shareholder Don Prophete in Kansas City, officially joined the firm this week in cities around the country.
The other new Littler shareholders are: Damon Hart in Boston; Irene Gallagher in Denver; Nikki Hininger Howell and Nicholas Walker in Kansas City; Anjanette Cabrera in New York; and Robert Ortbals Jr. in St. Louis. Prophete, 45, told The Am Law Daily that while spread out geographically, the group of employment litigators have worked together for years and share clients, including many in the utilities, retail, restaurant, and banking industries.
Reuters broke the news earlier this month that Prophete, who until January served as a vice-chair of Ogletree, had resigned from the firm. Prophete told Reuters at the time that he chose to leave after a disagreement with Ogletree management about the treatment of a lawyer he had recruited to the firm. Ogletree managing shareholder Kim Ebert told Reuters that after an extended disagreement, "we felt it was best for Don and for the firm to go their separate ways." (Tuesday, Prophete said that the reports are accurate but that "I’m past it now.")
Prophete says 983-attorney Littler’s exclusive focus on labor and employment work and its resources dedicated to the practice in offices around the world drew him to the firm. He had worked at Ogletree for eight years.
In other Churn news . . .
The latest addition to Baker & Hostetler’s Washington, D.C, office is LANCE SHEA. He joins the firm’s food and drug law practice from the partnership of Fulbright & Jaworski, where he primarily represented companies in the life sciences industry.
AVINASH GANATRA, a former Squire Sanders partner, has joined the partnership of Carter Ledyard & Milburn. A member of the corporate department, Ganatra will concentrate on capital markets and securities matters out of the firm’s New York office.
THEODORE BECKER has lateraled to Drinker Biddle & Reath to chair the firm’s national employee benefits and Employee Retirement Income Security Act litigation group. Becker, based in Chicago, has made the move from Morgan, Lewis & Bockius, where he was a partner.
Haynes and Boone has welcomed FRANK VIVERO as a partner in its corporate practice in New York. Vivero specializes in international transactions, with a particular emphasis on Latin America. Most recently, Vivero was of counsel at Milbank, Tweed, Hadley & McCloy.
Two new partners have joined K&L Gates’s Charleston office. MICHAEL BRYAN joins the corporate and mergers and acquisitions practice, while JULIUS "SAM" HINES will work with the commercial dispute group. Previously, Bryan led Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough’s sustainable energy group, and Hines was a leader of Womble Carlyle Sandridge & Rice’s admiralty and maritime practice group.
Former Nelson Mullins partners JON NEIDITZ and AMANDA WITT have left the firm to join Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton in Atlanta. Neiditz, who was a coleader of Nelson Mullins’s information management practice, and Witt were both hired as partners in the firm’s global sourcing and technology team.
The Frankfurt office of Latham & Watkins has welcomed new partner OKKO BEHRENDS in its financial institutions group. Behrends’s practice focuses on capital markets transactions. He was previously with Allen & Overy.
JANIS KERNS has rejoined former firm Nelson Mullins, returning to its financial services practice as of counsel. Kerns, an investment management attorney, had left Nelson Mullins in 2009 to become the editor of ACA Insight, a weekly news source for investment management legal and compliance professionals. She will be based out of the firm’s Washington, D.C., office.
Proskauer Rose has hired ROBIN FEINER, the former executive director of equity capital markets and equity corporate finance at UBS. Joining as senior counsel in the New York office, Feiner will focus on initial public offerings and equity markets capabilities.
DLA Piper’s former Chicago-based chair of the firm’s Midwest banking practice, JAMES KAPLAN, has left the firm to join Quarles & Brady as a partner. Kaplan will be working with the Chicago-based corporate services team on a wide range of matters related to financial services, banking, and securities.
Seyfarth Shaw has announced the launch of a new office in Shanghai—the firm’s first location in Asia—expected to open this summer. To lead the efforts, Seyfarth has hired former DLA Piper partner WAN LI. As reported by sibling publication The Asian Lawyer, Li will focus his work on corporate and labor and employment matters.
Sheppard Mullin Richter & Hampton has bolstered its New York office with the addition of three new partners and two special counsel. MARYJEANETTE DEE, a member of the business trial practice group, makes the move from Richards Kibbe & Orbe, where she was a member of the executive committee. JOHN HEMPILL, previously cochair of the emerging companies and venture capital group at Morrison & Foerster, will be working with the firm’s corporate practice. The third partner, a labor and employment attorney, is JACK KILEY, who was most recently the chair of Kelley Drye & Warren’s labor and employment practice. Kiley brings with him from Kelley Drye a team of six labor and employment attorneys including special counsel CHRISTOPHER COLLINS and KEVIN SMITH and four associates.
The Churn is compiled from law firm releases and announcements. Moves based on our own reporting will note this. Please send all announcements and news releases to email@example.com.
Sara Randazzo contributed reporting.