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Duane Morris' offices garner strength

Duane Morris hired former DLA Piper attorneys to fortify its newly created Baltimore office. The four new hires, three partners and one senior counsel, will concentrate in the firm's corporate practice group. The firm is receptive to hiring more attorneys, and wants to expand the scope of their practice areas beyond corporate and transactional work. The creation of the Baltimore office was spurred by the firm's active decision to reach out to the clients in the mid-Atlantic region. Senior counsel Wilbert Sirota, the partners Jay Gordon Cohen, Keli Isaacson, and George Nemphos will deal primarily with venture capital and private equity work, mergers and acquisitions, and securities law.

Nemphos will serve as the managing partner of the Baltimore office. He will concentrate on venture financing, public offerings of securities, securities law compliance, debt financing, and mergers and acquisitions. Sirota, as chairman of the office, will look after transactions involving venture capital, mergers and acquisitions, estate planning, and general corporate and tax law. Cohen's lot will be venture capital and private equity investments, domestic and international mergers and acquisitions, and start-up company financing. Isaacson will concentrate on finance law, corporate law, and securities law regarding private and public debt and equity offerings, and venture capital transactions.

The firm plans to continue expansion by increasing its presence in Chicago. To accomplish this, the firm has added nine experienced attorneys from well-known law firms in the Chicago area. These firms include Baker & McKenzie, Jenkens & Gilchrist, Katten Muchin Rosenman LLP, Bell, Boyd & Lloyd LLC, Seyfarth Shaw LLP, Sonnenschein Nath & Rosenthal, LLP, Quarles & Brady LLP, and the Illinois State Government's Department of Health. The Chicago office is trying to bolster its diversity, which has had a positive effect on the firm's overall growth. Specific improvements have been made in the areas of health law, business reorganization and financial restructuring, corporate, real estate, trial, employment, and immigration.

The Chicago office also added three new partners earlier this year. Patricia S. Hofstra, Charles B. Lewis, and John R. Weiss, the said partners, each specialize in different practice areas. Hofstra advises healthcare professionals and healthcare companies in corporate, regulatory, and litigation matters. Lewis practices in construction law and litigation. Weiss specializes in corporate restructurings and recapitalizations, loan defaults, and bankruptcies. The office also added two Special Counsels in the Employment and Immigration Practice Group, and four associates in the areas of health law, corporate practice, real estate, and trial practice.

Earlier additions to the firm's head count include two new partners; James E. Brown and Kristin Werner. These two have joined the Philadelphia office in a bid to strengthen the firm's presence there. The duo joined the Duane Morris from Cozen O'Connor , where they handled insurance coverage.

Ford & Harrison opens Melbourne office
Atlanta-based national labor and employment law firm Ford & Harrison LLP hired Andrew S. Hament as partner for its newly opened office in Florida. The new office is the firm's fifth location in Florida, and the sixteenth location in the U.S. An expert in the practice area, Hament joins the law firm from GrayRobinson. Hament has amassed wide experience with businesses in the Space and Treasure Coast area of eastern Florida. In addition to representing clients in all areas of labor and employment law, Hament counsels clients in employment relationships, including sexual harassment, drug abuse, and drug testing, the Family and Medical Leave Act, and the growing concerns about violence in the workplace. Hament has done much work towards the establishment of employers' right to transfer wage and hour lawsuits filed under the Fair Labor Standards Act from state court to federal court. The firm has more than 175 lawyers in its 16 offices. Other Florida locations include Jacksonville, Miami, Melbourne, Orlando, and Tampa.

Duane Morris & Selvam LLP


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