Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman has hired Timothy Brugh, who most recently served as a vice president and West Coast director of fiduciary services at The Goldman Sachs Trust Co., as a partner for its offices in San Francisco and Silicon Valley.
After spending more than a decade at the financial services giant, Brugh decided to return to private practice and join Pillsbury Winthrop’s estates, trusts and tax planning group Tuesday. Prior to Goldman Sachs, Brugh worked at Wells Fargo Private Bank for about six years, where he served as a senior vice president in Palo Alto.
“I wanted to go back into the practice of law while I still have the time in my career to build a practice,” Brugh said.
At Pillsbury Winthrop, Brugh will counsel individuals and families with substantial wealth regarding taxes, estate planning and philanthropic endeavors. For 25 years, Brugh has worked with ultra-high-net-worth clients, including the so-called top 0.1 percent of U.S. households, a group defined as those with more than $20 million in assets.
“That is one of the reasons that Pillsbury was a good option for me,” Brugh said. “I choose to work at [the firm] because my practice is focused on those ultra-high-net-worth clients and families. Pillsbury is a good fit for the type of clients that I hope to represent.”
Before making the move in-house to financial services firms in 2001, Brugh was an associate at San Jose-based Hopkins & Carley. Brugh started his legal practice at a San Jose-based boutique, The Law Offices of Fleishman & Weisman, where he was an associate for about six years.
“Pillsbury has long been known for its top-ranked private wealth practice, and we continue to enlarge the scope of our talented pool of attorneys in those markets where client demand is highest,” said a statement from Jennifer Jordan McCall, chair of the firm’s estates, trusts and tax planning practice. “Tim, who has deep connections in the greater Bay Area and Los Angeles, brings unique credentials to Pillsbury. The high-net-worth individuals and organizations we advise will benefit immensely from him being here.”
Brugh’s arrival follows after a number of other hires of wealth management and tax planning practitioners by the firm. Early this year, Pillsbury Winthrop welcomed aboard seasoned estate planning adviser and former Withers Bergman senior partner Joseph Field as senior counsel in Los Angeles, New York and San Francisco. Pillsbury Winthrop also set up shop in Miami early last year after adding a six-lawyer team from Boies Schiller Flexner. That group focuses its practice on advising high-net-worth individuals, as well as corporate and partnership tax clients.
Pillsbury Winthrop said it has 10 lawyers in its estates, trust and tax planning practice firmwide, although the firm also has a larger tax practice that does overlapping work in the space. That tax group got a jolt in May when Pillsbury Winthrop added a 13-lawyer team from Eversheds Sutherland.
Brugh will work closely with McCall and fellow partner Kim Schoknecht to help the firm build out its private client practice.
“In the Bay Area, there is a lot of wealth, there is a lot of clients that are creating their own businesses and companies, so there is a lot of economic activity,” Brugh said. “So it’s a good place to be if you are practicing tax and trusts and estates law.”
Pillsbury Winthrop has long-established roots in the region, having been formed via a 2005 merger between San Francisco-based Pillsbury Winthrop and Washington, D.C.-based Shaw Pittman. The firm’s San Francisco office opened in 1874, followed by a Silicon Valley opening more than a century later in 1981. According to Pillsbury Winthrop, it now has more than 150 lawyers in the Bay Area, with 104 of them in San Francisco and another 50 in Palo Alto.