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BCG News - 5/3/04


Wilson Sonsini hires five partners to open San Diego branch

Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati

at Kinzan, Inc., and will work on corporate and securities matters. Martin Waters, relocating from Palo Alto, will help build the corporate and life sciences practices for the new office. All five of the new partner hires formerly worked at now-defunct Brobeck, Phleger & Harrison. Firm Press Release, 5/3/04

BCG News - 5/3/04

Squire Sanders adds fourth office in Asia
Continuing with the almost weekly tradition of U.S. firms opening Asian offices (Chinese offices, in particular), Cleveland-based Squire Sanders & Dempsey gained approval from the Chinese government to open an office in Shanghai. Squire Sanders has maintained a presence in Asia since the 1950s and currently has three other offices in the region - in Tokyo, Hong Kong, and Beijing. The firm has placed an emphasis on growing its Asian practice in recent years, highlighted by the doubling of the Beijing office's staff last year. Dan Roules, who will serve as managing partner of the new office, believes that having a presence in Shanghai is central to the firm's international goals, as it is the "commercial heart of the world's most dynamic economy." Amy Sommers will join him in opening the office as a national partner and together, the two of them will oversee what the firm expects to be rapid expansion over the next few years. Firm Press Release, 5/3/04

Milberg Weiss completes firm split
The former partners of Milberg Weiss Bershad Hynes & Lerach announced today that their old firm has finished splitting into two separate entities, a process that the two sides had hoped to finish at the end of last year. Milberg Weiss Bershad & Schulman will keep more than 100 attorneys from the firm, approximately 40 of which are partners, as well as offices in New York, Boca Raton, Los Angeles, Wilmington and Seattle. The firm will also retain four of the original firm's name partners, including Patricia Hynes, who will continue to work with Milberg Weiss in an Of Counsel role. The leaders of the firm's West Coast operations will form a new 125-attorney, 51-partner firm named Lerach Coughlin Stoia & Robbins. Lerach Coughlin will be headquartered in San Diego, and will have satellite offices in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Houston, Philadelphia and Washington, DC. Prior to the split, Milberg Weiss Bershad Hynes & Lerach was the largest plaintiffs' securities litigation firm in the country with more than 200 attorneys. Both firms will continue to work on the same matters and expect to have an amicable and mutually beneficial relationship. Firm Press Releases, 5/3/03

Adorno & Yoss expands out of Florida to open its sixth office
Miami-based Adorno & Yoss, the largest certified minority-owned firm in the country with 185 attorneys, is opening an office in Atlanta, its first outside of Florida. The firm said in a press release issued today that this is the first step in its plan to develop a more national presence, as it hopes to expand to other prominent legal markets in the future. The firm's Atlanta office will be staffed with six attorneys and will focus on construction and commercial litigation, but will be grown to offer a full-service practice over time. Adorno & Yoss now has six offices, with attorneys also in Boca Raton, Delray Beach, Fort Lauderdale, Miami and West Palm Beach. Firm Press Release, 5/3/04

Houston IP boutique opens office in Austin with Thompson & Knight hires
Wong Cabello Lutsch Rutherford & Brucculeri, a Houston-based intellectual property boutique, has expanded to Austin. A group of three attorneys, including one partner, William Raman, and two associates, from Thompson & Knight was hired to open the new office. Raman expressed excitement in joining Wong Cabello in a press release, saying, "While my prior firm was an outstanding firm, I am thrilled to be practicing again with an intellectual property firm having the depth and diversity of intellectual property talent that I find at Wong Cabello." The firm was founded in 2001 with 5 attorneys and becomes one of the largest intellectual property boutiques in Texas with 16 attorneys after the most recent hires. Firm Press Release, 4/30/04

Two Virginia firms complete merger
On May 1st, Richmond-based Williams Mullen
merged with Norfolk-based Hofheimer Nusbaum, one day after Williams Mullen broke news of the merger. The merger creates the third largest firm in Virginia and the second largest law firm in the Hampton Roads region, with 250 attorneys in nine offices. Hofheimer Nusbaum brings 29 attorneys from offices in Norfolk and Portsmouth to Williams Mullen, and due to the firm's solid reputation in the area, those offices will practice under the name Williams Mullen Hofheimer Nusbaum. The remaining seven offices in Charlottesville, London, Newport News, Richmond, Tysons Corner, Virginia Beach and Washington D.C. will continue to practice as Williams Mullen. Both firms were interested in the merger as a way to offer its existing clients a more diverse practice, with Williams Mullen also expressing interest in further strengthening its Virginia roots. Firm Press Release, 4/30/04

Saul Ewing gains three from Duane Morris in Harrisburg
Philadelphia-based Saul Ewing has announced that it has added two partners, Eric Brossman and Catherine Walters, and one associate to its ranks in Harrisburg. The three attorneys all come from Duane Morris and will join the firm's business department. Brossman specializes in corporate and bankruptcy work, while Walters focuses on labor and employment law matters. The firm sought to hire the group because it saw a need for those exact specialties in the Harrisburg community. Saul Ewing currently has approximately 250 attorneys working in seven offices in the mid-Atlantic region and more than 20 attorneys in its Harrisburg office. Firm Press Release, 5/3/04

Minneapolis firm adds offices in Michigan, Washington, DC
Blackwell Igbanugo announced last week that the firm will be able to offer clients a national presence when it opens two new offices, one in Troy, MI and the other in Washington, DC. The firm, which has around 25 attorneys, is opening these two satellites as part of its first expansion effort to complement the firm's headquarters in Minneapolis. Jacqueline Sellers, who joins the firm from Detroit-based Lewis & Munday, will open the Troy office and head the firm's warranty litigation practice. Also coming from Lewis & Munday, Werten F.W. Bellamy will open the firm's Washington, DC practice and head the firm's corporate and technology group. With the additions, the firm becomes one of the largest law firm owned by African Americans in the country. Firm Press Release, 4/29/04

Hogan & Hartson adds two from Quinn Emanuel
Sanford Litvack and Joanna Swomley will join the New York office of Hogan & Hartson, the duo's third firm in the last four years. The two partners has previously worked at Dewey Ballantine together, but left that firm to work at Quinn Emanuel Urquhart Oliver & Hedges in late 2002. Litvack and Swomley are moving to Hogan & Hartson because Litvack wanted to join a firm with a presence in Washington, DC. Litvack, who also formerly worked at Disney, will join the firm's antitrust and litigation practices and will also spend time in the firm's Los Angeles office. Swomley will focus on complex commercial litigation work. New York Law Journal, 5/3/04

Altheimer & Gray's former chairman starts boutique firm
Gery Chico, who formerly led Altheimer & Gray from 1999 until the firm dissolved late last year and then moved to an Of Counsel position at Arnstein & Lehr, has decided to leave his second firm in a year and open up his own boutique firm with partner Marcus Nunes. The firm, which will be called Chico & Nunes, will focus on zoning and property law in Chicago. Speaking with the Chicago Sun-Times, Chico said that he and his partner wanted to start a Hispanic-owned law firm to offer real estate, litigation, and municipal law work to corporations interested in working with a minority-owned law firm. The parting with Arnstein & Lehr was cordial, and the two firms plan on referring work to each other. Chicago Sun-Times, 4/27/04

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