Former Philadelphia and federal prosecutor Joe Khan has made the move from 34-lawyer Spector Gadon & Rosen to the local office of Weisbrod Matteis & Copley, a similarly sized firm based in Washington, D.C.
Khan, who ran for Philadelphia district attorney last year in the Democratic primary, said he was inspired to make the move after the election. District Attorney Larry Krasner ultimately won the primary and the general election.
“I had hoped I could find another opportunity where [like being a prosecutor] every day I was able to get up and if I read about a problem in the newspaper, I could find a way to fix it,” Khan said.
One of the major subjects of discussion on Khan’s campaign, he said, was the opioid crisis, and that’s an area of focus for his practice at Weisbrod Matteis.
Khan plans to “lead the firm’s effort to go after the pharmaceutical industry for their role in this epidemic,” he said. “It’s safe to say that we’ll be representing county, local and state government entities who have suffered significant economic harm as a result of the opioid epidemic.”
Khan said he also plans to work on whistleblower cases and insurance coverage disputes, using “the same muscles I used as a prosecutor.” Khan said that at 35-lawyer Spector Gadon he also advised public officials and candidates, and he expects to continue working with those clients at his new firm.
Running for DA was an “uplifting” experience, Khan said. “One of the benefits of emerging from this process has been increasing my profile and to demonstrate to people I hope I’ll be working with that I will be able to fight for justice.”
Khan will continue serving as an adjunct professor at the University of Pennsylvania Law School, and will lead Weisbrod Matteis’ national diversity committee. He is also a member of the South Asian Bar Association of Philadelphia.
In its announcement of Khan joining the firm, Weisbrod Matteis said hiring him represents “a significant investment in the market.”
“Landing a heavyweight like Joe is another sign of our firm’s robust growth,” Weisbrod Matteis chairman August Matteis said in a statement.
The firm now has four lawyers in Philadelphia, office managing partner Lee Epstein said, out of about 30 lawyers overall.
“The firm itself is dedicated to pursuing corporate misconduct matters and whether it be insurance companies or a pharmaceutical company, we think Joe is an ideal fit for our burgeoning opioid practice,” Epstein said.
Philadelphia-based Epstein joined Weisbrod Matteis in 2016 as part of the firm’s initial move into the city—its first location outside Washington, D.C. The firm plans to open an office in Mississippi soon, he said.
“We’re trying to cover a lot of areas where folks need assistance in responding to very harmful conditions, whether it be opioids or disasters such as the hurricanes that have come down the pike over the last year,” Epstein said. “Our goal is to be a pre-eminent litigation boutique across the country and we’re trying to fit that bill here in Philadelphia.”
In a statement, George Vinci Jr. of Spector Gadon said, “We have nothing but the highest regard for Joe and his legal ability and wish him the best of success in his new association and practice areas.”